In a tragic turn of events on Saturday, a security officer was fatally shot and another individual was injured at Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center in Portland. The incident escalated into a confrontation in Gresham, where police officers shot and killed the suspect. The deceased security officer has been identified as 44-year-old Bobby Smallwood. The other victim, an employee of the hospital, is reported to be in a stable condition, according to Legacy Health.
The incident sparked a massive response from police officers across the city, resulting in a lockdown of the hospital for several hours. The surrounding area, a dense urban region filled with shops and restaurants, was also impacted. An emergency evacuation was enforced at a nearby Fred Meyer store. Police officers arrived at the scene just before 11 a.m., cordoning off the streets around the hospital while they searched for the suspect, who was believed to have fled the building after firing shots on the hospital’s fifth floor.
The suspect was later traced to Gresham around 1 p.m. on Saturday. A large number of police vehicles gathered on Northeast 181st Avenue near Glisan Street. The suspect’s vehicle, a white-and-maroon van, was intercepted outside of a U.S. Bank on 181st by Portland police from East Precinct and Gresham officers. Tactical armored vehicles and Multnomah County sheriff’s deputies arrived shortly after. Eyewitnesses reported a standoff between the police and the suspect, followed by the sound of three to four gunshots.
By 4:30 p.m., Portland police spokesperson Sgt. Kevin Allen confirmed that the suspect had been fatally shot by the police outside the bank. The suspect had been identified while driving the van, and the police had waited for backup before attempting a traffic stop. The suspect reportedly did not cooperate and was shot by three Portland police officers.
The initial emergency call was made by Good Sam security at 10:55 a.m., reporting that a visitor had verbally threatened hospital staff. Upon arrival, the police were informed that shots had been fired. The shooting took place on the fifth floor, where the birthing center is located. The wounded security officer, Smallwood, was transferred to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, a Level 1 Trauma Center, where he succumbed to his injuries despite lifesaving efforts.
The investigation into the police shooting in Gresham is being carried out by the East County Major Crimes Team. An internal review of the shooting will also be conducted by the Portland police. Northeast 181st Avenue was expected to remain closed for several hours between East Burnside Street and Northeast Glisan Street.