Driver Who Willfully Ran Over Three People Sent to State Hospital, Again

A judge ruled he was finally competent to stand trial last April.

A 65-year-old man who intentionally drove his Mazda SUV onto a sidewalk at Portland State University campus in 2018, seriously injuring three women, has pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree attempted murder and guilty except for insanity to a third.

Greg Porter was sentenced to 15 years in prison, although he’ll spend at least the beginning of that stretch in a locked psychiatric ward at Oregon State Hospital.

Porter was homeless and had been in and out of rehab at the time of his arrest in May 2018, and police believed at the time he was suicidal.

While in custody, he spent three years at OSH undergoing treatment to regain his sanity. A judge ruled he was finally competent to stand trial last April.

In a 2018 jailhouse interview, Porter told KGW he was living on the street with all his belongings in his car after a suicide attempt the prior year. “The day that this happened, I guess I just lost it because I called the bank and I’m $200 in the hole and I mean, problem after problem after problem,” he said.

Over the past two years, Oregon lawmakers have scrambled to increase funding for the state’s woefully underdeveloped mental health care system. Last year, Oregon ranked worst in the country for prevalence of mental illness—a problem that has leaked out onto the streets as a result of a concurrent affordable housing crisis.

That’s the subject of this week’s cover story. Read it here.

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