PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Officials say that a man shot and killed two women before committing suicide at a home in unincorporated Washington County on Wednesday night.
Just after 8 p.m., deputies from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a domestic disturbance on Southwest Scholls Ferry Road. Deputies arrived at the scene to find two dead people outside the home and one man with life-threatening injuries due to a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the sheriff’s office.
WCSO says detectives learned that the man, identified as 46-year-old Carlos Jimenez-Vargas, shot both victims during an argument before shooting himself.
Jimenez-Vargas was reportedly taken to the hospital but eventually succumbed to his injuries.
“The relationship between the suspect and one of the victims, there was a marriage relationship there at one point or another,” said Deputy Brandon Toney with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.
WCSO says the woman’s sister was the other person killed. The victims have not been named, but according to court records for Jimenez-Vargas, he had several charges this year, accused of threatening a woman with a gun and strangling another — both of which the state considered acts of domestic violence.
“Domestic violence homicides are a really unfortunate ending to really, really difficult situations,” said Rachel Schutz, executive director at the Family Justice Center in Washington County. “It’s an ultimate tragedy. Survivors are never to blame and are never at fault for the abuse that they are suffering.”
While it’s unclear the circumstances of what happened Wednesday night, the court records detailing the charges said many of the instances happened in front of children. Schutz says oftentimes, children can be caught in the middle of domestic violence and abuse, and as a result, experience severe emotional and psychological trauma, and it’s important to seek help for them.
“It is traumatizing to witness violence against someone that you love,” said Schutz. “It is so devastating, and I just cannot say how much of an impact this has on the children.”The Family Justice Center has a number of resources online and by phone for anyone experiencing or witnessing domestic violence or abuse, and they want to remind survivors that they are not alone.
The investigation is ongoing, and the sheriff’s office says Jimenez-Vargas’ family was notified of his death.
The 24/7 hotline for the Family Justice Center in Washington County is 503-430-8300 and can connect you to resources across the Portland metro. However, if you are ever in a domestic violence emergency, call 911. They also have resources available online including how to recognize abusive behavior, how to secure your phone or internet, and what steps to take to protect yourself and your family.