PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Sometime over the night of Jan. 31, the Police Memorial in Waterfront Park was vandalized, removing the names from the shrine, Sgt. Aaron Schmautz, President of the Portland Police Association shared in a heartfelt plea to the community.

The memorial, which was built in 1993, shared the names of officers who died in the line of duty.

In Sgt. Schmautz’s statement, he admonished the people who vandalized the memorial and called for people to turn away from criminal acts.

While I find this act of destruction to be startling and ugly, I also recognize the foolishness and short-sightedness of the actors. Too many times we have seen these hidden provocateurs either shout their way into a room where real discussions occur or destroy property and injure others when their rhetoric broke down.

The Portland City Council also shared a joint statement calling the vandalization “despicable” and shared that they will work with the Portland Police Historical Society to restore the memorial.

The Portland City Council condemns the despicable vandalization of the Portland Police Memorial, a site that honors Portland Police Officers who died in the line of duty. The memorial has stood on Portland’s Waterfront Park for nearly 30 years in recognition of their service to Portlanders. This ugly criminal act seeks only to fuel divisive and destructive rhetoric that is not representative of who we are as a city. We at City Council will work together with the Portland Police Historical Society to ensure the memorial is restored. We recognize the hardworking public safety personnel who work to keep our community safe every day and honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.