Very early this morning, India Street resident, Angelina Badalucco, heard arguing outside her apartment building, which is Congress Street. Then she heard what she believes were fire crackers and gun shots. Someone yelled: “My friends been shot. Call 911.” She did that. It was 1:59 am. Very soon after that the police arrived. She exited her apartment. That’s when she saw a body lying on a concrete slab to her right. To her left she saw another body lying on the ground in a nearby parking area. “At this point all I could think of was I was lucky not to end up in cross-fire,” Angelina said as she stood in front of her apartment building holding her two month old baby daughter in her arms.
At a police press conference this afternoon at police headquaters, Chief Michael Sauschuck released the names of the victims. Matthew Blanchard, 24, died as a result of his injuries. Two other victims underwent surgery and are expected to recover. They are Joshua Hersom, 24, and John Howard, 20. All three victims are believed to be Portland residents. The perpetrators are believed to have fled on foot heading west on Congress Street.
Norm Ledbetter, who was walking on India Street, said the shooting concerns him because he has a young son who lives near the shooting. “This makes me worry,” he said.
State Representative Mark N. Dion has his law office nearby on India Street. “All these shootings are very unsettling to a neighborhood. I have faith and confidence in the police department’s ability to resolve this quickly.”
Employees at Family Practice Center on Congress Street said they believe the argument took place on front of their building. One employee who arrived early for work received a police escort into the building because it was cordened off from the public.
ANYONE WITH INFORMATION ABFOUT THIS CASE OR WAS IN THE AREA IS ASKED TO CONTACT PORTLAND POLICE DETECTIVES BY CALLING 207-874-8533. TO PROVIDE INFORMATION ANONYMOUSLY, COMMUNITY MEMBERS MAY CONTACT US BY TEXT, INTERNET, OR PHONE. MOBILE PHONE USERS CAN TEXT THE KEYWORD ‘GOTCHA’ PLUS THEIR MESSAGE TO 274637 (CRIMES). FINALLY, ANONYMOUS PHONE TIPS CAN BE LEFT ON THE DEPARTMENT’S CRIME TIP LINE: 207-874-8584.