Man arrested for 'lewd acts' on TriMet bus
Warning: This story contains graphic descriptions from police
PORTLAND, Ore. - Police arrested a man they said on several occasions masturbated while riding on TriMet buses and ejaculated on female victims.
On Monday, a female victim told transit officers she was riding the bus downtown when a man behind her ejaculated on the back of her head. Officers took statements from the victim and witnesses, plus were able to collect DNA evidence, according to Sgt. Pete Simpson.
The officers used witness accounts and surveillance videos to identify the suspect as Jared Weston Walter, Simpson said.
Investigators said Walter was involved in similar incidents during the previous three weeks in Portland and Clackamas County. In those first two cases, police said the victims were not sure what had happened and did not at first grasp the seriousness of the offense.
Police recognized Walter from a 2009 arrest. In that case, he was accused of cutting the hair of women riding the bus and putting superglue on their heads.
Court records show that Walter was only convicted of tampering with a witness in that case. He was sentenced to 13 months in prison and two years of post-prison supervision.
Simpson said Walter had just recently been paroled.
After taking the original report, transit officers worked with several other police agencies and TriMet to track down Walter. He was arrested later the same day while attempting to get on a bus downtown, Simpson said.
He faces new charges of sex abuse, interfering with public transportation, harassment, disorderly conduct and public indecency. Walter was taken to the Multnomah County Jail.
"A guy like this, performing this kind of act in public, probably isn't going to pay attention to a bus exclusion," said Simpson. "But we do want to gather as much information as we can on these cases. Hopefully we can put a stop to his behavior through a number of criminal charges."
Police think they may be additional victims who have not yet stepped forward. They're releasing photos of Walter in case any additional victims recognize him.
If you were a victim or witnessed a similar incident, you're asked to call Officer West Helfrich at (503) 545-3860 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Walter's mother told KATU in 2010 that her son was a problem to raise and often under a doctor's care for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
He is originally from Houston, and his criminal record or accusations span three states.
In Washington, he was convicted of putting superglue in a woman's hair at a hardware store near Tacoma.