PORTLAND -- Two suspects remained on the loose after they wounded a clerk during a convenience store robbery Tuesday morning in North Portland.
Police said two men tried to hold up the Jumbo Discount Cigarette Plus store, located at 2224 N. Lombard, just after 9 a.m. when something went wrong and the suspects shot 43-year-old Debra Ross and then fled on foot.
Witnesses described an African American male between 19 and 21 years-old, 5'7 inches tall weighing 180-200 pounds. He was wearing a dark jacket and a dark stocking cap.
The other suspect was younger and perhaps in his teens, witnesses said. He was described as an African American male, 5'11 inches and thinner. He was wearing a dark colored hoodie with "peach fuzz as facial hair," police said.
Friends of the clerk told KGW she was shot in the chest but still managed to walk to the dry cleaner next door for help.
"She was looking normal and kept saying, 'tell them to hurry, tell them to hurry,'" said Chris Reed, who called 9-1-1.
Ross was rushed to Legacy Emanuel Hospital where she underwent surgery and was expected to survive.
"Just after Mother's Day, she's a mom, she's a grandma, and this is wrong. This is totally wrong," said friend Brenda Hebert.
"She's a really nice lady, it's a terrible thing to happen," added Dana Hoadley, a frequent customer at the small store.
A K-9 team scanned the area shortly after the shooting, but lost the suspects' trail.
Two nearby grade schools, Peninsula and Chief Joseph, were put in lock out status during the investigation. This meant that the exterior doors were locked for the safety of students and staff.
"It's pretty strange to have something like this happen in this neighborhood. This neighborhood has been pretty calm for a long time," said area resident Paul Dinas.