The Crusader Newspaper Group

Oregon: Activists arrested at protest over police contract

By Tim Becker and Jennifer Dowling, KOIN 6 News

A protest that erupted Wednesday at Portland City Hall after the City Council ratified a new police contract dispersed after about 6 hours.

A total of 10 protesters were arrested and one officer was injured, police told KOIN 6 News.

The officer was injured inside City Hall by someone in the crowd, but that officer’s injuries were described as “not serious,” PPB said. Authorities are still looking for whoever is responsible.

Protesters blocked traffic off and on again at Southwest 5th Avenue throughout the afternoon. As soon as police would leave, protesters spilled back out into the street, blocking traffic and MAX trains.

Shortly after 5 p.m., protest organizers said “we are going to disperse this protest now.”

Organizer Gregory McKelvey, though, said they were planning “something massive for Friday.”

McKelvey said the actions today were “the most anti-democratic thing we’ve seen from Portland City Hall.”

Multiple law enforcement agencies assisted PPB during Wednesday’s protests.

While PPB said that free speech events don’t require a permit, marches or demonstrations that restrict the movement of other community members do. Police said no permits were issued for the Wednesday protest.

PPB first cleared the street around 2:15 p.m. Officers in riot gear spread out in front of City Hall and played a recorded message warning protesters to clear the sidewalk and street or they could be arrested.

Those officers cleared out around 2:50 p.m. That’s when protesters retook the street. Since then, police have returned, left and returned once more.

How it began

This all started Wednesday morning after the Portland City Council approved a controversial police contract. Demonstrators refused to leave City Hall, moving their tents into the building. Police said protesters threw bottles at officers in City Hall, and that’s when they were cleared out of the building.

Some protesters were given medical attention after being pepper sprayed. They could be seen pouring milk onto their faces for relief. At least three ambulances were brought to the scene.

After the initial clash, protesters moved into the street and blocked traffic, including MAX and TriMet buses, but police were called to clear the street.

Some protesters defied police orders and 10 were arrested after the police cleared the street. Three were booked into the Multnomah County jail while the others were cited and released Wednesday.


Recent News

Scroll to Top