Cory ‘CJ’ Zenuch, fatally stabbed in southeast Portland, had been training for a new job


Cory “CJ” Zenuch was in training to start a job for a hamburger restaurant when he was killed after arguing with a man who did not want to leave his apartment and the dispute escalated into a stab in the neck. ‘outside, according to a friend and court records.

Police responded to a report of an assault at an apartment complex in southeast Portland and found Zenuch injured on the street.

Zenuch, 28, lived in an apartment with several others. A man named Elijah Sir Lonnie Townsend had come and the two were “playing fight” and demonstrating mixed martial arts moves, court records said.

At one point, Zenuch’s roommates said they overheard Zenuch tell Townsend to leave after Townsend called him racist, misogynist and ignorant, prosecutors wrote in a note filed in court.

Other friends sent Townsend away and came out to encourage him to leave. When Townsend was not gone, Zenuch approached him and told him he had better get in his car. It was at this point that Townsend walked up to Zenuch and stabbed him in the chest, witnesses told police, according to a prosecutor’s note.

Townsend fled in his car.

To learn more about the deceased, new details on the cases, please visit Portland homicides: under arms

The next day, Townsend posted on Facebook, “I haven’t done anything wrong. I am not that kind of person. I shouldn’t be blamed for (expletive), ”according to court documents.

Her message continued, “Me defending myself and being blown up by 3 or 4 people, I wanted to leave the situation and go home. I haven’t done anything to willfully hurt someone I swear to God.

Karin Pilgrim-Taylor, a friend of Zenuch, said she attended the accused’s bail hearing, heard 911 calls and watched video of the stabbing scene.

“It was hard,” she said. “CJ and his friends didn’t know this kid from anyone. It was kind of a hot mess. She described herself as Zenuch’s surrogate mother for more than a decade after the death of the adoptive father who adopted her.

Zenuch had been in training the previous two months to start a job for Killer Burger on the northeastern Boulevard Martin Luther King Jr. when he was killed, she said.

–Maxine Bernstein; [email protected]; 503-221-8212; @maxoregonian

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