PORTLAND, Ore. – A man who fatally stabbed another man in a random attack in the Old Town neighborhood of Portland last year was sentenced to life in prison.
Michael Lee Williams, 34, pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated murder in connection with the death of 37-year-old Jacob Shroyer. Williams may be eligible for parole after serving 30 years.
Shroyer suffered life-threatening injuries after he was stabbed multiple times with a knife at the Pacific Tower Apartments, located at 333 NW 4th Ave. The stabbing occurred at around 10:25 p.m. on May 8, 2017. His family posted he died the next day.
"Jacob Shroyer has passed away today. Our hearts are suffering that he is no longer in this world. His was a light that brought many people together this last week and in the the years prior. Please keep Jacob's family and loved ones in your thoughts tonight. Please think of Jacob fondly."
Police said there was no indication Willams and Shroyer knew each other before the attack.
"This stabbing was incredibly violent. I can't emphasize that enough," said Sgt. Pete Simpson, spokesman for Portland police. "It was also random, there's no connection between these two at all, and for investigators that doesn't happen as often as people think."
Williams was arrested and charged with attempted murder, assault and unlawful use of a weapon a few days after Shroyer's death.
Police said Williams assaulted an inmate after he was booked into the Multnomah County Jail.
"Really a violent streak for this man. We're very glad he's off the streets and in custody, and likely in custody for a long time," Simpson said.
Shroyer's partner, Eric Duncan, said Shroyer was one of the most compassionate people he'd ever met.
"He has the biggest heart you'd ever know," Duncan said. "He's so kind, he'd give up a paycheck for you to help you out. He'd take you off the street, feed you, laugh with you, comfort you, distract you from your issues, and take those burdens as his own."
Another friend, James Dixon, said Shroyer was a beloved son, friend, partner, barber and DJ.
"His work and artistry has made so many people happy. The impact of this tragic event is being felt everywhere," Dixon said.
A fundraiser was set up for Shroyer's family.