The mysterious death of Erika Evans: Cops still in the dark about who shot 26-year-old musician

The mysterious death of Erika Evans: Cops still in the dark about who shot 26-year-old musician
Erika Evans was shot dead while attending an 'experience' at Wallace Park in Portland, Oregon (Portland Police Department; Gun Violence Victims/ Facebook)

PORTLAND, OREGON: Police are still probing the mysterious death of Erika Evans, a 26-year-old musician from Texas, who travelled to Portland, Oregon, for an "experience." She was shot dead on a basketball court in a tiny park on September 23. As per a police statement, she was discovered when officers from the Central Precinct in northwest Portland, responded to a report about a shooting near Wallace Park.

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Cops found Evans and got paramedics to the spot, but it was too late. She was pronounced dead on the spot. The police are yet to determine if this was a random shooting or if she was the target. 

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The community was shocked after the tragic shooting occurred in their usually peaceful area. "It's been a very safe park for many years," Jim Brayton, who has lived near Wallace Park for 25 years, said, according to KOIN. "It feels like the violence that's happening in Portland is getting closer to us." The death of the singer, poet, and painter has left her loved ones devastated while investigators still try to determine what happened. No arrests have been made so far in this connection. 

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"Losing my daughter is the most profound tragedy of my entire life," said Paul, Evans' father, as per KXAN. "She loved to create from nothing, something beautiful. And she loved to express herself through different ways." Evans was in Portland as part of an "adventure." She attended the University of Texas in Austin and spent around two years as a member of the band The Halfways.

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Band founder and close friend Daniel Fernandez described her death as "painful" and "heartbreaking," as reported by KXAN. He remembers her as "sunny, cheerful, and into her music and art." She would set up her typewriter on the sidewalk and create poetry on the spot for passersby in exchange for donations. He remembers walking down Congress Street in Austin "and she was typing away on a typewriter, just kind of improvising poetry." "She was always trying new things, you know, kind of like exploring her artistry," he said. 

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Nicole Renee, who lives in Texas, wrote a touching post on Facebook about how she and her husband still have a poem Evans wrote for them, hanging by their bed. "Back in July my husband and I were walking Congress and came across this young sweet girl, who I thought was trying to make an extra buck for college," she wrote. "She was offering to type a quick poem on an old type writer. We thought it was a cute idea. She asked maybe three questions about us before saying she needs just a moment. We stepped aside and waited, slightly joking it was going to be a roses are red type poem," the post read, adding, "When she was done she motioned us over and handed us this torn piece of vintage paper. We read her poem and my eyes filled with tears. This girl was lyrical, she was dainty but strong with her vocabulary. The poem actually was pretty damn accurate."

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KXAN reported that on Saturday, October 1, from 4 to 9 pm, Evans' family and friends will attend a candlelight vigil in her honor outside Guero's Taco Bar on Congress Avenue in Austin. Anyone with information on this event is urged to contact Detective Brian Sims at 503-823-2079, [email protected], or Detective Meghan Burkeen at 503-823-2092, [email protected], with the case number 22-257119.

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