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Portland Police Give Up, Let Proud Boys, Antifa Brawl Through Portland

Portland, OR – Antifa and Proud Boys brawled in streets and parking lots in downtown Portland on Sunday and police did nothing to put a stop to it.

Portland Police Bureau (PPB) Chief Chuck Lovell spoke ahead of the planned protesters during a press briefing on Friday night, NBC News reported.

Chief Lovell warned that if the opposing political groups began fighting, police would not necessarily be sent in to separate them.

But he also said that didn’t mean that nobody was going to get arrested in connection with the incidents, NBC News reported.

“Just because arrests are not made at the scene when tensions are high, does not mean that people won’t be charged with crimes,” the chief added.

Proud Boys gathered at Portland’s waterfront on Aug. 22 to commemorate the violent clash with antifa last year at an event ironically called the “Summer of Love,” Oregon Public Broadcasting reported.

Antifa was present to protest the group’s event from the start, and conducted organized, armed patrols along the waterfront all day.

After remaining separated for hours, the two factions clashed in northeast Portland, Oregon Public Broadcasting reported.

The violence and destruction stretched on for several blocks as Proud Boys and antifa engaged in combat with sticks, bear mace, and paintballs guns, Oregon Public Broadcasting reported.

Rioters hurled mortar fireworks near a Chevron gas station at one point, forcing the business to close.

Antifa also threw paint and sprayed chemicals at journalists and attacked a freelance photographer, according to Oregon Public Broadcasting.

Witnesses said a group of Proud Boys overturned a white van that pulled up next to the location where their event was being held.

“This van right here that’s on its side tried pulling into the parking lot, and all these Proud Boys gate security started hitting it with bats and busting the windows out,” a witness told Oregon Public Broadcasting.

Police did not appear to be present for the melee until officers responded to a report of shots fired in the area of Southwest Yamhill Street and Southwest 2nd Avenue at approximately 5:47 p.m., the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) said in a press release.

There were no gunshot victims at the scene.

“There were numerous people in the area, including several people taking video and photographs,” the PPB noted. “There are reports that witnesses may have removed evidence from the scene before police arrived.”

Officers got a description and direction of travel for the fleeing suspect from witnesses and apprehended the suspect just three minutes later in the area of Southwest Alder Street and Southwest 3rd Avenue, according to the press release.

Police later identified him as 65-year-old Dennis Anderson.

The press release said Anderson was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center on charges of unlawful use of a weapon and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Witnesses told police that members of antifa were following Anderson to kick him out of the area before the gunfire erupted, The Guardian reported.

Anderson took cover behind a solar-powered trashcan, according to witnesses.

Then he pulled out a handgun and opened fire, The Guardian reported.

Witnesses said Anderson fired at least two shots before a member of antifa pulled out their own gun and returned fire.

The Guardian reported that at least seven shots were fired between the two.

PPB asked that any potential victims or anyone with evidence of what occurred in connection with the gunfight to contact the police, the press release said.

“There is no confirmed connection to any events or gatherings,” the department added. “The investigation is continuing.”

Critics blasted police for not intervening sooner when the violence erupted and alleged the situation would have been handled much differently had it occurred in a more affluent neighborhood, Oregon Public Broadcasting reported.

“If this was in Laurelhurst, this wouldn’t be happening,” one witness told the news outlet. “They would have shut this s–t down already.”

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler’s spokesperson, Sara Morrissey, claimed officers responded to the brawls within minutes of being made aware of them, Oregon Public Broadcasting reported.

“Had the situation worsened, police would have taken action immediately,” Morrissey added. “Instead, they will be conducting follow up investigations, making arrests and forwarding cases to the Multnomah County District Attorney for prosecution.”

But police were noticeably missing from the hundreds of videos of the chaos that were posted to social media.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

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Written by Holly Matkin


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