Yamhill Co. Sheriff's Office
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News Releases
2016 murder suspect who fled to Mexico gets extradited to face charges in Yamhill County. (Photo) - 07/17/24

The following information is released jointly by the Yamhill County Sheriff's Office and Yamhill County District Attorney's Office:

45-year-old Victor Melcher-Villalba recently completed extradition proceedings in Mexico and was returned to the United States where he is currently housed in the Yamhill County Correctional Facility. 

On October 2, 2016, the body of an adult female was discovered in a blueberry field in rural Dayton, by a passerby. The body was later identified by the Oregon State Police Crime Laboratory as 37-year-old Lilia Cosco-Ortiz from Vancouver Washington. An autopsy revealed Cosco-Ortiz died from homicidal violence.  The Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the Yamhill County Major Crimes Team investigated the homicide. 

Following the investigation which led investigators to Oregon, Washington State, and California, Melcher-Villalba was indicted by a Yamhill County Grand Jury on one count of Murder on January 19, 2017, and a warrant was issued for his arrest. Investigators later received information Melchor-Villalba may have fled the United States to Mexico. The Yamhill County Special Investigations Unit worked with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and secured a federal arrest warrant for Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution on Melcher-Villalba.

On July 11, 2022, law enforcement learned Melcher-Villalba had be taken into custody in Durango, Mexico on unrelated charges. The Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Unit along with the District Attorney’s Office worked with the United States Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs to request Melcher-Villalba’s extradition from Mexico back to Yamhill County to face a murder charge.

On Tuesday, July 16, 2024, Melcher-Villalba was transported by the Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agents back to Oregon where he was released to the custody of Sheriff’s Office Investigators. 

Melcher-Villalba’s first court appearance will be on Wednesday July 17.

Sheriff Sam Elliott praised the work by all law enforcement partners involved in this case which has brought Mr. Melcher-Villalba back to Yamhill County to stand trial.      

The Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office and the Yamhill County District Attorney’s Office want to thank the United States Department of Justice Office of International Affairs and the Federal Bureau of Investigation for their continued partnership, in securing Melcher-Villalba’s arrest and return to Yamhill County. 

Attached Media Files: FB_-_Media_Release_-_squad.jpg
YCSO responds to fatal motor vehicle crash (Photo) - 07/16/24

On July 15, 2024, just after 2:00 am Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a motor vehicle crash in the 6800 block of SE Eola Hills Road in rural Amity.  Responding personnel found a single vehicle, a silver 2007 Hyundai SUV, which had left the roadway striking a tree.


The driver, identified as 55-year-old Richard Howard of rural Amity, was deceased at the scene. Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office conducted the crash investigation and alcohol impairment, speed, and no seatbelt use were all determined to be factors in the crash.


Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by Amity Fire District and McMinnville Fire District during this crash response.

Attached Media Files: Eola_Hills.JPG