Gresham In The News

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  • Portland Metro Monday Traffic: Sewer work on SE Hawthorne Blvd closes the road to local traffic only

    Commuters should find an alternate route during this work. The closures are in effect all hours and all days for up to three weeks.


    Starting Monday, May 2, sewer construction on Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard will allow for only local and bus traffic from Southeast Cesar Chavez Boulevard to 50th Avenue and on SE 50th Avenue between Hawthorne and Division Street.

    "Local access only" means only those living or doing business in that specific area are allowed. Commuters should find an alternate route during this work. The closures are in effect all hours and all days for up to three weeks. So yes, expect major delays in that area and avoid it if you can. Businesses will remain open, but expect parking to be even worse than it normally is.

    INTERSTATE BRIDGE 8:11 a.m.; Non-injury crash reported on the south end of the Interstate Bridge at the Hayden Island exit. Watch for slowing.

    Update 8:30 a.m.; Cleared.

    ***

    NORTHEAST PORTLAND 7:19 a.m.; Responders arriving at a reported auto vs. bicycle crash at Northeast 15th Avenue at Weidler St.

    Update 7:44 a.m.; Traffic diverted, eastbound Weidler Street and southbound on 15th Avenue. Expect delays.

    ***

    Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 7.03.48 AM.pngI-84 westbound at 53rd Ave. 

    I-84 WESTBOUND (again) 7:02 a.m.; Crash blocks the center lane I-84 westbound at 43rd Avenue. Traffic backing to I-205 interchange.

    Update 7:10 a.m.; Cleared to right shoulder.

    ***

    I-84 WESTBOUND 6:21 a.m.; Stall on the right shoulder westbound on I-84 near 72nd Avenue. Expect delays.

    Update 6:45 a.m.; Cleared.

    ***

    Check back throughout the morning for the latest commuting updates and follow us on Twitter: @trafficportland 

    no traffic white.jpg 

  • Portland Metro Monday Weather: May kicks off with a bang with two 80-plus degree days in a row

    Monday will be quite a bit like Sunday was with warm temps, some strong breezes and plenty of flip flops and shorts to go around. Big changes move in beginning tonight.

    The last time Portland started the month of May off with to 80 degree or higher (and today it will be higher) temperatures was in 1945. And these aren't the only records being broken all over the city and the Northwest. Several coastal towns met, or broke, record heat number yesterday. The National Weather Service did some extensive number-crunching about our very warm April. Read about it here.

    Monday will be quite a bit like Sunday was with warm temps, some strong breezes and plenty of flip flops and shorts to go around. Big changes move in beginning tonight. Once the sea breezes kick in later this morning, low clouds will move in and very slowly make their way into the valleys. The thermal low pressure system will keep the beaches about 10 degrees cooler today than they were yesterday.

    Monday rise.jpgYou have to get up pretty early to catch the sunrises these days. But it's worth it. 

    Once that trough crosses the coast range, the metro area too will begin to cool. Forecasters expect some likelihood of thunder for most metro areas by this evening and some strong winds.

    Expect Tuesday to be 10-15 degrees cooler than today with lots of clouds and some chance for a shower or two. Wednesday looks rainy much of the day with a high of only 64. Rain should be on its way out by Thursday but leave behind plenty of clouds.

  • Portland woman dies at Horsetail Falls while trying to rescue 3-year-old son from fall

    Stephanie A. Cohen was hiking with another adult and four children when her son tumbled, said Peter Bellant, a deputy medical examiner for Multnomah Count

    Update: Daughter of Mother's Bistro owner dies in Columbia Gorge fall

    A 37-year-old Portland woman died Sunday at Horsetail Falls while trying to save her 3-year-old son who fell down an embankment, officials said Monday.

    Stephanie A. Cohen was hiking with another adult and four children when her son tumbled, said Peter Bellant, a deputy medical examiner for Multnomah County.

    Cohen was pronounced dead at the scene at 6:35 p.m.

    The child was taken to OHSU Doernbecher Children's Hospital. His condition was not immediately available Monday.

    Multnomah County sheriff's officials said the pair fell down an initial 50-to-60-foot drop before tumbling another 20 to 30 feet down a steep slope.

    -- The Oregonian

  • Smoke detector sounds the alarm to get Portland family to safety

    Engines arrived at the house at about 3:30 a.m. to find fire burning in the attached garage of a house at 1715 Southeast 160th Avenue. By the time they arrived, flames had begun spreading into the attic over the living area.

    Fire crews are crediting a smoke detector with providing the warning that got a family safely out of their burning house early Sunday morning.

    Engines arrived at the house at about 3:30 a.m. to find fire burning in the attached garage of a house at 1715 Southeast 160th Avenue. By the time they arrived, flames had begun spreading into the attic over the living area.

    The family, two adults and two children, was outside when crews arrived. They told firefighters that a working smoke detector in the residence had sounded and prompted them to evacuate.

    While one crew worked the ventilate heat and smoke from the roof using chainsaws, another moved to shut down the flow of natural gas at the meter, where flames had begun to spread.

    Investigators are still working to pinpoint a cause of the fire. No damage estimate is available.

    -- Dana Tims

    dtims@oregonian.com

    503-294-7647; @DanaTims

  • Pedestrian dies after being hit by sheriff deputy's car in Wood Village

    A pedestrian died Friday morning after a crash involving a Multnomah County Sheriff's Office vehicle in Wood Village, a spokesman said in a mid-morning update. Watch video

    A pedestrian died Friday morning after he was hit by a Multnomah County sheriff's deputy in Wood Village, a spokesman said.

    The sheriff's office hasn't released the man's name pending notification of family.

    The on-duty deputy involved has worked for the sheriff's office for six years, said spokesman Capt. Steve Alexander. He declined to release the deputy's name, but said the deputy was driving a marked 2013 Chevy Caprice.

    Emergency crews responded about 4 a.m. to the 24000 block of Northeast Sandy Boulevard, an industrial area east of 238th Drive. The Portland Police Bureau's Major Crash Team has taken lead in investigating the crash.

    The deputy was traveling west on Sandy Boulevard when the crash occurred, said Lt. Ryan Lee of the Portland police traffic division. The man was in the roadway, and not in a crosswalk, Lee said.

    The man wasn't wearing particularly bright clothing, but he also wasn't wearing all black, Lee said.

    Alexander said the deputy has been placed on paid leave during the investigation, a standard practice after this type of incident.

    -- Tony Hernandez
    thernandez@oregonian.com
    503-294-5928
    @tonyhreports

  • Portland Metro Friday Traffic: MAX Blue line delays on the westside

    The Friday commute starts out dry but rain will move in by mid-morning. Expect to drive home through light showers.


    pedestrian was struck and seriously wounded about 4 a.m. Friday on Northeast Sandy Boulevard and 238th Drive. Expect the road to be closed in that area for several hours as the investigation continues.

    ***

    TRIMET MAX BLUE LINE 8:20 a.m.; Expect up to 20 minute delays on the Blue Line trains due to a mechanical issue at Elmonica.

    ***

    BEAVERTON 7:42 a.m.; Crash reported Southwest Tualatin Valley Highway at 153rd Avenue.

    ***

    I-84 WESTBOUND 7:09 a.m.; Crash moved to the right shoulder I-84 westbound near 33rd Avenue. Expect slowing.

    Update 7:26 a.m.; Cleared.

    ***

    WILSONVILLE 7:03 a.m.; Injury crash reported at Southwest Stafford and Ellingsen roads.

    Update 7:25 a.m.; Cleared.

    ***

    HILLSBORO 6:58 a.m.; Major crash closes Northwest Wren Road at Glenco Road. Washington County advises to avoid the area through at least 8 a.m.

    ***

    The Friday commute starts out dry but rain will move in by mid-morning. Expect to drive home through light showers.

    Did you know Oregon has a "Move it" law? According to the Oregon Department of Transportation Oregon's "Move It" law (ORS 811.717) requires drivers to move their vehicle from the highway in a non-injury crash if the vehicle is operable and it is safe to move it. Then you can exchange information with others involved and witnesses.

    Also, if there are injuries, be sure to call 911.

    Let's not have to put any of this into practice today, ok? Great.

    Check back throughout the morning for the latest commuting updates and follow us on Twitter: @trafficportland

    no traffic white.jpgFind you full Portland-area traffic report here. (The Oregonian file photo) 

  • Fairview officer was shot by wanted felon, Gresham police say

    The officer has been released from the hospital, and the suspect continues to receive care under police custody, said Officer John Rasmussen, Gresham police spokesman, in a news release.

    A wanted felon is suspected of shooting a Fairview police officer Wednesday night, police said.

    An officer duo from Gresham and Fairview responded around 11 p.m. to a hit-and-run accident that quickly evolved into a shooting at Southeast 188th Avenue north of Burnside Street. An officer and the suspect were shot.

    Fairview Officer Scott Shropshire has been released from the hospital, and the suspect continues to receive care under police custody, said Officer John Rasmussen, Gresham police spokesman, in a news release.

    Charlton_David_Allen.jpgDavid Allen Charlton 

    Investigators believe David Allen Charlton, 40, crashed a GMC Envoy on a wrought-iron fence near an apartment complex entrance, Rasmussen said.

    "Charlton, 40, was seen grabbing bags from the car before running from the crash scene," Rasmussen said.

    Shropshire and Gresham Officer Michael Brooder, both partners in the East Metro Gang Enforcement Team, happened to be the closest police unit at the time of the crash, Rasmussen said. They were quickly backed up by Gresham Officer John Heer.

    Shots were fired within seconds, Rasmussen said. He declined to say who shot first or where in the body the men where hit. He added that type of evidence will be revealed in court. Rasmussen had said Thursday morning the incident was not gang-related.

    Charlton, who served 13 years in prison for a 1999 bank robbery, was wanted for a federal parole violation, Rasmussen said. He is currently facing accusations of two counts of aggravated attempted murder with more pending charges likely to come related to unlawful weapon possession, Rasmusses said.

    Shrophsire, a three-year officer with Fairview, and Booder, a 7 1/2 year veteran with Gresham police, were both voted Officer of the Year in their departments earlier this year. Heer has worked with Gresham police for almost three years.

    "The officers directly involved are on leave, per standard practice," Rasmussen said. "I don't know when they'll be coming back for shift work."

    Detectives assigned to Multnomah County's Major Crimes Team want to talk with anyone who has information about the incident. They ask anyone to call the Gresham Police tip line at 503-618-2719.

    The post will be updated.

    -- Tony Hernandez
    thernandez@oregonian.com
    503-294-5928
    @tonyhreports

  • Multnomah County Sheriff's vehicle strikes pedestrian in Wood Village

    The Portland Police Bureau's Major Crash Team will take the lead in investigating the crash. The roads will be closed in that area for the investigation. Watch video

    Update 12:00 p.m. Pedestrian dies after Friday morning crash with sheriff's office car

    Update 7:32 a.m.

    A Multnomah County Sheriff's Office vehicle struck a pedestrian early Friday morning in Wood Village.

    Emergency crews responded around 4 a.m. to the 24000 block of Northeast Sandy Boulevard, an industrial area east of 238th Drive. The crash occurred on a dead-end street in an industrial area.

    A man was taken to the hospital with critical injuries, said Capt. Steve Alexander, spokesman. He was not in a crosswalk, Alexander said.

    PPB investigate MCSO injury crash.jpgPortland police officers investigate a crash involving a Multnomah County sheriff's car and a pedestrian.  

    The Portland Police Bureau's Major Crash Team will take the lead in investigating the crash. The roads will be closed in that area for the investigation.

    The deputy was traveling west on Sandy Boulevard when the crash occurred, said Lt. Ryan Lee, of the Portland police traffic division. The man was not wearing particularly bright clothing, but he also wasn't wearing all black, he said.

    "We're still trying to determine the position of the pedestrian (and) still trying to determine speeds and a variety of other things," Lee said.

    Alexander said the deputy was not injured, and he is receiving help from a peer support group.

    This post will be updated as news develops.

    -- Tony Hernandez
    thernandez@oregonian.com
    503-294-5928
    @tonyhreports

  • Portland Metro Friday Weather: Showers to end the week, then off to a sunny weekend

    Showers will be light and the temperatures mild. The high today will be 58 degrees.

    Friday starts off dry and cloudy. Astoria and other coastal areas were starting to see showers as early as 6 a.m.

    Those showers will make their way inland throughout the morning and the Portland area can expect rain by mid morning. Showers will be light and the temperatures mild. The high today will be 58 degrees.

    Rain should taper off by evening leaving us with mostly cloudy skies to start Saturday. A strong upper level ridge is expected to build staring on Saturday. Forecasters from the National Weather Service note this will be the start of a trend toward sunny skies and warmer temperatures into next week.

    Saturday the clouds will lighten up by afternoon and give us a high of 69. Sunday looks sunny all day with a high of 80. Monday is even warmer and clear - high of 83. The forecast even goes as far as Tuesday which is also expected to be sunny and in the mid-70s.

  • Multnomah County balks at $415K award for woman T-boned by deputy who ran red light

    A Portland jury awards Michelle Ramsdell $415,000 for the pain and suffering she says she's still experiencing due to the 2013 crash, but Multnomah County wants a new trial.

    In early 2013, Michelle Ramsdell was T-boned by a Multnomah County sheriff's deputy who ran a red light in Gresham without lights or sirens blaring.

    Though Ramsdell was able to walk away from the crash that totaled the 2012 Hyundai she was driving, she says she developed pain in her back and hips that won't go away -- even now, more than three years after the crash.

    Therein resides the question, presented to a Portland jury last month: What, if any, compensation should the 35-year-old registered nurse be paid for pain that only she knows exists? After two days of trial in Judge Stephen Bushong's courtroom, a 12-person jury unanimously agreed to award Ramsdell $415,000.

    The verdict came as a tremendous relief to Ramsdell: It had been her word against that of the county, which contended that Ramsdell was exaggerating her injuries.

    "I had to prove that I wasn't lying," Ramsdell told The Oregonian/OregonLive this week.

    But the county wants another shot at the case. Deputy county attorneys Jacqueline Kamins and Andrew Jones this month filed a motion for a new trial -- contending, among other wrongs, that Ramsdell's attorney made a "calculated decision to play to juror emotion and prejudice."

    They argued that Ramsdell's attorney, Robert Le, was unfairly allowed to vilify the county by telling jurors that it failed to admit liability for more than 21/2 years and pay Ramsdell the compensation she is due.

    On Feb. 8, 2013, at about 2:30 p.m., Ramsdell -- then a new mom -- was driving away from a Gresham consignment store where she'd gotten some baby items. The signal light at Northeast 181st and Glisan Street had just turned green, and she had started through the intersection when Deputy Jessie Volker drove through a red light, according to police reports.

    The deputy had been going to a non-emergency call regarding an eviction, and had taken her eyes off the road for an instant to find the address, according to the deputy's testimony. That's when the patrol car crashed into Ramsdell's sedan at about 40 mph -- spinning the Hyundai into a van and across the intersection, Le said.

    The deputy's airbag went off and her patrol car was totaled. But the deputy said she wasn't injured.

    Ramsdell's airbag also deployed and the Hyundai, which belonged to her mother, was destroyed. Bruises formed on her chest and hip, and she developed what her doctor later identified as a bulging disc or discs.

    The county offered to settle the case for $25,000, but that barely covered her medical expenses, Le said. So Ramsdell elected to go to trial.

    Ramsdell says she was surprised to learn the county had hired a private investigator to covertly follow her around with a video camera over the course of days. During trial, she says, she saw video footage taken while the investigator was hiding behind bushes outside her Tualatin apartment complex or trailing her as she purchased a bassinet and a high chair she found on Craigslist.

    "That was just creepy," Ramsdell said. "I pride myself on being an observant person, and to know someone was following me? It's just a sickening feeling."

    The county also pointed to footage of Ramsdell at the Tigard Winco and Tualatin Fred Meyer, shopping with her now-3-year-old daughter. Ramsdell says she watched herself carrying a jug of orange juice, bending over to sort through bulk mushrooms and picking up her daughter and putting her in a shopping cart shaped like a toy car. And seconds later, the video shows her putting the youngster in a different shopping cart.

    "What I said to the jury was 'I'm 35. What does everyone expect me to do, quit living my life?" Ramsdell recounted. "'I have to go on whether I have pain or not. ...I said lifting things of a certain weight causes pain. I never said I couldn't do it.'"

    Ramsdell says her daughter is "obsessed" with riding in the toy-car shopping carts at Fred Meyer, and was pleading with her mother to put her in one on the day the private investigator recorded her, apparently from his vantage point in the parking lot.

    "I kept trying to reason with a 31/2-year-old: 'You don't need to be in the cart. You can walk. We're only going to grab a few things,'" Ramsdell said.

    Seconds after Ramsdell placed her daughter in the first cart, the girl spotted a different toy-car shopping cart she liked better -- and begged her mother to move her, Ramsdell said. She said she obliged, even though it was painful to lift her.

    "My back was hurting, but that's my kid, and I want her to be happy," Ramsdell said.

    During trial, Ramsdell says she felt uncomfortable hearing the county attorneys focus on her weight as a potential cause for her pain. Ramsdell said she had always considered herself fit until she had her daughter, and she hasn't been able to get back to her pre-baby weight. She is now pregnant with her second.

    "They mentioned my weight more than my weight has ever been mentioned," Ramsdell said. "They kept mentioning my thighs. ...My attorney said 'Don't even worry about it. They're going to try everything.'"

    Ramsdell's attorney called upon her boss, her mother and her fiance -- who all attested that she hasn't been as physically active or has needed more rest in the years since the collision.

    Ramsdell's side called on two doctors who supported her, while the county called upon a doctor who said her need for medical care should have gone away within a year of the crash, Le said.

    Ramsdell says she no longer wants to do much after she arrives home from her nursing job in Salem.

    "I just want to relax and sit on my couch with a heating pad," she said. "When you have pain on a regular basis ... it affects your mood."

    Ramsdell had sought $750,000. Jurors deliberated for a few hours before reaching their verdict of $415,000.

    The county attorney's office declined to comment directly for this story. But Multnomah County spokesman David Austin said the county has a duty to investigate the veracity of claims filed by plaintiffs, in the interest of protecting taxpayer dollars. And that sometimes means hiring a private investigator to video-record plaintiffs.

    "As stewards of taxpayers, we will sometimes do that," Austin said. "It's not often."

    "We'll use the means necessary to find out the information, and then you look into how far a legal claim goes," Austin continued. "Whether we settle or we end up in court depends on the results of those investigations."

    Ramsdell says the trial was emotionally taxing, and she had hoped never to step into a courtroom again.

    The judge is set to hear the county's motion for a new trial on May 25.

    "I just feel like they (the county attorneys) are going to fight this forever," she said. "They'd rather spend more money fighting me, than just get this settled."

    -- Aimee Green

    agreen@oregonian.com

    503-294-5119

    o_aimee

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