PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — As gun violence plagues Portland, police in Oregon’s largest city responded to six shootings within a nine hour span between Thursday night and early Friday.
The shootings included a car chase, during which suspects shot at an officer. Three people were arrested and the officer was not injured.
Although last year was marked by record high numbers of gun violence in Portland, the number of shooting incidents during the first month of 2022 outpaced January 2021, according to police data.
During January alone, police recorded 127 shootings. So far this year at least 22 people have been injured by gunfire and there have been at least 13 homicides.
In 2021, the city recorded 90 homicides amid a surge in gun violence, shattering the city’s previous high of 66 set more than three decades ago.
Last year, the number of homicides in Portland surpassed more populous cities such as San Francisco and Boston — and more than double the number of slayings in its larger Pacific Northwest neighbor Seattle.
Killings have been on the rise in Portland for the past few years. From 2019 to 2020, Portland had a sharper rise in killings — an 83% increase — than nearly all major cities. Nationally, homicides had increased by nearly 30% in the same time, based on FBI data.
City police and officials say last year’s increase — which disproportionally impacted Portland’s Black community — was fueled by gang-related arguments, drug deals gone awry and disputes among homeless people. The situation was exacerbated by the pandemic, economic hardships and mental health crises.
Portland Police Bureau news release:
Officers responded to multiple shooting incidents overnight (Photo)
Portland Police Bureau - 02/18/22 3:23 PM
Portland Police officers responded to multiple shooting scenes overnight, spanning all three precincts and involving the Focused Intervention Team (FIT).
On Thursday, February 17, 2022, at 6:58p.m. North Precinct officers responded to the 15900 block of Northeast Fremont Street on a report that a man was sitting in his car threatening his ex-wife over the phone. Officer approached and the man was seen to be armed with a handgun. Officers attempted communication from a distance but the man fired a shot. Due to limited visibility, officers were unable to tell where the shot was aimed. Officer requested additional assistance, and a safety perimeter was set. On duty personnel from the Special Emergency Reaction Team responded and assisted with safely approaching the vehicle at about 9:07p.m. The man was deceased by suicide.
On Thursday, February 17, 2022 at 10:37p.m., officers with the Portland Police Focused Intervention Team were patrolling near Northeast Sandy Boulevard and Interstate-205 in North Precinct when they attempted to pull over a vehicle. The driver fled and occupants of the vehicle fired shots at an officer (see separate press release). Three people were arrested.
On Thursday, February 17, 2022, at 11:15 p.m., East officers were dispatched to a local hospital regarding a subject who had walked in with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound. The subject said the injury occurred accidentally while cleaning his gun at a different location. Officers conducted a follow-up investigation. Case #22-45766
On Thursday, February 17, 2022, at about 11:32 p.m., Central Precinct Officers heard numerous shots east of the Hawthorne Bridge. While officers conducted an area check, a caller to 911 reported a shooting. Officers contacted the victim, who was working as a security guard, and learned that the suspects had driven by and shot at his car in the area of Northeast 12th Avenue and Northeast Irving Street (photos). The victim was uninjured, but his car was struck repeatedly. Case #22-45776
On Friday, February 18 at 2:55 a.m., East Officers responded to a call regarding a shooting in the area of Southeast Ramona and Southeast 123rd and 124th Streets. Officers located evidence at the scene as well as a vehicle that was struck several times. The vehicle was identified as stolen. Case # 22-45855
On Friday, February 18, 2022, at 3:40 a.m., East officers responded to the 16000 Block of Southeast Crest Court regarding a caller who said he confronted car prowlers and they shot at him. Upon arrival, officers located the caller's vehicle, a 2019 Alfa Romero, in front with a bullet hole through the front of the vehicle. The caller and his son observed suspects prowling cars and went outside to confront them. The suspects got into a darker colored Jeep and fled the scene, traveling eastbound on Southeast Powell. The caller and son followed them in their car and stated that when the suspects got to Southeast 172nd, the passenger reached out and fired shots at them. The caller’s son said to defend himself and his father he had his handgun and fired back at the vehicle. The suspect Jeep turned soon after and the caller and his son returned home and called police. Officers investigated the scene of the shooting and found evidence, including casings and a Honda Odyssey, which had been struck. The owner was not located. The investigation is continuing. Case # 22-45877
If anyone has information about these shootings, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and provide the case number.
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