In a possible homicide case, two Indian-origin brothers were reportedly shot and killed by a fellow Indian national in the US state of Oregon. According to media reports and police, the incident occurred on Wednesday in Portland city, where 21-year-old Jobanpreet Singh allegedly opened fire on the two men in their 20s at a strip mall.
While the identities of the victims have not been released by the authorities, Kamal Singh, a tobacco shop owner across the mall, claimed that the victims were his cousins who were both brothers and in their 20s. Further investigations are underway.
According to The Oregonian newspaper, Jobanpreet Singh, who was detained at the scene, has been accused of two counts of first-degree murder and was taken into custody at a detention centre, the police stated on Thursday. The suspect’s cousin, who spoke to the newspaper, revealed that he had just spoken to his cousins earlier in the day when he received a call from his employee notifying him of a shooting.
According to local media reports, the defendant appeared briefly in court for an arraignment, where he pleaded not guilty on both murder charges. Tanus Allen, an employee at a nearby company, reported that he was inside the store when he heard an argument and then gunshots. He observed two men falling to the ground. The report stated that these murders brought the city’s homicide count to 30 for this year, in comparison to 35 at this time last year.
On May 4, Jobanpreet was charged with two counts of first-degree murder and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center, according to the Portland Police Bureau. Police officers from the Central Precinct responded to a shooting report at around 2:45 pm on the same day in the 9100 block of Southeast Barbur Boulevard and found two men dead upon arrival at a parking lot.
Although the Portland police have not officially identified the victims, Kamal Singh, an owner of a tobacco shop across the mall, claimed that the two men who died were his cousins, who were in their 20s and were brothers. He stated that they had talked earlier that day and that he received a call from his employee notifying him of the incident. The Oregonian newspaper reported his statement.
Singh appeared in court on May 4 and pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree murder and four counts of unlawful use of a weapon, as reported by OregonLive. Police have reviewed video surveillance footage showing Singh and two friends seated at a table outside Bentoz Teriyaki restaurant. Singh then got up and walked toward a man who had just parked his car.
According to an affidavit filed by Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney Margaret Burgess, another man approached that car and then walked quickly toward Singh with a phone in his hand.
According to court documents, a man named Singh has been accused of fatally shooting two men in a parking lot. Singh reportedly pulled out a gun from his pocket, aimed at the two men in front of him, and fired multiple rounds. Despite the men collapsing to the pavement, Singh continued shooting until they died. The suspect then called 911 to report the shooting, stayed at the scene, and was subsequently arrested.
Witnesses reported hearing an argument before the gunshots, but the motive for the shooting remains unclear. Although the affidavit does not elaborate on the motive behind the shooting, witnesses have claimed that they heard some kind of altercation or shouting preceding the firing of six to ten gunshots. The two victims were unarmed. Singh is currently being held without bail and is scheduled to appear in court on May 12th.