News | Local

Clackamas Town Center Gunman Kills Two, Then Takes Own Life (Live Updates)

OPB | Dec. 11, 2012 3:57 p.m. | Updated: Feb. 21, 2013 11:42 a.m.

Contributed By:

Courtney Sherwood, Morgan Holm, April Baer, Kristian Foden-Vencil

At least two people were killed by a shooter who is now dead, and one other was injured, at Town Center shooting at about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday. The shooter has been “neutralized,” according to law enforcement, though details are still unclear. Watch for continuing updates below, and listen to live coverage on OPB radio.

 

5:50 p.m.: All updates are now being posted via Cover It Live, in the box above.

5:45 p.m.: Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after reports of a shooting at a mall in Clackamas County:
 
“I am shocked by today’s horrific and deeply disturbing events at Clackamas Town Center. To lose even one Oregonian to violence is heartbreaking. To have an ordinary December afternoon at the mall descend into a scene of murder and terror is absolutely devastating. My thoughts and prayers tonight are with the victims, their loved ones, and all who have been affected by this terrible act of violence.”

5:39 p.m.: James Rhodes of the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office says that the shooter is dead, as are an additional two people, and one is confirmed injured. Nearly 100 officers are on the scene at the Clackamas mall. Law enforcement will say that the shooter was male, but will not release any other identifying information at this time.

5:23 p.m.: Northwest News Network Editor Colin Fogarty is at Legacy Emanuel Hospital. He reports that Emanuel officials initially expected a helicopter carrying one or more injured people to come to the hospital, but it never arrived — it’s unclear why, but may have re-routed to another medical facility.

5:21 p.m. Additional information from James Rhodes of the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office: “I don’t have any details about who this person is, motive.” He said he could not provide information about how many shots were fired or how many law enforment officials were on the scene. Witnesses who may have information should contact the sheriff’s office, either by approaching law enforcement if they are on the scene, or by stopping by the physical location.

Emergency crews respond to a shooting at Clackamas Town Center.

Emergency crews respond to a shooting at Clackamas Town Center.

April Baer

5:15 p.m.: More from OPB’s April Baer, who is reporting live from Clackamas Town Center: There’s still no information about whether the shooter is still alive, though law enforcement say he has been “neutralized.” It’s also not clear if the shooter is one of the two people who have been confirmed dead.

Baer also reorts that a steady stream of cars is now leaving the mall parking lot. Buses are linend up ready to drive people away as needed.

Police are “moving through slowly and trying to find people in the mall.”

5:03 p.m.: A witness says the shooter’s rifle jammed before he dropped the gun and ran.

4:59 p.m. Governor Kitzhaber released the following statement in response to the shooting at the Clackamas Town Center mall: “My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. I appreciate the work of the first responders and their quick reaction to this tragic shooting. Oregon State Police Superintendent Rich Evans is on the scene. I have directed State Police to make any and all necessary resources available to local law enforcement.”

4:53 p.m.: James Rhodes of the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office just spoke with the media. “The shooter has been neutralized,” he said. “I don’t have more information than that at this time.”

Rhodes confirmed that at least one person has been killed. “There’s been a lot of reports, a lot of conflicting information,” and until he has confirmed full details he said he would not provide more information.

He will hold another press conference at 5:30 p.m.

4:49 p.m.: Law enforcement is asking people near Clackamas Town Center to restrict use of cell phones when possible to keep lines from overloading.

4:48 p.m.: Trimet has re-routed several bus lines around the mall. Details online here.

4:45 p.m.: OPB reporter April Baer is at the mall and talking with Think Out Loud live on the radio. From her dispatch:

  • “I’m looking out over what looks like an ocean of  emergency vehicles. … It looks like a perverse parody of a holiday light display”
  • “We are yet to have a press briefing. “
  • “Officers have not really confirmed yet whether they’ve caught the shooter. There’s a lot that’s unclear here.”
  • “As I was headed in, ambulances were headed out of the area and many more emergency vehicles were headed in.”

4:40 p.m.: Community Emergency Reponse Teams are about to enter the mall. Some customers and employees are still inside, many baricaded inside.

4:36 p.m.: According to police scanners, 98-99 percent of the mall has been cleared and does not contain any wounded people or a suspect. Portland search teams and Oregon State Police SWAT teams will be joining the scene soon.

4:35 p.m.: OPB’s Think Out Loud is going to hold a live discussion of the shooting, starting shortly. Call 888-665-5865 to join the conversation.

4:30 p.m.: The Associated Press reports the shooter was wearing camoflauge and a mask.

4:28 p.m.: Interstate 205 has been shut down near Clackamas Town Center.

4:24 p.m.: Reports are emerging that at least seven people are injured and at least two dead.

4:21 p.m.: OPB Reporter Kristian Foden-Vencil reached Paul Beckett, who works at Excalibur Cutlery & Gifts, by phone. Beckett said everything happened very suddenly.

Beckett: “I was in my store preparing for a mid-day close, just the tills basically. We heard a lot of gun shots out front. Some of the glass railing in front of my store shattered. A couple of windows in some of the other shops shattered. And people started running around and screaming. They weren’t that scared at first. But suddenly people started ducking into places and diving on the ground and hiding.  The security guards for the mall came around to tell everybody to just go in your store and close up the front of the stores.”

Beckett said he saw  a half a dozen SWAT team members come in. When OPB spoke to him, he was in his store, on the ground hiding in the back of the store.  Beckett said he was waiting for an all clear.

4:13 p.m.: It’s not clear how many people may have been injured, but medics are now on the scene, some victims are being evacuated.

4:11 p.m.: Civilians are being evacuated from the south side of the mall. Reports on the number of shots fired range from fewer than 20 to more than 60.

4:04 p.m.: The shots were fired near Macy’s and a man was seen near the mall’s food court around that time. According to police scanner conversations, the suspected shooter was carrying an assault rifle and wearing a mask.

3:57 p.m.: Police are actively securing exits at Clackamas Town Center on Tuesday afternoon after receiving reports that shots were fired by a man carrying a rifle at the mall. Few details are available, watch this story for updates.

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