Nice job, Portland. ‘Defund the police’ movement leads to 2,000% increase in murders.

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The following article contains editorial content written by a retired Chief of Police and current staff writer for Law Enforcement Today

PORTLAND, OR- Newton’s Third Law says that “for every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction.” While Newton’s laws apply primarily to physics, they also apply in other areas.

For example, law enforcement funding and crime.

Welcome to Portland, Oregon which is a real life example of Newton’s Third Law in action, where the city council’s action of defunding police has resulted in a 2000% increase in murders.

According to the Washington Examiner, last year Portland, like a number of big cities such as Minneapolis and Seattle to name only a few thought it would be a good idea to “defund the police.”

This was of course in response to the overdose death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last May, which was wrongly attributed to police use of force as an autopsy found.

That was the action taken by Portland.

The reaction?

The once-beautiful northwest city is racked with gun violence, and now Mayor Ted Wheeler is being forced to walk back his support from the draconian cuts made to that city’s police budget.

Wheeler recently requested an emergency funding initiative of $2 million for the police department, primarily due to the explosion of gun violence in that city.

In 2020 at this point in time, Portland had only experienced one homicide. This year? 20 so far, along with 208 shootings…in under three months, or an average of just under three per day.

Last June, Wheeler supported the Portland City Council’s shortsighted and politically correct decision to cut $15 million from the police budget.

One of the victims of that cut was the police unit that investigates gun violence. To the surprise of nobody who possesses more than a few brain cells, that move backfired…bigly.

The immediate result? Portland saw over 100 straight nights of “non-peaceful protests”—riots—last year.

Well, the calendar flipped from 2020 to 2021, Joe Biden found himself somehow getting elected, but one constant remains the same in Portland. Riots. They are back yet again with a vengeance.

Once again, the target of Antifa’s and Black Lives Matter activists is the federal courthouse. Unlike the “insurrection” that took place on January 6, these riots are actually causing enormous amounts of damage to federal property and resulting in scores of injuries to law enforcement officers.

Last July, the federal courthouse was the scene of nightly riots, with some anarchists attempting to torch the building with occupants inside.

Those riots were of course seemingly downplayed by Democrats, who criticized the deployment of federal law enforcement to defend the building and supplement local authorities. For example, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi famously referred to them as “stormtroopers.”

Estimates from last June was that the city had suffered around $24 million in damage due to the riots, with federal buildings sustaining roughly $2.3 million in damage.

Officials in cities such as Portland have quite literally dug their own city’s graves, by giving in to political correctness. It was fairly easy to predict that defunding the police in the midst of ongoing violent riots was a recipe for disaster, and now these cities are paying the price.

People like Wheeler, who lost their spine and refused to stand up to far-left activists, people who consistently throw down with the criminal element, have doomed these cities to becoming versions of the 1980’s cult-classic Escape From New York.

So, who exactly is to blame for the problems in Portland? Wheeler is a Democrat. The entire city council is Democrat, save one independent who was endorsed by the council’s Democratic caucus. Oregon’s feckless semi-dictator governor, Kate Brown is a Democrat.

So who is to blame? We’ll let you do the math.

Interestingly, Joe Biden has sent federal agents to the courthouse to protect the building, yet we have heard nary a complaint from Democrats like Pelosi, nor Brown, who last year accused President Trump of “provoking confrontation for political purposes.”

Currently, Democrats on Washington are once again pushing gun control, and are in part citing the increase in murders as being due to the “easy” availability of guns. Of course common sense dictates that criminals, by virtue of the fact that they are criminals do not obey gun laws.

Further, as the Examiner points out, “guns are exactly as available today as they were before this 2,000% surge in murders.” Further, Oregon, as well as neighboring states such as Washington and California all have strict gun laws.

One of the primary roles of government is the protection of citizens. It’s not embracing the latest “woke” ideology, it’s not kowtowing to political correctness. It is to provide for the safety and security of its citizens.

As we are seeing in major cities from New York to Chicago, St. Louis to Portland, city leaders are failing in their most basic responsibilities.

For Portland, a once beautiful city, the only way to turn things around is for voters to install new leadership on the city council.

They already missed the boat in replacing Wheeler, but given who his opponent was, an avowed supporter of Antifa, he was the lesser of two evils.

JoAnn Hardesty, a devout anti-police zealot would be a good start for people to get rid of. Perhaps a 2,000% increase in murders will be enough to convince residents to change course. The next victim could be them.

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Last year, we wrote about how much money the city of Portland “saved” by defunding the police. For more on that, we invite you to:

DIG DEEPER

PORTLAND, OR – As if Portland didn’t have enough monetary expenses active or pending on the destruction caused by the endless riots and protests in the past few months – there’s also the multi-million dollar costs associated with policing these very protests and riots.

According to reports, police overtime costs associated with the unrest in the city has cost $6.9 million. While rioters and protesters have been clamoring to “defund the police,” their activities are ironically forcing more money to go towards policing.

This $6.9 million in spending toward overtime is only when reviewing the data from Portland between June and July.

Considering that the protests and riots have yet to cease, it’s fair to assume that the overtime costs connected to the period of the riots is now well above $7 million.

When reviewing the overtime costs from January of 2020 up until July, the total ticket is $11.4 million for that entirety. What that means is between January and the end of May this year, the PPB was shelling out an average of around $900K monthly for overtime costs.

Yet, in June and July, the average monthly cost between the two months for overtime was $3.45 million each.  

But it’s not just overtime costing money either, nor is it the needed repairs to portions of the city due to the destructive efforts of bad actors at these riots and protests.

There were tens-of-thousands in costs related to crowd control assets and mere protective measures for buildings in the area.

In early June, there was nearly $50,000 spent on items like chemical munitions and pepper spray for the PPB. Then, by mid-June, slightly over $20,000 was spent to re-up on that very same type of equipment. The mayor’s office also shelled out $30,000 for fencing that was erected around City Hall.

Another $40,000 was spent on fencing via the PPB in June and July, which mostly covered areas in Chapman and Lownsdale squares. Apparently, that fencing only lasted a few days when erected and was subsequently removed.

But law enforcement officials are all too aware that overtime costs are needed in these times. Such as when departments are feeling the effects of the defunding that has taken place.

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With violent crime in the rise within certain areas of New York City, the NYPD has announced that strategically allocated overtime for certain precincts will be administered that are among some of the areas most greatly impacted by this rising violence.

The current rate of shootings has soared when compared to 2019 data in New York City, with the NYPD showing an overall increase of 87% for the entirety of 2020 and a 143% increase for August alone. With violent crime increasing, there has also been an increase in response times.

Data shows that officer response times increased by 44% in June of this year and 14% collectively between July and August. Currently, there are two theories being touted as to what is causing these increased response times.

Former police officer and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams suggested that police precincts might be intentionally slowing their response times due to the anti-police sentiments across the country:

“The Department of Investigation must look at precinct by precinct to see if job actions are taking place in certain precincts out of frustration.”

NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea denied that there was some collective move by precincts to intentionally slow down their response times:

“New York City police officers and detectives are as dedicated today as they ever have been.”

Surprisingly, Mayor Bill de Blasio presented an alternative theory to Adams’. The mayor reasonably pointed out that the recent cuts to the NYPD budget, which was nearly $1 billion, is going to inevitably affect things like response times:

“If there are fewer police officers and less overtime there are going to be challenges.”

These questions about what’s going on with policing, with respect to response times, comes on the heels of a recent murder of a caretaker for the Bedford-Stuyvesant Church who was gunned down on August 31st.

Deacon Ronald Stewart lamented the loss of the 62-year-old victim, calling him a “good man” and describing how he and his wife took him in off the streets and afforded the victim a second chance at life:

“He was an asset to the church, a very good person. Not only that, me and my wife took him off the street and we fed him. We did everything for him.”

Earlier on August 31st, a Manhattan criminal court judge was randomly attacked by an assailant while she was heading down Water Street on her way to work. A witness to the attack, Barat Mukhtiyi, described the seemingly random assault:

“Somebody hit her on the face and the guy was on a bicycle.”

Not long after the incident involving the judge being assaulted, there was reportedly two men who were shot while standing outside of a daycare facility in Fordham Heights.

Starting on September 1st, small amounts of overtime are now going to be allocated to certain precincts and will be approved until the end of the summer. It’s unclear if the NYPD will be considering any continuance of overtime after the aforementioned period.


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