PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – A woman who said she was falsely arrested after twerking to NWA’s “F*** Tha Police” at a Black Lives Matter rally in Portland received $75,000 from the city in a settlement.
In exchange for the settlement money, Alonna Mitsch agreed to drop charges against Portland Police Bureau and its officers Kyle Green, Ken Le and Andrew Braun, and not hold them liable for any injuries that resulted from the incident on Aug. 17, 2019. The complaint was dismissed Wednesday.
Mitsch, a Black woman, filed a federal lawsuit against the City of Portland and the police officers on Aug. 17, 2021.
The lawsuit stated that during the August 2019 protest, Mitsch was wearing Black Lives Matter clothing and taking part in the large demonstration. Mitsch said she joined the event to “peacefully protest the presence and ideology of the Proud Boys.” In the lawsuit, she described them as “a violent right-wing neofascist group.”
While counter-demonstrators marched downtown, Mitsch crossed the street and heard music blaring from the song. She then briefly twerked to the music in the bike lane area of the crosswalk, the suit added.
The document said there were other demonstrators both in the crosswalk area and marching in the middle of the street. However, these other demonstrators were “white and non-Black” and were not at the time engaging in conduct with a message critical of police.
The lawsuit stated that after Mitsch briefly twerked, she continued to cross the street.
“She was already on the sidewalk, when, without warning, PPB officers jumped off their police vehicle to chase Ms. Mitsch,” the lawsuit said.
She claimed that while on the sidewalk, PPB officers, including the ones named in the lawsuit, ran up on her from behind, pulled or twisted her arms, swung her down to the ground from behind and arrested her with too-tightly bound restraints.
Mitsch accused the officers of racially profiling her and arresting her because she was a Black woman engaging in “Expressive conduct supporting Black Lives Matter and critical to police.” The suit said that the officers treated the Proud Boys demonstrators differently and more favorably.
After she was arrested, Mitsch was charged with disorderly conduct. She was later acquitted by a Multnomah County jury.
In her lawsuit, Mitsch was seeking relief for economic and non-economic damages.
The settlement does not mean the city has admitted any liability for the crimes it was accused of.