Portland Demonstration Turns Violent Saturday Night

Photo: Bear spray and baton/ Unified Command

A demonstration outside of the Justice Center in downtown Portland turned violent with protesters throwing rocks, firecrackers and ball bearings at police. More than 20 people were arrested.

The event happened after mostly peaceful demonstrations early in the day. The Proud Boys held a rally at Delta Park and far left groups, including Antifa, held a rally at Peninsula Park.

Around 8:30 p.m., a demonstration started in Lownsdale and Chapman Square Parks. As the crowd grew, many gathered in the street at SW 3rd Avenue and SW Main Street, blocking the street near the Justice Center. The incident was still under the Unified Command of Oregon State Police and the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.

The Unified Command for the City of Portland issued warnings via loudspeaker to vacate the roadway because it was open to vehicular traffic. Despite multiple warnings, much of the group remained in the street.

Officers moved in and made several arrests. While making arrests and ticketing illegally parked vehicles, projectiles were thrown at officers including full beverages cans, firecrackers and rocks. At one point, an officer was attempting to load an arrested person into a transport van when another arrested person, Michael Colten, forced his way out. He ran while still restrained in zip-ties for about two blocks before he was recaptured by officers.

Officers attempted to disengage and leave the area multiple times in an effort to de-escalate, but each time as they retreated, individuals in the crowd threw projectiles at officers and re-entered the street. Officers made additional arrests.

At 10:29 p.m., officers stopped a vehicle associated with the demonstration in the area of SW 1st Avenue and SW Jefferson Street. A drone was seized from inside the vehicle.

Officers provided security during the traffic stop. As they began to disengage, many of the demonstrators moved back out into the lanes of travel. Officers again cleared the street. As they did this, officers were targeted by high velocity objects, believed to be ball bearings launched from slingshots. These projectiles had the potential to cause serious injury.

At about 11:45p.m., because of criminal activity witnessed, the crowd was notified by loudspeaker that the gathering was an unlawful assembly, and they were to leave the area to the west. They were warned that failure to adhere to the order may subject them to arrest, citation, or the use of crowd control agents including, but not limited to, impact weapons and/or tear gas.

Few, if any, individuals followed the order, so officers began physically moving the crowd away. The officers were pelted with additional rocks and other dangerous objects. Officers continued making arrests.

During one of the arrests, officers seized a can of bear spray and a baton.

While the majority of the crowd dispersed by 1:30 a.m. Sunday, a small group of hostile individuals remained. Individuals threw glass bottles at the direction of officers. Law enforcement officers performed several additional arrests in Chapman Square Park.

Here are the details from the demonstrations earlier in the day:

Delta Park

A group of nearly 1,000 people gathered in Delta Park located at N. Denver Avenue and N. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. The group rallied for several hours, waved flags and listened to speeches.

During the event, law enforcement learned of an assault that occurred against an individual who was documenting the event. Portland Police Bureau opened an investigation. Information will be posted by Portland Police at a later time.

The group started leaving the park around 2:30 p.m. They traveled in a caravan north on I-5 into Washington State.

As vehicles left the park, Oregon State Police and Portland Police stopped multiple vehicles for traffic violations. Portland Police officers stopped a tan pickup truck for also obscuring their license plates. Officers located and took possession of firearms, paintball guns, baseball bats and shields. Portland officers issued a criminal citation to Phillip Klein, 18, of Sherwood, for Possession of a Loaded Firearm in Public (city code), and Matthew Klein, 24, of Sherwood, for Unlawful Possession of a Firearm and Possession of a Loaded Firearm in Public (city code).

By 4 p.m., Delta Park was clear.

Peninsula Park

A separate group of nearly 1,000 people gathered in Peninsula Park located in the 700 block of N. Rosa Parks Way. The group rallied and listened to speeches for several hours before dispersing. Police confiscated a couple of shields, but no other law enforcement action was needed.

Historic Vanport Memorial

Another group gathered near the former site of the City of Vanport, near Portland International Raceway. They met, gave speeches and eventually drove in a caravan through North Portland to Irving Park in Northeast Portland where they rallied throughout the day.

There were a few other small gatherings in other locations throughout the city.

Saturation Patrols

Troopers, deputies and officers saturated the area around and between Delta Park and Peninsula Park Saturday. The overarching goal for the day was to allow groups to meet and rally in peace and to prevent conflict. Law enforcement performed a number of traffic stops, issued tickets for traffic violations and made several arrests. Each individual was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center.

William Day, 32, unknown residence, is charged with Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle for possessing a stolen vehicle.

Arrest time/ location: 12:30 p.m., NE. 13th Ave. & NE. Marine Dr.

Arresting agency: Oregon State Police

Daniel Merrill, 59, of Portland, is charged with Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants.

Arrest time/ location: 10:30 a.m., N. Schmeer & N. Vancouver

Arresting agency: Oregon State Police

Valerie Hill, 38, of Salem, was arrested on an outstanding warrant.

Arrest time/ location: 11:15 a.m., N. Columbia & N. Vancouver

Arresting agency: Oregon State Police

Nimrod Taylor, 42, unknown residence, is charged with Assault in the Second Degree and Criminal Trespass in the Second Degree. Taylor is accused of assaulting a clerk at a convenience store located on N. Marine Drive & N. Vancouver Way around 2:30 p.m. Portland Police Bureau is investigating.

One Oregon State Police trooper sustained minor injuries when a large rock was thrown at the driver’s side window near the intersection of N. Rosa Parks & N. Missouri Ave. Any witnesses to this event, please call OSP Dispatch at 800-442-0776 or dial *OSP (*677) from your cell phone. No other injuries to officers were reported.

We encourage anyone who is a victim of crime or was a witness to a crime, to report it to the Portland Police Bureau. Please call 503-823-3333 or e-mail crimetips@portlandoregon.gov.

Events remained relatively calm Saturday afternoon because of good operational planning and an abundance of resources available under the Unified Command structure. As the evening progresses, we will continue to work together to keep the community safe and ensure we protect everyone’s right to free speech and assembly. We want to thank everyone who remained peaceful at these events.