Gunman opens fire at East Bend shopping center, inside Safeway: 3 people dead, including shooter

Date:

(Update: Police hold press conference; Safeway shopper talks about terrifying moments to get kids out of store)

BEND, Oregon (KTVZ) — A gunman armed with a rifle and shotgun fired several shots in the parking lot of a mall in northeast Bend on Sunday night, then entered a Safeway and fired several more shots, two people were killed and shoppers were looking for the exits. Officers also found the gunman dead in the store.

Police Chief Mike Krantz told reporters at a late news conference that they believe the man entered the mall’s parking lot from a neighborhood behind it.

An AR-15-style rifle and shotgun were found “in close proximity to the shooter” when police arrived, Krantz said, adding that police fired no shots after arriving at the store.

There was a witness who believed there was a second gunman, but Krantz said their investigation revealed “no evidence of a second gunman anywhere in the area.”

Krantz said nearly 100 agents from various agencies were involved in the investigation into the “very large crime scene,” so it will take time to process the crime scene, including obtaining search warrants.

“Our hearts go out to the victims and their families,” Krantz said. “We know this is terrifying for our community and something we would never want to happen in our city,” he said, pledging to “follow every lead.”

Krantz said police are aware of “information circulating on social media” that are said to be messages from the shooter and are also investigating.

There have also been reports of shootings elsewhere in the city, the police chief said, but officers checking those reports found “no evidence of other shootings in our community.” In particular, he said, there were reports of shots fired near Southeast Ninth Street and Reed Market Road, but police “find no evidence of a shooting there either.”

“We ask the community to be patient as we go through the investigation” and to call 911 with any directions if it’s an emergency, Krantz said. He also said he had just heard of the one injured and had no details.

Officers and medics rushed to the Forum Shopping Center just after 7 p.m. after numerous reports of shots fired and one or more victims and/or suspects.

The livestreamed press conference was held shortly before 11pm (it starts about 2 minutes after the YouTube video):

Just before 8:30 p.m., St. Charles spokeswoman Lisa Goodman confirmed they had received two people, one dead on arrival and another in good condition. A short time later, she said the hospital had been placed in a lockout.

Minutes later, Sheila Miller, the Bend Police Department’s communications manager, told reporters that three people had been shot dead, including the alleged gunman.

Police responded to numerous calls just after 7 p.m. and reported shots had been fired at the Forum Shopping Center, she said.

Miller said the gunman fired shots into the parking lot near the Costco and Big Lots stores and then entered the west entrance of Safeway.

“One person was shot at the entrance,” she said, and was reported dead on arrival at St. Charles Bend.

“Police believe the gunman continued to shoot through the store, shooting and killing an additional person,” Miller said.

Police found the gunman dead in the store.

The police spokeswoman said a “shelter” warning was still in effect in the area “out of an abundance of caution”. Police scheduled a media briefing at police headquarters at about 10:30 p.m., which they said would be livestreamed on the city’s YouTube page,

Goodman said shortly before 9 p.m. that “the hospital is locked down and we encourage people to stay away unless they experience a medical emergency.”

Still “shaken up” two hours later, Safeway shopper Josh Caba told NewsChannel 21 about some terrifying minutes during a grocery store run.

The resident of Bend said his wife had stayed in the car because she was not feeling well while he went shopping with their four children.

“About 10 minutes later we went to the front. Then we heard I don’t know how many shots up front – six or seven. I immediately turned to my children and said, “Run!” People were screaming. … it was a horrific experience.”

Concerned for his wife, as it turned out, “by the grace and provision of God,” when he and three of their children burst through the large black exit doors of the produce department, his wife had driven back and “sit in the car, saying” Get in the car! Get in the car!’”

Caba said he went back in and found their fourth child, rushing her out of the store and also to the car. He wanted to commend the police for their actions.

“When I got out of that store and the kids were picked up, they (officers) run into the store. They are great people. They deserve all the praise and praise in the world. It’s definitely more terrifying than you can imagine to have someone shoot your kids. They are rock stars!”

Deschutes County 911 dispatchers received numerous calls just after 7 p.m. reporting multiple gunshots had been heard near the mall, on Highway 20 and Northeast 27.e Street.

Some callers said they saw someone dressed all in black, while others said a male test subject was holding two duffel bags that may have entered the grocery store.

Others heard gunshots from nearby Costco, to the east.

Bend police said in a tweet that there was “an active investigation in the area of ​​The Forum Shopping Center. Please avoid the area. More updates to follow as the investigation progresses.”

Bend Police, Oregon State Police, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Deputies, Oregon State Police and Bend Fire & Rescue medics, including numerous armed officers and armored vehicles, arrived amid reports that one or more suspects may have left the area.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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