Man shot while protecting car from thieves in SE Portland, says choice nearly cost his life

A man says he was shot in Southeast Portland on April 17 while defending his son’s car from thieves - a choice that nearly cost his life.
Published: May. 21, 2023 at 10:21 PM PDT
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PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - A man says he was shot in Southeast Portland on April 17 while defending his son’s car from thieves - a choice that nearly cost his life.

Describing the feeling of being shot still makes Jose anxious, he said.

“Everything is still vivid in my mind,” he said. “It’s not easy to talk about.”

Jose said he is used to thieves breaking into cars, claiming to have had 50 or so, and even upwards to twice a week. In the past, he said, he has confronted suspects and they’ve run off.

“So, it was getting worse and worse each day.”

SEE ALSO: Cars damaged after 70 shots fired in SE Portland; neighbor says he worries he’ll be caught in crossfire

On April 17, his son told him someone was breaking into their car, and when he ran out he saw two men. He described them both as white and in their mid-20′s. The one he says who shot him was wearing reading glasses, about 5-foot-10 and slim.

“I was yelling at them and trying to scare them away.”

Then one of the suspects asked the other to toss him a gun, Jose said. Then, according to Jose, the suspect caught the gun and shot him point blank.

“The force of it, the strength was so enormous,” Jose said. “I felt this tremendous heat inside of my body. I fell and I started seeing my life in front of me like a movie.”

Jose is describing the feeling of a bullet ripping through his chest, into his diaphragm, breaking ribs and primarily damaging his liver.

He woke up in the hospital days later, where he says doctors gave him something to drink. However, he said his body was in shambles and he was taken back to the ICU.

“There’s are times when I’m angry at myself,” he said. “Why did I go out and confront them like that?”

His anger isn’t only directed at himself, but the shooter and accomplice too.

“I’m mad at them, because only a coward would do something like that. They’ll just shoot you and kill you. They’re ruthless. They don’t care.”

SEE ALSO: Man found injured at bottom of ravine 5 days after going missing in Cowlitz County

Now Jose is home with his family of roughly 20 people, who are all supporting him through his recovery.

“It’s going to take time,” he said. “I’m slowly starting to walk. So, I believe this is a second chance. I miss my life. I can’t wait to go back to work and just back to normal.”

He said he’d never confront thieves again. Instead, he’d like them take whatever they want, “because I was very close to losing my life.”

He’d encourage others to do the same, even if they’re also armed.

“Don’t make the same mistake I made. It’s not worth it. These people will not hesitate. They don’t care. just think twice because you can die.”

SEE ALSO: 3 teens arrested, assault weapon found in Salem apartment shooting

Jose said he hasn’t heard from police in a few weeks.

FOX 12 also reached out and are yet to hear back.

The incident is keeping Jose from work, and he said medical bills are starting to stack up and could use some help.

If you’d like to help, his family has set up a GoFundMe on his behalf.