Youth crime spree causes mayhem across outer East Portland

Here’s why officials say the robberies, thefts, and vandalism done by this band of bandits isn’t merely misguided kids ‘having some fun’ …

From Montavilla, to Powellhurst-Gilbert, Foster-Powell, and on to the Lents neighborhood, officers have a hard time keeping up with a band of youth, bent on committing very adult crimes.

By David F. Ashton

Some might speculate that the crimes committed on May 17, between 3:05 and 7:34 p.m. were just kids “blowing off steam” by wilding through four neighborhoods one afternoon.

But, to the victims that these teenage thugs terrorized, robbed, and carjacked, they are nothing by callous criminals.

“The people in this group were described as one black female and up to four black males, ranging in age from mid to late teens,” a Portland Police Bureau official reported.

“The suspects’ descriptions and actions, as well as the relatively close locations between these crimes, suggests that the same suspects are responsible for each one of these crimes, and may have committed similar crimes over several days.”

In Montavilla, a victim snaps a photo of the criminal suspects walking away afterward. PPB provided image

3:05 p.m. ~ Retail theft
The first of three incidents that took place in the Montavilla neighborhood were in a convenience store, just east of I-205, on SE Division Street. After the group entered the store, they spread out and began stealing items. As they began to leave, they shoved an employee out of their way as they left with the stolen property. It’s Case No. 21-132906.

3:22 p.m. ~ Steal tip jar
Moving west to the 8700 block of SE Division Street, the group raced into a restaurant, began yelling loudly at staff, creating a disturbance to distract – while one of the group grabbed the tip jar, reportedly containing about $80. Then the group left the premises. It’s not known if this was a “bias crime”. This is Case No. 21-132917.

3:46 p.m. ~ Vandalism; Theft; Attempted robbery
Next, the group entered a beauty salon on SE Division Street at 82nd Avenue of Roses. Inside, they began throwing products from shelves and toppling tables. Individuals from the group moved into marked “employee only” areas and stole property. At least one person attempted to take a purse from a customer, before leaving with the rest of the group. It’s Case No. 21-132937.

4:15 p.m. ~ Robbery from occupied vehicle
Turning south on SE 82nd Avenue of Roses, in the Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhood, the group approached a person parking a car in a lot just north of Clinton Street. They surrounded the car and approached the driver, demanding money. One of the group grabbed property from inside the car before the group ran off. This is Case No. 21-132954.

Emboldened by their success in committing petty theft, the gang steps up to Felony crimes – such as carjacking. These juveniles are seen here near a car officials say they hijacked. PPB provided image

4:50 p.m. ~ Felony Carjacking
Strolling further south, in the parking lot of the Emmert Cali Saigon Mall on SE 82nd Avenue of Roses at Foster Road, in the Foster-Powell neighborhood, the group committed their next crime. Perhaps tired of walking, the group surrounded a car as its driver tried exit the parking lot. When the car stopped, one of the criminal suspects opened the door and pulled the driver out of the car. The group then piled into the car and drove off. This one is Case No. 21-132990.

7:34 p.m. ~ Attempted Carjacking
After joyriding to the area of SE 86th Avenue and Bush Street in the Lents neighborhood, near the back side of the Marshall School Campus, the crime-bent band blocked the way of a motorist using the carjacked vehicle. They forced the car to stop, and the youthful criminals tried to hijack this car, but the driver managed to drive away. It’s Case No. 21-132131.

Investigators believe other crimes may have been committed by these juveniless, but have not yet been reported. If you have information about these or similar crimes, contact Detective Jeff Sharp by email at or Detective Bob Boylan at

Or, you can send an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers of Oregon – and perhaps receive a reward of up to $2,500 cash for information – at their website: CLICK HERE.

© 2021 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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