Whitman student arrested in response to warrant, facing multiple charges

Alissa Antilla, Editor-in-Chief

Whitman senior Ben Katz was arrested on Tuesday, Dec. 3, by a Washington State Patrol Trooper in response to an arrest warrant issued in Oregon, according to a report from the Walla Walla County Corrections Department. 

The warrant was issued on Dec. 3 in Clackamas County, Oregon, in response to a Nov. 12  indictment in the Clackamas County Circuit Court. According to the warrant, the indictment charged Katz with using a child in display of sexually explicit conduct, sexual abuse in the first degree, online sexual corruption of a child, luring a minor, attempting sexual abuse in the second degree and two counts of harassment. 

According to documents from the Walla Walla County Superior Court, Katz was accused of being a fugitive. Because Katz had been charged with committing a crime in another state, the Court accused him of fleeing from justice. 

Katz is currently facing extradition — meaning that one jurisdiction delivers a person accused of a crime in another jurisdiction over to law enforcement — from Walla Walla County Superior Court to Clackamas County Circuit Court. The warrant stated that Katz would be extradited from anywhere in the U.S. 

Following his Dec. 3 arrest, Katz was taken to Walla Walla County Jail. On the morning of Wednesday, Dec. 4, Katz appeared in the Walla Walla County Superior Court and his extradition hearing was scheduled for Dec. 30, according to court documents. 

Katz’s family posted a $25,000 cash bail for his release, according to court documents. He is now awaiting his upcoming extradition hearing, which will occur at Walla Walla County Superior Court.