On the evening of Aug. 20, 2018, Bend Police arrived at Jordan’s home on Mount Hope Drive to find her unconscious: she had tried to commit suicide by overdosing on pills. Bend BP declared her son Mason dead at the scene; Tashina had shot him in the head. She planned to use the gun on herself as well, but it stopped working, according to a handwritten note left at the scene.
While Mason was born healthy, he developed cerebral palsy which made it hard for him to control his muscles and movements. He also suffered from hydrocephalus, a condition that causes brain damage from fluid build-up. Mason attended Miller Elementary School and the students there helped raise money for his medical expenses such as a wheelchair ramp for his house and the family’s van, according to the Sparrow Club. After he was killed, friends and family raised almost $10,000 for his funeral on a GoFundMe page.
“By all accounts Mason Jordan was a loving, caring, and precious child,” said District Attorney John Hummel in a statement released Monday morning. “All who encountered him were better for it. His mother loved him with all her heart, until she broke.”
Jordan had documented mental health difficulties and pleaded guilty except for insanity. Her doctors had diagnosed her with “major depression with psychotic features,” and told the court that she met the legal definition for Oregon’s criminal insanity defense at the time of the incident.
“Numerous single mothers of children with disabilities contacted me to share their stories of the immense stress, loneliness, and despair they experience on a daily basis,” Hummel said. “Other parents of children living with disabilities contacted me to say that it is difficult raising their children, but their child’s health should not be an excuse for murder.
“At the end of the day, the murder of a child is never justified, while the emotional state of a defendant is always relevant," Hummel concluded. "The resolution of Ms. Jordan’s case holds her accountable, honors Mason’s life, and reflects the mental state she was in at the time of the crime. Justice was done.”