Bend hatchet-wielding transient arrested after store lockdown

Police say he twice threatened security officer

BEND, Ore. - A 23-year-old transient caused a disturbance at Trader Joe's, twice threatened a security officer with a hatchet and caused a brief lockdown of J.C. Penney before his arrest Monday evening, Bend police said.

Police were dispatched around 6:35 p.m. to a reported weapons offense at the Cascade Village Shopping Center on N. Highway 97, Sgt. Rob Emerson said.

A security officer with the shopping center was contacted by Trader Joe's workers reporting a man yelling at customers and causing a disturbance. He later was identified as Jeffrey Ebel, Emerson said.

When the security officer arrived in the area, he found Ebel in Food 4 Less and asked him not to return to Trader Joe's, the sergeant said.

When Ebel said he was waiting for a bus, the security officer gave Ebel directions to the bus stop and followed Ebel from a distance as he walked toward the stop.

At one point, as Ebel walked to the north, he turned and saw he was being followed, unlatched a hatchet and displayed it over his head, yelling at the security officer and threatening to harm him, Emerson said.

The security officer contacted Deschutes County 911 dispatchers and kept watching Ebel, providing updates as he walked toward the northwest, just west of J.C. Penney.

While the security officer was on the phone with 911, Emerson said Ebel suddenly turned back around and charged the security officer, with the hatchet over his head. That prompted the security officer to run into the store and hide as Ebel entered the store, looking for him.

When Ebel couldn't find the security officer, he ran out toward the northwest and J.C. Penney was put on lockdown for a brief time, Emerson said.

Bend police arrived and found Ebel behind a business near Hunnell and Robal roads, Emerson said. He was detained without further incident and the hatchet was seized.

Ebel was booked into the county jail on charges of menacing, second-disagree disorderly conduct and unlawful use of a weapon. He was being held late Monday on $17,500 bail, jail records showed.

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