Gun cleaning man accidently shoots teen – in condo next door

Who it was that called the police regarding the shooting at these Mill Park condominiums surprised officials …

Portland Police officers and detectives answer the call of a shooting, at these Mill Park condominiums.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
It wasn’t a gang shooting that brought Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct District Officers to the condominiums in the Mill Park neighborhood on SE 130th Avenue, just south of SE Salmon Street, at about 7:30 p.m. on May 29.

“Officers arrived and contacted the man who called 9-1-1,” PPB Public Information Officer Sgt. Pete Simpson told East Portland News. It turned out to be the shooter himself.

“He said he was cleaning his lever-action rifle, inside his unit, when the gun discharged and fired a round,” Simpson added. “The bullet traveled through the wall and struck a 17-year-old girl in the neighboring unit.”

A neighbor told reporters that, when the shot rang out, she said it sounded more like someone “punching the wall”.

Police quickly learn that it was the man who says he accidently discharged his rifle who’d called 9-1-1.

Other ear-witnesses said they’d heard that the bullet traveled through three interior walls, and after grazing the teenager, and exited the unit to the north.

“The girl suffered a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to one of her legs, and was transported to a Portland area hospital for treatment, and has since been released,” Simpson reported.

Although police continue their investigation, neighbors say the feel a little more relaxed, after learning that this was not another gang shooting.

Officers took 52-year-old Christopher Morris temporarily into custody, Simpson added. “Morris was interviewed by detectives and has cooperated in the investigation. Investigators seized the rifle as evidence.”

As of this writing, Morris has not been charged with a crime; the case has been forwarded to the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office for consideration of criminal charges.

© 2013 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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