The Portland Police Bureau reported Thursday that shootings in the city have increased during the first week of April, despite restrictions on gatherings and movement.
The Bureau’s gun violence reduction team says Portland averages one shooting a day, but from March 29 through April 9 – a span of 11 days – there were 22 shootings.
Speaking at a press availability on April 3, PPB Chief Jami Resch said the bureau has also seen an increase in domestic violence calls and speeding citations.
Nationwide, overall crime rates have dropped since the coronavirus shut down large swaths of the country. In Washington, a number of police departments have reported double-digit decreases in crime.
But early evidence, including the latest data from PPB, suggests the drop in crime may not carry over to gun violence. In Baltimore, in the first five days after the mayor declared a state of emergency, police reported zero homicides. But the city’s homicide rate quickly returned to pre-pandemic rates. In Chicago, March was the calmest month for fatal shootings in five years. Then, on Tuesday, the city had the most shootings in a month and the most people killed since August 2018.
Sgt. Ken Duilio with the GVRT said the uptick in Portland comes after shootings initially dropped in the couple of weeks following the Governor’s stay at home order.
In two of the recent shootings, people were hit, but not fatally. As of April 9, there have been 138 shootings in the city. There were 426 in 2019.