Investigation reveals details in Libke murder

Investigation reveals details in Libke murder

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by Sara Roth, KGW.com Staff

kgw.com

Posted on February 3, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 4 at 3:11 AM

OREGON CITY, Ore. – New details have emerged about the murder of Oregon City officer Robert Libke, including the suspect’s history of violence.

Libke, a 41-year-old volunteer reserve officer, responded to a house fire on Nov. 3 and was shot and killed by the homeowner, 88-year-old Lawrence Cambra.

Cambra also died after shooting himself.

Background: Officer Libke dies after being shot in Ore. City house fire

On Monday, Chief Jim Band of the Oregon City Police Department led a press briefing about the murder investigation, completed by the Clackamas County Major Crimes Team.

Read full murder investigation 

According to Band, Cambra had a history of violence and had a restraining order taken out against him in October 2012.

Neighbors heard him arguing with his partner the night before Libke’s murder.

Then, on Nov. 3, Cambra set his house on fire after arguing again with his partner, threatening to kill her, burn the house down and kill himself, investigators said.

Cambra’s partner escaped by spraying him with mace.

Neighbors reported seeing Cambra standing at the door, disoriented. Three officers, including Libke, responded to the scene.

According to the investigation, Libke saw the suspect, drew his weapon, approached Cambra and told him to drop his gun. A little more than a minute after Libke exited his patrol car, Cambra shot him in the head.

After the shooting, multiple officers responded to the scene. They failed to see visible signs of life, investigators said.

"Our police officers and deputies were on scene for a long time, but they were busy making sure they were able to evacuate and get people to safety and set up a perimeter so the suspect couldn't escape," said Sgt. Matt Paschall of Oregon City Police. 

SWAT team officers arrived on the scene and saw signs of life. They reached Libke and then loaded him into a Life Flight helicopter so he could be flown to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center.

Meanwhile, other SWAT officers tracked down Cambra and shot him twice before Cambra turned his gun on himself.  Investigators said Cambra died as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Libke died as a result of his injuries at Legacy Emmanuel on Nov. 4. He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Ultimate Sacrifice by the Governor’s Commission on the Law Enforcement Medal of Honor, as well as the Oregon City Police Medal of Valor, Purple Heart, Distinguished Service Award, and Chief’s Medal of Merit.

Libke is survived by his wife and unborn child, due in February.

Related: Vigil held for slain Oregon City officer Robert Libke 

KGW Reporter Ashley Korslien contributed to this report. 

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