Woodburn man charged with murder of woman found dead at Salem motel

A 23-year-old Woodburn man on parole for strangulation has been charged with murdering a Gresham woman found dead at a Salem motel in August.

The Salem Police Department announced that Raul S. Martinez “surrendered to authorities” on Monday, Sept. 19. Martinez turned himself in at the Marion County Jail.

He was indicted by a Marion County grand jury on Sept. 6, 2023 for second-degree murder with a firearm in the death of Janet Ramos-Hernandez, 22. He also was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and lodged on a parole violation.

Police have released few details of the murder. Salem police earlier said they found Ramos-Hernandez dead at the Shilo Inn on Market Street when they responded to a “CPR call” early on Saturday, Aug. 19.

In 2020, Martinez pleaded guilty in Marion County Circuit Court to strangulation, fourth-degree assault and third-degree robbery.

“I caused physical injury to a person who was pregnant and I impeded her normal breathing in the presence of a minor child and I used physical force upon a person while in the course of committing theft,” he said in his petition to plead guilty.

He was sentenced him to 36 months of probation, court records show.

In September 2022, his probation was revoked and he was sentenced to six months in state prison.

STORY TIP OR IDEA? Send an email to Salem Reporter’s news team: [email protected].

SUPPORT OUR WORK We depend on subscribers for resources to report on Salem with care and depth, fairness and accuracy. Subscribe today to get our daily newsletters and more. Click I want to subscribe!

Les Zaitz is editor and CEO of Salem Reporter. He co-founded the news organization in 2018. He has been a journalist in Oregon for nearly 50 years in both daily and community newspapers and digital news services. He is nationally recognized for his commitment to local journalism. He also is editor and publisher of the Malheur Enterprise in Vale, Oregon.