PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Portland police declared an unlawful assembly and made 11 arrests after a crowd of people marched to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Wednesday night.
The group of about 200 people started at Elizabeth Caruthers Park and arrived at the Portland ICE building shortly after 10 p.m. and some in the crowd immediately started leaving graffiti and blocking traffic. Federal officers emerged from the building a few minutes later, after one person shot a security camera with a paintball gun. As various items were being thrown by protesters, one officer was injured by a rock striking their leg.
The incident commander quickly determined the event was an unlawful assembly.
The Portland Police Bureau then made warning announcements, demanding the crowd leave the area or else be subjected to crowd control munitions. Most people stayed despite the warnings and over the next hour, the PPB and federal officers pushed the crowd through nearby streets as Portland police made multiple arrests.
By 11:35 p.m., the majority of the crowd returned to the ICE building shortly after the dispersal. As it was still an unlawful assembly, PPB made several targeted arrests while the group was moving toward the building. While those arrests were being executed, somebody pepper-sprayed an officer. Nearby, a fire was started at South Bond Avenue and South Gaines Street.
Once a few more arrests were made, PPB officers disengaged in an attempt to deescalate the situation — while still being hit by rocks thrown at them by members in the crowd. Ultimately, PPB officers did not use any crowd control munitions or tear gas throughout the night.
About 50 people returned to the building but slowly left the area within the next few hours.
Eleven people were arrested overnight for charges ranging from interfering with a peace officer to carrying a concealed weapon. Those taken into custody were listed as follows:
Arrests made overnight
- Baxter, Robert, 26, of Reno, Nevada, interfering with a peace officer
- Oram, Sara, 42, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II
- Abrams, Rebecca, 28, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II
- Canizal Almanza, Ivan, 21, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II, carrying a concealed weapon
- Atkin, Austin, 25, of Reno, Nevada, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II
- Wilks, Noah, 21, of Corbett, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II
- Wade, Greyson, 20, of Happy Valley, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly Conduct II
- Trapicano, Daniel, 33, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II
- Molina, Tracy, 47, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II
- Churchwell, Brenden D., 31, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly Conduct II
- Phomara, Kevin, 26, of Portland, Oregon, interfering with a peace officer, disorderly conduct II, harassment, unlawful use of mace/pepper spray
Dueling protests in Gresham
Gresham took center stage for the start of the 90th night of demonstrations against police and systemic racism in the Portland metro area as opposing groups faced off on either side of a busy public street.
Gresham City Council held an emergency meeting earlier Wednesday ahead of planned events to consider taking down the Black Lives Matter flag flying at City Hall in an attempt to avoid “violence and destruction.”
The original event was a planned “flag wave” organized by people from outside the community, including an alleged spearheading by right-wing protesters, and have included messages on social media about “tearing down the Black Lives Matter flag,” The Gresham Outlook reported. A group of counter-protesters had planned to rally around the flag to protect it from being forcibly removed.
The nightly unrest in Portland has shown no signs of slowing down, despite nearing the three-month mark. A riot was declared outside City Hall Tuesday after members of the crowd broke windows and set fires. Police said they arrested 23 adults and detained two juveniles.