Police: 72-year-old man tried to kill 74-year-old roommate over - KPTV - FOX 12

Police: 72-year-old man tried to kill 74-year-old roommate over electric bill

Posted: Updated: Feb 16, 2018 09:06 PM
Leo Miller's booking photo from the Washington County Jail. Leo Miller's booking photo from the Washington County Jail.
Charlotte Simons (KPTV) Charlotte Simons (KPTV)

Investigators in Tigard say a 72-year-old man tried to kill his 74-year-old roommate – all over the electric bill.

Leo Miller is now in the Washington County Jail facing several charges, including attempted murder and strangulation.

The victim, Charlotte Simons, told FOX 12 she’s on a fixed income and needed a little help paying the bills. Roughly six months ago, a friend put an ad on Craigslist to help her find a roommate and Miller ultimately moved in.

On Feb. 4, Simons said she asked Miller for his half of the electric bill, but he wasn’t ready to pay and what happened next landed him in jail.

Investigators say Miller tried to kill her.

Simons said she was sitting in her recliner watching television when he came at her with a plastic bag around his hand and covered her face.

“He thought he could suffocate me with that,” she said. “I played dead… I just went limp and he thought that he killed me.”

She managed to pull out her Philips Lifeline medical alert necklace and called for help.

Court records show that dispatchers on the other end of the line heard her yell, “I need police, he’s trying to kill me.”

When Miller realized what she was doing, investigators wrote in court records that he started punching her in the face to the point that one of her eyes was swollen shut.

“I couldn’t even open it, I mean it was a mess,” Simons told FOX 12.

But – even at the age of 74 – she was determined to fight back.

“That’s when I reached for his gonads and I just squeezed them as hard as I could,” she said. “If I had a pair of cutters, he wouldn’t be wearing ‘em today, he’d be at the hospital.”

Thanks to the call she was able to make, Tigard Police interrupted the attack.

Simons spent two days in the hospital. She said she’ll be happy if Miller never gets out of jail.

“If you want to beat up on somebody, go to the gym and work out on a body bag,” she said.

Miller made his first appearance in court on Monday and pleaded not guilty.

Through court records, prosecutors said this attack was so violent they asked a judge to raise his bail to $50,000.

He’ll be back in court in March.

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