Grand jury clears police in Kimmons' shooting
A Multnomah County grand jury has cleared a Portland police sergeant and an officer in the Sept. 30 early morning shooting death of 27-year-old Patrick Kimmons near a downtown hotel.
Sgt. Garry Britt and Off. Jeffrey Livingston shot and killed Kimmons after responding to gunshots in the area of Southwest Third Avenue and Harvey Milk Street, formerly called Stark Street. The Portland Police Bureau says Kimmons was shot after firing a revolver at two other men in the area and then running toward the sergeant and officer.
Police say Kimmons shot the two other men while they were fighting. They were hospitalized for their injuries.
The Portland Police Bureau released video from two cameras in the area that appear to show a man firing a gun at two people fighting in a parking lot, then running toward police, who shoot him as he begins to swerve away from them by running between two parked cars.
An autopsy released Wednesday showed Kimmons was shot in chest, leg and buttocks.
"The grand jury's not true bill decision means they have determined no criminal prosecution is warranted, and that the use of deadly force against Mr. Kimmons by PPB Sergeant Garry Britt and Officer Jeffrey Livingston was a lawful act of self-defense and/or defense of a third person, pursuant to Oregon law," the Multnomah County district attorney's office said in a Wednesday, Oct. 31, statement announcing the decision.
Kimmons' family protests the grand jury ruling, insisting Patrick was not threatening anyone when police shot him.
"He is running through the cars with his hands up after he was shot three times," Kimmons' brother, Arthuray Dudley, told KOIN 6 News, referencing the released surveillance footage. "His hands are up, but he's still running and they are still shooting and after about eight shots he falls to the ground."
Kimmons' mother, Letha Winston, added: "How
The family is considering legal action. can you shoot someone who's no longer a threat?"
Several protesters blocked downtown strets after the ruling was announced. A driver, Mark Dickerson, 55, was arrested for hitting but not injuring one of them.
The police shooting triggered protests against the police and a counter-demonstration by the conservative Patriot Prayer group.
The DA's office has filed a motion in Multnomah County Circuit Court to release a transcript of the grand jury proceedings. It will be up to the Multnomah County Circuit Court presiding judge to release the transcript.
Police Chief Danielle Outlaw said in an Oct. 31 statement that the bureau was being as transparent as possible about the shooting. "To ensure the integrity of this investigation, including the administrative review, criminal investigation and grand jury process, the bureau waited to release the information until the conclusion of the grand jury. Though we recognize the community's desire to review the information in a timely manner, we also waited to release this information until the family of Mr. Kimmons was briefed and shown the investigation and video. We recognize this is a difficult time for many and wanted to ensure the information was presented to the family first," Outlaw said.
Portland Police Association President Daryl Turner issued a statement Oct. 31, saying the evidence shows the sergeant and officer had no choice except to shoot Kimmons.
"Our officers did exactly what the community asks of them; they acted to stop a person who posed an immediate, deadly threat to our community,'' he said in a statement.
Turner also said that anger towards the police was fueled by "false narratives."
"Fanning the flames of emotion through misinformation doesn't help uncover the facts; nor does it help our community understand what happened that early Sunday morning," Turner said. "We have now heard from a Multnomah County Grandy Jury made up of our own community members. After an extensive review of the evidence, that Grand Jury determined that the officers' use of deadly force was justified."
KOIN 6 News is a news partner of the Portland Tribune and contributed to this story.