Man stole ring, backpack from Portland train stabbing victim

Wade Massey
June 3, 2017

Police in Portland, Oregon, have arrested a man for allegedly stealing a backpack and wedding ring from an Army veteran who was stabbed to death while intervening on behalf of two Muslim girls who were being harassed on a train.

Tips poured in Thursday night after police released surveillance images and video of the suspect.

Police credited the public's help in apprehending the homeless suspect, specifically a Domino's Pizza worker who recognized the suspect.

Best's camouflage, military-style wallet remains missing, the police spokesman said.

He now faces charges of abuse of a corpse in the second degree, theft in the second degree and tampering with physical evidence.

Ricky Best, Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche, and Micah Fletcher were stabbed on 26 May when they intervened to prevent a man from harassing and threatening two teenage girls who appeared to be Muslim.

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"They've suffered an enormous loss and this is just one more layer of tragedy to their already terrible experience", Sgt. Pete Simpson said of the family, according to KOIN. Police released surveillance video showing the man walking off the train carrying Best's backpack in his right hand and another backpack in his left hand.

Police later arrested Jeremy Joseph Christian, 35, in connection with the killings.

In court on 30 May, Mr Christian shouted: "Death to the enemies of America".

"It's just unconscionable to do what he did", Simpson said.

In the early morning hours of Friday June 2, 2017, Central Precinct officers located and arrested the suspect involved in the theft of a backpack and wedding ring of homicide victim Ricky Best. He was a 23-year Army veteran and father of four. Best and two other men confronted Christian when he began a race-hate tirade against two African-American women on the train, one of who was wearing a hijab. I understand that is no measure against their grief.

"People in the community saw this and felt the understandable rage that I think everybody felt", Simpson said.

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