PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Multiple suspects are being sought after an assault took place at Glenn Otto Park on Sunday, which authorities have called “brutal” and “appalling.”
Just after 7:30 p.m., deputies responded to a report of an assault at 1110 E. Historic Columbia River Highway in Troutdale. When they arrived, they found two brothers injured near the Sandy River at Glenn Otto Park.
According to the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, a group of individuals reportedly swam across the river and confronted the victims before violently attacking them. The group consisted of multiple male suspects, who are seen on video punching, kicking and stomping on at least one of the victims.
One of the men involved, who appears to be wearing salmon-colored shorts in the video, is seen using a large stick to repeatedly strike one victim.
“This is a serious and appalling assault that occurred in broad daylight at a family-friendly, riverfront beach,” Law Enforcement Chief Deputy Nicole Morrisey O’Donnell said. “We are actively investigating the assault, and we are urging the public to come forward with information that may lead to an arrest of these individuals. Violence has no place in Multnomah County.”
One of the victims of the assault said the suspects yelled homophobic slurs at them. Because of this, detectives are considering bias crime charges.
“We went down to the river we were swimming. At one point my brother had to go pee so he went on the other side of the bridge, asked a group of guys if there were any kids or girls with them because he didn’t want to pee because they were on the other side. He turned his back to them and started peeing and they started yelling that he was gay,” said David Van Horn, one of the brothers.
Van Horn and his brother started to banter back and forth with their assailants.
“Then they beat us with sticks, they kicked my brother to the ground and beat the absolute crap out of him,” Van Horn said.
At one point, Van Horn said rocks and beer bottles were thrown at him and his brother.
“We both went to the ER, I have seven staples in the back of my head. I have about a two inch gash from where they hit me with a stick. My brother had to get stitches on his chin from where they hit him, he also has bruised ribs…,” Van Horn said.
No arrests have been made — all of the suspects left the area shortly after the assault took place.
“We just want justice,” said Van Horn.
An investigation is ongoing and authorities are asking for the public’s help in identifying the men involved in what they called a “brutal assault.” Anyone with information is urged to call the MCSO Tip Line at 503.988.0560 and reference case number 21-24002.
This is a developing story.