Keizer mom charged with murder in death of preteen son

The murder victim was a preteen boy

12-year-old Caden Berry was found dead in his Keizer home on January 14, 2017. (Courtesy photo)
12-year-old Caden Berry was found dead in his Keizer home on January 14, 2017. (Courtesy photo)


KEIZER, Ore. (KOIN) — The mother of a 12-year-old boy has been charged with murder after authorities found the preteen boy’s body in a Keizer apartment.

Keizer police and fire personnel were called to the Riverwood Apartments at 175 Garland Way North around 12:40 p.m. Saturday, officials said. The fire department arrived first and found the boy, identified as Caden Berry, dead inside the apartment.

The boy’s mother, identified as 38-year-old Amy M. Robertson, was also at the scene and cooperated with police when they arrived. She was taken into custody and remains cooperative, authorities said. She faces a charge of aggravated murder and was booked into the Marion County Correctional Facility on Sunday morning without bail.

Amy M. Robertson faces a charge of aggravated murder, police say. January 15, 2017, (KPD)
Amy M. Robertson faces a charge of aggravated murder, police say. January 15, 2017, (KPD)

Neighbors who spoke with KOIN 6 News didn’t want to be fully identified, but said Berry was well-liked. They said they were immediately concerned when they heard Robertson yelling in the courtyard and he was nowhere to be seen.

“His mom just came out here yelling,” one neighbor said. She was reportedly swinging her arms around and said something about demons to another neighbor. Though it wasn’t immediately clear to them what was wrong, the teen was noticeably absent.

“I went out there and told her to calm down. She said, ‘OK,'” a neighbor told KOIN 6 News. “I said, ‘Where’s your son?’ She said, ‘In the house under the blanket.’ So I went into his room. He wasn’t in there.”

As she searched further, she found the boy in the living room.

“There was a recliner tipped over and he was halfway on it under a blanket,” she said. “I pulled the blanket back and I could tell he was gone.”

12-year-old Caden Berry was found dead in his Keizer home on January 14, 2017. (Courtesy photo)
12-year-old Caden Berry was found dead in his Keizer home on January 14, 2017. (Courtesy photo)

The neighbor said Berry wasn’t breathing and was cold. His head was laying on the arm of the up-turned recliner, covered with a blanket.

“I tried to wake him up, and he wouldn’t wake up. So I ran out and yelled to call an ambulance.”

When the neighbor did that, Robertson reportedly said, “I told you not to move the blanket.”

One of his young friends in the complex said there may have been warning signs earlier this week. “He just wasn’t acting right,” Berry’s friend told KOIN 6 News.

“He was, like, always happy and he was never really, like, sad. Until yesterday. He looked really sad and he was, like, a really close friend.”

The investigation continues and an autopsy will be performed by the Oregon State Medical Examiner’s Office

Robertson faces an aggravated murder charge and is scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday at 3 p.m. According to the Keizer Police Department, aggravated murder includes incidents that involve the intentional homicide of a child under 14 years old.

Friends remember Caden Berry with candlelight vigil

The mother of a teenage boy is in custody for his death at this apartment building in Keizer, January 14, 2017 (Keizer PD)
The mother of a 12-year-old boy is in custody for his death at this apartment building in Keizer, January 14, 2017 (Keizer PD)