Attempted-murder suspect from Centennial taken down in Wilkes

See exactly where this desperate alleged shooter crashed his truck – and, why he wrecked …

In the darkness of early morning hours, police say shots rang out at this Centennial neighborhood apartment complex.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
A half-block north of SE Powell Boulevard, the sound of gunfire jarred awake the residents at the Hathaway Apartments — located at 3320 SE 134th Avenue. It was September 29, and the time was 3:54 a.m.

Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct district officers were first on-scene, responding to a “shots fired” call at the complex, according to PPB Public Information Officer Lt. Robert King.

Throughout the day, detectives remain at the apartment complex, gathering evidence in a case they call “attempted murder” – and part of a “domestic violence” disturbance.
“Arriving officers learned that a man had been shot,” King reported, adding that the gunshot victim had been transported to an area hospital.

A man, who was pointed out as the shooter, apparently didn’t want to talk with police, King observed. “The suspect in the shooting fled in his truck. The suspect drove at a high rate of speed, attempting to elude officers.”

This shows the estimated route of the suspect. Ashto-Graphic Map

The suspect’s exact route remains unavailable as he traveled rapidly through outer East Portland. But the blue pickup truck careened northbound to about SE Division Street, then east twelve blocks to SE 148th Avenue. The high-speed caravan headed north, past SE Stark, E. Burnside, NE Glisan, and NE Halsey Streets.

“The suspect crashed into a fence at NE 148th Avenue, just at NE San Rafael Street,” King continued.

Investigators look at the shooting suspect’s crashed truck, gathering evidence.

For some reason, the fleeing suspect turned east – and buried his truck into a sturdy wood and masonry fence that borders the Summerplace retirement development.

“At the crash site, there was an officer-involved shooting,” King related. “Following the shooting, the suspect refused to comply with commands from uniformed officers.”

Even an officer’s gunshots aren’t enough to make this seemingly-desperate suspect surrender. The yellow “evidence markers” indicate the location of recovered bullet shell casings.

Police say this man, 27-year-old Joshua Stephen Baker, fled the scene of a shooting a couple of miles south of where he was arrested. MCDC booking photo

When the suspect saw members of PPB’s SERT squad roll into place, the suspect, identified as 27-year-old Joshua Stephen Baker, finally gave up.

“A firearm was located at the scene,” King noted. “The suspect was transported to an area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.”

By 3:00 p.m. that afternoon Baker was released from the hospital and immediately arrested – and was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center (MCDC) at 4:11 p.m., where he remains at this writing.

Throughout the day, detectives and criminologists examine the crash and shooting scene.

“Baker was charged with Assault 1 with a Firearm, Attempted Murder with a Firearm, and Domestic Violence Assault 4,” King later reported. MCDC Records show Baker’s combined bail is set at $550,000.

“The victim, identified as 38-year-old Vadim V. Kobenko, is at a local hospital in critical condition,” King added.

© 2012 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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