Four officers fired on an armed robbery suspect who displayed a "realistic replica handgun" Monday morning near Laurelhurst Park, according to a police spokesman's account of the third police shooting this year in Portland.
Portland Police Bureau spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson said around 7:30 a.m. an officer driving near Southeast 37th Avenue and Oak Street spotted a blue Honda matching the description of a vehicle used in a Sunday morning armed robbery 15 blocks away at the Jay's Market at Southeast 48th Avenue and Belmont Street.
The officer called for reinforcement and Special Emergency Response Team backup while a suspect slept inside the car.
Before SERT backup arrived, the man awoke and was seen moving around inside. Police ordered him to leave the car.
He emerged, displaying what looked like a handgun. Four officers fired on him.
He remains in surgery with non-life threatening injuries at a local hospital.
The handgun turned out to be a realistic replica firearm, Simpson said.
Police chief Mike Reese and Mayor Sam Adams have been on the scene, where the streets remain closed while investigators continue to gather evidence.
Dispatchers confirmed reports of a shooting shortly before 8 a.m. near Southeast 37th Avenue and Southeast Stark Street, adjacent to Laurelhurst Park.
Officers swarmed the area, sealing off the tennis courts at the edge of the park and congregating near a home facing the park near Southeast Oak Street.
It is the third police-involved shooting in Portland in 2012. No officer was injured in Monday's incident, police said.
Laurelhurst, a neighborhood of stately homes surrounding one of Portland's loveliest park lakes, is better know for its seasonal tree colors than for violent crime.
Fern Wilgus, Laurelhurst Neighborhood Association's public safety chairwoman, said the tennis court area has attracted sporadic fights and robberies over the years.
"Yes, there have been problems there in that part of the park, but it's not perpetual problems," she said.
In 2010, police investigated a gang-related sexual assault at the park that began as a carjacking in Northeast Portland.
Copyright 2012 - The Oregonian, Portland, Ore.
McClatchy-Tribune News Service