Police: Driver in custody after trying to run over group in SE P - KPTV - FOX 12

Police: Driver in custody after trying to run over group in SE Portland, 2 hospitalized

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

A driver is in custody after police say he tried to run over a group of people in southeast Portland. 

The crash occurred just after 4 p.m. Sunday in the 100 block of Southeast 97th Avenue. When police arrived on scene, they learned three people were hit by a silver 2016 Chevrolet Impala.

According to police, one person was taken to OHSU with a broken leg while another person who was hurt was driven to the hospital by a family member. Police say the third person who was struck received minor injuries and did not seek medical attention at the time of the investigation.

Witnesses told police a man was driving recklessly down the street all afternoon.

"The guy's driving up and down the street 50 miles an hour, spinning tires around the corner," said a witness.

"First they asked him nicely to stop doing it and he wouldn't, and they told him nicely to stop and he just decided that he wasn't going to stop," said Tara Smith, who says her son and grandson were hit by the driver. 

Witnesses say the driver threw his cigarette out the window, put his foot on the gas and floored it – driving into at least three people who were outside. 

"Stared him right down in the eye and just sped straight for them," said neighbor Merle Meacham.

Police say they found the suspect and his car down the street at the Chestnut Tree Motel and took him into custody. Officers say alcohol and speed may be factors in the crash. 

Smith said she doesn't know who this man is, but she hopes he gets the punishment he deserves.

"If he's going to have to do some time for the crime, then he's going to have to do some time for the crime," she said. 

Police say the suspect's identity and charges will be released at a later time. 

The Portland Police Bureau Detective Division's Assault Detail and the Traffic Division are investigating the incident. 

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