Estacada community rallies around stabbing victim, friend of suspect in shock

Mike Dettling says he grew up with Josh Webb, who is accused of killing his mother and stabbing a Harvest Market employee. (KATU Photo)

A Molalla man says he didn't see it coming from his childhood friend. He's speaking out, saying people shouldn't be so quick to judge the suspect, Joshua Webb.

Police confirmed grocery store worker Michael Wagner was stabbed by Webb after Webb walked into the Harvest Market in Estacada. Police also confirmed the severed head Webb was carrying belonged to his mother, Tina.

Wagner is recovering in the hospital and is expected to be OK. Many people who know him tells KATU News that he’s a hero for trying to stop the suspect.

Everyone at Trails Inn Café & Timber Room Monday night knows Wagner. Randy Ells says he's known him for 30 years, and says you'd know him too if you've ever been to Harvest Market.

“He's the kind of guy you wish was your brother,” said Ells. “You don't meet people like that too much anymore. This community has a lot of tightknit people, and Mike is the best of the best.”

Messages and cards being signed by patrols and left at the market and bar seem to express that sentiment.

“We all love Mike, and we all want him to do good, and he is doing better,” said Ells.

While many paint Wagner as a tribute to the community, those who know the suspect, Josh Webb, are shocked he’s charged with those crimes.

“Josh is a good person,” said Mike Dettling, a friend of Webb’s. “I was surprised. It's like a movie.”

Dettling says he and Webb were neighbors in Colton.

“We grew up riding dirt bikes, and had sleepovers and had a good time,” said Dettling.

He says Webb loved computer games and games like Dungeons and Dragons. He describes Webb as quiet and someone who mostly keeps to himself. Over the years, he says they grew apart, but tells KATU News he visited the family most recently a month ago. Dettling knew then that something was off.

“That look, his eyes, catatonic,” said Dettling.

Dettling says he hopes people realize that mental illness needs a voice and perhaps can find one through Webb.

“There are millions suffering from it, including myself,” he said.

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