Learn the steps the police took to find a man who they say is armed, dangerous – and still on the loose, after this disturbance shut down a large section of the Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhood …
Traffic is diverted off SE Powell Blvd. during rush hour as police search for an alleged gunman who took a pot-shot at his girlfriend as she drove off.
Story and photos by David F. Ashton
The usually-slow afternoon drive home along outer SE Powell Boulevard slammed to a complete halt, as police diverted traffic from the street between SE 112th Avenue and SE 122nd, starting about 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 2.
According to Portland Police Bureau spokesperson Officer Catherine Kent, it all began with a “disturbance” call to 9-1-1 late in the afternoon, about an event witnessed in the Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood.
Because police officers didn’t find the handgun said to be used in the shooting at the scene, the officers who formed a perimeter around the area stood ready to defend themselves, should the armed gunman show up at their position.
The call, from a third-party, informed police that “a male and female were verbally arguing over a set of [car] keys. The female took off in a silver Mercedes, and the male subject took out a gun and fired a round (bullet),” Kent explained.
Officers were dispatched to the area of SE Powell Boulevard and SE 120th Avnue.
When officials suspect that a gunman is on the loose, they call in the Special Emergency Response Team (SERT) to help search the neighborhood.
Above, Portland Police Bureau’s Air Two circles the area, looking for the suspect, using their high-power camera system.
Concern grows; SERT called out
From what we heard while monitoring the police radio, a young man, about 5′ 8″ tall with a medium built, wearing a grey hooded sweatshirt and grey pants, took off on foot. A brief inspection of the vehicle involved in the incident revealed no bullet holes, however.
We watched as police officers searched vehicles leaving the streets between SE Powell and SE Division, mostly from SE 115th Avenue east to SE 120th. From what we heard, police searched for the nickel-plated handgun allegedly used, but didn’t find it.
Because of their concern that an armed gunman was on the loose in the neighborhood, police supervisors activated SERT officers to comb the area. Overhead, the cops’ “eye-in-the-sky”, Air Two, circled with its high-power cameras and infrared sensors, searching for the alleged gunman.
Police officers search vehicles leaving the quarantined area, to make sure the suspect doesn’t slip away in a vehicle.
Neighbors kept from returning home
For hours, folks living within the area were told they could not enter the quarantined zone. “We’re just trying to keep everyone safe,” an officer explained to an exasperated-looking woman with four kids in her car.
“I wish I could get home,” Stella Longham told us, as she waited in the Rock & Roll Pizza parking lot on her way home from work. “There’s a lot of trouble here in this part of town. But, the police seem to react quickly. I’d rather be safe than sorry.”
It wasn’t until later in the evening that police allowed residents to return to their homes.
Officials say this man, 20-year-old Eddy John Anthony Lewis, is their person of interest in the case, and should be considered armed and dangerous. If you see him, immediately call 9-1-1.
Police name suspect
The man police say who caused the ruckus is 20-year-old Eddy John Anthony Lewis. Officials say Lewis may be charged with “domestic violence with a firearm” and “attempted assault”. Citizens are urged to call 9-1-1 if they spot Lewis.
© 2008 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News