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Pot buddy gets prison for 2015 cliff-push death

Crime
Avante Armstead, 22, appears in Multnomah County Circuit Court on an allegation of murder.jpg

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A 23-year-old man was sentenced to 18 years behind bars for killing Irvin Batalla nearly 4 years ago. 

Batalla’s body was found on July 6, 2015, at the base of a cliff at Rocky Butte Park in Northeast Portland. 

Investigators said 22-year-old Batalla and Avante Armstead had gone to Rocky Butte together to smoke marijuana. It was there, authorities say, that Armstead pushed Batalla off a cliff. 

On the same day Batalla’s body was discovered, officials in Lane County contacted Armstead after police responded to a car crash near Springfield involving Batalla’s car. 

Armstead was taken into custody on an unrelated warrant out of Washington County. At that point, officials didn’t know Batalla had been killed.

It wasn’t until 2017 that Batalla’s death was ruled a homicide. 

Around that same time, Armstead was being held in custody in Nevada on an unrelated drug charge. 

The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office said a witness told officials in 2017 that Armstead pushed Batalla off the cliff at Rocky Butte and then took Batalla’s car. 

Armstead pleaded guilty to 1st-degree manslaughter and 3rd-degree robbery on Friday. He was sentenced to 216 months in prison. 

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