PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) -- The face of the downtown camping ban protest said he's quitting after being intimidated by other campers who don't share the same vision.
Now, many others are moving out as well.
"We're trying to end homelessness, that's why we're here," said Michael Withey. "That's why we've been here for two years."
Withey said his message really began after Occupy Portland protesters were evicted from downtown two years ago. He said legitimate homeless people who could no longer camp had nowhere to go.
"The big problem is if you're going to do something like that, then you offer an alternative and so far we've seen none and that's not the country that I thought I grew up in," he said.
Withey has been actively protesting for homeless options for the past two months. But Wednesday he explained to City Council why he and others are leaving.
"Whatever is happening in Schrunk Plaza or Chapman and Lownsdale, it's not condoned by the protesters who left Schrunk Plaza," he said.
Co-existing with campers who are bullying, breaking the law and do not share the same message has taken a toll on Withey.
"We're letting everyone know, if you want to call this a protest then you'll see people here on the sidewalk holding sides and they'll be us. So please do not acquaint the lawlessness, as it was called by the mayor, with the actual protest."
A city council spokesperson said it is constitutionally difficult to differentiate between who is a troublemaker and who is a protester.
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