Work release escapee found in Columbia River committed suicide

By Emily Gillespie, Columbian breaking news reporter

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A Vancouver man whose body was found in the Columbia River on Sunday morning died of suicide by drowning, according to the Multnomah County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Drake Edward Johnson, 27, had escaped from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office work release on July 17. His body was found floating in the North Portland Harbor just before 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

In July 2011, Johnson was sentenced to 20 months in prison and 12 months of community custody on drug charges, according to court records.