At Least 3 Shot Near Portland Street Racing Takeovers

Portland police said some of the street racing events prevented officers from reaching areas of the city where people had been shot.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Multiple people were shot near illegal street racing “takeovers” as street racers blocked streets and intersections across the city Sunday night.

It all happened on a weekend when Portland police were so busy responding to homicides and shootings that they couldn’t do anything to crack down on street racing. The Portland Police Bureau (PPB) said some of the events impeded officers’ ability to reach areas of the city where people had been shot.

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KGW obtained video of large-scale illegal street racing events Sunday night across the city: on Northeast 72nd Avenue and Sandy Boulevard, on Marine Drive near I-5, and at the Lloyd Center. According to police, three people were shot in the area of ​​the Marine Drive street racing event Sunday night. Police did not clarify whether the shooting occurred at the event or just in the area where it was taking place.

CLOCK: Illegal street racing at the Lloyd Center

The street racing angered Portland residents, with numerous people contacting KGW on Sunday night to share details of what they were seeing and hearing, and asking why the police weren’t getting involved.

Much of the protest centered around a large event in Northeast Portland that took over several streets and blocked the six-way intersection of Northeast 72nd Avenue, Sandy Boulevard and Fremont Street in Northeast Portland’s Roseway neighborhood.

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According to witness reports, there were hundreds of people at the event and cars were lined up five to six cars deep on each part of the intersection to make sure no one could get through. There were reports of “drifting” cars, fireworks, large amounts of smoke, and people sitting and standing on the roofs of nearby businesses, including a nearby donut shop.

CLOCK: Illegal street racing on NE Sandy Boulevard

People who contacted KGW said they called 911 multiple times, but police did not respond. One person said he was told by dispatch that there was nothing the police could do about it.

When KGW contacted police Sunday night about the event, Portland Police Bureau (PPB) Lt. Nathan Sheppard said officers were not responding to street races Sunday night because they were responding to shootings. , including one in southeast Portland that left a man dead, and other “life/safety calls.”

On Monday, Portland police explained in more detail how busy they were. Officers responded to three homicides and seven other shootings over the weekend. Police also said that some of the street racing events in the city prevented officers from reaching areas where people had been shot.

RELATED: Man shot and killed in SE Portland

Sheppard said street racing events require many officers to respond due to the sheer number of people in attendance. As of Sunday night, there were not enough officers available to safely respond to street racing calls, he said.

“Although the goal of the Portland Police Bureau is to respond to calls for service as soon as possible after they are dispatched, street racing incidents are typically large crowd control events that require a large number of officers,” he said. Sheppard on Sunday night. “Officers are currently working on multiple life/safety calls and not enough are available to safely address calls related to street racing. Officers will respond as they become available and it is safer for them to do so.”

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In April, PPB said it would crack down on illegal street racing after numerous street “takeovers” in recent years. Portland police released a statement saying they were “planning and gathering resources to conduct regular enforcement missions.”

In August 2021, the Portland City Council voted to create a new ordinance that would ban street racing in the city. Under the terms of the ordinance, illegal street racers could face prison terms, have their cars towed and receive fines of up to $500.

RELATED: Portland Police Plan To Crack Down On Illegal Street Racing (April 2022)

RELATED: Portland City Council passes ordinance banning street racing with $500 fine, possible jail time

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