PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Dozens of people gathered at Peninsula Park Friday afternoon in memory of a 16-year-old who was shot to death in the Hazelwood neighborhood in August — and his loved ones want the violence to end.
Those closest to Jaelin Scott said he was a great older brother, caring and funny. His family and friends gathered at the “Stop the Gun Violence” rally put on by Fridays 4 Freedom, a Black youth-led organization, which began at 2 p.m.
“In Portland there were a lot of shootings in July, a lot of homicides and I feel like as a community we need to bring light to those that go within the Black Lives Matter movement just besides racism,” said organizer Arieanna Morehead, who was Jaelin’s friend.
“He was more than my son. He was my best friend,” his dad Cash Carter said. “I knew him, he knew me. We talked about everything.”
Morehead said Jaelin was “really sweet, he was really caring. He loved basketball. He was super funny.”
The teenager was shot August 27 at Gateway Discovery Park on NE Halsey Street. A stranger was with him as he took his last breaths.
Carter told KOIN 6 News he believes the ongoing protests and riots have prevented the PPB from focusing on other crimes throughout the community — something he believes contributed to his son’s death. Carter said he planned to meet with Portland Police Chief Chuck Lovell to talk about it.
On the PDX Black Lives Matter website, organizers said, “A common misconception is that the Black Lives Matter movement is only about fighting and abolishing the police. In reality, there are many factors that play a part in this movement. Gun violence happens to be one of those things.”
“It’s about making the right choices the next time. My son wasn’t perfect but (hopefully) the next person won’t have to deal with what I’m dealing with,” Carter said. “I shouldn’t be up here talking about him. He should be talking about me.”
PPB detectives continue to investigate and ask anyone with information to contact Detective Shaye Samora at 503.823.0768 or by email: Shaye.Samora@portlandoregon.gov
The PPB and Crime Stoppers of Oregon are offering a cash reward of up to $2500 for information that leads to an arrest. Tips can be submitted anonymously or by calling 503.823.4357.