Estate of murder victim files wrongful death lawsuit

Gary Lewis in a Multnomah County courtroom on murder charges, July 8, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)
Gary Lewis in a Multnomah County courtroom on murder charges, July 8, 2014 (KOIN 6 News)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN 6) — The estate of a murder victim has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the man accused of killing her.

The civil lawsuit, filed earlier this week, claims Gary A. Lewis, 61, intentionally caused the death of Renee Sandidge-Crowley by blunt force trauma to the head.

An undated photo of Renee Sandidge released by the Portland Police Bureau on June 8, 2014
An undated photo of Renee Sandidge released by the Portland Police Bureau on June 8, 2014

According to court documents released in the criminal case, Lewis used a hammer to murder Sandidge-Crowley.

The civil lawsuit claims Lewis caused the death around June 7, but her body, police said, wasn’t found until June 10.

When police search Lewis’ property in the 3900-block of Northeast 66th Avenue they found a hidden underground bunker.

Lewis faces charges of murder, abuse of a corpse, unlawful use of a weapon and being a felon in possession of body armor.

Because of “intentional acts” of Lewis, Sandidge-Crowley’s estate suffered economic damage for cremation expects of $1,000, the court documents state.

The lawsuit seeks $498,000 to cover lost earnings on Sandidge-Crowley’s behalf, the court documents state. It also seeks $500,000 for non-economic damages.

Josh Lamborn, the attorney on the case, has requested a jury trial.

Lamborn said Wednesday he plans on seeking a court injunction to ensure Lewis does not sell or get rid of any potential assists pending trial.

No future court dates have been set as of yet for the civil trial.

A tentative trial date for Lewis’ criminal case has been set for July 31, 2014 but will likely be re-set.

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