Sunday, August 13, 2017

Search for Armed Suspect Who Ran from Police Results in Two Arrests, Two Guns Seized (Photo)


News Release from Portland Police Bureau
Posted on FlashAlert: August 13th, 2017 10:56 AM
Downloadable file: Aaron_Drake_Birt_24.jpg
Downloadable file: Tavaris_Deontay_Winchester_27.jpg
On Saturday August 12, 2017, at 11:30 p.m., Portland Police Bureau Gang Enforcement Team (GET) officers attempted to stop a driver in a stolen car near 162nd Avenue and East Burnside Street.

The driver pulled into an apartment complex parking lot, exited the vehicle while it was still moving, and ran away. The car continued to roll forward slowly until it crashed. The three passengers were not injured and detained by police.

The driver, later identified as 24-year-old Aaron Drake Birt, ran through the apartment complex while being chased on foot by a GET officer. Birt scaled a fence and as he jumped down, a handgun fell from his waistband. Birt picked up the handgun and continued to run, gun in hand, away from the officer. Officers lost sight of Birt in the neighborhood so they stopped searching, due to the inherent danger of searching for an armed suspect. Officers immediately established a neighborhood perimeter to contain the suspect. The Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT), Crisis Negotiation Team (CNT), and the Air Support Unit (ASU) were activated to respond and assist with the search.

Once SERT officers had been briefed on the situation, they began to search, quickly locating Birt hiding very near where he was last seen. Birt was taken into custody without incident and his handgun was seized as evidence.

Birt was booked into the Multnomah County Jail on charges of Felon in Possession of a Firearm, Unlawful Use of a Vehicle, Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle, Attempt to Elude by Vehicle, Attempt to Elude on Foot, Interfering with a Peace Officer, Escape in the Third Degree, Recklessly Endangering Another Person (three counts), Unlawful Possession of a Firearm, Possession of a Loaded Firearm, and Theft in the First Degree. Birt is also being held on a parole violation. He will be arraigned on Monday in Multnomah County Court.

Shortly after SERT officers arrived at the scene, officers heard a single gunshot from the neighborhood contained by the perimeter. After hearing the shot, a white car was observed quickly leaving the area by police. Officers were able to stop the driver a few blocks away. A handgun was seized and a convicted felon arrested - both unrelated to the original call. The suspect, 27-year-old Tavaris Deontay Winchester, was booked into the Multnomah County Jail on charges of Felon in Possession of a Firearm, Unlawful Use of a Weapon, Discharging a Firearm in the City, and Carrying a Concealed Weapon. Winchester will also be arraigned on Monday.

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