Three suspects were arrested Sunday in connection with the "unprovoked" beating and stabbing of a 21-year-old Medford man in Hawthorne Park near downtown earlier in the day.
Medford resident Shilo Hill Hutson, 20, was charged with first-degree assault, first-degree attempted assault and third-degree assault for allegedly beating Medford resident Michael Gregory, 21, and stabbing him in his side. The suspect's brother, Cody Blue Huston, 18, and Dustin Lee Soli, 22, both of Medford, were charged with third-degree assault and disorderly conduct. Soli also was sought by police on a statewide warrant for a parole violation.
Gregory was receiving treatment late Sunday at Providence Medford Medical Center, where he had emergency surgery upon arrival at the hospital at about 5 p.m., said Medford police Sgt. Brent Mak. "It looks like it was an unprovoked attacked," Mak said. "It's clear the three males instigated the attack. It appears they were trying to fight one guy for an old beef."
Gregory's condition was not considered to be life-threatening late Sunday, Mak said. Hospital spokeswoman Vicki Chamberlain did not immediately return a call to her cellphone seeking the victim's condition.
Gregory and nine friends, some of whom are transients, were playing Hacky Sack in the park, near where a city pool is located, when the three suspects attacked the group, said witness Andrew Amaral, who is Gregory's friend. "We were just standing there playing Hacky Sack, and they came up to us with knives and sticks," said Amaral, who identified himself as a 20-year-old transient.
Mak said the suspects singled out one of the males to fight. When his friends tried to help him, a fight broke out. During the fight, Gregory was struck in the head with a thick stick and stabbed in the abdomen with a knife.
The suspects, then, fled going westbound on Jackson Street, Mak said.
Medford police Officer Dave Awbrey spotted the suspects on Jackson and was able to detain them, Mak said.
Emergency responders were dispatched to the scene at just before 5 p.m.
Mercy Flights rushed Gregory to the hospital by ambulance and also transported another 30-year-old male victim with minor injuries to the hospital. That 30-year-old victim, whose name was unavailable late Sunday, was treated and released.
Amaral was visibly shaken and had blood smeared on his forearm from trying to assist Gregory.
"I was holding his head wound," Amaral said.
Nearby, three girls from the group of friends cried and clung to each other as Medford police officers combed the area for evidence.
"We get groups that congregate there (in Hawthorne Park)," Mak said. "Some are homeless; some aren't. They just hang out, and a lot of times we have problems. In this incident, the suspects were definitely the aggressors. They were intent on getting in a fight."
Reach reporter Paris Achen at 541-776-4459 or e-mail email@example.com.