Wednesday, April 23, 2014

On November 6, 2013 at 1259 Astoria 911 received multiple 911 calls about a disturbance involving a firearm that occurred near Safeway. Because there were several callers, including the two participants of the incident it was difficult for dispatchers to determine what had happened and where the parties were.

From initial reports it appeared that there had been a disturbance between two drivers at Safeway. During the confrontation one of the participants brandished a firearm. After the firearm was brandished both participants got in their vehicle and headed east on Highway 30. The vehicles were described as a Semi-Truck and a pick up. Officers located the parties. The semi truck was located, near Blue Ridge Drive on Highway 30, it was being operated by Richard Vinson, age 60 of Silver Lake WA. The pick up was located on Scandinavian Cannery Road near Highway 30, it was being operated by Larry Bradley, age 65 of rural Astoria.

After interviewing the parties involved, and witnesses to the event, Astoria Police determined that Vinson and Bradley had been traveling east on Highway 30 (Commercial Street) near 15th. Bradley felt that Vinson tried to squeeze him out as the lanes merge. There were gestures made and horns honked but both vehicles continued on with Bradley in the lead vehicle.

A few minutes later, at the stoplight at 33rd and Leif Erickson, Bradley exited his vehicle in the roadway and confronted Vinson. Vinson exited his semi and there was a physical confrontation. During this confrontation Bradley went to the ground. By all accounts, Bradley returned to his vehicle and retrieved a gun. The gun was brandished in a manner that several people saw it. Vinson indicated that Bradley told him he would kill him. Bradley reengaged Vinson and there was a verbal confrontation. Bradley put the firearm in his waistband, got in his truck and left.

Based on their investigation Officer Ken Hansen arrested Bradley for Menacing and Unlawful Use of a Weapon. He was transported to the Clatsop County Jail. "This did not appear a case of self defense," said Deputy Chief Brad Johnston. "It appeared that at every stage of the incident Bradley was initiating contact and escalating the situation. Even if he had been a victim of an assault, he had broken contact; there was no longer a threat."

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