Arrest Made in Alleged Violent Attack Plot at Smith Rock Climbing Event

BEND, Ore. – A man from Portland, Oregon, was arrested in Deschutes County on suspicion of planning a violent attack during an event, according to the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office.

The 39-year-old suspect, Samson Zebturiah Garner, was taken into custody without incident, and court documents from Deschutes County indicate that he is facing charges of attempted murder, attempted commission of a felony, and unlawful use of a weapon.

The sheriff’s office received information from the Portland Police Bureau about a resident planning a violent attack in the Deschutes County area, leading to an investigation that resulted in Garner’s arrest. Law enforcement officials discovered evidence of the planned attack after obtaining a search warrant for Garner’s vehicle.

According to the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, there is no ongoing threat, and it appears that Garner was acting alone. The Portland Police Bureau was commended for sharing the information and likely preventing a major incident in Deschutes County, according to a statement from the sheriff’s office.

The potential targets of the planned attack were identified as “Belayer 1,” “Belayer 2,” “Spectator 1,” and “Spectator 2,” individuals involved in rock climbing events. While the specific event was not mentioned in the documents, the only major climbing event in Deschutes County during that weekend was the Craggin’ Classic at Smith Rock State Park.

The event’s organizers, the American Alpine Club in Colorado, released a statement acknowledging the potential threat to the safety of attendees but confirmed that the individual was arrested, and there was no continued threat. Smith Rock State Park was briefed by the sheriff’s office, but neither the park manager nor the court documents confirmed that the Craggin’ Classic was the target of the planned attack.

The arraignment for the indictment is scheduled for Oct. 27, providing an opportunity for the judicial process to unfold as authorities continue to ensure the safety of the public.