PSU athlete killed, two wounded in Northeast Portland shooting

Police investigate a shooting Friday, Aug. 2, 2019 near Northeast 42nd Avenue, between Killingsworth and Holman streets that left two people wounded and Portland State basketball player Deante Strickland dead. (Photos: KATU; inset: PSU)

UPDATE: Police have made an arrest in this case. Click here for more information.

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Portland police said one man was killed and two women were wounded in a shooting Friday afternoon in Northeast Portland.

Police did not release any names, but family members identified the man who was killed as 22-year-old Deante Strickland, who played basketball at Portland State University.

Police were called just after 2 p.m. to the area of Northeast 42nd Avenue, between Killingsworth and Holman streets.

Damian Strickland told KATU News that his nephew's sister and grandmother were also shot, and they are in the hospital. He told KATU the three were shot by another sister who fled the scene in a car. He said he had no idea what would have motivated her to shoot her family. He also said the shooting happened outside a family home.

Police said the two women who were shot are expected to survive.

PSU released a statement, mourning the loss of Deante Strickland. The university said he was a social science major.

"We are deeply saddened by the loss of Deante," said Portland State Director of Athletics Valerie Cleary in the statement. "He represented everything it means to be a Viking in his hometown of Portland. He will forever be remembered for his character, determination and warm smile. Our prayers go out to his family and friends."

Viking's basketball coach Barret Peery recruited Deante in 2017. In the school's statement, Peery said everyone was saddened upon learning the news of Deante's death.

"We are better for having had Deante in our lives," he said. "His smile, passion and energy for life was second to none. He lit up a room and made the people around him better in every way. He loved his family, his friends and everyone around him. ... We will never forget him and he will always be with us. I love Deante and am a better man for having the opportunity to coach him. This entire community will miss him."

Deante attended Central Catholic High School in Portland and then went to Casper College in Wyoming before coming to PSU.

Authorities said they immediately secured the scene and got medical care for the victims.

Police have released no suspect information and said none would be released "unless appropriate" for the investigation. They have not confirmed what the family told KATU. No arrests have been made.

In a news release, police said the medical examiner will determine how the man died, as well as his identity.

Homicide detectives have taken over the case.


Shooting Near Construction Zone

At Northeast 42nd near Hollman, the glass was broken at a TriMet bus stop.

Dillon Bleichner, who lives in the area, said he heard multiple gunshots.

"It sounded like a firework at first. It was like pop, pop, pop, but it was really quiet, and then all of a sudden -- pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, and there was four more, and that was when we knew it was gunshots," he said. "A couple seconds went by, and there was a few more, and it just went completely silent."

Witness Kenneth Carter was flagged down by Deante moments after the shooting.

"As I crossed over (Northeast Holman), he came running down in the middle of the street," Carter said. "I didn’t know what was going on, his arms were flailing and flapping as to signal, to stop me."

When Deante reached his passenger side window, Carter says he was bleeding from his mouth.

Carter says two speeding vehicles, one of them believed to be the shooter's car, drove past, spooking Deante.

He ran into a nearby construction site. A construction worker said he tried to perform CPR, but Deante did not survive.

"It’s sad," Carter told reporters. "I hope and pray for the family ... definitely everybody is in my prayers."


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