I love how the new normal in Portland is that a witness rolls out of “his tent.”
PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man who was dropped off at a local hospital in the early hours of Saturday morning has died, said Portland Police. They are now investigating the violent chain of events that led up to his death.
Authorities have connected his death with a car crash and gunfire that were reported around 12:15 a.m. Saturday at Northeast 8th Avenue and Davis Street. Officers arrived at the scene this morning to find a car that had crashed into a nearby building. They also found evidence of gunfire in and around the SUV. However, the car was abandoned and no one was found in the area.
Shortly after beginning their investigation, police learned that someone had been dropped off at a nearby hospital with traumatic injuries. They believe that after the car crash, friends of the victim brought him to the hospital.
That man has been identified as 23-year-old Sean Kealiher, of Portland.
Doctors attempted to save him, but he did not survive.
The Medical Examiner’s Office said that an autopsy indicated he died from blunt force trauma. His death is now being investigated as a homicide.
Witnesses reported hearing shouting just before Kealiher was injured. A man told KOIN 6 News he was in his tent nearby when he heard what sounded like 2 cars colliding, followed by shouting. Daryl Perez said when he came out of his tent, he saw the SUV hung up on the sidewalk—it had hit a tree outside of the offices of the Democratic Party of Oregon and the driver was trying unsuccessfully to move the car. He also said he heard 4 shots fired, but wasn’t sure who had a gun.
“He was lifeless,” said Perez. “It was difficult for them, they were…just trying to get him to get up. He’s heavy—he slipped out of their hands a couple times before they got him back to the car.”
The Democratic Party offices were closed at the time of the crash, but the damage left from the incident was still visible.
“It’s very sad this would happen to someone in our town,” said Brad Martin, the Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Oregon. “He was involved in progressive causes and deeply committed, and it makes it all the more sad and concerning.”
At the crash site, a memorial for Kealiher has begun to form.