Oregon man charged with murder of Barry Washington Jr. for allegedly talking to his girlfriend

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He was shot dead in a town the OPB describes as “where over 90% of residents are white and gun violence in the city center is rare.”

Oregon man was arrested Thursday after a grand jury charged him with six counts of the shooting death of a 22-year-old Barry Washington, Jr. outside of a nightclub.

Ian MacKenzie Cranston, 27, was charged with second degree murder, first degree manslaughter, second degree manslaughter, first degree assault and two counts of unlawful use of ‘a deadly weapon.

A man has been arrested after an Oregon grand jury charged him with six counts in the shooting death of Barry Washington, Jr., 22 (above) outside a nightclub on last month. (Photo: GoFundMe.com)

The fatal shooting occurred on September 19 in downtown Bend, a city Oregon Public Broadcasting describes as “where more than 90% of residents are white and gun violence in the downtown area is rare. “.

According to a local report, Washington approached and complimented Cranston’s girlfriend. The meeting turned into a scuffle involving several people, the Deschutes County prosecutor said. John Hummel. Before the fatal shots were fired, there were shoves and punches.

Prosecutors said after the fighting had ended there was nothing but screaming, at which point Cranston pulled a gun from his belt and fired at Washington. Hummel made it clear that there was “no justification” for his use of the weapon.

“The question I must decide is whether Cranston’s decision to shoot was motivated in part by [Washington’s] race, ”he said. “In the end, it comes down to what was his motivation at the time he committed the crime.”

Cranston has not been charged with hate crimes.

The community of Bend was first outraged when Cranston was initially charged with a single charge of second degree manslaughter. Less than 24 hours later, he was released after posting bail. However, the new charges put Cranston behind bars, this time on a bail warrant at the Deschutes County Jail.

“Our country has a shameful history of bashing, chasing and lynching black men for talking to white women. Over the past week, hundreds of people have called and emailed me reminding me of this story, ”Hummel said at a press conference, according to OPB. “There is a calculation with the running that has to happen in central Oregon, and it has to happen now.”

Bend is over 90% white and Washington was black. Since his death, his family, friends and supporters have attended several vigils to draw attention to his case.

Washington’s friend and roommate, Max Petersen, encouraged him to move to Bend from the Bay Area, “He was a nerd, there’s no other way to put it,” he said of his late friend . “He liked to play Pokémon. He played Nintendo every day.

“I told him it would be a safe environment here,” Peterson said. “But, that was obviously a lie.”

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The Oregon Post man charged with the murder of Barry Washington Jr. for allegedly speaking to his girlfriend first appeared on TheGrio.


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