In early January, 33-year-old Willits woman Amber Dillon was found dead in a remote field just over the Mendocino/Sonoma County line. Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office Violent Crimes detectives investigated the scene.
A Death Investigation Synopsis Report provided by the Sonoma County Coroner’s Unit provides the most insight into Dillon’s death since the investigation began.
As per the report, Dillon was found dead lying in the grass, fully clothed on the afternoon of January 7, 2022. On her scalp was an inch-and-a-half cut and in her jacket pocket were two capped hypodermic needles.
Dillon’s cause of death was determined to be intraparenchymal hemorrhage and cerebral edema of uncertain etiology.
“Intraparenchymal hemorrhage” is bleeding that occurs within the tissue of the brain and “cerebral edema of uncertain etiology” is caused when an excess of fluid accumulates in the brain leading to compression of tissue and blood vessels. “Uncertain etiology” means the cause of that cerebral edema is unknown.
Both of these conditions can occur as a result of traumatic brain injury.
Other significant factors that led to Dillon’s death were “environmental exposure/hypothermia”, “blunt force injuries of head”, and “methamphetamine abuse”.
Also note, that the identification of “blunt force injuries of the head” and the inch-and-a-half cut on her scalp point towards some sort of traumatic blow to the head that contributed to her death. Whether that blow was due to being stuck by someone else or a fall to the ground is yet to be determined.
Amber Dillon’s death became public knowledge on January 11, the same day news broke that 22-year-old Alyssa Mae Sawdey was found deceased off Ukiah’s Christy Lane. The two young woman’s death fueled a fast-growing internet rumor that a serial killer was preying upon women in Northern California.
Just last week, the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office identified Sawdey’s cause of death as “acute methamphetamine toxicity”.
In a conversation with Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant Juan Valencia, the circumstances surrounding Dillon’s death are still under active investigation and the case remains open.
Due to the ongoing nature investigation, no further information could be provided. Sergeant Valencia requests that any members of the public that have information regarding the circumstance call the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office at (707) 565-2650.