Bullet factory worker, 27, is charged with ‘shooting dead black man, after ”respectfully” complimenting and asking out his girlfriend during night out’
Ian Cranston charged with second-degree murder, first and second-degree manslaughter, assault and weapons counts in the death of 22-year-old Barry Khristiano Washington Jr.
Prosecutors in Oregon say Cranston, who is white, shot Washington, who is black, after the victim complimented the suspect’s girlfriend
Shooting outside a nightclub in Bend, Oregon, on Sept. 19 was preceded by altercation between Cranston and Washington
County District Attorney John Hummel drew parallels between the killing and historic racist murders of black men, accused of speaking to white women
Cellphone video circulating online purports to show moment of shooting, followed by sound of female bystanders laughing
Cranston has not been charged with any hate crime, District Attorney John Hummel said he did not have sufficient evidence at this point to also seek a bias crime charge against Cranston
Hummel said ‘If we obtain sufficient evidence to prove that this shooting was at least partially motivated by race, we will go back to that grand jury and ask them to add the charge
The investigation continues and Cranston’s next court hearing is scheduled for Dec. 7
Cranston’s attorney slammed the DA’s comments, said Washington was the aggressor, who physically assaulted his client, leaving him with head injuries
A white bullet-maker shot a black man dead for paying his girlfriend a ‘respectful’ compliment, prosecutors say, in an incident likened to Jim Crow-era lynching.
Ian Mackenzie Cranston was charged with murdering a black man on a street in Bend, Oregon, on September 19, after he spoke to Cranston’s girlfriend Allie Butler outside a bar called The Capital.
A grand jury this week indicted Cranston, 27, on six charges in connection to the shooting last month of 22-year-old Barry Washington Jr., Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel announced in a news conference Thursday following Cranston’s arrest.
Cranston is White while Washington is a Black man,
Those charges include second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter, second-degree manslaughter, first-degree assault and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon.
Cranston appeared in court Friday and is being held in the Deschutes County Jail without bond. He has not entered a plea.
Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel said: ‘It is believed that the initial interaction between Barry and Mr. Cranston began when Barry complimented Mr. Cranston’s girlfriend.
‘There’s no evidence that what Mr. Washington did when he approached the woman was inappropriate.
‘There’s not an allegation that he groped her, grabbed her, was crass with her.
He complimented her in a respectful manner. She was fine back.
She said, “No, thank you. I’m flattered but I’m in a relationship.” No allegation that anything Mr. Washington did was inappropriate.’
That was the extent of the interaction, but Cranston, a machinist at bullet manufacturer Nosler, was ‘not happy,’ it is alleged.
Hummel said the two men later had words outside, and that there was some pushing and punches thrown, but that things had calmed down before Cranston allegedly pulled a gun from his waistband and shot Washington.
The initial compliment was not caught on camera.
But footage said to show the altercation was shared on social media, with a man believed to be Washington filmed fighting with another man moments before a gunshot rings out.
Cops were called to the scene, and found Washington, who lived in Bend, lying on the sidewalk suffering from a gunshot wound.
He was rushed to hospital and died the next day.
Cranston was initially arrested on a single charge of second-degree manslaughter and had been released on bail before the grand jury returned the indictment Thursday.
A Deschutes County grand jury late Thursday indicted Redmond resident Ian Mackenzie Cranston, 27, and he was quickly arrested, then arraigned Friday on second-degree murder, manslaughter and other charges in the Sept. 19 fatal shooting of 22-year-old Barry Khristiano Washington on a downtown Bend street corner.
Charges have been upgraded as Cranston has now been charged with crimes including second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter and first-degree assault.
Hummel said an arrest warrant was issued and Cranston was arrested by Bend police at his home on charges of second-degree murder, first- and second-degree manslaughter, first-degree assault and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon.
Cranston is white and Washington was Black, but the killer has not been charged with any hate crime.
Hummel said he did not have sufficient evidence at this point to also seek a bias crime charge against Cranston, though the investigation continues.
The District Attorney Hummel drew parallels between the killing and historic racist murders of black men.
Hummel added, ‘If we obtain sufficient evidence to prove that this shooting was at least partially motivated by race, we will go back to that grand jury and ask them to add the charge.
‘It is believed that the initial interaction between Barry and Mr. Cranston began when Barry complimented Mr. Cranston’s girlfriend.
‘Our country has a disgraceful history of denigrating, prosecuting and lynching Black men for talking to White women. Over the last week, literally hundreds of people called and emailed me to remind me of this history.’
Cranston has since been arrested and held in Deschutes County Jail on a no-bail warrant, Hummel said. However, Cranston was “not happy,” Hummel said.
“He said some words to Mr. Washington. Mr. Washington said some words back,” Hummel said.
“There was some pushing, some jostling, some punches thrown, but then it calmed down. It was not going to get out of hand. Then Mr. Cranston pulled a gun out of his waistband and shot and killed Mr. Washington.”
While Cranston is White and Washington is Black, Hummel did not seek a hate crime charge, he said, telling reporters he felt prosecutors had insufficient evidence to make the case at this time.
However, the case remains under investigation. “If we obtain sufficient evidence to prove that this shooting was at least partially motivated by race, we will go back to that grand jury and ask them to add the charge,” he said.
Cranston’s attorney Kevin Sali accused Washington of being the aggressor and claimed that he physically assaulted his client, leaving him with head injuries.
In a statement to CNN, Sali said ‘indisputable’ video evidence shows ‘before Ian Cranston ever drew his weapon, Barry Washington had assaulted him without provocation, resulting in head injuries that required the police to take Mr. Cranston to the hospital where a brain scan and other procedures had to be performed.’
In the video said to show the incident, man believed to be Washington uses foul language and moves towards someone off camera.
A woman shouts a profanity and a shot rings out.
Then a male voice exclaims ‘Hey, call the police!’ and laughter is heard.
Later, a woman is heard telling a man that the ‘guy on the ground’ pushed and hit her in the face, and also struck her boyfriend.
A cellphone video appears to show Washington engaging in a dispute with some people just seconds before a gunshot rings out. Then some girls are shown laughing while he bled out and died
Cranston’s defense attorney later sharply rebuked Hummel over his race comments.
After the evidence comes out at trial, I trust someone will ask the District Attorney why he deliberately inflamed the community with statements he knew were not supported by any evidence,’ Sali stated.
Cranston did not enter a plea during his arraignment on Friday. He is due back in court on December 7.
KTVZ reported that Cranston has no prior criminal history in Oregon. Over the past year, he has worked as a machinist for a company that manufactures bullets.
Supporters of Washington’s family rally outside courthouse as Ian Cranston was arraigned Tuesday on second-degree murder, other charges in shooting of Barry Washington Jr.
Washington was a native of Benicia, California, who had only recently relocated to Bend with a friend, according to the Bend Bulletin.
He is survived by his mother and younger siblings.
‘This is really overwhelming. The way my son was murdered… it’s too much,’ wrote Washington’s mother, Lawanda Roberson. ‘I’m so hurt.. I haven’t even begin to grieve. The legal case is a lot…all while trying to lay my son to rest.’ A GoFundMe campaign that has been launched by Washington’s aunt to help the family has drawn more than $57,000 in donations.