Wanted Ore. Man Accused of Torturing Woman Is Using Dating Apps to Find Victims and Evade Capture: Police

A nationwide manhunt is underway for Benjamin Obadiah Foster, 36, who is accused of attempted murder, kidnapping and assault

Benjamin Obadiah Foster
Benjamin Obadiah Foster. Photo: Grants Pass Police Department

A nationwide manhunt is underway for an Oregon man accused of brutally assaulting and kidnapping a woman he was in a prior relationship with. Authorities believe the suspect is still "actively using" online dating apps to find people to help him evade capture, as well as to find new potential victims.

Benjamin Obadiah Foster, 36, is wanted for attempted murder, assault and kidnapping after the incident in Grants Pass, Ore., last week.

Last Tuesday, the 35-year-old alleged victim was found by police officers beaten, unconscious and bound, according to a statement from the Grants Pass Police Department.

Foster allegedly tried to kill the woman while "intentionally torturing" her and keeping her confined in a location "where she was not likely to be found," Josephine County District Attorney Joshua Eastman wrote in court documents, Oregon Live reports. Foster allegedly held her captive for a "protracted period of time," Grants Pass Police Chief Warren Hensman said at a press conference last week.

The alleged victim, who was apparently in a prior romantic relationship with Foster, according to documents reviewed by Oregon Live, was later transported to a local hospital in critical condition. Foster fled the scene before officers arrived.

Benjamin Obadiah Foster, Police Searching for Man Who Kidnapped Woman
Benjamin Obadiah Foster. Grants Pass Police Department/Facebook

Officers went to a residence in Wolf Creek, Ore., last Thursday to arrest Foster, but he escaped. "Following a lengthy manhunt, Foster evaded capture and likely received assistance in fleeing the area," Grants Pass PD wrote in a Facebook update.

Various pieces of evidence, including Foster's 2008 Nissan Sentra, were seized during a search of the property, and officers also arrested a 68-year-old woman there for allegedly "hindering prosecution."

Police say Foster is still "actively using online dating applications to contact unsuspecting individuals who may be lured into assisting with the suspect's escape, or potentially as additional victims," noting that "anyone assisting Ben Foster with his escape will face potential prosecution."

The department urges local residents to look out for Foster, noting that he might alter his appearance by shaving his beard or changing his hair color. "The Grants Pass Police Department asks the public to pay particular attention to Foster's facial structure and eyes since those features are very difficult to change."

Authorities say Foster, who is still on the run, is "armed and should be considered extremely dangerous."

Benjamin Obadiah Foster, Police Searching for Man Who Kidnapped Woman
Benjamin Obadiah Foster. Grants Pass Police Department/Facebook

"We are laser-focused on capturing this man and bringing him to justice," Grants Pass Police Chief Warren Hensman said at a news conference last week, the Associated Press reported. "This is an all-hands-on-deck operation."

"This is a very serious event, a brutal assault of one of our residents that we take extremely seriously. And we will not rest until we capture this individual," Hensman added.

'Extremely Troubling' Foster Isn't Behind Bars: Police Chief

The police chief has also said he finds it "extremely troubling" that Foster is not still behind bars in Nevada after being charged with five felonies there, including the 2019 assault and battery of a girlfriend in Las Vegas. That alleged victim suffered seven broken ribs, two black eyes and other related injuries after being bound at the wrists and ankles with zip ties and duct tape for two weeks, the Associated Press reported.

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That alleged victim later told police she was forced to eat the chemical lye while she was held captive, and that she once choked to the point of unconsciousness as a result.

The girlfriend allegedly escaped after convincing Foster to take her on an errand to a grocery store and gas station, where she bolted from the car. Foster was arrested by SWAT officers later that day, according to AP, and spent a total of 729 days behind bars while awaiting trial.

Despite the fact that Foster was also awaiting trial in connection with a 2018 domestic abuse charge during his time in jail, he secured an August 2021 plea deal that reduced his sentence to 2 1/2 years — which included the 792 days he'd already spent in jail awaiting trial.

Anyone with information about Foster's current whereabouts or online activity is asked to call the Grants Pass Police Tip-Line at 541-237-5607.

Police urge anyone who sees Foster not to approach him, but to call 911 immediately.

There is a reward in place for information leading to his arrest and prosecution.

If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to thehotline.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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