The Newport Police Department responded to separate assault cases on Sunday, both of which involved use of a weapon.
At 11:07 a.m., police were dispatched to the Newport Walmart after receiving a report that a female at that location was attempting to assault a store employee with a baseball bat. An Oregon State Trooper was the first to arrive on scene and was able to intervene and stop the suspect.
An investigation revealed that Hannah Lettrell, 30, of McMinnville, had been in the store and had allegedly stolen some items. Lettrell left the business with the stolen merchandise but returned a short time later. A Walmart security officer witnessed Lettrell return and confronted her about the earlier theft. This is when Lettrell brandished a baseball bat and charged the security officer, swinging the bat and yelling profanities. The security officer was able to flee from the suspect.
The trooper, who was in the area at the time, intervened and gave commands to Lettrell to drop the bat. She threw the bat and then proceeded to yell at responders.
Lettrell was taken into custody and lodged at the Lincoln County Jail on charges of attempted assault in the second degree, unlawful use of a weapon, menacing, disorderly conduct and theft in the third degree.
Later that day, at 4:18 p.m., Newport police were dispatched to the Newport Bay Motel after receiving a report of a man with a machete assaulting another person.
Officers arrived and contacted Ronald Callihan, 66, of Newport, sitting in his vehicle. An investigation revealed that Callihan was staying at the motel and had prior issues with another tenant there. While the victim was in a common area working on their bicycle, Callihan approached the victim and began swinging a machete wildly. The victim attempted to get away but was unable, and was struck in the arm with the machete. Callihan was yelling at the victim and continued to swing the machete, only stopping the assault when bystanders intervened.
Callihan reportedly admitted to the assault and was still very agitated when contacted by officers. He was placed into custody without incident, and the machete was seized. The victim refused medical treatment at the scene.
Callihan was taken into custody and lodged at the Lincoln County Jail on charges of assault in the second degree, assault in the fourth degree, unlawful use of a weapon, harassment, menacing and disorderly conduct.