A man accused of torturing a woman he held captive in Oregon last week was spotted walking a dog in the same area that crime took place, police said Tuesday.
Benjamin Obadiah Foster, 36, is wanted by police for attempted murder, kidnapping and assault after a woman was found unconscious, bound and near death in Grants Pass, Oregon, last Tuesday. She was hospitalized in critical condition.
The Grants Pass Police Department on Tuesday shared a photo of what it claimed was Foster walking a dog “in the Grants Pass area.”
Later Tuesday night, a large police presence was gathered outside the home in Grants Pass where the woman was found, according to CBS affiliate KTVL-TV. Video from the station showed police surrounding the area and occasionally moving toward the house. KTVL reported that Grants Pass Police spokesperson Jeff Hattersley told the station that Foster is believed to be underneath the home, and SWAT teams are trying to get him to surrender.
police believe Foster is barricaded inside the home, but law enforcement officials have not publicly confirmed that report or said what it is they were doing in the area.
On Thursday night, local and federal law enforcement agents raided a property in the unincorporated community of Wolf Creek, about 20 miles north of Grants Pass, and seized Foster’s car. They arrested 68-year-old Tina Marie Jones for hindering prosecution in the raid, but Foster managed to escape.
Jones is accused of following Foster in a vehicle on Thursday as he drove to a remote location and then intentionally guided his vehicle over an embankment, according to court documents. Jones then gave Foster a ride to the property that was raided, where he had been hiding out, court records showed.
Police had said Foster was “actively using online dating applications to contact unsuspecting individuals who may be lured into assisting with the suspect’s escape or potentially as additional victims.” They also warned that Foster could attempt to change his appearance by cutting or changing the color of his hair or shaving his facial hair.
In 2019, before moving to Oregon, Foster held his then-girlfriend captive inside her Las Vegas apartment for two weeks. He initially was charged with five felonies, including assault and battery, and faced decades in prison upon conviction. But in August 2021, Foster reached a deal with Clark County prosecutors that allowed him to plead guilty to one felony count of battery and a misdemeanor count of battery constituting domestic violence.
A judge sentenced him to up to 2 1/2 years in a Nevada prison. But after the 729 days he had spent in jail awaiting trial were factored into his punishment, Foster was left to serve fewer than 200 additional days in state custody.
Foster’s girlfriend suffered seven broken ribs, two black eyes and injuries from being bound at the wrists and ankles with zip ties and duct tape during her two-week captivity, according to a Las Vegas police report.
The woman also told police she was forced to eat lye and was choked to the point of unconsciousness.
She escaped when Foster let her out of his sight during a trip together to a grocery store and gas station.
Court records show Foster was out of custody at the time on a suspended jail sentence for carrying a concealed weapon without a permit. He also was awaiting trial in another 2018 case involving domestic violence, but Foster’s plea deal with prosecutors in 2021 settled the domestic violence case, a copy of the agreement shows, and he was “sentenced to credit for time served.”
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