Sentencing set for May in Southeast Portland incident
Ralph Turner was convict of numerous felony crimes on Tuesday for seriously injuring a Portland police officer and firing shots at other officers during a 2011 standoff in a Southeast neighborhood.
Turner was convicted by a Multnomah County Circuit Court jury on 12 counts of attempted aggravated murder, 10 counts of unlawful use of a weapon and one count of first-degree assault. He will be sentenced in May.
Turner's attorney argued that he was mentally incapacitated by medications he was taking for a number of health issues, including cancer. Prosecutors from the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office argued Turner knew what he was doing.
Officer Parik Singh suffered the most serious injuries when he was struck in the lower abdomen by a bullet from a hunting rifle. Singh testified about his long recovery at the trial.
The incident at approximately 9:15 a.m. on March 6, 2011, when officers responded to a residence in the 3300 block of Southeast 10th Avenue on the report of a distraught, suicidal man. The caller told a 9-1-1 call taker that Turner, her fiancé, was yelling that he didn't want to live and that he was alone at the location and threatening to hurt himself by taking pills. The caller told 9-1-1 that there were guns stored in the garage and it was unknown if Turner had them in his possession.
Central Precinct officers Andrew Kofoed and Timothy Lowry arrived in the area at approximately 9:17 a.m., along with Sergeant Reed Hunt. Kofoed attempted to contact Turner by phone but did not receive an answer. Based on the information that Turner was talking about taking pills to hurt himself, the officers and sergeant approached the house on foot to contact Turner.
At approximately 9:22 a.m., Kofoed, Lowry Hunt were outside the front door when Turner fired a single shot from a handgun through it. The bullet went through Kofoed's pant leg but did not strike him. Shrapnel from the door and door frame hit Kofoed in the ballistic vest and also struck Hunt in the hand.
The officers retreated from the door and immediately requested additional officers to respond. The Special Emergency Reaction Team (SERT) and Crisis Negotiators were also requested to respond. Kofoed broadcast that he believed he'd been shot in the abdomen and advised all responding officers to take hard cover as the gunman was still inside the residence.
Singh arrived at approximately 9:28 a.m., moved into Brooklyn Park and took a position on the Northwest side of the park behind a tree. As other officers were arriving at around 9:34 a.m., Turner fired shots at them and hit Singh. Other officers retuned fire and pulled Singh to safety, where he was transported to an area hospital and underwent surgery.
Sergeant Troy King of the Crisis Negotiation Team was enroute to the scene and made phone contact with Turner. As additional officers continued to arrive, King maintained phone contact with Turner and convinced him to surrender to police.
At approximately 10:34 a.m., Turner exited the residence and surrendered to officers. He was transported to an area hospital for a medical evaluation on an unrelated health issue before being booked into the Multnomah County Jail.
Singh has returned to patrol duties assigned to Central Precinct. Kofoed and Hunt were treated at the scene for their injuries and did not miss duty.