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Zachary Joseph Urton pleads guilty to aggravated murder with a firearm in the death of Gervais resident Kenny Kalugin in Salem

A Dundee man has been sentenced to life in prison for his part in the 2017 murder of a Gervais man during a drug buy gone wrong in Salem.

PMG FILE PHOTO - UrtonZachary Joseph Urton, 37, pled guilty in Marion County Circuit Court to aggravated murder with a firearm and first-degree attempted robbery in the death of Kenny Kalugin in November 2017. He was sentenced April 22 by Judge Audrey J. Boyles to life in prison with a minimum sentence of 40 years. In exchange for his guilty pleas, multiple other charges against him were dismissed. He will be eligible for parole after having served 30 years in prison.

Urton was the last of three suspects to be sentenced in connection with the death of Kalugin, who was found dead from multiple gunshot wounds in a car in a Salem alley in November 2017.

In pleading guilty, Urton admitted he joined Jose Barboza-Manzo and Vanessa Garcia-Beiza with the intent to meet Kalugin in Salem to get drugs. Urton admitted to shooting Kalugin multiple times with the intent to take the drugs by force.

The three suspects fled the scene in a vehicle driven by Garcia-Beiza, which was identified by witnesses near the scene of the shooting prior to Kalugin's death. Barboza-Manzo and Garcia-Beiza were arrested in the days following the shooting, while Urton was arrested three weeks later after attempting to elude a police officer during a car chase.

At the time of his arrest, a warrant for Urton had already been issued for multiple charges, including meth and heroin possession, as well as delivery of drugs within 1,000 feet of a school. On Feb. 22, he was sentenced in Clackamas County to 25 months in prison on charges of attempting to elude a police officer and felon in possession of a firearm, both from the 2017 car chase.

Urton is the second of the three suspects to plead guilty to Kalugin's murder after Barboza-Manzo did so in December.

Barboza-Manzo was the first suspect to be arrested after Salem police detectives apprehended him at a Tillamook County residence following a standoff with Oregon State Police SWAT team. Five days before he was scheduled to stand trial, Barboza-Manzo pleaded guilty to the murder, admitting his involvement in the robbery that led to Kalugin's death, and was sentenced to life in prison as well.

Garcia-Beiza was arrested shortly after Barboza-Manzo on charges of first-degree robbery and murder. She admitted in court documents to driving Barboza-Manzo and Urton from the scene after hearing gunfire. The murder and robbery charges against her were dismissed in exchange for her pleading guilty to a single count of hindering prosecution. She was sentenced to 60 months probation.

Urton familiar to local police

Urton is no stranger to the criminal justice system closer to home. He was one of two people arrested in June 2011 in the robbery of a Best Western Hotel in Newberg in which he brandished a gun and demanded money. Based on a surveillance video, detectives identified the suspects' vehicle and tracked it to a location in Dundee; the vehicle belonged to a member of Urton's family, police said.

The suspects were tracked to a motel in Salem and apprehended. Urton was arrested on an outstanding warrant and charged with first- and second-degree robbery, second-degree theft, conspiracy to commit robbery, menacing, unlawful use of a weapon and conspiracy. He plead guilty to second-degree robbery in exchange for having the other charges dismissed. He was sentenced to 70 months in prison.

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