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Monday, February 18, 2013

Man Dead, but Few Other Details in First Portland Police Shooting of 2013

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Mon, Feb 18, 2013 at 9:44 AM

Update 12:30 PM: Mayor Charlie Hales' spokesman just sent out a statement explaining that the mayor would not be sending out a statement on last night's shooting. It was followed by another email explaining that Hales would also be cancelling tomorrow's planned press conference on what's expected to be a scathing audit of Portland's street-paving funding.

Mayor Hales will not release a statement today regarding the officer-involved shooting that took place Sunday, Feb. 17 at Portland Adventist Medical Center.

The mayor was on scene during the incident, having been contacted by Portland Police. He did not observe the confrontation.

The mayor received a briefing today (Monday, Feb. 18) from Portland Police. The topics of the briefing included the process of the investigation, and how it must proceed in order to find out what happened. Participants in the process include the district attorney’s office, the medical examiner’s office and the Independent Police Review Division for the city of Portland.

Mayor Hales intends to maintain the integrity of that process.

We are anticipating the release of further information in a couple of days. We will work with Portland Police to get information out as quickly as we can.

Update 11:15 PM: Mercury reporter Nathan Gilles says the shooting happened in a parking lot behind the hospital, sprawling from a parking garage along SE Main to a church along SW Market. Officers and techs are still in the lot, about 300 or so feet Southeast of the parking structure, near a fence that divides the lot from the hospital campus.

Adventist spokeswoman Judy Leach says the hospital lifted the lockdown by 11 last night, and that it went into effect at 9:30 after the hospital issued a "code silver," aka there was a "a combative person with a weapon on the premises of the hospital." Leach wouldn't comment on what anyone from the hospital may or may not have seen.

We also don't know whether the man who died was experiencing a mental health crisis. Adventist is home to an in-patient psychiatric center with a 24-hour intake center.

Original post resumes here: It's always a bad sign when the Portland Police Bureau issues a late-night release about a shooting, with practically zero details, and then makes a point of saying the bureau's public information officer will be suiting up and driving over to the scene. It's usually code for a police shooting.

So it went with an alert last night about a shooting at Portland Adventist Medical Center. At 1:20 this morning, as Steve mentioned briefly in GMN, the bureau issued an update confirming that officers were involved and that one man was dead.

This is what the release said—the only accounting so far of what happened. The whole thing started with a report of an armed man in the parking lot. That man presumably was the one shot—although there's no confirmation yet of whether the man was armed or had his weapon out and was threatening officers.

The shooting on the grounds of Portland Adventist Medical Center (PAMC) is an officer-involved shooting. One subject is deceased. No officers were injured during the shooting.

The investigation began on Sunday evening at approximately 9:30 p.m. when officers were called to PAMC on the report of a man with a gun in the parking lot. Several officers responded to the area and began to get containment on the large PAMC complex. The hospital went into lock-down to keep patients and staff safe.

As officers were continuing to get containment on the complex, some officers encountered the suspect and shots were fired. The suspect died at the scene and no officers were injured.

Homicide detectives and Criminalists from the Forensic Evidence Division are at the scene in the very early stages of the investigation.

Per policy, any involved officers will be placed on paid administrative leave as the investigation continues.

This is the first police shooting of Mayor Charlie Hales' tenure as police commissioner. And his office has confirmed that Hales, like his predecessor, Sam Adams, used to do, was on scene during the initial stages of the investigation. An update from the police bureau is promised no earlier than noon... we'll update earlier, though, if anything else pops up.

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