BAKER CITY — A man who apparently arrived in Baker City during the unseasonably warm days of early November has kept police busy as he has moved to various businesses, possibly seeking shelter as the temperatures continue to drop and snow falls.
Police Chief Ray Duman said his officers had their first contact with Gregory Rex Stephens, 74, on Tuesday, Nov. 10, when he was trespassed from a Baker City convenience store.
Duman said Stephens is a transient who came to Baker City from Enterprise. Police have been called to 19 separate incidents, 15 of which were reports that Stephens refused to leave businesses after he was asked to move on, in the first seven days of his arrival in the community.
Stephens was cited on charges of criminal trespassing three more times on Nov. 10, twice at the Baker Truck Corral and once at the Baker Tower. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, Baker County Sheriff Travis Ash has put a cap on the number of people in custody at the Baker County Jail at about 20.
Those spaces are reserved for people accused of more serious crimes and people arrested on crimes that require mandatory arrest under state law, such as domestic violence offenses. And others at the jail are serving sentences for Baker County convictions.