The Portland Police Air Support Unit assisted in the capture of three juveniles who were committing burglaries.
On November 21, 2022, just after 1:30 a.m., officers at East Precinct responded to a string of burglaries to marijuana dispensaries, all occurring in Southeast Portland, and all sharing the same modus operandi.
Case #22-310342: At 1:32 a.m., officers were dispatched to the 9200 Block of Southeast Woodstock Street after a witness reported seeing a vehicle drive into the front of the business. Several individuals ran into the store, came running out with merchandise, and then fled to a second waiting vehicle. The first vehicle was left at the scene and soon determined to be stolen.
Case #22-310352: At 2:11 a.m., officers were dispatched to the 4100 Block of Southeast 60th Avenue after a caller to 911 reported seeing a vehicle drive into the doors of a dispensary. The vehicle and its occupants had already left the scene before officers arrived. Officers are working with employees to determine what was stolen.
Case #22-310391: Just after 3:10 a.m., a neighbor called 911 to report a dispensary in the 10000 Block of Southeast Division Street had just had its doors driving through. The occupants of the vehicle took merchandise from the dispensary before fleeing in the vehicle.
East Precinct officers were in the area of the third burglary, and quickly located a Silver Kia Soul driving with its lights off. The Portland Police Bureau's Air Support Unit (ASU) was assisting officers and flew into the area. AIR1 tracked the vehicle, allowing officers to stay a safe distance back. After driving recklessly, the suspect vehicle eventually came to a stop in the 1600 Block of Southeast Main Street. AIR1 directed officer on where to set up a perimeter, and on the suspects' movement. All three burglary suspects were safely taken into custody.
Officers soon learned all three suspects were between 14 and 15 years old. Both vehicles used to ram into the dispensary doors were stolen Kias. The juveniles are facing charges of Burglary, Criminal Mischief, Reckless Driving, and Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle, and have been booked into the Donald E. Long Juvenile Detention Home.
"Portland's Air Support Unit played an integral role in the apprehension and capture of these brazen burglars," said Chief Chuck Lovell. "In addition to providing an unparalleled birds-eye view, ASU allows officers to safely follow at a distance. They were able to record video of the capture, which is being provided as an illustration of our officers' great work and ASU's value as a tool in fighting crime: https://youtu.be/ZAxqzGCa58M "