Portland Police Arrest ‘BLM’ Protesters as Fires, Disruptions Reported Downtown
PORTLAND, Oregon—Portland police Saturday night arrested more than a dozen protesters who were gathered with a group of several hundred “Black Lives Matter” protesters downtown.
Protesters were heard chanting “Black Lives Matter” and Breonna Taylor’s name. They also chanted: “No good cops in a racist system!”
Officers made the arrest shortly after 9 p.m. as they tried to keep the streets clear for traffic. Police told protesters to move back and get out of the street as they made the arrests.
The Oregonian reported that protesters had burnt a flag and police said that protesters were lighting fires.
Protesters also shot fireworks at police, and threw full cans, rocks, and other objects at officers. Police had earlier warned that protesters hurling projectiles would be subject to arrest.
Officers have observed people setting fires. Anyone who is involved in criminal behavior, including reckless burning is subject to arrest or citation.
— Multnomah Co Sheriff (@MultCoSO) September 27, 2020
About 10 p.m., police left the scene. The protesters remained in the street.
Earlier Saturday, police said a right-wing rally by the Proud Boys rally began at noon and was largely dispersed by 3 p.m.
Around 1,000 counter-protesters had gathered at another park and also largely dispersed by 7 p.m. according to local media. The night-time protest was not part of the scheduled protests organized for the day.
The attendance for the pro-Trump Proud Boys rally earlier in the day was far fewer than the 10,000 organizers had expected after left-wing groups organized several counter protests to oppose the Proud Boys’ message.
Local and state elected officials on Friday declared an emergency and rushed to shore up law enforcement ranks to prepare for possible violence between the protesting groups.
One Proud Boys member told reporters on Friday that one of his group’s goals was to get state officials to declare an emergency and deploy National Guard members to Portland to “restore law and order” in the city, after months of nearly nightly protests by far-left sympathizers following the death of George Floyd in late May.
The Associated Press and Epoch Times reporter Zackary Stieber contributed to this report.
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