Featured News, Siskiyou

Man Convicted of First-Degree Murder in Siskiyou County Shooting

Timothy Chase McDonald

Yreka, CA – A Siskiyou County jury has found Timothy Chase McDonald, 26, guilty of first-degree murder for the shooting death of Spencer Hodgson, 31, in a case that dates back to April 2019.

On April 8th, 2019, the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office received a report of a possible dead body near Yreka Walker Road in the Klamath River area. The victim was identified as Spencer Hodgson, and the Sheriff’s Forensic Pathology team determined that Hodgson had died from multiple gunshot wounds in a homicide.

In January 2020, nearly a year after the murder, Sheriff’s Deputies arrested Timothy McDonald after new information came to light. According to the Sheriff’s Office, McDonald had confided in an acquaintance that he had ambushed Hodgson after discovering flirtatious texts between the victim and McDonald’s girlfriend. Investigators believe that Hodgson did not know McDonald at the time of the murder.

Per SCSO Press Release: The Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office expressed gratitude to their detectives and forensic team for their efforts in the investigation, as well as to the District Attorney’s Office for their dedication in pursuing justice. They also thanked witnesses who provided crucial information to detectives during the investigation.

The Sheriff’s Office extended their condolences to the family of Spencer Hodgson and all those affected by this senseless and tragic crime. They hope that the jury’s verdict will provide some sense of closure for those who cared for Hodgson.

McDonald’s sentencing date has not yet been announced, but he faces a significant prison term for the first-degree murder conviction.

January 3rd, 2020 Sheriff’s Office Seeks Public Support to Solve Murder Case
Up To $50,000.00 Reward Offered

continued on www.siskiyou.news

Mr. Spencer Richard Hodgson, found deceased in the Klamath River area of Siskiyou County.

Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) detectives continue to probe the homicide involving a former Santa Cruz County resident, Mr. Spencer Richard Hodgson, found deceased in the Klamath River area of Siskiyou County. A “Secret Witness” reward, coupled with a donation, has been combined in the case, which means up to $50,000.00 is being offered for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the suspect(s) responsible for the murder of the victim in this case. Mr. Hodgson’s body was found in a ravine on April 8, 2019 in vicinity of Yreka Walker Road in the Klamath River area. On Monday, April 8, 2019 at about 9:06 a.m., a Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) deputy responded to the location after receiving a report of a possible dead body. Klamath River is a small, rural community located about 27.6 miles northwest of Yreka astride SR 96, near the Klamath River. Siskiyou County is the northern-most central county in California and is contiguous to the Oregon border. The responding SCSO deputy arrived at the scene and confirmed the body was that of a deceased male adult. SCSO’s Major Crimes Unit (MCU) was summoned and responded to the scene. An extensive crime scene investigation was conducted by detectives and MCU’s forensic technician. The victim was identified as a local man, Mr. Hodgson, 31, most recently a residence in the Klamath River area. Spencer previously had long-term ties in the Santa Cruz, California area.

An autopsy was conducted on April 10 and the forensic pathologist and detectives confirmed the cause of death as gunshot wounds and the manner of death as homicide.

SCSO investigators were able to recover the victim’s missing pick-up truck, with the assistance of the California Highway Patrol’s (CHP) Northern Division Air Operations Unit. A CHP-piloted aircraft with the MCU’s detective sergeant as a passenger-observer, found the missing pick-up after an aerial search was conducted in the area. A dog owned by the victim was also found alive and well and was given to family members. The pick-up vehicle is considered a source of potential evidence for investigators and its recovery has led to additional leads. Detectives have interviewed a number of associates of the victim and family members. Search warrants were obtained and some potential evidence was recovered and the case is still on-going but leads have dissipated over time. The reward has been offered to motivate anyone out there with information about the case to contact SCSO investigators. Virtually any information could be important to the case. Forensic analysis of evidence found at the scene and in the pick-up owned by Mr. Hodgson is underway and may yield additional information critical in the case.

Assistance and support has been requested from Sheriff Jim Hart of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office and his staff, which is assisting with the dissemination of the reward and information about the case in Mr. Hodgson’s previous home county. Although Mr. Hodgson has most recently resided in the Klamath River area of Siskiyou County, the investigation has revealed there are links between Spencer and other people, including friends and associates in the Santa Cruz County area.

According to Sheriff Jon Lopey, “There is a good chance someone in Siskiyou County knows something about Mr. Hodgson’s case. We have disseminated a news release in the Santa Cruz County area as well, in the hopes of obtaining additional investigative leads in this case. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Siskiyou County, Oregon, and Santa Cruz County news outlets for helping us with this important case. Any information about Spencer’s activities prior to the April 8, 2019 incident, even of a minor nature, and any other leads about this homicide could be pivotal in this case. Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact a SCSO detective at (530) 842-8318 and refer to SCSO Case Number 1-19-0547.”

One Comment

  1. Cindy Brown

    Wondering how much subscriptions to the Siskiyou News might be? The Yreka Branch Library would like to subscribe to your paper copy. Thanks.

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