April 29, 2012 12:00Attachment: VIEW FILES
This morning, Sunday April 29, 2012, at 2:32 a.m., Portland Police responded to the report of a domestic disturbance at an apartment in the 13400 block of Southeast Stark Street.
Officers arrived and learned that 44-year-old John Wimberly Smith was inside an apartment, possibly armed, refusing to come out to police. Officers spoke with the female victim who told police that Smith assaulted her and threatened her with a gun. Smith remained inside the victim's residence armed with the handgun but the victim was able to get outside to contact police. Three children, ages 11 and under, were asleep inside the apartment, according to the victim.
Based on information that the suspect was armed and that three children were inside the apartment, the Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT) and Crisis Negotiators were called to scene at approximately 3:51 a.m.
Negotiators talked with Smith extensively and were able to contact some members of Smith's family to assist with the negotiation. Negotiators played recordings of some members of Smith's family to him, in hopes that Smith would safely surrender to officers.
At approximately 8:50 a.m., the three children came out of the apartment and were quickly moved out of the area by officers. Negotiators learned that the children were asleep most of the night but when they woke up, Smith told them they could not leave, then told them they could leave if they wanted to, after about 45 minutes.
After the children were out of the apartment, Smith would no longer talk to officers and remained inside the victim's apartment.
At approximately 9:30 a.m., after not hearing anything from Smith or seeing any movement in the apartment, SERT officers deployed tear gas into the apartment.
Smith did not exit the apartment so at approximately 10:00 a.m., a robot equipped with a camera was sent into the apartment and it was discovered that Smith was deceased of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. Smith was located in the windowless bathroom inside the apartment.
Investigators from the Portland Police Bureau's Domestic Violence Reduction Unit (DVRU) are assisting in completing the investigation.
Traffic was blocked from 130th to 135th along Southeast Stark Street for several hours as police worked to resolve the situation.
Attachment: VIEW FILES
Sgt. Pete Simpson