Disturbed man runs naked through Mall 205 area

See the commotion caused by this man – as he ‘streaked’ from the hospital to I-205 — and why  …

After a night’s stay, here at Portland Adventist Medical Center, the partially-clad man begins his brief run for freedom.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
It wasn’t a prank when a man ran partially-clothed, then naked, through part of outer East Portland, from Mill Park into the Hazelwood neighborhood, on July 5, officials say.

Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct district officers got involved at 11:08 a.m., when they headed for a “disturbance call” in the area of SE 97th Avenue and SE Washington Street.

Listen, as the action unfolds, with this 9-1-1 Center Dispatch recording.

But, the man’s mid-County odyssey had actually started on July 4, reported PPB Public Information Officer Lt. Robert King. “We learned that the man fought with Gresham Police the previous evening. The man was suspected to be high on Methamphetamine at that time. It took multiple officers to take him into custody.”

More than just struggling with Gresham cops, King said, the man, now identified as 45-year-old Charles Auther Freeman, reportedly bit an officer’s fingers as he fought with them. Freeman was taken to Portland Adventist Medical Center (AMC), where he was held overnight.

It took persuasion by hospital grounds keepers, reports say, to get Freeman to leave the hospital’s grounds.

Calling to find out why a patient would be released wearing little but a hospital gown, East Portland News was told that AMC spokesperson Judy Leach was out for the day – but the hospital’s public relation’s staff did send a press release that stated, in part,

“At the time of his discharge, Mr. Freeman had no evidence of an emergency. His request to be discharged from the hospital was granted. At the time of his discharge, Mr. Freeman did not represent a danger to himself or others,” stated the release.

The release said nothing about how Freeman was clothed when he left the hospital

“When Freeman was released from Portland Adventist, he would not leave the hospital grounds,” King continued. “Witnesses indicated he was urinating in the bushes on hospital grounds; but he eventually left the area.”

Freeman’s first encounter of the outside world took place at this optical shop in the Mall 205 area.

Freeman headed northwest on SE 96th Avenue, until he stumbled into the America’s Best Contacts & Eyeglasses shop in the strip mall [no pun intended] at 9701 SE Washington Street.

“The guy looked really ‘out of it’,” recalled an employee, who asked not to be identified when she spoke with East Portland News. “I was about to go on a lunch break, but I waited until he’d left the area.”

When officers arrived at the business and tried to escort him out, Freeman then reportedly ran – wearing only a hospital gown – and spotted a van which he unsuccessfully attempted to carjack.

As caught on this ODOT traffic camera, a man identified as Charles Auther Freeman struggles with – and bites – police officers. ODOT image

“Officers deployed the Taser, but it had little effect and again Freeman ran,” King said. “He then ran toward a homeless person in the area and again officers Tased the man, but again the Taser had no effect.”

Somewhere between the strip mall, going northwest across the Stark/Washington/I-205 overpass, Freeman’s gown came off, and he continued his flight from officials naked.

Ultimately, three officers attempted to subdue Freeman at SE 97th Avenue and SE Stark Street. “As they attempted to handcuff him he grabbed an officer’s leg and would not let go,” King described. “Freeman bit officers in the course of the struggle. One of the officers delivered strikes to Freeman so he would let go of the other officer so they could handcuff him. Only after the strikes, were officers able to take Freeman into custody.”

Freeman is restrained, and prepared for transport back to the hospital. ODOT image

The three bitten officers are recovering from their injuries.

“Following the altercation with officers on the afternoon of July 5, Mr. Freeman was taken into custody and has been readmitted to Adventist Medical Center where he is now in stable condition,” stated hospital spokesman Leach in the release.

This man, 45-year-old Charles Auther Freeman, in an earlier and current booking photo, faces numerous charges, officials say. MCDC image

At 12:17 p.m. on July 6, Multnomah County Detention Center records show that Freeman was released from the hospital and arrested; then transported to the MCDC where he was booked in at 3:14 p.m.

“Freeman is charged with Escape in the Second and Third Degree, 2 counts of Disorderly Conduct, 2 counts of Trespass in the Second Degree, Resisting Arrest, Harassment, Attempted Unauthorized Use of Motor Vehicle and Public Indecency,” King reported. “He is being held on 87,500 bail.”

© 2012 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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