Attack at Happy Valley Denny’s similar to attack at movie theate - KPTV - FOX 12

Attack at Happy Valley Denny’s similar to attack at movie theater Sunday

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HAPPY VALLEY, OR (KPTV) -

Investigators say the attack at a Denny’s in Happy Valley Wednesday night is similar to another incident at a movie theater in the nearby Clackamas Town Center that happened Sunday night.

Deputies say a man tried to light another movie goer on fire at the Century Clackamas Town Center Theater using gasoline.

Ron Steinhauser was in that theater, and he told FOX 12 that he saw the suspect about 10 minutes before the movie was about to end.

"I noticed someone strike a match down the row from me. I thought it was odd, but didn't really take a huge notice of it,” Steinhauser said. "He used the single match to light the whole book of matches, stared at the flame for a second, and then brought up a water bottle with his other hand."

MORE: Deputies searching for suspect who set man on fire in Clackamas County Denny's

Steinhauser said he was not sure exactly what occurred next, but said he saw the aftermath of the attack and could smell gasoline coming from the victim.

"I didn't notice exactly what happened next, but there was a big flurry of movement, and the victim ran by me.  I noticed there was a slight flame on his arm, but it went out very rapidly.  He exited to the left, and the instigator exited to the right,” he explained. "I smelled gasoline as the person ran by me."

The entire incident was short-lived, Steinhauser said, with most of the people in the theater unaware of what had happened.

"It was over very quickly. Mostly, the other people in the theater didn't even realize what had happened, until the gas smell started to soak into the room," he said.

MORE: Surveillance video shows suspect wanted for setting man on fire at Clackamas Co. Denny's

Steinhauser says he did not get a good look at the attacker's face but says it could easily be the same person responsible for the attack at the Denny’s.

Authorities say the victim of the attack in the theater was not being cooperative with investigators, but Steinhauser hopes detectives will take a closer look at security video from the theater to see if it is indeed the same man suspected in the attack Wednesday night.

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