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Chinese American community raises concerns over recent Portland shooting

Community members gathered Friday to share concerns with a police interaction prior to a shooting that injured two people, including at least one of Chinese descent.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A shooting on Friday, July 29 has some members of the Chinese American community in Portland sharing concerns about the police response that preceded it — but so far, there are not a lot of verified details about exactly what happened that night.

A meeting inside a restaurant on Friday off Southeast 82nd Avenue was a chance for community members to be heard and ask some questions.

The Portland Police Bureau did confirm that a shooting happened at Southeast 122nd and Holgate last Friday night, injuring two men. One of those men had gone to the location to retrieve his stolen car.

That man is of Chinese descent — and according to leaders of the Chinese American community in Portland, he's still in the hospital with serious injuries.

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Neal Lee is the president of the Oregon Chinese Community Benevolent Association. Lee told KGW on Thursday that officers arrived and ultimately did not help the man get his car back. And after they left, Lee said a gunfight broke out.

At this point it's unclear exactly who was shooting and why; police are still investigating and not commenting about the details of the case. So far details have not been released about why police left the scene when they did.

That leaves people in Portland's Chinese American community to wonder, and to want to be heard.

“The message is that we need the police bureau and the city to listen because the community feels that they're not listened to and nothing's happening," said Lee. "So they want some assurances and comfort to know that the police bureau and the city cares about the Chinese community, about the Asian community."

RELATED: Doxing concerns prompt PPB to withhold name of officer involved in deadly shooting

Portland Police Association President Aaron Schmautz came to the meeting. He said he understands the concerns coming from a community that has seen a surge in bias crimes in the past few years. And although there is more to do in investigating this situation, including the police response, Schmautz said police need to do all they can to connect.

“There's different timelines and certainly investigative timelines don't meet up with the need to very quickly and transparently talk about impact on community, Schmautz said, "and so I think it's important for law enforcement to be available and to be able to hear and to be able to discuss what we can discuss, and also to build that trust.”

Late Thursday afternoon, KGW received the following statement from PPB:

“The Portland Police Bureau is aware of the concerns of the Oregon Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, and throughout the week Portland Police Bureau leadership has met the CCBA and other members of our diverse local Chinese community about this case. We have reassured them that it is being fully investigated. While we cannot provide specifics due to the ongoing investigation by the enhanced community safety team, rest assured that PPB lives by our organization values of integrity, compassion, accountability, respect, excellence, and service.”

KGW will update this story as more details become available.

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