PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – The woman accused of shooting a gun inside Portland International Airport Tuesday evening claimed she fired the gun so she would not kill her family in Texas, according to newly released court documents.
Around 11:11 p.m. Nov. 14, Port of Portland Police were dispatched to a reported shooting at the D/E checkpoint after a woman — later identified as 47-year-old Laura Patterson — fired a pistol in the air, authorities claim.
Officials said no one was injured by the gunfire.
An airport employee pointed out Patterson to arriving police and said the gun was around the corner, court documents say. The employee reported hearing two gunshots and saw TSA personnel running, court documents allege — noting the employee said another witness pointed out a gun on the ground and after the employee asked Patterson if the gun was hers, she replied, “’yup, I did it.'”
Authorities claim Patterson was “incongruously calm,” wearing a purse, and did not have any weapons in her hands.
Another witness reported that he took cover behind a pillar after seeing a woman with a handgun and heard “’two bangs’” about three feet ahead of him at the checkpoint, court documents say. The witness claims he saw the woman put the gun on the floor and made statements “to the effect of, ‘is anyone going to do anything?’” The witness goes on to claim he heard someone else ask the woman why she shot the gun, to which she replied, “’she was crazy.’”
Court documents say an officer found a black handgun on the carpet about 20 feet behind Patterson, along with two black bags. While taking her into custody, authorities said they found two BMW key fobs and one loose bullet.
Officers said they also recovered a .380 caliber handgun with one round in the chamber, one round in the magazine, and two spent shell casings. Inside her bags, authorities found clothes, two boxes of 50-round .380 caliber pistol cartridges with price tags attached, and a folder with multiple expired drivers’ licenses belonging to her, court documents say.
Court documents allege Patterson told authorities she took out the gun and pulled the trigger, “’[because] I wanted to,’” and claimed the gun was hers and that she aimed at the ceiling.
In police custody, Patterson told authorities she drove from her Kennewick, Washington home to PDX to shoot her gun, but not to hurt anyone and that she “purposely loaded the firearm to bring it to the airport.”
“Patterson advised she came to the airport because she needed to do something because she wanted to kill her family members who live in the area of Houston, Texas,” court documents claim. “Patterson advised she did not intend to fly out of the state but thought about killing her second cousin who was local to the area.”
Authorities claim she wanted to kill the family members because “they are pedophiles and were aware of the sexual abuse but covered it up,” and thought about killing her family – also including her mother, sister, aunt, and uncle – for two years. Court documents say she fired the gun to avoid killing her family but did not think anyone would stop her.
Officials said the gunshot caused $10,000 in damage to a window on the airport roof.
Patterson made her first court appearance on Thursday and faces several charges, including attempted murder, reckless endangerment, criminal mischief and the unlawful use of a weapon.
Patterson’s next court date is set for Nov. 27.