PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man who was watering his front lawn was shot in the leg by a stray bullet when at least two people began firing at each other early Thursday night in Southeast Portland.
Officers responded to reports of gunfire in the 3900 block of SE 174th Avenue. Investigators said at least two people had been shooting at each other and a stray bullet struck the victim — who was not involved — while he was watering his yard.
That victim — Jim Keller — told KOIN 6 News the bullet pierced his ankle, then made its way through both front doors, through a wall and then through a recycling bag. “And then I found it under the dog’s bowl,” Jim’s son Dustin said.
Another stray bullet went through two walls in Jim’s bedroom.
Jim was treated at a hospital and released. He said he’s thankful the wound wasn’t worse and that his granddaughter, who often visits him, wasn’t there at the time.
Dustin said the fact that his dad could have been hurt worse is “scary — I don’t like him living in the city.”
Officers said several bullets also pierced a nearby apartment with people inside, including a child taking a bath who was nearly struck.
Jim wants other people in the community to be careful because gun violence is “everywhere.”
“It could’ve ended all yesterday and over something I don’t even know the reason,” he said. “Thought my neighborhood was safe — I’ve never had any problem here… Everybody’s just gotta be careful man, it don’t matter where you live.”
The Portland Police Bureau said one person who was involved was detained and a gun was taken as evidence but no charges have been filed. At least one other suspect is still being sought. The case number is 21-157537.