An 18-year-old man was fatally shot Tuesday afternoon following an altercation with an acquaintance in the parking lot outside a small strip mall in central Vancouver.
The alleged shooter, identified by police as Antoine Steven Archer, 20, was located a short time later after seeking treatment for a gunshot wound to his hand, the Vancouver Police Department announced Tuesday night.
The victim, who died at the scene, has been identified as Trevonta Billie Steven Burks.
Vancouver police responded to reports of multiple gunshots near the intersection of Northeast Stapleton Road and Northeast Fourth Plain Boulevard at 2:23 p.m.
According to emergency radio traffic monitored at The Columbian, shots came from a black sedan occupied by two people who then drove away on Fourth Plain Boulevard.
“We’re working on the details,” said Lt. Tom Ryan of the Vancouver Police Department Major Crimes Unit, as officers worked to cordon off the scene behind caution tape and take statements from nearby witnesses. “We’re trying to piece this together.”
The victim’s sister was among the witnesses to the shooting. Their mother arrived at the scene around 3 p.m.
Around the same time, police responded to an urgent care clinic for a man, identified as Archer, who came in with a gunshot wound. He was transported to a local hospital for treatment, according to a police news release issued Tuesday night.
Investigators learned that Archer and Burks, who knew each other, were involved in a verbal altercation that turned physical. Archer shot Burks and accidentally shot himself in the hand, police said.
Archer was arrested on suspicion of second-degree murder and booked into the Clark County Jail. He is scheduled to appear Wednesday morning in Clark County Superior Court, according to the jail roster.
‘It was just chaos’
Emergency dispatchers received multiple calls about the shooting, which occurred in broad daylight in the middle of a busy commercial area. Employees at nearby businesses reported hearing between three and six gunshots in rapid succession. At the scene, investigators had marked seven potential shell casings scattered in the parking lot. The victim’s body lay in the northeastern corner of the parking lot.
One person who called in the shooting was Eileen Moreton, a lab manager at Any Lab Test Now, a business located across the street. Moreton witnessed the event from behind the desk in the business’s windowed reception area.
Moreton heard the gunshots before she saw anything, she said.
“Just a pop, pop, pop, pop,” Moreton said. “All of the sudden, it was just chaos.”
She looked up to see a group of young people around high school age panicking in front of Boba Tree, a teahouse that is one of three businesses that share the building at 5210 N.E. Fourth Plain Blvd. Moreton then saw two other young people, a male and a female, jump into a black sedan parked in front of the neighboring business, Fit Curvez Nutrition.
“A man and a girl got in a black sedan and they took off real quick,” Moreton said, adding that she watched first responders arrive shortly afterward and attempt to administer CPR.
Dozens of officers responded to the scene, which is only about a block south of the Vancouver Police Department West Precinct offices on Stapleton.
Police closed a portion of Stapleton Road for the investigation, and blocked the road’s exit from state Highway 500.