Parkrose the scene of a fifth gang-related shooting this week

UPDATED: Alleged shooter captured! NE Sandy Boulevard is shut down, as police track a gun-toting suspected gangster who wounded another man. See what we learned about this incident …

No one was driving on NE Sandy Boulevard – from NE 102nd to 122nd Avenues – as police searched for the man they say pulled the trigger in Portland’s most recent gang-related shooting.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Folks in the Parkrose Neighborhood are saying they’re disturbed that Portland’s fifth gang-related shooting in a week took place on their streets – but they say they aren’t surprised.

About 9:00 p.m. on May 8, a 9-1-1 Call Center operator takes a call reporting that a man in his 20s had been shot near NE 119th Avenue and NE Sandy Boulevard.

In front of the Portland Value Inn on NE Sandy Boulevard, officers share information, and talk with witnesses to the shooting.

Because Parkrose is now in Portland Police Bureau’s (PPB) North Precinct, one of the officers with whom we spoke when we arrived on-scene said some of the officers had come as far west as Linton to respond to the “shots fired” call.

“Officers were able to determine that one person had been shot,” confirmed PPB Public Information Officer Lt. Robert King. “The victim, a male in his twenties was transported to an area hospital.”

In the dark of night, officers and detectives comb through the area, looking for clues.

We watch as a K-9 Team and officers scour NE 119th Avenue, south of NE Sandy Boulevard, for evidence – and to try to get a track.

“Even though officers quickly locked down the area and established a perimeter, they did not locate a suspect,” King added. “The suspect is described as male, black, 20 years-old, 5’6″ inches tall, weighing 175 pounds, with a mustache – and he was last seen wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and a black beanie.”

PPB criminalists join officers as they continue their search on NE 119th Avenue.

Based on the information available at the scene, King later related, officers were able to determine that the shooting was gang related. “Gang Enforcement Detectives responded to conduct the investigation.”

Even though the gunshot victim’s injuries aren’t considered life-threatening, PPB Chief Michael Reese activated “Operation Cool Down” the following day.

Portland Police Bureau Chief Michael Reese says he’s bringing back “Operation Cool Down”. East Portland News file photo

At a morning press conference on May 9, Reese said the recent spike in gang violence has caused him to reassign a sergeant and six officers to the gang enforcement unit for the summer. The object, he adds, is for gang officers to be “visible and proactive”.

This includes, the police chief says, visiting suspected gang members homes to deliver the message: “You are going to be a victim of violence if you don’t stop this activity.”

“It’s hard to break the cycle,” Reese says at the press conference, “when one shooting leads to another shooting.”

Asked if he suspected a link between gang members and illicit drugs, Reese said he’s already instructed the PPB Drugs and Vice Division staff to look into the possible connection.

Neighbors say they hope not to see Parkrose streets again shut down because of another gang-related shooting in the coming weeks.

On June 11, authorities released the name of the shooting victim as 25 year-old Antonio Vernell Porter.

The PPB Gang Enforcement Team’s investigation led to the identification and arrest of 19 year-old Pierce Dupree Woods. Woods was arrested about 9:30 p.m. on Friday June 10.

Police charge this man, 19 year-old Pierce Dupree Woods, in the gang-related Parkrose shooting.

Woods was charged with Assault in the first degree, Assault in the second degree, Attempted Murder and Unlawful Use of Weapon. Woods was lodged at the Multnomah County Justice Center in downtown Portland and he is being held on $775,000.00 bail.

© 2011 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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