Drive-thru shooting stuns fast food patrons

See why this mid-afternoon assault outer East Portland put Jack in the Box customers, shoppers and neighbors on edge …

Police close off the area surrounding this East Portland Jack in the Box restaurant, while they investigate a daylight shooting.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
The last thing anyone expected on the sunny afternoon of January 18 was a hail of bullets striking a car in the drive-thru at the Jack in the Box at 4242 SE 82nd Avenue, in the Lents neighborhood.

“It sounded like firecrackers going off,” recalled Denise Ingram, who said she’d been walking up to the restaurant from the south side – opposite of the shooting. “People were ducking and running – and so did I. Look! My hands are still shaking.”

Trapped in the drive-thru, witnesses said the driver of this car tried to drive out of the path of the flying bullets, and hit the car ahead in the line.

Ingram said she then heard a loud crash – and later learned that the driver of the shot-up car had slammed into an SUV in front of it in the drive-thru in the course of the incident.

When Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct officers arrived at 2:27 p.m., they found a shot-up silver Nissan Sentra – and bullet holes in the building of the fast food restaurant.

Just above the crime scene tape, fresh bullet holes in this car are clearly visible.

“A male and female in the Nissan told police that they were sitting in their car in the drive-thru line,” said PPB Public Information Officer Sgt. Pete Simpson.

“An unknown African American male fired multiple shots at their car – then ran away, westbound, on SE Boise Street,” Simpson added. “Nobody was hit during the shooting.”

Officers confer with investigators, sharing facts they’ve obtained from the physical evidence and witness statements.

Several officers conducted a neighborhood search for the suspect, but did not locate anyone matching his description: An African American male in his 20s, 5’10”, with a “skinny build”.
“Based on preliminary investigation by responding officers, it is believed that the shooting could be gang-related,” Simpson commented. “Investigators from the Gang Enforcement Team responded to the scene and are continuing to investigate.”

Anyone with information about this shooting is asked to call the Gang Enforcement Team at (503) 823-4106.

The restaurant – and surrounding area – are shut down, while the investigation continues.

© 2013 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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