Warning: This story features disturbing content.
The small, quiet town of Estacada, Oregon was shaken on Sunday by the gruesome murder of a 59-year-old woman and the stabbing of a well-loved local grocery employee. On Sunday, which happened to be Mother’s Day, 36-year-old Joshua Lee Webb walked in the local Harvest Market Thriftway grocery with an 8-inch knife in one hand and the decapitated head of his mother on the other. Webb then stabbed a well-known clerk before the store’s employees subdued him.
According to a statement from witnesses and the local police, the 36-year-old murder suspect walked in the grocery store drenched in blood. Ashlie Crombie, who has worked at the grocery store for the last three years, stated that a customer was the first to spot Webb as he made his way to the store, according to an Oregon Live report. Crombie was not on duty when the incident happened, though she was quickly filled in by her co-workers immediately after the bloody incident.
Once Webb was inside the store, he proceeded to stab a longtime employee named Mike, whose last name has not been released, up to seven times before other staff of the grocery was able to subdue him. Webb’s hands and feet were bound with duct tape by the store’s employees before police arrived.
Investigators say the suspect walked into the Estacada Thriftway carrying a knife & what looked like a human head before stabbing someone. pic.twitter.com/56GwCFO3I9
— John Hendricks (@JohnKPTV) May 15, 2017
While others were subduing Webb, another staff member with first-aid training began helping Mike until the paramedics arrived. The injured worker was then transported to the Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland, where he underwent surgery. As of writing, authorities have stated that Mike would be making a full recovery from his injuries.
The suspect was then taken to the Clackamas County Jail, where he was booked on suspicion of murder and attempted murder. According to Interim Sandy Police Chief Ernie Roberts, Webb had been in a catatonic state since he was apprehended on the grocery store. The interim chief also revealed that authorities found the murder weapon in the Thriftway store.
Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Nate Thomas further confirmed that upon investigation, authorities were able to determine that Webb had indeed been carrying a severed human head when he assaulted the Thriftway employee. Thomas also revealed that the head of Webb’s first victim was recovered at the market.
Joshua Webb’s first victim, who was later identified by police as 59-year-old Tina Marie Webb, was also his mother, according to a KTLA report. The 59-year-old was killed in her home, a house she shared with the suspect. David Webb, Tina’s husband and Joshua’s father, expressed his grief over the gruesome incident, stating that prior to the murder, his son did not show signs that he had a severe problem.
“My wife was wonderful. I’ve been married to her for almost 41 years. Joshua was our son. I never saw a problem. Evidently, there was one. I don’t know. I start crying every time I think about it.”
Spoke with a woman who put this sign and candles out for folks. She was in the store when the stabbing happened. This community is in shock. pic.twitter.com/bidSByQhKy
— John Hendricks (@JohnKPTV) May 15, 2017
The loss of Tina-Marie Webb and the stabbing of Mike has shaken the small town to its core, with some expressing their grief over the fact that the bloody incident happened on Mother’s Day.
“It’s really a shame, on Mother’s Day, too. It’s really a sad thing to see on Mother’s Day,” a resident stated.
Though the loss of Tina was a huge blow to the community, other residents stated that they are at least thankful that Mike survived the attack. Timmer Robertson, a regular at the Thriftway, said that the employee was beloved by many due to his constantly pleasant disposition and overwhelming optimism.
“He’s such a happy-go-lucky guy. He’ll sit and tell you which vegetables to get and which ones not to. Really nice guy. No one around here will have a bad thing to say about him.”
Joshua Lee Webb has had no major convictions in the past. So far, Webb’s only conviction happened back in 2000, when he was charged for the unlawful use of metal objects on tires.
[Featured Image by Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office/AP Images]