A horror-movie confrontation with a Portland, Oregon landlord, resulting in his death, was considered self-defense by the police.
In November, police determined the killing of landlord Justin Valdivia was in self-defense after Valdivia illegally entered a former tenant’s home and charged at him while wearing a slasher mask and brandishing a hammer. and a pellet gun in the middle of the night.
Stas Wallace, the former tenant, had decided to leave his room at the end of August, according to an article by The Oregonian/OregonLive, but stayed in the apartment sleeping on the couch courtesy of his three other roommates.
The roommates said Valdivia stalked them for weeks, and Wallace allegedly borrowed a sword for protection as the threats escalated. The sword would later be used to stab the owner through the chest after he entered the house in the middle of the night on September 15.
This incident would not be the first time Valdivia acted in a way that concerned tenants. He had previously attempted to enter the home illegally, as Oregon law requires landlords to give at least 24 hours notice before entering a tenant’s home.
The Oregonian/ The OregonLive article also reported that Valdivia allegedly swung a knife at one of the tenants and produced an invalid handwritten eviction notice.
The actions would escalate into Valdivia’s final threat, when he used his key to enter the property at 1 a.m. and accosted Wallace in the living room while asking for Wallace’s cellphone, which allegedly contained a video of Valdivia . threaten tenants.
According to witness statements, Valdivia pointed what was later determined to be a pellet gun at Wallace. Fearing for her life, Wallace stabbed Valdivia through the chest with the borrowed sword.
Wallace and one of the housemates called 911 and attempted to stop the bleeding, but Valdivia was pronounced dead at the scene. In November, the killing was ruled in self-defense and no criminal charges were brought.
According The Oregonian/ OregonLive, Valdivia’s family disagree with what happened on September 15.
Valdivia’s wife, Naomi, said it was Wallace who harassed Valdivia, and that her husband entered the rental property that night to demand that Wallace remove Craigslist posts accusing Valdivia of being a sex offender. The article reported that court records showed Valdivia was convicted of sexual abuse in 1996.
Wallace’s former roommate Robert Bainter said Wallace stabbing Valdivia was not a malicious attack.
“He had a gun pointed at him, and if that’s not a moment where you feel like you can defend yourself, I don’t know what is,” Bainter told The Oregonian/OregonLive.
The article reported that all of the housemates had since moved out of the rental property.
Newsweek reached Portland Police Bureau and the Multnomah County Attorney’s Office for comment.
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