Sherwood man arrested, accused of murdering girlfriend
A Sherwood man is facing charges on suspicion of murdering his girlfriend, the Washington County Sheriff's Office announced Wednesday evening, Aug. 10.
Fabian Albert Hernandez, 31, is accused of killing 27-year-old Kaylee Birdzell, whose body was reportedly discovered Tuesday, Aug. 9, at a landfill in Benton County.
The Sheriff's Office said Hernandez and Birdzell "had been in a relationship," and after Birdzell's family reported she was missing last Friday, Aug. 5, they interviewed Hernandez on Sunday, Aug. 7.
Hernandez was originally arrested Sunday on unrelated charges of identity theft and fraudulent use of a credit card. After detectives found the body, and the Oregon State Medical Examiner's Office confirmed the remains were those of Birdzell, detectives added presumptive charges of second-degree murder and abuse of a corpse.
Hernandez has been in jail since Sunday, according to the Sheriff's Office.
The Sheriff's Office said it received a tip Sunday that Birdzell had been killed and her body put into the garbage at a local apartment complex. Detectives reportedly investigated the tip and found cause to believe Birdzell had been killed.
The garbage from the apartment complex was apparently taken to the landfill in Benton County, near Corvallis. Detectives traced the path of the garbage and searched the landfill Tuesday, locating Birdzell's remains.
The investigation remains open, and additional charges against Hernandez are possible, the Sheriff's Office said.
Hernandez was already facing trial for multiple felony charges, including burglary, theft and criminal mischief, stemming from incidents in 2020, 2021 and 2022, according to court records. He is tentatively scheduled to face trial over those open cases in January 2023.
Detectives are asking for the public's help in investigating the homicide case. Anyone with information about Hernandez or Birdzell's recent activities or Birdzell's death should call the Sheriff's Office at 503-846-2700.
Editor's note: The Family Justice Center of Washington County reminds everyone that resources are available if you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence or abuse.
If this is an emergency and you or someone you know is in danger, call or text 911 immediately.
You can also call them individually at:
• Domestic Violence Resource Center: 503-469-8620
• Sexual Violence Resource Center: 503-640-5311
• Safety Compass: 971-235-0021
• Washington County Mental Health: 503-291-9111
Tri-county resources Include:
• Multnomah County, Call To Safety: 503-235-5333
• Clackamas County, A Safe Place and Clackamas Women's Services: 888-654-2288
• The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233
By Mark Miller
Editor-in-Chief, Washington and Columbia counties
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