Tina Ketcham, a 40-year-old woman from Oregon, was found dead in Linn County Jail on March 11, two weeks after she was arrested on multiple child sex abuse charges. Ketcham was charged with six counts of first-degree rape, two counts of first-degree sex abuse, one count of first-degree sodomy, and six other sex offenses against a young boy. Prosecutors said that the charges only represented a fraction of Ketcham’s alleged abuse and that hundreds of charges could have been brought against her.
Ketcham had allegedly raped the boy from 2015 to January 2020 when he reported the abuse to the police. Investigators did not disclose the relationship between Ketcham and the victim, but they said that he was known to her when the abuse began. Ketcham denied all the charges brought against her.
During her bail hearing, Ketcham’s lawyer, Stephen Doyle, argued that his client’s business stake meant that she was a low flight risk and that granting her bail would allow her to attend counseling sessions. However, the judge refused to reduce her bail from $350,000 to $50,000. Ketcham killed herself while awaiting her next hearing.
Linn County Sheriff Jim Yon said that corrections deputies found Ketcham hanging in her cell and unresponsive during hourly security checks at 5:10 am on March 11. Deputies immediately entered the cell, activated medics, and started life-saving measures. However, Albany Fire Department paramedics pronounced Ketcham dead shortly after their arrival. Sheriff Yon added that no further details would be revealed as the investigation was still ongoing.
The victim’s identity was not disclosed to protect him, but he will have to live with the trauma caused by Ketcham’s actions for the rest of his life. Ketcham’s death has left many questions unanswered, but it serves as a reminder of the devastating impact that child sexual abuse can have on victims and their families.