Portland City Center

Man arrested in PSU sexual assault case was substitute teacher

Man arrested in PSU sexual assault case was substitute teacher
Nate Justin Wheeler

PORTLAND, Ore. – A man arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting a woman at a Portland State University building used to work as a substitute teacher in Hillsboro.

Nate Justin Wheeler, 40, was arrested at his home in Northwest Portland at 3:40 a.m. Tuesday. He faces two counts of first-degree sexual abuse.

According to court records, while a teacher, Wheeler was convicted in July 2001 of third-degree sexual abuse and delivery of a controlled substance to a minor. He was sentenced to serve probation time.

He also has convictions from 2006 and 2012, for invasion of privacy and failure to register as a sex offender, respectively.

KATU is working to find out how the 2001 convictions impacted his employment and teaching license.

The PSU attack happened just before 4 p.m. on Saturday. The victim, who is a PSU student, told police that a man followed her from the transit mall into Neuberger Hall, where he got into an elevator with her and, she said, he sexually assaulted her. She fought back by hitting the man until he ran away.

This was the second time in less than two months that someone reported an assault inside Neuberger Hall, a classroom building that's located right off Southwest Broadway near the transit mall. Back in April, police say a man grabbed a woman from behind in a hallway, stole her phone and ran.

Wheeler was taken to the Multnomah County Jail. PSU public safety officers and the Transit Police Office also helped make the arrest.