Two men accused of robbing, beating & tying man naked to a tree
SKAMANIA COUNTY, Wash. - Two people are in jail accused of kidnapping, robbing and beating a man in the woods at gunpoint then leaving him naked and tied to a tree.
And more people may be arrested in the case.
The attack may have been retaliation for stealing a car and beating a dog, said a man related to one of the suspects.
The man who was hurt said he received a concussion, a broken nose and other cuts and bruises. Police said he was left in the woods overnight, cut himself loose from the tree and managed to get to the road where a hunter found him and brought him to safety.
That hunter brought the man to Chris Fuller, who helps run Washougal River Mercantile. Fuller's also the area's volunteer fire chief and EMT.
Fuller called 911.
"That family was really nice and picked him up even though picking up an unclothed person might seem a little scary for many people," Fuller said.
Fuller said Robert Downey, from Vancouver, was in the back of the family's pickup truck wrapped in a blanket.
Fuller's dad gave the man some clothing to wear. In addition to the broken nose, Fuller said the man's eyes were blackened. The man was able to talk, Fuller said.
The Skamania County Sheriff's Office believes at least two men were responsible for the kidnapping and assault in the woods.
John Bedell told KATU News one of the suspects, Marcus Bedell, is his nephew.
"He was helping a friend of his out that had his vehicle stolen and had his dog inside," John Bedell said.
He said Downey totaled the other suspect's truck, beat his dog and tied the dog to a tree in Portland.
"Maybe it was retaliation from the dog, I don't know," said John Bedell. "But I couldn't fathom my nephew leaving somebody like that. It doesn't seem right."
The incident has become the talk of the town.
In another bizarre twist, the hunter who found Downey in the woods is the suspect's girlfriend's father. One family member said it's just a weird coincidence.
The second suspect is Charles Sample of Vancouver.
A background check on all three men involved revealed they all have a criminal history.
KATU's news partners at The Columbian even found out they met in jail.