Suspicious disappearance of woman prompts police to ask for public's help

PORTLAND, Ore. - Portland police say they need help finding two people and the disappearance of one of them is considered suspicious.

The Portland Police Bureau's Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT) searched a home at 3934 Northeast 66th Avenue Saturday, June 7. Police had responded to that home to do a welfare check.

Police say 59-year-old Rene Suzanne Sandidge-Crowell is missing and detectives consider her disappearance suspicious.

Police are also looking for the homeowner, 61-year-old Gary Alan Lewis. They say they want to speak with him.

On Monday police continued their search, which included investigating a tarp while wearing what looked like hazmat suits.

A neighbor snapped a photograph over the fence of something that he was told by Lewis was meant to be a bomb shelter built to hide from the government.

Sandidge-Crowell is a white woman, 5 feet 2 inches tall and weighs 100 pounds. She has red hair and brown eyes.

Lewis is a white man. He is 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighs 190 pounds. He has gray hair and a gray beard.

While conducting Saturday's welfare check, police determined things looked suspicious, so they called in homicide detectives.

Later in the day, a SERT team was brought in and tear-gassed the house.

Some residents nearby were evacuated for 12 hours, only allowed back home on Sunday morning.

Neighbors also said they heard loud explosions, flashes of light and felt tear gas.

On Sunday, the home was a major mess with shattered windows, a smashed fence, and chunks of debris all over the front yard, surrounded by police tape and a half-dozen officers.

Sandidge rented the basement, according to neighbors, and frequently clashed with the owner who lived upstairs.

Next door neighbor Tom Manwell said police came to the house often in response to disputes.

"Four or five times a week for the last 2.5 months was an average day for us in the neighborhood to see police or ambulance," Manwell said.

KATU found court records showing a stalking order filed by Lewis' wife against Sandidge-Crowell in 2013. It details accusations of verbal abuse.

Lewis' wife and daughter are now staying with friends and neighbors.

"She doesn't say much, she doesn't know anything either," said one neighbor, Jyl Smith. "Police aren't telling her anything either, they can't probably. It's frustrating for everyone involved."

Anyone with information about Sandidge-Crowell's and/or Lewis' whereabouts is asked to immediately call 9-1-1.

KATU's Erica Nochlin contributed to this story.