PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A Portland man came within inches of losing his life this week when he was accidentally shot in the neck by his roommate.
Angle Carter was shot Tuesday afternoon at his shared apartment on Southeast Yamhill Street. His roommate was cleaning his gun when the gun went off.
The bullet entered Carter’s neck and exited out his back, breaking 2 ribs along the way and narrowly missing his carotid artery.
He was rushed to a hospital with life-threatening injuries and underwent surgery. By Wednesday morning, Carter’s life was no longer hanging in the balance. By Thursday, he was up and talking to KOIN 6 News.
“Literally, I was 3 centimeters from dying on the carpets in there,” Carter said from inside his apartment.
But in the moment, Carter was sure he was going to die. He said time slowed when the gun went off: he noticed the flash, the spray of gun powder.
“My first thought was ‘I just got shot’ — my second thought was ‘oh no, I’m dead, I’m not going to make it.'”
Carter said his roommate — who is also his best friend — stood stock still in shock before calling for help. Carter remembers also feeling frozen in the moments after the bullet hit him.
“I just couldn’t move,” he said. “It felt like my brain got disconnected from my body. I couldn’t move — I could talk, but I couldn’t blink.”
Paramedics rushed into the apartment and whisked Carter away. Investigators stayed on site for several hours as they pieced together what had happened. The accidental shooter, who was initially taken into custody, was eventually released.
As Carter works to regain feeling in one of his arms, he says he doesn’t hold any grudges against his friend but he does want the incident to serve as a warning for others.
“No matter the situation, always keep your firearms always safe. Make sure you use them safely — it don’t matter how experienced you are. You can always have issues.”
Carter’s roommate said the 9 mm handgun has been taken out of the house for good.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Carter move to a new apartment. He said his current landlord is evicting them due to the discharging of a gun inside the unit.