PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man is back in jail for a second time in two weeks after Portland Police say he attacked a security guard downtown and threatened workers.
Yohance Belt was arrested in November for destroying property and threatening employees at a Plaid Pantry. His bond was set at $250, but he was released after paying 10% of that. He was arrested again on Monday but refused to go to his arraignment on Tuesday. The DA’s Office said they will arraign him on Wednesday and ask for a higher bail.
Belt was arrested by police on Monday after they say he went into the Department of Human Services building in downtown Portland and threatened to shoot employees unless they gave him an EBT card. Police say he also assaulted the building’s security guard, then went into a downtown toy store and threatened an employee before stealing multiple items.
“He came in and was speaking in a way that didn’t make a lot of sense. He did threaten to kill us, he says he kills people,” said Fern Dixon, the employee at Stumptown Otaku who working at the time of the incident. “He comes over and starts taking the pens. I was like ‘that’s fine.’ He starts taking the change, I was like ‘that’s fine.’ I said ‘take whatever you want I just need you to leave.’ After that, I just kept repeating.”
Dixon also said she had bear mace in her hand ready to use if Belt got too close. The store was open Tuesday but kept the doors locked, letting customers inside when they knock.
Court records show that in the last two decades, Belt has been charged with at least 65 misdemeanors, and he’s been convicted of 19. Four of those convictions were violent in nature. His record also shows he’s violated parole 25 times.
The DA’s Office told KOIN 6 News that a special unit that handles repeat offenders is taking on Belt. The Strategic Prosecution and Services Unit will review all of Belt’s charges throughout the years and find out what interventions didn’t work.
The DA also said it will either lead to longer prison sentences or getting Belt specific services or both.