Portland Joins Cities Holding Vigils for Lesbian Teens Shot in Texas

Kristene Chapa and Mollie Olgin were shot in a Portland, Texas park on June 23. Chapa survived the attack, but Olgin was dead when police arrived.
By Erin Rook, PQ Monthly

Portland, Ore. is joining a growing lists of cities across the nation holding vigils for the young Latina lesbian couple shot June 23 in Portland, Texas.

Mollie Judith Olgin, 19, was dead when police arrived at the scene while her girlfriend, Mary Christine Chapa, 18, was found in critical condition and underwent emergency surgery. Investigators told the Corpus Christie Caller Times that the women were shot with a large caliber handgun in a section of a local park that was overgrown with knee-high grasses.

The Portland vigil will take place at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 14 at Metropolitan Community Church (2400 NE Broadway). The vigil is being organized by volunteers from Pride NW, GLSEN, Q Center, MCC Portland. Organizers are asking that participants bring flowers instead of candles, which will be collected and bundled into bouquets after the vigil for LGBTQ seniors.

The police are not yet calling the shootings a hate crime, but are investigating the possibility the teens’ sexuality was a motive.

“That’s always something that we’re looking for, but as of this point, we have not been able to establish that that had anything to do with the attack,” Portland Police Chief Randy Wright told MSNBC.

No one has been arrested in connection with the crimes, but police have released a sketch of the suspect based on a witness descriptions (see right). If you have any information about the attack, you can make an anonymous call to the Portland (Texas) Police at 361-777-4444.

Chapa’s family is uninsured, and a fund has been set up for her medical care. To donate to Chapa’s medical fund, send checks in her name to Prosperity Bank, 1127 East Sinton, Sinton, TX 78387. To donate online, click here.