Barry Washington Jr., a 22-year-old Black man, was fatally shot byIan Mackenzie Cranston (White male, 27) at an Oregon club after Barry complimented his fiancée and asked her out.
The shooting happened on September 19 in Bend, Oregon outside of aDeschutes County nightclub called The Capitol.
According to reports, Barry approached Ian’s fiancé, Allie Butler, first at the bar and later outside.
Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel said Barry did not act inappropriately while interacting with Allie, but Ian reacted aggressively and a fight broke out.
DA John Hummel said Ian shot Barry while he was arguing with one of Ian’s friends.
Ian Cranston was initially arrested and charged with second-degree manslaughter.
After posting 10% of his $100,000 bail, Cranston was released within hours the same day of the murder under the condition that he appear in court on October 5, 2021.
Cranston’s swift released caused outrage, but Bend, which is located in central Oregon, has a reputation for being a racist city.
DA Hummel said there wasn’t enough evidence to charge Ian Cranston with a hate crime.
Our country has a disgraceful history of denigrating, prosecuting, and lynching black men for talking to white women.
Over the last week, hundreds of people called and emailed me to remind me of this history; I responded to every one of you.
At a candlelight vigil held for Barry on Wednesday, many Central Oregon residents shared their experiences with racism.
A Black woman shared she was recently run off the road in Bend.
A teenage girl shared that she was called the N-word when she was 5-years-old.
A local activist shared the story of Deshaun Adderley, who committed suicide in 2015, after he alerted school administrators that he was getting bullied at Summit High School and they did nothing to help him.
Barry’s roommate, Max Peterson, who has known Barry since he was 11-years-old, also spoke at the vigil and expressed regret for suggesting that Barry move to Bend.
He’s a loving person, he only cares about having fun when he steps out; that’s his only goal when he steps out of the house.
I told him it would be a safe environment up here. But that was obviously a lie that I told him. I had been given a different impression from the community up here. I had better faith up here.
We absolutely expect a murder charge.
I think he was targeted. I think what 99% of the people walking downtown Bend look like… if they would have got into a fight, trying to push up on some dude’s female because they thought she was cute or whatever, and they tried to compliment her, I promise you they wouldn’t have died that night.
Ian Mackenzie Cranston was indicted by a Deschutes County grand jury late Thursday, and he was re-arrested and charged with second-degree murder, first and second-degree manslaughter, first-degree assault and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon for the shooting death of Barry Christian Washington Jr., on a downtown Bend street corner.
According to the DA, the grand jury indicted Ian on every charge sought by his office.
We charged the highest crime there is for this act.
It was an intentional act. That’s what our theory was.
It wasn’t a fumbling with the gun, or an accidental discharge of the gun. It was an intentional decision by Mr. Cranston to shoot and kill Barry Washington.
Watch DA John Hummel speak on the indictment during a live-streamed news conference.
Ian was booked in the county jail without bail pending an initial court appearance scheduled for next Tuesday.
The murder of Barry Washington, Jr. is being shared across social media to bring more attention to the case.
Barry’s family set up a GoFundMe to pay for legal fees in the case with a goal of $40,000.
This story eerily reminds me of Emmett Till.
We send our deepest condolences to Barry’s family and friends. #JusticeForBarry