Montavilla shooting said ‘gang related’

See why neighbors are on edge, after bullets rip through cars and houses in an outer East Portland shooting that sends a man to the hospital …

After police arrive on this street in the Montavilla neighborhood, neighbors who heard the gunshots ring out watch, as the investigation begins.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Bullets sprayed houses and cars – fired by at least two shooters, neighbors said – on March 21 about 5:35 p.m. One man was seriously wounded, and that brought the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) Gang Enforcement Team to investigate.

In front of a rental house at 313 NE 79th Avenue, a man was getting out of his car, when suspects – about 25 feet north of him – opened fire on the victim.

Officers secure the scene, and await the arrival of Gang Enforcement Team members.

“It sounded like fireworks going off; then there was a pause as they reloaded, and then they started shooting again,” neighbor Mario Beckner told East Portland News. He added that he ducked for cover and heard the commotion, but didn’t see it.

“It was clearly two people firing guns, reloading, and firing again, “Beckner said. He added, “Then, they got in a white Ford Mustang, headed south, and turned west on NE Everett Street and sped away.

Bullet shell casings, like this one, litter the street.

After waiting a moment, making sure the gunfire had stopped, he called the 9-1-1 Center, and learned others had also reported the incident. Beckner and two neighbors walked toward the shooting victim, slumped in the street, softly crying, and attempted first aid until paramedics arrived and took him to a local hospital.

Portland Police officers arrived at the scene about the same time as did paramedics.

“Officers provided emergency first aid with the assistance of community members as emergency medical personnel responded to the scene,” confirmed PPB Public Information Officer Sgt. Chris Burley.

“The adult male victim believed to be suffering a serious non-life-threatening injury,” Burley added.

The shooting investigation continues in front of the house believed to be the residence of the victim.

Arriving first, PPB East Precinct officers found NE 79th Avenue littered with bullet casings, and began putting evidence markers where they’d come to rest; but there were so many casings, they ran out of markers and started using business cards folded in half instead.

Learning that the shooting victim’s daughter often stayed with him, and concerned for her safety, officers forced the door of the house, searched, and found it unoccupied.

“Officers also located an unoccupied parked vehicle and multiple occupied residences that were struck by gunfire,” Burley said. An officer at the scene told reporters at least five bullets hit the house north of the crime scene.

Members of the PPB Division Gang Enforcement Team are briefed by first-arriving officers.

The Gang Enforcement Team arrived and took over the investigation, along with criminalists with the Bureau’s Forensic Evidence Division.

“Based on information learned at this point in the investigation, there is not believed to be a danger to the community in connection to this shooting investigation,” Burley reported.

Anyone with information about this shooting is asked to contact the Gang Enforcement Team at 503-823-4106

© 2018 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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