Multnomah Co. District Attorney's Office
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News Releases
UPDATE: Organized Retail Theft Task Force Indicts Janeice Downs on 16 Counts Representing Over $56,000 in Stolen Goods - 04/23/24

CORRECTION: The original release identified two detectives with incorrect agencies; the release has now been updated. MCDA regrets the error.


Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt today announced that Janeice Renee Downs, 24, has been indicted on 16 theft charges totaling over $56,000 in stolen goods from a local retailer. This case is being investigated and prosecuted by the Organized Retail Theft Task Force. 

Upon review of the evidence, the Task Force presented the case to a grand jury, which returned a true bill of indictment on April 22, 2024, for the following charges:

  • Six counts of Organized Retail Theft
  • Three counts of Aggravated Theft in the First Degree
  • Seven counts of Theft in the First Degree

In addition, Downs has been accused of more than $400,000 in retail theft in Washington State, and she faces further charges in Multnomah and other Oregon counties. She is currently in custody in King County, Washington (under the name Janeice Smith). 

The DA’s Office would like to thank multiple law enforcement partners for their assistance in this case, including Detective Andrew Hearst with the Portland Police Bureau, Detective Jeffry Christiansen with the Bellevue Police Department, and Detective Nyla Poulson with the Tigard Police Department.

A charging instrument is only an accusation of a crime. Downs is innocent unless and until proven guilty.

###

DA Mike Schmidt releases weekly cases impacted by public defense crisis - 04/19/24

February 19, 2024

PORTLAND, Oregon – Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt released a list of cases impacted by the public defense crisis. The list includes felony cases dismissed by the JC3 court as a result of the crisis. 

In November, DA Mike Schmidt called the public defense crisis– defined by a lack of public defenders to provide counsel to defendants– an urgent threat to public safety. Individuals charged with a crime have a constitutional right to defense counsel. Victims have a right to justice. Absent counsel, criminal prosecutions cannot lawfully move forward, and throughout the counsel shortage, cases issued by the office have been routinely dismissed over prosecutors’ objections.

DA Schmidt also declared that MCDA would publish cases dismissed due to the crisis each week to increase transparency and advance the public’s understanding of the scope of the crisis. Here is an updated breakdown of the types of felonies getting dismissed.

There were 9 cases dismissed by the court as a result of the public defense crisis between 4/12/24 and 4/18/24:

23-CR-57815

24-CR-01392

23-CR-58332

22-CR-41672

23-CR-49112

23-CR-58974

24-CR-03333

23-CR-40084

23-CR-59334

 

 

#MCDA#

UPDATE: Grand Jury Transcripts Released for Matthew Holland Death Investigation - 04/19/24

The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office (MCDA) today published transcripts of the grand jury proceedings in the death investigation of Matthew Holland.

Upon the grand jury’s return of a “not true bill” in this matter, MCDA filed a motion with the presiding court to create and release a transcript of the recorded grand jury proceedings pursuant to ORS 132.260(1). The transcripts are available on MCDA’s website:

MCDA has no additional comment on this matter.

###

 

*Original Message (3/21/24)*

Grand Jury Returns Not True Bill in January 2024 Fatal Shooting by a Portland Police Officer

Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt today announced that a grand jury returned a not true bill for the fatal shooting of Matthew Lee Holland, 31, on January 14, 2024. Upon the conclusion of the presentation of evidence, the grand jury returned the not true bill yesterday, finding the use of force by Portland Police Officer Joshua Howery that resulted in Lee’s death was not criminal under Oregon law. 

Previously released information regarding this incident can be found here

Pursuant to ORS 132.270, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office will file a motion and request that the court authorize the release of a grand jury transcript for public review. If the Court grants the motion, MCDA will post the transcript on its website.

###

Antony Kassab Indicted on Charges of Murder in the Second Degree and Unlawful Use of a Weapon - 04/15/24

April 15, 2024

Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt today announced that Antony Kassab, 20, was indicted by a grand jury on charges of Murder II and Unlawful Use of a Weapon related to the stabbing death of Cody Funk, 35, in Gresham on December 26, 2023. Kassab is also presently charged with the stabbing assault and attempted murder of another victim on February 9, 2024 (24-CR-09504).

Case Facts

On the morning of December 26, 2023, Gresham Police were notified of an unresponsive individual found near the intersection of SE 190th Ave. and SE Division St. The victim–quickly determined to be Cody Funk– had been experiencing homelessness at the time of his murder. An autopsy indicated that he had died from multiple stab wounds. Investigators with the Gresham Police Department and the East Multnomah County Major Crimes Team diligently collected and reviewed evidence in the case to identify a suspect.

Indictment

The case was referred to the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office for review. Upon consideration of the evidence provided by law enforcement, DDA Sean Hughey presented the case to a grand jury, which returned a true bill of indictment on April 12, 2024, for the following charges:

  • Murder II 
  • Unlawful use of a weapon
     

Please note that a charging document is only an accusation of a crime. Kassab is innocent unless and until proven guilty. 

 

Joseph Beard Convicted on multiple charges related to Auto Theft Task Force - 04/15/24

April 15, 2024

On April 11, 2024, Joseph Beard, 52, was convicted on charges of unauthorized use of a vehicle (UUV), possession of a stolen vehicle (PSV), and theft I related to the Auto Theft Task Force’s work to address the issue of automobile theft in Multnomah County. This conviction stems from an ongoing large-scale investigation, dubbed “Operation MistleTow'' by the Auto Theft Task Force and Portland Police Bureau.

Law enforcement’s investigation revealed that Maters Auto Recycling–the company with which Beard was affiliated–had a history of falsifying purchase paperwork for stolen vehicles before selling them to Rivergate Scrap Metal. Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office investigators identified dozens of vehicles that had been sold by Maters Auto Recycling to Rivergate, many of which were crushed shortly after being sold. 

In December 2023, a woman witnessed Beard tow her legally parked car, following his truck and eventually boxing it in. Other members of the community became involved and Beard promised to tow the car back to the woman’s apartment. Beard did return the vehicle and promptly left the scene before a stolen vehicle report was created. Law enforcement was notified and a warrant was issued for Beard’s arrest on December 22. He was arrested while again driving his tow truck on January 5, 2024 and was subsequently charged with 22 felonies. Several of the stolen towed vehicles involved in the larger scheme were traced back to Beard, who now has five open cases related to auto theft that are actively being pursued by the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office. 

Sentencing in this case has been set for Friday, April 19, 2024, at 9am. 

The DA’s Office would like to thank the Auto Theft Task Force, and the many officers whose work contributed to this case. 
 

#MCDA#


 

DA Mike Schmidt releases weekly cases impacted by public defense crisis - 04/12/24

February 12, 2024

PORTLAND, Oregon – Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt released a list of cases impacted by the public defense crisis. The list includes felony cases dismissed by the JC3 court as a result of the crisis. 

In November, DA Mike Schmidt called the public defense crisis– defined by a lack of public defenders to provide counsel to defendants– an urgent threat to public safety. Individuals charged with a crime have a constitutional right to defense counsel. Victims have a right to justice. Absent counsel, criminal prosecutions cannot lawfully move forward, and throughout the counsel shortage, cases issued by the office have been routinely dismissed over prosecutors’ objections.

DA Schmidt also declared that MCDA would publish cases dismissed due to the crisis each week to increase transparency and advance the public’s understanding of the scope of the crisis. Here is an updated breakdown of the types of cases being dismissed.

There were 13 cases dismissed by the court as a result of the public defense crisis between 4/5/24 and 4/11/24:

24-CR-00886

23-CR-56073

23-CR-57383

24-CR-00303

23-CR-48379

24-CR-01131

23-CR-47772

23-CR-30864

23-CR-17686

23-CR-39899

23-CR-39086

23-CR-05108

21-CR-55496

DA Mike Schmidt releases weekly cases impacted by public defense crisis - 04/05/24

February 5, 2024

PORTLAND, Oregon – Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt released a list of cases impacted by the public defense crisis. The list includes felony cases dismissed by the JC3 court as a result of the crisis. 

In November, DA Mike Schmidt called the public defense crisis– defined by a lack of public defenders to provide counsel to defendants– an urgent threat to public safety. Individuals charged with a crime have a constitutional right to defense counsel. Victims have a right to justice. Absent counsel, criminal prosecutions cannot lawfully move forward, and throughout the counsel shortage, cases issued by the office have been routinely dismissed over prosecutors’ objections.

DA Schmidt also declared that MCDA would publish cases dismissed due to the crisis each week to increase transparency and advance the public’s understanding of the scope of the crisis. Here is a breakdown of the types of felonies getting dismissed.

There were 12 cases dismissed by the court as a result of the public defense crisis between 3/29/24 and 4/4/24:

23-CR-28875

23-CR-61874

21-CR-60856

23-CR-34560

23-CR-43760

23-CR-45423

23-CR-48312

23-CR-21498

22-CR-54099

23-CR-57293

23-CR-53500

20-CR-16579

 

#MCDA#

Chantail Williams Arraigned on Theft, Money Laundering Charges - 04/04/24

Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt today announced that Chantail Williams, 39, was arraigned on a secret grand jury indictment for seven charges related to stealing and laundering public funds from the City of Portland in May 2022.

Case Facts

On May 26, 2022, police were made aware of a cybersecurity breach that occurred with the City of Portland’s computer network. It was discovered that a malicious actor compromised the email account of a Portland Housing Bureau employee and fraudulently misdirected approximately $1.4 million that was intended to go to Central City Concern for construction on an affordable housing project. 

Law enforcement discovered that the fraudulent transfer was wired to a bank account in Florida on April 25, 2022. The account belonged to an LLC, and the account was managed by Chantail Williams. Detectives determined that Williams made wire transfers from the Florida bank account to various other accounts, including international accounts. They also discovered payments made to a Cash App account belonging to Williams; $25,000 in cash withdrawals from the Florida bank account; and a $25,000 purchase of a car using a debit card associated with the Florida bank account (records obtained included Williams’ driver license involved in the purchase of the vehicle). It was also determined that the same account belonging to Williams made purchases of home furnishings and that the majority of funds were transferred to a bank in Mexico.  

Indictment

The case was referred to the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office for review. Upon review of the evidence provided by law enforcement, DDA Jesse Hoffman presented the case to a grand jury, which returned a true bill of indictment on February 26, 2024, for the following charges:

  • One count of Aggravated Theft in the First Degree
  • One count of Aggravated Identity Theft
  • One count of Felony Computer Crime
  • Two counts of Laundering Monetary Instrument
  • Two counts of Criminal Conspiracy to Commit Laundering Monetary Instrument

The indictment was sealed, and a warrant was issued for Williams’ arrest. She was arrested in Florida and transferred to Multnomah County custody on April 3, 2024. Williams was arraigned on the charges today, and the court ordered security release in the amount of $100,000. 

A charging document is only an accusation of a crime. Williams is innocent unless and until proven guilty. 

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20240404-Board-Meeting-(Child-Abuse-Prevention-Month)-MN-06.jpg
20240404-Board-Meeting-(Child-Abuse-Prevention-Month)-MN-06.jpg
Multnomah County Declares April 2024 as Child Abuse Prevention Month (Photo) - 04/04/24

Today, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office, the Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) Child Welfare Division, and CARES Northwest appeared before the Multnomah County Board of Commissioners to make the proclamation of April 2024 as “Child Abuse Prevention Month.” Presenting to the Board were DA Mike Schmidt, Senior Deputy District Attorney Chuck Mickley, CARES Northwest Executive Director Jenny Gilmore-Robinson, and DHS District Manager for Child Welfare Sherrelle Jackson.

By declaring April 2024 as Child Abuse Prevention Month, the Multnomah County Board of Commissioners made findings that include:

  • Child abuse and neglect is a serious public health and safety problem that impacts all of our community, and finding solutions requires input and action from everyone;
  • We must all recognize the signs of child maltreatment and take appropriate steps to safeguard children by reporting concerns and connecting families with the help they may need; and
  • Effective child abuse prevention and intervention efforts succeed because of coordinated partnerships between government, child welfare, health, schools, law enforcement and community organizations.

Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt said: “Child abuse is an obvious, yet hidden problem. By providing a collaborative, coordinated, trauma-informed response to child abuse, our community can have a positive impact on the health and safety of the more than 150,000 children living in Multnomah County today, and on the well-being of the adults those children will become.”

CARES Northwest Executive Director Jenny Gilmore-Robinson said: “I’m grateful that we take this time to recognize Child Abuse Prevention Month each year because it is a chance to shine a light on this often-hidden public health crisis that many would understandably rather pretend does not exist. Equally important, it is an opportunity to reinforce for our community the powerful idea that child abuse can be prevented.”

Senior DDA Chuck Mickley leads MCDA’s Multi-Disciplinary Child Abuse Team Unit. The Unit has three primary functions: coordinating child protection efforts and policy with community partners to make and keep children safe; prosecuting felony crimes involving child victims, including homicide, physical abuse, abandonment, neglect, and sexual exploitation and sexual assault of children where the suspect is not considered a stranger to the victim; and protecting children though litigating dependency cases in juvenile court.

Senior DDA Mickley said: “For over the past 11 years, I have been dedicated exclusively to the prosecution of child abuse cases. During that time, I’ve seen an amazing range of emotions, from the carnage that child abuse visits upon children, to the resilience that children demonstrate and the care and attention they receive from the people who support them – in law enforcement, at DHS, and at CARES Northwest.”

According to the most recent Oregon Department of Human Services Child Welfare Data Book, there were 87,529 reports of child abuse and neglect in Oregon in 2022. In Multnomah County, there were 13,243 reports of abuse and neglect. The most common family stress factor when child abuse was present was substance abuse. The next most common stressors were domestic violence.

In thanking County Commissioners for the proclamation, Mickley said: “Child abuse is a hidden problem despite the numbers. People don’t think about it nearly often enough, and providing this forum and the opportunity for people to think about it is critically important in preventing child abuse in the future.”

Multnomah County Child Abuse Multidisciplinary Team

Oregon law requires that every county use a multidisciplinary approach to child abuse intervention. In 1989, the law specified that every county create a multidisciplinary team coordinated by each county's District Attorney. The Legislature recognized then, as it does still today, that identifying and responding to child abuse is complicated and requires complex collaboration and consistent teamwork to adequately address child abuse situations.

The Multnomah County Child Abuse Multidisciplinary Team (MDT) includes representatives from CARES Northwest, local law enforcement, public schools, hospitals, health departments, local mental health service providers, the Oregon Department of Human Services, and Multnomah County’s Department of Community Justice. The team works with community partners to protect children who have been abused and neglected while ensuring that all practices are trauma-informed and mitigate the life-long consequences of child abuse.

Members of the Child Abuse MDT were also present at today’s Board meeting on behalf of the thousands of children and families they serve.  

Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse

It’s important to know the warning signs of abuse because children often can’t or won’t speak up if they are being abused. They rely on the people around them to recognize something isn't right. Warning signs include:

  • Physical signs on the child, such as unexplained or unusual injuries.
  • Things the child says or does, such as running away from home, self-harm, or fear of their parent or caretaker.
  • Things the ​​caretaker says or does, such as ignoring the child's needs or isolating the child.

Call 855-503-SAFE (7233) if you think a child is being abused or neglected. 

  • You will talk​ to a Child​ Welfa​re screener. 
  • Be ready to give information about the child, such as their name, age, and where they live (if you know). 
  • The screener will ask about your concerns, including anything the child has said.​​​ 
  • What you share will be kept private (confidential).
  • Read the Child ​Abuse Reporting Guide​ for more information about what to expect when you call. 

###

 

UPDATE: Ryan Fardreamer Sentenced to 90 Months in Prison for Attempted Murder - 04/01/24

UPDATE:

Today, a Multnomah County Circuit Court judge sentenced Ryan S. Fardreamer, 48, to 90 months in prison for a March 2023 incident in which Fardreamer shot at three people in Southwest Portland. The case resulted in a negotiated plea agreement with the defendant and his counsel. Fardreamer pleaded no contest and was found guilty by Judge Katharine von Ter Stegge. The Court sentenced the defendant to 90 months for:

  • One count of Attempted Murder in the Second Degree with a Firearm
  • One count Assault in the Second Degree with a Firearm
  • One count of Unlawful Use of a Weapon with a Firearm

Additionally, Fardreamer will serve three years of post-prison supervision. He is currently in custody in Multnomah County and will be transported to the Oregon Department of Corrections to serve his sentence.

The DA’s Office wishes to thank the PPB officer and detectives who assisted with this case.

###

*Original Message 7/14/2023*

DA Mike Schmidt Announces Grand Jury Indictment of Ryan Fardreamer in Attempted Murder Case

Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt today announced that a grand jury indicted Ryan S. Fardreamer, 48, on multiple charges for the attempted murder of three people in Southwest Portland earlier this year: 

  • Three counts of Attempted Murder in the Second Degree with a Firearm
  • One count of Assault in the Second Degree with a Firearm
  • One count of Attempted Assault in the First Degree with a Firearm
  • One count of Unlawful Use of a Weapon with a Firearm
  • One count of Robbery
  • One count of Felon in Possession of a Firearm
  • One count of Possession of a Loaded Firearm
  • Once count of Menacing
  • Two counts of Recklessly Endangering Another Person

On March 6, 2023, Portland Police responded to OHSU upon reports of a shooting victim in the emergency room. Witnesses reported that Ryan Fardreamer arrived at a homeless camp near I-5 and Capitol Highway and used his vehicle to block victims in. Fardreamer then began firing shots at three victims, hitting a male victim in the leg as victims attempted to drive out of the camp. A victim struck Fardreamer’s vehicle as he drove from the scene. Fardreamer later contacted this victim in his truck, poured gasoline over the vehicle, and threatened to set the truck on fire if he was not compensated for the damage. 

Upon the grand jury indictment on July 10, the court issued a warrant for Fardreamer’s arrest. On July 11, a Portland Police officer arrested Fardreamer on that warrant. Officers recovered two firearms during the arrest. Fardreamer has multiple felony convictions from other states, including criminal sexual conduct in the fourth degree (Minnesota) and sexual assault in the third degree (Iowa), and is further charged with Felon in Possession of a Firearm. 

Due to the violent nature of these crimes and the risk that Fardreamer poses to public safety, prosecutors filed a motion seeking preventive detention (a means of denying any form of release during pendency of the case). Fardreamer will remain in custody until his preventive detention hearing in August, at which time the judge will issue a ruling on whether he will be detained or released. 

A charging instrument is only an accusation of a crime. Fardreamer is innocent unless and until proven guilty.

###

DA Mike Schmidt releases weekly cases impacted by public defense crisis - 03/29/24

March 29, 2024

PORTLAND, Oregon – Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt released a list of cases impacted by the public defense crisis. The list includes felony cases dismissed by the JC3 court as a result of the crisis. 

In November, DA Mike Schmidt called the public defense crisis– defined by a lack of public defenders to provide counsel to defendants– an urgent threat to public safety. Individuals charged with a crime have a constitutional right to defense counsel. Victims have a right to justice. Absent counsel, criminal prosecutions cannot lawfully move forward, and throughout the counsel shortage, cases issued by the office have been routinely dismissed over prosecutors’ objections.

DA Schmidt also declared that MCDA would publish cases dismissed due to the crisis each week to increase transparency and advance the public’s understanding of the scope of the crisis. Here is a breakdown of the types of felonies getting dismissed.

There were 7 cases dismissed by the court as a result of the public defense crisis between 3/22/24 and 3/28/24:

19-CR-78351

23-CR-45478

23-CR-21751

23-CR-45752

23-CR-43618

23-CR-54716

23-CR-54706




 

#MCDA#