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Suspect Arrested in Tomato
Patch Murder

Fifty-two year old Chuck Sollish surrendered to police after a Lane County grand jury indicted him in the murder of a neighbor.

EL CAJON, CA: A McKenzie Bridge man, wanted in the shooting death of a 70 year old neighbor, turned himself into police last Wednesday. Nathan Charles "Chuck" Sollish had been indicted for murder following a two month investigation into the death of Henry Guelld.
   Guelld was shot to death on September 23 while watering tomatoes in a garden adjacent to property owned by Sollish. The victim was hit twice in the chest by rounds fired from a .22 caliber weapon. He died at the scene, about 50 feet from the edge of Highway 126.

   According to the Lane County Sheriff's Office, there was an apparent dispute over damage to plants owned by Sollish, who believed Guelld was responsible. There were no eyewitness to the crime. Sollish was determined to be the suspect after many contacts with the public and people who knew Sollish.
   Larry Korthof, another neighbor who discovered the body, first went to the
McKenzie Bridge Store to call for help. When he returned, he saw Sollish drive up and enter his residence. Calling out and banging on the door caused no response from Sollish, Korthof said. That was one of the last times he was seen in the area.  Since then his house has appeared unoccupied.

   Police intensified their investigation on October 14, stopping traffic in McKenzie Bridge and handing out close to 200 flyers. They also were seeking information concerning firearms and ammunition owned by Sollish.
   On November 23 investigators received a report that Sollish had been observed in the Eastern Oregon City of Boardman. He was driving a 2001 purple Dodge Neon with Oregon plates. Police also believed he was armed with a .44 magnum handgun.
   Last Monday a warrant was issued for his arrest for homicide. Sollish was taken into custody two days later in El Cajon, California, near San Diego. Police said he was in phone contact with a relative and after a short conversation agreed to turn himself in. Soon after he walked into the El Cajon Police Department and surrendered.

   Sollish will have to appear in court in California before he can be returned to Oregon.

Original Tomato Patch article

Text and photo: Mckenzie River Reflections      (C) 2001  Reprinted by permission

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