This story started just as the evening was ending about 2:30 a.m. early on Friday, July 7 – with an armed robbery at the 82nd Avenue Bar and Grill, on S.E. 82nd Avenue of Roses, near Raymond Court.
"Officers responding to the armed robbery saw a vehicle being driven out of the area of the robbery at a high rate of speed," later reported Portland Police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson. "The driver crashed in the area of SE 112th Avenue and Boise Street, and the two occupants ran from the crash scene."
"I don't know how they did it – but somehow, the guys in the silver Pontiac Grand Prix managed to smash up the car, and flip it up sideways on a tree – then run like crazy away from it," remarked neighbor Harold Andersen later that morning.
Shortly after the crash, police Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT) members gathered on S.E. Holgate Boulevard in the parking lot of "The Voice of Hope Christian Church", near S.E. 105th Avenue, prepared to go after two armed robbery suspects.
"The SERT officers [were called in because] the two robbery suspects were described as being armed with a knife and a handgun during the robbery," Simpson said.
Going street by street, and yard by yard, SERT members and East Precinct officers scoured the neighborhood looking for the suspects that Simpson described as "one white male and one black male, both shorter in stature."
At 7:29 a.m. police believed they'd captured one of the suspects, but that individual was soon released. At 8:01 a.m., the search was called off, with no arrests.
But later, during the course of the investigation, PPB Robbery Detail detectives identified two suspects, one of whom they believed traveled to Southern California following the robbery. Detectives obtained an arrest warrant for 27-year-old Jesus Mezick on Robbery in the First Degree, Robbery in the Second Degree, Theft in the First Degree, and Unlawful Use of a Weapon.
And, on Sunday, July 9, members of the United States Marshal's Fugitive Task Force arrested Mezick on the warrant. Mezick was booked into the Los Angeles County Jail, awaiting extradition to the State of Oregon.
Detectives also obtained a search warrant for a residence near S.E. 88th Avenue on Reedway Street, after learning that the second suspect in the robbery lived there. SERT served a search warrant in the early morning hours of Thursday, July 13.
During the service of the search warrant, 33-year-old Jamaar Abdul Smith was taken into custody, and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center (MCDC) at 12:01 p.m. on July 13 on charges of Robbery in the First Degree, Robbery in the Second Degree, Theft in the First Degree, and Unlawful Use of a Weapon.
After his arraignment, Smith was returned to custody at MCDC, in lieu of $510,000 bail.