PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - Bullets struck a children’s center in southwest Portland on Monday night, as police in the city have responded to roughly 240 shootings so far this year.
Nobody was hurt at the Neighborhood House Children’s Center near Southwest 26th Avenue and Capitol Highway, however workers showed FOX 12 the damage from inside on Wednesday.
Bullets, casings and shattered glass were found in one of the classrooms.
“One was at child level and I just hate to think of what could have happened,” said Director Lindsay Wills. “One went right through our front door; we have people going in and out all the time.”
One bullet came in through a classroom window, hit the wall and landed on a game in a classroom closet. The window is now covered with a poster that tells the young children to eat their vegetables.
Investigators said the shooting occurred around 9 p.m. Monday. An empty car was found near the scene crashed into a pole, but the driver was gone. Investigators believe people inside one car may have been shooting at people in another car.
Wills said her students, like students all over the country, do regularly practice for lockdowns and lockouts. She doesn’t believe her school was targeted for violence, but it was still shocking to see the damage.
“It’s still really scary and ugly to think we could have been hurt or something worse could have happened because two groups of people can’t control their anger,” she said.
The staff has cleaned up the mess from the shooting, but it will be some time before all the windows can be repaired. Students will be able to go back to school Monday.
Wills said the ordeal does strengthen her resolve to teach her 70 students positive and peaceful ways to deal with their emotions.
“What can we do different so that our kids aren’t growing up to be adults that react with guns,” she said.