Tigard businesses: Riot is ‘one more thing you aren’t expecting’

Protests

Rioters smashed windows and left graffiti at Tigard Police Station before targeting nearby businesses

TIGARD, Ore. (KOIN) — Tigard business owners boarded up their storefronts and community members helped with clean up after rioters tagged buildings and smashed windows on Thursday night.

About 100 people gathered Thursday evening to protest the deadly police shooting of 26-year-old Jacob Macduff. Some in the group later vandalized the Tigard Police Department and nearby businesses.

Aldo Ruiz of Taqueria La Fuente said the march started on SW Main Street.

“Mortars and an M-80 went off,” he said. “They just started tagging, breaking people’s windows and not really focusing on what the cause is for and that’s really the issue — you are hurting small businesses, you are hurting small businesses that are putting their life and soul into these businesses.”

Beach Hut Deli owner Chris Haedinger said he was somewhat prepared.

“Most of us got plywood in time,” he told KOIN 6 News. “We already struggled through 2020 with COVID as you can imagine, every business here on Main Street has, and it’s one more thing you aren’t expecting.”

No windows were broken at Haedinger’s shop but plenty of graffiti was left behind.

Members of Tigard Little League showed up with Coach Kevin Robinson to help with cleanup on Friday.

“What they don’t understand is those businesses didn’t budget for that — they have no idea that’s going to happen — so the money they are going to have to put toward that to fix it is money that they can’t plow back into their community that we desperately need,” Robinson said.

The coash said it’s the small businesses that work hard to give back to the kids.

“People like Beach Hut Deli and Mark Creevey [with] State Farm fund programs that make sports and extracurricular activities accessible for everybody,” he said.

Haedinger encouraged anyone looking to pitch in to buy some food or shop at businesses in downtown Tigard because every bit helps.

“Everybody needs to be supported so spread the wealth and support everyone here,” he said.

Zero tolerance

The Washington County District Attorney’s Office and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office issued the following joint statement in response to Thursday night’s riot:

“While we respect the right to free speech and peaceful assembly afforded under the First Amendment, we will not tolerate illegal behavior demonstrated by some individuals in Tigard on Thursday night. Rioting, vandalism and property destruction are criminal acts and will be prosecuted in Washington County. We stand with the people and business owners of Tigard whose property was damaged in last night’s riot.

“As business owners continue to grapple with the economic impacts of COVID-19, they should not also be dealing with rioting, vandalism and property destruction.

“The Tigard Police Department is now investigating any and all criminal acts associated with Thursday’s riot. The Washington County District Attorney’s Office will aggressively prosecute cases referred to our office by Tigard police.”

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