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Man charged in 2 murder cases in Southeast Portland

Nathaniel Freeman is accused of shooting and killing Ny'Cole Lashawn Griffin on April 24. He is also charged in the murder of Morgan "Max" Victor on May 4.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A man previously charged for murder in a Southeast Portland shooting in May now faces charges for a separate deadly shooting in late April.

Nathaniel Freeman, 33, was arraigned in Multnomah County court on May 27, according to Portland police. He is accused of shooting and killing 30-year-old Ny'Cole Lashawn Griffin on April 24.

Officers responded to a report of a shooting around 1:17 a.m. at Southeast 9th Avenue and Southeast Ash Street in the Buckman neighborhood. Police learned that the victim, later identified as Griffin, was taken to Legacy Emanuel Hospital where doctors confirmed he died. The Portland Police Bureau (PPB) said Griffin's friends remained at the hospital to speak with authorities.

Nikki Griffin-Ware, Griffin's mother, shared a statement with KGW:

Ny’Cole was an amazing person with a huge and perfect smile. Ny’Cole had such a huge energy that filled the room every time he was present with one of the most contagious laughs. He was a great son, awesome brother, an amazing uncle and friend. He was a protector and a real super hero to me. He loved me beyond words, I felt and knew it every day, and I miss him, his goofiness and just awesome personality and huge tight hugs. This guy Nathaniel Freeman has killed prior and after killing my son and should have never been out of jail in my opinion. I trust God in all things, even in this, but it’s just unfair. This gun violence epidemic plaguing Portland has to stop. It’s breaking so many hearts and destroying so many families.

RELATED: Police identify man killed in weekend Buckman neighborhood shooting

Credit: PPB
Police said Nycole Griffin was shot near Southeast 9th Avenue and Southeast Ash Street on April 24. He was taken to the hospital, but did not survive.

Freeman was previously arrested and charged in the murder of Morgan "Max" Victor on May 4. PPB said officers responded to a shooting around 1:30 a.m. near Southeast Division Street and Southeast 28th Place in the Hosford-Abernethy neighborhood. The officers found Victor dead inside an apartment. 

PPB has not publicly said whether Freeman knew the two shooting victims. Further details about what led up to each shooting have not been released.

Credit: Portland Police Bureau
On May 4, officers found Max Victor shot and killed inside an apartment on Southeast Division Street.

In 2008, Freeman was previously charged for killing a man and injuring another man in a shooting near the University of California Berkeley campus in California, according to an article published by the San Francisco Chronicle. The shooting stemmed from a dispute at a party and "centered over nothing, just some perception of disrespect by the suspect to the injured but surviving victim," a prosecutor told the newspaper at the time.

Portland has grappled with the ongoing issue of gun violence. At least 38 people have died in homicides in the city since the start of 2022. Portland saw a record-breaking number of homicides in 2021, with 90 people killed and over 1,200 shootings.

RELATED: Police identify victim of deadly shooting at Southeast Portland apartment

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