Weekend shootings remind Portlanders gun violence is far from fixed

Published: Mar. 27, 2023 at 5:44 PM PDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - Multiple shootings over the weekend killed three, injured one, and reminded a city gun violence is another epidemic still impacting community members.

The first shooting happened Friday night off North Interstate Avenue at the Albi Tiki Bar. Portland Police were called to the scene around 10:45 p.m. and a person was shot, but he is expected to be okay. Gunfire then erupted in Southeast Portland around 3 a.m. No one was injured but bullets hit two businesses. Just before 2 a.m. Sunday, gunshots were reported in the 8600 block of Northeast Hassalo Street. Houses were reportedly hit and one woman says a bullet almost struck her while she slept. But it was a deadly shooting in broad daylight Saturday that Portland Police Chief Chuck Lovell called shocking.

SEE ALSO: Portland police see success in recovering stolen vehicles, report says

Police were called to the corner of North Foss Avenue and North Foss Court to reports of gunfire. When they arrived, officers found three people shot to death in a gold sedan. Neighbors FOX 12 spoke said they saw a group they described as teenagers running from the scene. Police have not released suspect descriptions or names and ages of the victims. At the spot where the three victims were found, a memorial of flowers and balloons popped up over the weekend. Pieces of the gold sedan still remain on the ground where it apparently crashed.

Sam Sachs, founder of the nonprofit The No Hate Zone, said city leaders need to have the same urgency to curbing gun violence as they did last year. To him, seeing crime data that shows the number of murders is down compared to this time last year means nothing.

“Three-young men were gunned downed sitting in a car, murdered, in broad daylight but we believe we have a handle on that?” Sachs said. “You don’t have a handle on it.”

Edward Williams is the executive pastor at Mt. Olive Baptist Church and said this shooting is part of what he calls the sad cycle of violence engulfing Portland the last few years.

“No one wants to be in that cycle, no one wishes that to be on anyone,” Williams said. “We wish we had the answer or the answers that could make it stop, that could make it go all away.”

SEE ALSO: Popular Portland pizza chain closing three of its restaurants

He said he’s been in conversations with other local pastors about what they can do to help put an end to this cycle. Right now, they don’t have an answer.

“The one thing I always find myself saying when something like this happens is an example of man’s inhumanity to man,” Williams said.

As Portland Police work to figure out a motive for the shooting, Williams said he will work to make his community feel safe

“We will always be here to love, care and support and provide stability, safety and civility,” Williams said.