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TriMet operator assaulted, reward for information offered

TriMet is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of a suspect who assaulted bus opetrator Thursday night in North Portland.

According to TriMet, the operator is recovering after being physically attacked in the St. Johns area while on a break. The assault happened about 10:50 p.m. on Dec. 12 on a Line 4 bus while it was parked at North Richmond and Syracuse Street.

TriMet says the operator was repeatedly punched after informing a rider who had boarded about a half mile earlier that he did not pay the correct fare. The man began yelling at the operator and then began hitting the operator. The operator fought off the suspect, who then took off on foot. Police searched the area but were unable to locate the suspect.

The suspect is described as an African American male in his 20s, 5’5", 300 lbs., with a thin mustache. He was last seen wearing a yellow hoody.

The suspect boarded the bus at North Kellogg and St. Louis Avenue. After the assault, he left in the direction of the Safeway store at Richmond and Syracuse Street.

Anyone with information about the suspect should report it to police or call 503-238-RIDE.

The name of the operator was not immediately released.