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Search for man leads to Eugene.

Byline: Jack Moran The Register-Guard

Correction (published July 29, 2010): Eric Preimesberger's mother said her daughter-in-law left Eugene in June to stay in Vancouver, Wash., with a family member. A Front Page story on Wednesday regarding Preimesberger's disappearance incorrectly stated that his mother said the daughter-in-law went to Vancouver with her brother.

Kay Wilson believes that her 30-year-old son was murdered, and that his body eventually will be found in the Eugene area.

Court documents show that police investigating Wilson's son's mysterious April disappearance in Reno, Nev., searched his wife's portable storage unit in west Eugene earlier this month, after cadaver-sniffing dogs indicated that human remains might be found inside.

Investigators didn't discover Eric Preimesberger's body inside the unit, but they continue to gather clues in the case.

Wilson said Eugene police have kept in contact with her about their activities in the investigation.

She believes that officers were on the right track when they searched the storage unit.

"Just because they didn't find the body in there doesn't mean that he was never in there," Wilson said.

"It's my belief is that he was murdered, and that (the body) is somewhere near Eugene," she said.

In a search warrant affidavit filed in Lane County Circuit Court earlier this month, Eugene police officer William Rogers said a Reno police detective told him that Preimesberger's disappearance is suspicious, and that Preimesberger's wife, Kristi, is a person of interest in the case.

Kristi Preimesberger, 30, told police that her husband left her after an argument in Reno in April, the affidavit states.

She moved from Reno to Eugene about two weeks after her husband vanished.

Wilson told investigators that her son had planned to make the move to Oregon with his family, hoping to start a yurt-building business with his wife's brother, Eugene resident Timothy Morgan, Rogers wrote.

Both Wilson and Morgan's mother told investigators that Morgan was in Reno the day Eric Preimesberger vanished, according to the affidavit.

Police learned that when Kristi Preimesberger arrived in Oregon, she moved into Morgan's home on Chandler Avenue in Eugene.

But Rogers wrote that officers visited that residence several times between July 1 and July 10 to conduct "welfare checks," and never located anyone there.

Investigators did find several newspapers stacked on the porch and diapers in a garbage bin, according to the affidavit.

Rogers wrote that he spoke with Kristi Preimesberger's mother on July 6, and that she told him that she had not spoken with her son since around July 1, at which time Morgan told her "he was tired of Kristi's drama and craziness, and that he was done with her."

Their mother - who told Rogers that her daughter was in possession of a gun - said she tried several times to reach Morgan after that conversation with no luck, the affidavit states.

It is not known whether authorities have since learned the whereabouts of either Morgan or Kristi Preimesberger, or if they have been reported as missing.

Wilson said the pair left Eugene in June to stay in Vancouver, Wash., with another family member.

She said she believes that her daughter-in-law is traveling with the Preimesbergers' 6-year-old daughter, Ivy, and 21-month-old son, Damion.

Rogers and Eugene robbery/homicide Detective KC Myers did not return telephone messages this week seeking comment on the ongoing investigation.

Preimesberger's disappearance has garnered little coverage in the mainstream media, but several online blogs have prominently featured his case.

Although Preimesberger vanished in late April, Reno police detectives just last week issued a brief news release seeking information from the public that could help investigators track him down.

Eugene police thought they may have had a break in the case earlier this month, after Rogers learned that Kristi Preimes berger's mother had been paying rent on her daughter's portable storage unit, which investigators found at a storage facility on Cross Street in west Eugene.

A worker there told police that Kristi Preimesberger last removed items from the unit on June 15, and that she said during the visit that she was moving to Washington state, Rogers wrote.

On July 10, investigators had three cadaver-sniffing dogs from Marion and Lane County sheriff's departments search the storage unit facility for evidence of human remains.

All three dogs detected the presence of human decomposition in the area surrounding Kristi Preimesberger's portable unit, the affidavit states.

"I was told by the (dogs') handlers that in their experience, it was likely there are decomposing human remains in close proximity, or inside, the (storage) unit rented by Kristi," Rogers wrote.

In requesting a search warrant, Rogers wrote that he had probable cause to believe that evidence of the crime of second- degree abuse of a corpse would be uncovered inside the storage unit.

When investigators searched the unit they found "no items of evidence," Rogers wrote following the search.

Wilson forwarded to The Register- Guard an e-mail she said Rogers sent her Saturday informing her that he was still working on the case and asking her to "keep the faith."

Police said anyone with information about the case can call Reno detectives at 775-334-2188.
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Title Annotation:City/Region; He disappeared from Reno in April; police searched a storage unit here and continue to gather clues
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jul 28, 2010
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