PORTLAND, Ore. -- Eight shootings in less than 24 hours in Northeast Portland, Southeast Portland and North Portland have police officers and community members searching for answers.
"I have never seen this level of violence erupt in such a short amount of time ever in my career, “ said Sgt. Charlie Fender, with Portland's gang enforcement team.
The most recent shooting happened Wednesday afternoon at the intersection of NE 16th & Killingsworth.
Two witnesses who wanted their identities kept anonymous told KGW at least five shots were fired from a dark-colored van at a building that houses a music shop, a barbershop and a church.
"It was one after another like pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop," recalled one of the witnesses.
At the time of the shooting, three children and their mother were inside Texas T's Barbershop and two men were standing outside.
"I'm about 6'2" and if you look at the window over there they were right above my head," one of the witnesses said.
Though the motives for each shooting remain under investigation, the Portland Police Bureau's Gang Enforcement Team has stepped up patrols. Officers said they were also working with gang outreach groups like Brother's & Sister's Keepers.
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Show me a young person with a lot of time on their hands, they are going to find something to do. Nine times out of ten it will be negative, “ said Tonya Dickens, Executive Director of Brothers and Sisters Keepers.
"Any way we can be out here and hopefully run some interference and help someone answer questions or just get through," said Dickens.
The latest drive-by shooting was the most recent in a series of incidents that began at around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, when gunshots were fired into a TriMet bus kiosk at N. Albina & Killingsworth Streets. No was injured, but glass covered the sidewalk.
After Tuesday’s incident, officers found Demarcus Carney, 25, and Karl Colbert, 34, both of Portland, suffering from gunshot wounds near N. Albina & Stafford Streets. They were both rushed to area hospitals, but expected to survive their injuries.
Detectives said they were unsure if the shootings were related. No arrests have been made.
The Crime Stoppers program was offering a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to an arrest in these cases. Tipsters Callers can remain anonymous. Call Crime Stoppers at 503-823-HELP (4357), leave a tip online at www.crimestoppersoforegon.com, or text 823HELP plus your tip and send it to CRIMES (274697).