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Man who monitored, filmed police arrested with arsenal in car outside police station

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Weapons and ammunition found in Eric Crowl's (R) car parked outside the East Precinct office.
Weapons and ammunition found in Eric Crowl’s (R) car parked outside the East Precinct office.


Aug. 09–Portland police arrested a man who watched officers for months from his parked car outside the East Precinct office after finding an arsenal of weapons and ammunition in his SUV, they said Monday.

Officers noticed 39-year-old Eric Eugene Crowl Sunday outside the precinct, Sgt. Pete Simpson said in a news release. Crowl appeared to be monitoring officers, Simpson said.

It wasn’t the first time — precinct officers started noticing Crowl in his parked Chevy Tahoe in April, Simpson said. Crowl would film officers and track them during shift changes, he said.

At one point during a traffic stop, officers noted that Crowl had a police scanner in his car and was a “self-proclaimed Constitutionalist,” Simpson said.

About 2:50 p.m. Sunday, Crowl was back at the precinct but drove away when he apparently heard over the police radio that officers planned to contact him, Simpson said. When officers stopped him, they didn’t see any firearms in his car.

Officers noticed him later Sunday about 9:30 p.m. back at the precinct on Southeast 106th Avenue.

“Due to heightened concerns about police ambush attacks after the recent incidents in Dallas, Texas, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, officers contacted Crowl, concerned about his actions,” Simpson said. “As officers approached Crowl, ordering him to keep his hands up, he would raise and lower his hands and appeared to be reaching around inside his vehicle.”

Crowl eventually got out of the SUV and officers patted him down for weapons but found none, Simpson said.

But when they searched the Tahoe, they found, Simpson said: a 5.56 rifle, a 12-gauge shotgun, two 9 mm handguns, a loaded 100-round 5.56 magazine drum, hundreds of 5.56 and 9mm rounds of ammunition, 5.56 tracer rounds, handheld radios, a police scanner, camouflage clothing and camping gear including sleeping bag, food, camping stove, and lantern.

Investigators searched Crowl’s home and found eight additional rifles, a shotgun and hundreds of rounds of ammunition, Simpson said.

Crowl was booked Monday into jail on allegations of attempted assault of a public safety officer, unlawful use of a weapon and unlawful possession of a firearm, with bail set at $1 million.

Crowl will be arraigned Tuesday in Multnomah County Circuit Court.

— Francesca Fontana

503-294-4009

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