Skip to comments.Man shot by Washington County tactical officers was armed, thought intruder was on his property,
Posted on 03/15/2012 10:14:05 AM PDT by marktwain
The man shot by Washington County tactical officers in New Columbia Tuesday night had grabbed a gun because he thought intruders were on his property after his wife had checked on their barking dog in their backyard and saw a stranger in dark clothing.
Alberto Flores-Haro, according to relatives and witnesses, did not know that the men surrounding his home and neighborhood Tuesday night were authorities approaching to raid a residence just a few doors down from his home in the 9500 block of North Woolsey Avenue.
"There was someone in our backyard, and my mom called our stepdad," said Daniel Ibarra. "He told me to go upstairs and get the gun."
Ibarra, 17, said he didn't know where it was, and Flores-Haro followed him up the stairs and retrieved it. Ibarra said a stranger came through the home, and left through the front door.
Neighbor Juan Soto Martinez, 16, who lives across a walkway from Flores-Haro's home, said he heard Flores at his front door yelling with a man, who seemed to be outside, on the side of his house. Then, he heard multiple gunshots.
Ibarra found his stepdad collapsed in the front doorway of their home, shot in one arm and twice in the stomach, and called 9-1-1 about 10 p.m.
" I grabbed a rag and put pressure on his forearm," Ibarra recalled, and told his mother to grab a towel from the kitchen and place pressure on Flores' torso wounds.
GS.51SHOT115-02.jpgView full size Ibarra said his family had no idea that the men surrounding their home in tactical uniforms of army green were from the Washington County Sheriff's Office's Tactical Negotiation Team, who were assisting police.
He said of his dad, "I think he just wanted to scare them away. He didn't know who they were."
While his father lay bleeding, Ibarra said he was ordered out of the house.
"Once I stepped outside, I was ordered to get on the ground," said Ibarra, a Roosevelt High School senior.
He said the rest of his family, his mother and four other children from ages 5 and 13, were ordered to get out of the house, and then tactical officers grabbed his stepdad and carried him to a waiting ambulance.
Flores-Haro, 31, remains in serious condition at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center.
In a release this afternoon, Portland police said three members of the Washington County Tactical Negotiations Team were involved in the shooting: one Hillsboro police officer and two Washington County Sheriff's deputies.
While Sgt. Pete Simpson said early today "there was an exchange of gunfire,'' police said later this afternoon that detectives have not determined if Flores-Haro fired any shots at police. Police also said that the officers "repeatedly identified themselves as law enforcement officers.''
"Preliminary information released at the scene was than an exchange of gunfire occurred. However, detectives have been searching for shell casings at the scene, which is lined by a heavily wood area. A handgun was recovered at the scene, but detectives have not determined if the man shot at police.''
Mayor Sam Adams also released a statement: "The City takes incidents such as this very seriously. As with any officer-involved shooting, there will be a thorough investigation and we will make sure every element is examined.''
This morning, Portland police have said only that the man shot by officers had approached police with a handgun as officers were getting ready to serve a search warrant at a nearby, unrelated location.
Simpson said this morning that as police prepared to approach an apartment to execute a search warrant that a man from a nearby apartment emerged with a handgun. Simpson did not know if the man fired first or how many shots officers fired. He said only that "there was an exchange of gunfire." No officer was shot.
Police later in the night did serve a search warrant at a home just doors down from Flores' house on North Woolsey Avenue, and arrested Anthony Bagsby, 20, and Cocoa Tapli, 16, who face accusations of attempted aggravated murder in connection with a Sunday night gang-related shooting and robbery on North Woolsey Avenue.
Portland Lt. Robert King declined to release any more details on the officer-involved shooting. He declined to release the name of the man shot, or explain why police were withholding the name. King also declined to answer whether the tactical officers had identified themselves as police outside Flores' home.
Portland had a mobile command center set up at the site through the night, and left about 10 a.m. today.
Many residents in the neighborhood said they got little sleep after they heard the gunshots. Some reported hearing between four and five, others said six or seven.
Martinez, who lives across from Flores' home, said he was watching TV in his living room, and caring for his younger brothers and sisters because their mom wasn't home at the time.
"I heard like four or five shots," Martinez said. When he looked out his window, "Alberto was laying in the front of his home, bleeding."
Martinez said he told his younger siblings to "get down," and then took them to an upstairs bathroom.
Residents in the area described Flores as a family man and a good neighbor, who worked loading trucks. They described him as in his 30s.
"He's a good neighbor," said Maria Bosyuk, who lives next door to Flores. She said her children heard the shooting and couldn't sleep.
"It sounded like three, then three more" shots, said Michelle Clopton, who lives on North Woolsey Avenue.
As she went to call 9-1-1, she heard police shouting commands to someone on a megaphone."The cops were on a loud speaker, saying 'Come out with your hands up!' Clopton said, who kept peeking out her window.
Another resident who asked not to be named said she was lying in bed when she heard six to seven gunshots. "I grabbed my phone to call police and noticed they were already all outside," she said.
scenephoto.jpgView full sizeMaxine Bernstein/The OregonianHome where Alberto Flores-Haro was shot, pictured far right. Building in foreground is location where tactical officers were readying to raid with a search warrant last night. She said the police orders via megaphone came much later, at least an hour or so: "Come out of the house! Do it now!"
An officer instructed her to stay in the back of her house, she said, and she was worried about the many children in the neighborhood.
"I was sitting in my living room and heard a lot of shots," said Dorine Nafziger, a North Woolsey Avenue resident who lives with her husband and 3-year-old son.
She and her husband went upstairs and looked out their back window.
"We saw the big SWAT tank and a lot of officers in army green suits, helmets and shields," Nafziger said.
She got on Facebook to share information with other neighbors to figure out what was going on. At one point , she said she saw police lead five people from a home in handcuffs.
"It freaks us out," Nafziger said. "It's not the first time something like this has happened in our neighborhood." Sonja Andreas said the gunshots came in what she described as two staccato explosions. Then she said, she heard a lot of yelling and screaming.
She called 9-1-1 and said she was told, "Don't worry, there's a police action happening right now."
But Andreas said she didn't see the usual marked police cars, but a large armored vehicle, and men in what looked like military-type garb.
Tactical teams from Portland, Washington and Clackamas counties routinely rely on each other. Simpson said officers on these teams train with each other and are "fairly interchangeable." Washington County's tactical team is comprised of officers from multiple police agencies and was assisting Portland police last night as Portland's tactical team was in training.
Simpson did not know how many officers fired on the suspect or which agencies they represent.
Not really. NOTHING will be done to the officers. Let me look into my crystal ball.
“Serving a warrant” should involve a uniformed, unmasked sheriff’s officer knocking on the door of the person to be served,
not a bunch of ninjas on a “seal” raid.
As these incidents accumulate, regular Americans’ disgust and mistrust of law enforcement in general likewise increases. I’m as “law and order” as the next citizen, but when I see a cop these days, my initial reaction is to think: “I’m most likely looking at an enemy, a lawless goon armed at my expense, who would kill me if he could get away with it.” I KNOW that’s not rational, but it’s the truth.
No. You are not alone in that. I even have friends who are Law Enforcement who are looking to get out. Two went into Private Security contracting and another went back into computers.
If this gestapo raid was really for a "few doors down" why in the hell were storm troopers entering this man's home. I wish he'd have gotten a couple of good well-hit shots off. These storm trooper tacticals need a lesson.
Fixed it for you.
It's popular and only going to get worse.
Unless they charge him for the theft of 3 rounds of ammunition.
Well, maybe not. Those asshole Atlanta Drug Squad LEOs who murdered that old black lady mistakenly invading her home actually went to jail...more of that should happen.
Er, more war on murderers, not everything is about drugs, unless your addicted.
Yes, he was!
Because if the SWAT Team is not used nearly every day, its funds will be cut.
Year One, City Manager to Police Chief. "Chief, I see here your SWAT Team cost 11 million last year, and you only were called out 7 times! Geez Chief, that's over a million each time!"
Year Two: "Great work, Chief! I see the SWAT Team was used 347 times last year! Are you sure 11 million dollars is enough?"
More importantly, why were they wandering through random neighboring yards? Some elaborate sort of flanking maneuver? Looking for a quiet place to take a whiz?
Most of the SWAT cops were ex military troops. They learned how to do this in Baghdad, Ramadi and Mosul. "Dominate the battle space!" etc etc etc. Your peaceful, fenced-in backyard may be seen as part of their "avenue of approach with good cover and concealment to the north of the target."
The cops will walk, they won't even lose a day's pay. Judges want the SWATTIEs to remain on a "war footing" and not get "cold feet." Remember the undercover FBI team who shot the face off the Eagle Scout in MD a few years back? Total mistaken identidy snafu, screaming at the innocent kid and his girlfriend to both "FREEZE OR WE'LL SHOOT!" and "GET OUT NOW! OUT NOW!"
This with carbine muzzles leveled at their windshield and windows.
They didn't even get a slap on the wrist.
I agree 100% with your #41. The cops will walk. No problem at all.
The Overlords need their Enforcers to feel frisky and unhindered by mere legal niceties.
Yep, time to stock up the escape pod.
Trying to reamin fair-minded, and recognizing that this article probably put as much “cops-are-bad-guys” spin as possible; there are still two troubling points that jump out at me:
1)”There was someone in our backyard...” and “Ibarra said a stranger came through the home, and left through the front door” - What the heck? Regardless of the warrant, by what authority does a police officer enter a civilian’s back yard at night, go through the home and leave through the front door? UNLESS - by “our backyard” the kid meant “the backyard of the apartment building” and by “home” he meant “apartment building”. Possible I guess, and if this is a more accurate representation, the reporter should be charged with attemptiong to start a riot - CLARITY should be a reporter’s primary aim.
2) “police said later this afternoon that detectives have not determined if Flores-Haro fired any shots at police” THESE are weasel words. A more accurate statement would be “no evidence has been found to suggest that Flores-Haro...” If they have the gun, they know if it was fired or not. If they have the guy, know if he fired a gun. Evidence of the gun being fired could have been determined by the cordite sniff-test on the spot, no? And with the man in custody, they can do a gun powder residue test in a matter of minutes can’t they? So why have they “...not determined if Flores-Haro fired...”? Becausse they have nothing to suggest that he did, and having nothing, it seems certain that he didn’t.
So here’s my most level-headed, unbiased opinion:
I’m going to guess the guy moved from the apartment building backyard, through the back building entrance, out the building front entrance. (This is the only thing that makes sense without believing that the cops are complete tyrannical dunderheads) The civilian was concerned, armed himself, and verbally confronted the “intruder”. I won’t speculate as to whether or not the police officers clearly identified themselves or not, but it seems very clear to me that the civilian didn’t fire his weapon.
This is why the black mask and ninja look for cops is wrong. Any hat or helmet worn should have a star or badge on it. The uniform should not be all black and the top or vest should have POLICE on it in large, bright letters.
Citizens confronted by masked people in black rightly assume these are bad guys and get shot unfairly. Sure the cops yell “police” but often follow it immediately by shooting the citizen. Why serve a warrant in the dark of night?
Woulda been easier to arrest David Koresh when he went out for a jog, too, but that wouldn't have been nearly as impressive at the budget hearings.
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