As hero died protecting teens, his belongings were stolen

As hero died protecting teens, his belongings were stolen

Blake Casey
June 3, 2017

A 51-year-old man faces charges including abuse of a corpse after police said he stole a man's wedding ring after the man was fatally stabbed in an attack on a Portland, Oregon, light-rail train last week.

The department's official spokesman, Sgt Pete Simpson, tweeted: "Find this man Portland". In a 17-second-long surveillance video released by police, the suspect is seen leaving the MAX train carrying what appears to be Best's backpack in his right hand. Appeal for help Portland police had appealed to the public for help in locating the suspect in the theft of Best's backpack and wedding band.

After 12 hours of social media outrage and his photo being shared widely in the community, the man suspected in the theft is now in custody, Portland police announced Friday morning.

Best, 53, and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche, 23, were stabbed last weekend after witnesses said they stepped in to defend two teenage girls against a verbal assault on the train by reputed white supremacist Jeremy J. Christian. The third man, 21-year-old Micah David-Cole Fletcher, survived the attack.

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"They've suffered an vast loss and this is just one more layer of tragedy to their already very bad experience", Sgt. Pete Simpson said. "The contents of the backpack include personal items important to the Best family". Best died at the scene, police have said.

Authorities also recovered Best's missing backpack, although officers said some items, like the Army veteran's wallet, were missing.

Christian attacked the men after they tried to protect two young black girls at whom Christian was yelling racist and anti-Muslim remarks. The statement went on to describe the alleged thief as a "white male with a blonde hair mullet, wearing a black Jordan Brand baseball cap, a black t-shirt featuring an image of Marilyn Monroe and an American flag, black shorts, and black shoes". "After serving in the military, he'd usually say, 'Hey, I'm not getting shot at, why shouldn't I smile?'"