A warm night turned violent early Monday, when a shooting that police called gang-related shook Vancouver’s Hough neighborhood.
A suspect, Jeremy Pina, 21, of Vancouver, was being held on suspicion of attempted first-degree murder, according to police. He was arrested about 7:15 a.m. Monday morning, about 90 minutes after a police SWAT team had entered an apartment in a small complex at the corner of 21st Street and Markle Avenue.
The victim’s name was not released. He was taken to a local hospital for treatment; a man who said he was his father told a Portland TV station that his son was shot, underwent surgery and was recovering.
The Safe Streets Task Force was called to investigate the shooting, which is standard in suspected gang-related events, said Vancouver police spokeswoman Kim Kapp.
A motive for the shooting wasn’t immediately clear.
“It wasn’t random. That’s all we know,” Kapp said Monday.
The incident began at 12:05 a.m. after several neighbors called 911 to report a shooting at a home at 2213 Lincoln Ave.
One of the first people on scene was an off-duty firefighter, Nate Cook, who lives nearby.
Cook, 36, was watching television with his wife, Jasmine, when they heard about seven gunshots and a scream through the open window.
“I’ll never forget that scream,” Jasmine Cook said.
Nate Cook ran outside and saw the 18-year-old victim’s bicycle on the ground in front of his house. He went back inside to get dressed and called 911 as he ran to where he had heard the scream.
He found the victim lying on the sidewalk conscious and alert. The gunman was nowhere in sight. The victim had about six gunshot wounds, Cook said. He examined the wounds and came up with a treatment plan to pass on to medics when they arrived with equipment.
As soon as Vancouver Police arrived, they handed Cook a pair of gloves. He had blood on his hands and legs. The paramedics took the victim to an area hospital.
Cook then talked to a woman he knew to be the victim’s mother. He assured her that her son was being treated and was in good hands.
Police searched yards and checked cars driving through the neighborhood, Cook said.
Shortly before sunrise, officers surrounded a tan-colored apartment complex at 21st Street and Markle Avenue, less than two blocks away from the scene of the shooting.
At about 5:45 a.m., a SWAT team used a loud hailer and fired tear gas, then entered an apartment. It was not clear if anyone was home, but the suspect was not there, according to police radio traffic monitored by The Columbian.
Police opened up the perimeter around the Markle Avenue scene at about 6:45 a.m. Shortly afterward, they found Pina walking down a nearby street and arrested him. According to Columbian and court archives, he has a criminal record, including a 2008 conviction for being an accomplice to an assault, attempting to intimidate a witness and making false statements to police.
The Safe Streets Task Force is asking anyone who was in the area of the 2000 block of Lincoln Avenue, Markle Avenue or Kauffman Avenue from midnight to 4 a.m. Monday morning and may have information that would assist with this investigation to contact Safe Streets Task Force Detective Erik Zimmerman at 360-487-7412. Information or tips may be anonymous.
Craig Brown of The Columbian contributed to this report.