PORTLAND -- A man was arrested in connection to the alleged attack of a hiker on a popular Southwest Portland trail Sunday morning.
Police arrested 24-year-old Kenneth Couch and charged him with crimes including strangulation and first-degree rape. His bail is set at $260,000, said Lt. Robert King of the Portland Police Bureau. Lt. King explained the first degree rape charge involves a Gresham case.
Michelle Dickson said she was going for a hike on Wildwood Trail in Washington Park when a man came up from behind her just before noon near the Hoyt Arboretum on Southwest Fairview Boulevard.
"He sped up behind me and he accosted me by grabbing me from behind and a neck hold he said 'mam you need to..' and I didn’t hear anything after that because I started screaming," Dickson said.
She said the man held onto her for a moment, but ran away when she kept screaming.
Other hikers came to help her, but the man was already gone.
"Within 10 seconds people came, people had cell phones out people were very supportive and concerned obviously," Dickson said.
Police and K-9 units searched the area and eventually captured a suspect on Monday.
Couch was living in the park, in a tent set up in a heavily treed area, according to investigators.
The head of security for the Oregon Zoo noticed the tent Monday morning and alerted park rangers. The rangers said they quickly realized that Couch, who was living in the tent, matched the description of Dickson's attacker and alerted police.