By WILLIAM MANSELL, ABC News
(PORTLAND, Ore.) — One person is dead after a vehicle struck several pedestrians during multiple hit and runs across several blocks in Portland, Oregon, Monday, according to the Portland Police Bureau.
Five other people were transported to hospitals with non-critical injuries, according to Portland Fire and Rescue. There were more victims who didn’t require medical transport.
The woman who died was identified Tuesday as 77-year-old Jean Gerich of Portland.
“Jean Gerich was not a nameless victim. She was a loving mother of two. She was a proud grandmother of five, ages 4 to 16,” her family said in a statement. “She would have turned 78 in twelve days. She beat cancer five years ago. She received her first [COVID-19] vaccination shot last week and was overjoyed to get out in the world again.”
Portland police identified 10 people who were injured, including seven cyclists and two pedestrians, as well as another individual who suffered a head injury and was unsure if they were outside their car at the time of the accident.
The incident happened at about 1:02 p.m. local time when a Honda Element drove into pedestrians and vehicles from Southeast 33rd Avenue and Stark Street to Southeast 13th Avenue, according to the police.
After crashing their car, police said the driver fled on foot, but community members corralled him until law enforcement arrived, authorities said at a press conference Monday afternoon.
The suspect, who has not been identified, has also been hospitalized. Police said they do not believe terrorism was a motivating factor in the crashes.
“The multiple hit and run crashes by the same suspect yesterday were traumatic for our community,” Police Chief Chuck Lovell said in a statement Tuesday. “Thank you to the many community members who responded to assist victims and alerted police to the suspect. All of us at PPB send our sincere condolences to the loved ones of the person who was killed as well as our hopes for recovery to those injured. We are committed to a full investigation so that the person involved can be held accountable for these senseless acts of violence.”
Police said the crime scene is very large and covers dozens of city blocks. Officials are asking witnesses or anyone who finds what they believe is evidence, reach out to officers in the area or call the non-emergency number (503-823-3333) to provide information.
ABC News’ Marilyn Heck contributed to this report.
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