Man arrested, pleads not guilty in Portland hotel killing – KATU
PORTLAND, Ore. – Homicide detectives arrested a man in connection to a Vancouver woman who was found dead in the DoubleTree Hotel in Portland.
Tae Bum Yoon, 24, of Bellevue, Wash., was arrested at Union Station in Portland after arriving by train on Wednesday, police officials said.
Yoon pleaded not guilty Friday in Multnomah County court to the killing of 24-year-old Ashley Renee Benson at the DoubleTree Hotel near the Lloyd Center Dec. 26. Portland police said Benson was the victim of sex trafficking but have declined to say if was related to her killing. | Read more
Officials made the arrest after developing a lead in the case Wednesday. They had been working closely with investigators in Bellevue, officials said.
According to court documents, Yoon does not have prior convictions or pending court cases.
Yoon was born in Seoul, South Korea, however he currently lives in Bellevue.
On Friday, police and prosecutors were still mum about the circumstances of her death and what evidence leads them to think Yoon was involved.
Sgt. Pete Simpson said more details will likely emerge next week.
Simpson said there are no other suspects in Benson’s death. He said arresting anyone involved in the trafficking of Benson is “not an aspect we’re looking at right now.”
“The primary focus of this investigation is the homicide,” Simpson said. “Certainly, as we do that investigation, if we learn of other criminal behavior by other people, we’ll prioritize that accordingly.”
Benson’s body was found in a stairwell of the hotel.
Benson grew up in the Portland area and had a son. Her father and other relatives sat on the back bench of the courtroom, sobs emerging when the bespectacled Yoon appeared behind a glass partition in jail clothes. After the hearing, the family hustled out of the courthouse without speaking to reporters.
If you have any useful information in this case, call detectives at (503) 823-0692.