Prison escapee indicted for murder of ex-girlfriend


Davonte Donahue, November 24, 2021 (Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man who escaped federal prison two months ago has been indicted for the murder of his ex-girlfriend, officials say.

Police arrested 29-year-old Davonte Donahue after a standoff that began on Saturday, Nov. 21, when officers responded to a report of domestic violence near the corner of SE 171st Avenue and Division Street. Donahue shot at officers from the apartment but was ultimately arrested hours later.

Once police entered the apartment, they found a woman — later identified as Mariela Gonzalez-Rocha — dead inside.

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According to DA Schmidt, Donahue is now formally charged with second-degree murder with a firearm, constituting domestic violence, five counts of first-degree murder with a firearm and one count of a felon in possession of a firearm. 

The murder occurred after Donahue reportedly escaped from federal custody two months beforehand.

According to court documents obtained by KOIN 6 News, in March 2016, a judge sentenced Donahue to nine years in prison for the sex trafficking of a minor.

On Aug. 12, court documents say Donahue was caught on camera jumping over a fence, cutting off his GPS ankle monitor and escaping the area in a white sedan that was waiting for him.

Overnight standoff in SE Portland

Officials said it started when Gonzalez-Rocha called authorities, saying she was being held hostage by her boyfriend in the bathroom of an apartment on the afternoon of Nov. 21.

Gonzalez-Rocha called 911 around 3:30 p.m. and she was heard crying over the phone, court documents said, appearing to plead with a man, “Please, please don’t. Please [expletive] don’t.”

A man then took over the phone, told authorities his name is Jason and claimed Gonzalez-Rocha was using drugs, per court documents. Gonzalez-Rocha yelled the name “Davonte Donahue” before the call abruptly ended, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in Multnomah County Circuit Court.

When police arrived, they said Donahue fired shots toward the officers through the apartment door. At least 30 rounds were fired through the windows and doors.

Donahue continued firing after a Special Emergency Response Team broke the windows and filled the apartment with an unspecified chemical agent. Officials said police did not fire back and continued to call for Donahue to surrender.

Shortly after 1 a.m., SERT entered a room Donahue had barricaded himself in and arrested him.

Police said they found a woman shot to death inside the apartment, confirmed Wednesday to be Gonzalez-Rocha.

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