Shootings are continuing to increase in Portland, despite targeted patrols intended to stop them.
Two men were hospitalized with gunshot wounds in separate weekend shootings in Northeast Portland. The names and conditions of the victims were not immediately released. No suspect information was immediately available, either.
The first investigation began at 11:51 p.m. on Saturday, May 9, when
North Precinct officers responded to the area of 5000 block of Northeast Killingsworth Street on a report of a shooting. When officers, they found an adult male victim with a gunshot wound in a residence. He was transported to a hospital by ambulance with non-life threatening injuries.
Then, at 12:10 a.m. on Sunday, North Precinct officers responded to the area of 14000 block of Northeast Sandy Boulevard. When officers arrived, they found an adult male victim with a gunshot wound. He was transported to a hospital by ambulance with non-life threatening injuries.
The Gun Violence Reduction Team responded to both scenes to continue the investigation.
During a May 1 remote press conference, Chief Jami Resch said that shootings this year are running about 25% above the same period in 2019. She hoped that a number of recent "significant" arrests and gun seizures will reduce the the increrase.
"We hope to see declines," Resch said at the time. Police have reported more shootings since then, however.
Other crimes have also increased after a brief drop following Oregon Gov. Kate Brown's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order on March 23, Resch said. They include burglaries, which are running higher than last year, especially commercial burglaries with closed bars, restaurants and nightclubs being targeted the most. But Resch said weekly burglary arrests have also increased in recent weeks, jumping ffrom just four during the week of March 15 to 17 for the week of April 19.
Domestic violence arrests have also increased recently, Resch said, although the number of weekly domestic violence calls are largely unchanged from last year. There were an average of 41 weekly domestic violence arrests from March 1 to April 25, 2020, compared to 38 in the same period last year.
It is unclear how many of the recent arrests are related to the COVID-19 pandemic, however.
"Overall, the statistics for domestic violence reports and arrests have followed a natural fluctuations between high and low weeks since January 2019. It is difficult at this point to determine if any recent trends are related to COVID-19 or part of a natural fluctuations. These trends will become more clear with additional time," said a report of domestic violence arrests in Portland from March 1 to April 25, 2020, released during the briefing.
Traffic accidents have also declined, Resch said, although twice as many speeding citations have issued — including 17 for driving over 100 miles per hour between April 12 and 25.
Resch also said the bureau is not aware of any officer who has tested positive for COVID-19 and the number out on sick leave is not higher than previous years. All officers and non-sworn civilian staff must now have their temperatures taken before they start their work shifts. Anyone with a temperature over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit after back-to-back tests would be required to go home, and could not return to work until 72 hours pass with no fever or symptoms.
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