Subscribe

Santa Rosa man, convicted of a fatal stabbing on SSU’s campus, dies in wrong-way collision in Oregon

Tyler Bratton, who was riding a motorcycle, had been traveling north on Interstate 5 when authorities say he made an unexplained U-turn into oncoming traffic and collided with a Jeep.|

A Santa Rosa man convicted of involuntary manslaughter in a 2018 fatal stabbing that occurred on the Sonoma State University campus, was killed last week in a head-on collision in Oregon.

Tyler Bratton, 24, died at about 12:45 a.m. Friday on Interstate 5, south of Wilsonville, according to Oregon State Police.

Wilsonville is about 10 miles south of Portland.

According to state police, Bratton was heading north on a Honda motorcycle when, for some unknown reason, he made a U-turn and rode south in the northbound lanes.

Authorities said he was in the left lane when he collided with a black Jeep Cherokee and suffered fatal injuries.

Investigators have not determined why Bratton turned around and went against traffic, according to state police.

The Jeep’s driver was identified as Usach Sisach Nelson, 22, of Corvallis, a community about 25 miles south of Salem and 75 miles south of Portland.

Nelson was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. State police said his blood-alcohol content registered at 0.10, which surpasses the legal limit of 0.08 in Oregon.

Interstate 5 was closed for nearly five hours while the collision was investigated.

Bratton was convicted of felony involuntary manslaughter and possessing a weapon on SSU’s campus after he fatally stabbed Steven J. Garcia, 26, in a dorm room in May 2018.

He claimed he acted in self-defense after Garcia forced his way into a student’s room. Bratton was sentenced to probation, but his probation was revoked and he was jailed in 2019 following a probation violation that occurred during a traffic stop.

Bratton was a passenger in a car pulled over by a Santa Rosa police officer. The police officer, officials said, spotted a knife in Bratton’s seat. He had been prohibited from having weapons under the terms of his probation.

He was released from the Sonoma County jail in March, after serving three years for the probation violation, officials said.

Staff writer Sara Edwards contributed to this report.

UPDATED: Please read and follow our commenting policy:

  • This is a family newspaper, please use a kind and respectful tone.
  • No profanity, hate speech or personal attacks. No off-topic remarks.
  • No disinformation about current events.
  • We will remove any comments — or commenters — that do not follow this commenting policy.
Send a letter to the editor

Our Network

The Press Democrat
Sonoma Index-Tribune
Petaluma Argus Courier
North Bay Business Journal
Sonoma Magazine
Bite Club Eats
La Prensa Sonoma
Sonoma County Gazette