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News Release
Melvin Lee Tillman pleads guilty to 10 commercial burglaries; sentencing set for April 19, 2019 - 02/06/19


FEBRUARY 6, 2019

Melvin Lee Tillman pleads guilty to 10 commercial burglaries; sentencing set for April 19, 2019


Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill announced that 63-year-old Melvin Lee Tillman admitted that he committed nearly a dozen separate commercial burglaries in Portland, Oregon during an eight month period in 2018.

On February 5, 2019, Tillman appeared before Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge Gregory Silver and pleaded guilty to 10 counts of burglary in the second degree.

Tillman admitted that he unlawfully entered, and remained in, the following properties to commit theft:

  • January 10, 2018 – A business at 3556 Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard;
  • January 22, 2018 – A business at 3325 Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard;
  • February 14, 2018 – A business at 3562 Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard;
  • April 19, 2018 – A business at 225 Northwest 11th Avenue;
  • April 23, 2018 – A business at 333 Northwest 16th Avenue;
  • April 23, 2018 – A business at 517 Northwest 23rd Avenue;
  • June 15, 2018 – A business at 601 Southeast Morrison Street
  • June 18, 2018 – A business at 628 Northeast Broadway Street;
  • August 11, 2018 – A business at 622 Northeast Grand Avenue;
  • August 12, 2018 – A business at 301 Northeast Knott Street.

According to court documents previously filed in Tillman’s cases, he would either kick in doors or smash out windows to make entry into the businesses in the late evening or early morning hours. In many of the burglaries, Tillman would steal, or attempt to steal, money from cash registers.

As part of the pre-trial agreement reached with the state, Tillman will have an “open sentencing,” which means on April 19, 2019 at 2 p.m., Judge Silver will determine the sentence. Under Oregon law, this case carries a presumptive 30 months prison sentence per count because Tillman is a repeat property offender. The state has agreed not seek a sentence of more than 80 months in prison.

The litigation of Tillman’s cases were handled by Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney Christopher Shull and Multnomah County Senior Deputy District Attorney Nathan Vasquez and the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office Strategic Prosecution Unit, which reviews cases that stem from neighborhood-specific concerns. The unit is primarily responsible for interfacing with the community over specific issues, and handles all types of cases across the criminal justice spectrum to include misdemeanors and homicides.

The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office recognizes the work of the patrol officers from the Portland Police Bureau’s Central Precinct, the PPB’s Central Precinct Neighborhood Response Team, the PPB’s Detective Division and the PPB’s Forensic Evidence Division for their dedicated efforts investigating these cases.

No additional information can be released by the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office at this time.


Contact: Brent Weisberg, Communications Director

Phone: 503.988.6567


Attached Media Files: PR-19-35-Melvin_Lee_Tillman.pdf
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