Pedestrian in nighttime fatal accident in Centennial neighborhood

See why investigators say they’re looking to why the victim was apparently lying in SE Division Street …

SE Division Street is closed for hours, while investigators look into the death of a pedestrian.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Although several pedestrians have been struck by vehicles so far this year in outer East Portland, the city’s first traffic fatality occurred at 8:28 p.m. on January 30 in the Centennial neighborhood.

There’s only one street light illuminating the intersection of SE Division Street at SE 173rd Avenue – just a block west of the Portland city line. It’s an area that seems even darker on a rainy evening.

Police Traffic Division investigators come to check out the crash scene.

Investigators learned that a white 2013 Mercedes C250, driven by 43-year-old Ted Chu, was traveling eastbound on Division Street in the right lane.

The headlights of Chu’s Mercedes didn’t catch a dark form in the roadway until it was immediately in front of him, he told Portland Police Bureau (PPB) Traffic Division Major Crash Team investigators.

A transport truck loads the Mercedes C250 on the flatbed after the accident.

“Chu was unable to swerve in time and struck the pedestrian in the road,” said PPB Public Information Officer Sgt. Pete Simpson. “Then, he immediately stopped.”

Officers and medical personnel arrived and began treating victim, but were unable to save his life, and he died at the scene.

Chu cooperated with investigators, Simpson added, and was not under the influence of intoxicants.

The Multnomah County Coroner arrives at the scene.

The following day, the crash victim was identified as 46-year-old Angelo Elton Tupper.
“Investigators do not know why Tupper was lying in the roadway,” Simpson commented. “Investigators learned that Tupper was at a nearby lounge prior to the crash.”

Additionally, he added, there’s no indication that Tupper might have been hit by a different vehicle prior to being struck by Chu’s car.

Members of the Multnomah County Coroner’s office prepare the deceased for transport.

“The investigation is continuing into the cause and manner of Tupper’s death,” Simpson concluded.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Officer Peter Kurronen at (503) 823-2208 or

© 2014 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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