Remains of missing man recovered near Klamath Falls

November 29, 2016

The family of a missing man found dead near Klamath Falls earlier this month said they do not believe his death could have been a suicide, although investigation of the incident is ongoing.

The remains of Brett Thomas Farmer were recovered three weeks ago following his disappearance Aug. 23, 2014, when Farmer was 42.

He was last seen leaving his girlfriend’s house in Klamath Falls and his vehicle was found abandoned shortly afterward near Long Lake Road, west of the city. His remains were not located until this month.

Oregon State Police (OSP) Detective Donnie Miller said Monday a local resident found evidence of Farmer’s remains Nov. 4 near where the car was found. On Nov. 6 the Klamath County Major Crime Team, including OSP and the Klamath Falls Police Department, investigated the scene and recovered Farmer’s remains.

Though witnesses initially told investigators Farmer was suicidal at the time of his disappearance, Miller said the cause and time of death are unknown due to the incomplete condition of the remains, and are still the subject of investigation.

But Farmer’s sister, Heidi Dishmon, of Yucca Valley, Calif., said Farmer’s relatives have no reason to believe the deceased killed himself and instead think he was a victim of homicide.

Dishmon said it was Farmer’s then-girlfriend who told investigators Farmer may have killed himself and, if authorities had spoken with additional relatives, they would have been told suicide was not a possibility.

“Nothing’s going to bring him back, but to slander his name because of one disgruntled girlfriend is unfair,” said Dishmon.

She acknowledged her brother did have struggles late in his life with substance abuse stemming from chronic pain from a cancer diagnosis during his childhood. At the time of his disappearance, Farmer was enrolled in Klamath County Drug Court related to a 2013 conviction for burglary and was investigated shortly before he went missing for the theft of prescription painkillers from a local resident, according to court records.

“We did not know how addicted he had become and how much it would change his life,” said Dishmon, who said the family is remembering Farmer as “young at heart” and someone who “emanated love for everyone.”

But despite her brother’s challenges, Dishmon said there is no reason for her to believe Farmer was suicidal and the family is hoping OSP will bring a killer to justice. On Monday Miller said, while homicide has not been ruled out as a cause of death, authorities are not actively investigating any suspects.

Dishmon said Farmer’s remains are being sent to her this week and the family is planning a funeral for Dec. 29 in Utah. She encouraged anyone with information about her brother’s death to contact OSP at 541-883-5713.