Portland stabbing: Man accused of stealing victim’s wedding ring as he lay dying

Credit: Portland Police Bureau

Credit: Portland Police Bureau

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.

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Investigators identified Ricky Best, 53, as one of the two men killed in last Friday’s attack. Authorities arrested Jeremy Christian, 35, after the attack on charges including attempted murder, two counts of aggravated murder and two counts of second-degree intimidation.

After Best was stabbed, police believe he was approached by George Tschaggeny. Portland police spokesman Sgt. Pete Best told The Oregonian that Tschaggeny took advantage of chaos in the aftermath of the stabbing and snatched Best's backpack and the wedding ring off his finger.

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Surveillance cameras captured a man, identified by police as Tschaggeny, carrying Best’s backpack from the MAX train.

“It’s completely heartless,” Simpson said. “People in the community saw this and felt the understandable rage that I think everybody felt.”

Tschaggeny was arrested early Friday after a Domino’s Pizza employee reported seeing a man who matched the suspect’s description in the area. He was apprehended without incident early Friday at a small transient camp near Interstate 84, according to The Oregonian.

He was wearing Best’s wedding ring at the time of his arrest, police said.

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

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“It’s an added a layer of tragedy for this family,” Simpson told The Oregonian.

Authorities booked Tschaggeny into the Multnomah County Jail on charges of second-degree theft, tampering with physical evidence and second-degree abuse of a corpse. He is scheduled to appear before a judge for an arraignment Monday.

Best was one of three people stabbed last Friday after they attempted to intervene after police said Christian started to harass two young black women on a MAX train. One of the women was wearing a hijab, according to officials

Best died at the scene. Taliesin Namkai-Meche, 23, was taken to a hospital, where he died. A third man was injured and subsequently released from the hospital.

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