20-year-old charged with killing man at his Milwaukie home
Ceontae Poston has been charged with killing Phillip Anthony Gatto Jr., who was found murdered in September 2016 in his Milwaukie home.
Poston, 20, was barely 18 when he allegedly committed the 2016 murder. He was arrested by Vancouver police in October 2016 for the robbery of the Milwaukie Mart, which is in Portland's Brooklyn neighborhood on Milwaukie Avenue.
Detectives apparently connected Poston with the Gatto murder while Poston was in jail for the Portland robbery. Gatto had a long criminal history himself, including possession of controlled substances, driving with a suspended license and theft.
According to police, Gatto's body was found inside the residence at 9545 S.E. 42nd Ave. Clackamas County records indicate that Gatto had purchased the house in 2005.
Cops initially were called to the area of Southeast 42nd Avenue and Olson Street on reports of fighting, screaming and banging. In a secret indictment unsealed for a June 5 arraignment, Poston is charged with murdering Gatto, whose murder is connected with a second suspect, Keandre Brown.
Scott P. Healy, senior deputy district attorney for Clackamas County, said he could not talk about the facts of the case to explain Poston's connection with Brown. Healy did explain how Poston is being charged.
"Poston is charged under what is referred to as a felony murder statute," Healy said. "Under this theory, the defendant does not necessarily have to be the one personally responsible for the death of the victim if it occurs during, or in the furtherance of, a certain enumerated felony crime listed in the felony murder statute."
Poston is also charged with robbery and burglary related to Gatto's death.