One person has died from a gunshot wound and a second person remains hospitalized from a self-inflicted gunshot wound Friday afternoon in the Orleans Natural Area, police said.
Corvallis police are continuing the investigation.
At 2:32 p.m. Friday, a passing motorist reported that a man had been shot in the 28200 block of Highway 34 between the Willamette River and the Highway 20/34 bypass. The man was transported to Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center.
Upon investigating, police found a second gunshot victim nearby in a wooded area. The person was deceased at the scene. Authorities are withholding the identities of both people involved pending notification of next of kin.
Lt. Dan Duncan said there was no danger to the public, but detectives were treating the scene as a criminal investigation.
“It appears that it was just the two people involved,” Duncan said. “Anytime you have an investigation like this, until you have all the information, you investigate it as a criminal matter until otherwise proven.”
Police blocked off the Van Buren Bridge and Highway 34 from the bypass to Northwest First Street following the shooting. Traffic was being diverted to Second Street but there was a roadblock to the bridge itself.
Police said Friday evening that it would likely be “several hours” before the highway would reopen. Detoured traffic on Highway 20 between Corvallis and Albany was backed up for miles at about 5 p.m.
The Corvallis Police Department is leading the investigation because even though the Orleans Natural Area is in Linn County it is also within city boundaries.
The Oregon State Police Crime Lab was called Friday evening to assist at the scene.
“Our entire detective team is working on it right now,” Duncan said. “The investigation is ongoing. It takes a lot of people to get to the bottom of this.”
Several Corvallis police vehicles, an incident command truck, a Corvallis Fire Department engine, Oregon State Police and the Oregon Department of Transportation all responded to the scene Friday.