PORTLAND – Police arrested a man in Northeast Portland after he allegedly injured four people with an illegal firework Thursday night.
Just before 10 p.m. near Northeast 65th Avenue and Northeast Broadway, 32-year-old Zachary Mosbrucker was lighting off illegal fireworks when an exploding rocket blew up over the heads of four people, said Sgt. Pete Simpson with Portland police.
A 38-year-old man was hit in the face and a 16-year-old boy was hit multiple times in the back. They were both were taken to the hospital for treatment and later released. Two other women were treated at the scene by paramedics.
Graphic Image: 16-year-old's firework injury
The 16-year-old boy, Michael Schmidt, was trying to cover his girlfriend when he was hit by the firework.
"I just tried to cover her up and hoped for the best," Schmidt said. "I realized my shirt was on fire. I peeled it off and then I kind of crashed... I was screaming in pain," he said.
Gina Thronlow, who was also injured, saw the firework hit Schmidt.
"It exploded on him.... I mean actually exploded on his back. He leaned over his girlfriend because it was actually going toward her, and she got a big brunt of it too. But he took the most of, so he's kind of a hero," Thronlow said.
The victims told KGW they had already asked Mosbrucker to stop setting off the fireworks so close to them before they were injured.
Mosbrucker was arrested and charged with four counts of reckless endangerment. Police said he was not associated with any of the victims.