A suspect in the murder of 88-year-old Los Molinos resident, Loreen Severs, on May 23, 2020, has been arrested as an alleged serial killer.
Ryan Scott Blinston, 37, of Oroville who was already in Butte County Jail on suspicion of attempted murder, was charged Thursday, May 13 with three separate murders and another attempted murder as the result of a multi-agency investigation involving the Tehama and Butte sheriff's offices, Oroville Police Department and California Department of Justice, reported Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey and Tehama County District Attorney Matt Rogers.
Blinston is charged in the murder of Severs, the attempted murder of her 91-year-old husband, Homer Severs, the murder of Sandra George, 82, of Oroville and Vicky Cline, 57, of Oroville.
A charge for suspicion of arson has also be filed in connection to the torching of Cline's car.
The two district attorneys, Ramsey and Rogers, said they agreed to combine all the cases and have them tried in Butte County Superior Court.
“Through the combined efforts of law enforcement agencies in both Tehama and Butte counties, we will be able to seek justice for the victims and ensure no one else will be harmed,” said Ramsey and Rogers in a joint statement.
The new charges are separate from the attempted murder charge of a Brush Creek man that Blinston is already facing in Butte County Superior Court.
The multi-agency investigation revealed Blinston worked for a tree-trimming services and was part of a work crew at the Severs' Los Molinos home on May 18, 2020.
Binston reportedly broke into the Severs' 25267 Josephine Ave., home five days later and killed Loreen and attempted to kill Homer by slitting their throats. Homer survived the attack and was able to make it next door to where his nephew lived for to call 911 and get help.
It is reported Homer died in December of an illness not related to the attack.
Still part of the tree-trimming service crew, Blinston, who had worked at George's home on June 4, 2020, returned that same day and allegedly killed George by slitting her throat as he reportedly had done to the Severs.
Two days later, Vicky Cline was seen with Blinston, reportedly as acquaintances, in downtown Oroville. An arson fire destroyed Cline's car later that same night.
According to the district attorneys' officers, Cline's body was later discovered by a fisherman in the Feather River near Belden on June 21, 2020. Damage to her throat was reportedly consistent with Blinston's allegedy other victims.
Blood and DNA evidence on and inside Blinston's car was forensically matched to Cline, according to the investigation.
During the very early morning hours of June 14, 2020, a Butte County sheriff's SWAT team carefully approached a motorhome where Blinston was located in an isolated and wooded area of Brush Creek in Butte County to serve and arrest warrant on the suspect for the allegedly arson of Cline's car.
As the team approached, screaming and pounding from the motorhome could be heard. The pounding reportedly turned out to be Blinston using a hatchet in an attempt to get back into the home, where, just moments previous, he had attacked and cut the throat of the sleeping 50-year-old man who lived on the property, reported the Butte and Tehama county district attorneys' offices.
The injured resident was allegedly able to kick Blinston out and lock the door. It was at this point the SWAT team arrived.
Blinston reportedly tried to run into the woods, but was captured by members of the team and taken into custody.
Critically injured, the resident of the motorhome was transported by medical helicopter to an area hospital for treatment and was eventually released.
Since that time, Blinston has been held without bail in the Butte County Jail on suspicion of attempted murder and pending court proceedings as the two counties investigative teams put the additional murder and attempted murder cases together.
Blinston appeared in Butte County Superior Court May 13 for arraignment on the additional murder and attempted murder charges.