Two cities that have been devastating by rioting are now suing the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security, claiming that the federal government agencies overstepped their bounds by deploying federal police.
The past few months have brought unprecedented destruction and anarchy to cities across the US. The state of Oregon has some of the most damaged cities in the country, which eventually led to federal government intervention over the summer.
Law Enforcement Today has previously reported on the chaos seen daily on the streets of Portland. In one example dating back to July 14, a federal police officer was attacked with a hammer while attempting to stop a rioter from vandalizing the federal courthouse (the attack on federal property would later serve as the reasoning for maintaining a federal police presence).
We have also reported on the damage to Oakland.
LET’s Gregory Hoyt highlighted the worst of the “peaceful protests” following an intense night of rioting on August 27. Hoyt explained that rioters took part in looting, arson, vandalism, and assaulting officers.
600-700 people took part in violent & destructive protests Wed. night. numerous fires set, dozens of windows broken, multiple businesses vandalized. Protesters threw objects at officers, thankfully no officers were injured. Several people arrested. pic.twitter.com/5tBIQ1FsQO
— Oakland Police Dept. (@oaklandpoliceca) August 27, 2020
Unfortunately, this was not the only night where anarchy reigned over the city. In Oakland and Portland this level of disorder has become the new norm. To solve for Oregon’s rapidly worsening crime problem, the federal government sent in federal police to aid in containment operations and protect federal property.
However, city officials were not happy with the intrusion by the higher authority and continuously resisted the government’s help. Now, the two cities have opened a lawsuit against two of the government agencies that aided in riot control.
Portland and Oregon are suing the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security for invading, and slowing, the riots.
The lawsuit explains that the two agencies and their heads enacted “a policy that authorized the deployment and operation of federal agents allegedly for the purpose of assuring domestic law and order and tak[ing] over cities.” The lawsuit claimed that the actions by the two agencies were a response to orders given by President Trump “in or around June 2020.”
The Trump administration has argued that their interference in the rioting was only to protect a federal courthouse that was under siege. The cities disagree and claim that the policy measures were made to “replace” city law enforcement.
The lawsuit reads:
“The activities in cities such as Portland instead reveal a distinct and meaningful policy shift to use federal enforcement to unilaterally step in and replace local law enforcement departments that do not subscribe to the President’s view of domestic ‘law and order.’”
The Department of Homeland Security opposes this argument and claims that the lawsuit is only an attempt to make the president look bad.
In a statement on Thursday the department said:
“Yet again, dangerous politicians and fringe special interest groups have ginned up a meritless lawsuit. They aim to harm President Trump and distract from his law and order agenda.”
The department went on to say that the politicians are focusing more on “political points” than ending the violence:
“Department of Homeland Security have acted entirely lawfully. Instead of condemning the violence we are seeing across the country, these politicians focus on scoring cheap political points to the detriment of the American people.”
A lawsuit by a governmental entity against another government body would yield interesting results. However, it would also create a major precedent on the federal government’s right to intervene during rioting.
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Residents in Portland beg city to make the rioting stop (as city officials continue their attacks on police)
PORTLAND, OR – The message was loud and clear from the majority of business owners and residents in the downtown area of Portland – they are fed up with the nightly protests and riots. They want the city to put a stop to it.
People in the city are fed up with the consecutive nights of chaos and violence that has been plaguing the area since the death of George Floyd in May of this year in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The chaos seemingly started by Black Lives Matter and other people who were, along with law enforcement, shocked and dismayed at the in-custody death of Floyd.
However, overtime, Antifa and other people who seemingly just want to enact chaos have joined in with some members of Black Lives Matter to keep the city looking like a war zone on a nightly basis.
According to Koin.com, they spoke to many members of the community, and the majority, while claiming support of Black Lives Matter, say enough is enough.
Despite the feelings from some of the residents and business owners, groups of Antifa, Black Lives Matter and others continue their siege nightly. On October 11th, protesters and rioters overturned statues of former President Theodore Roosevelt and President Abraham Lincoln.
You know, Republican President Abraham Lincoln who maintained, and won the fight against democrats to end slavery. Makes sense to topple his statue.
Reporter @shanedkavanaugh details length BLM-antifa rioters went through to intimidate Portlanders into not recording their rampage through downtown that included a shooting. They assaulted a resident at his home & threatened a woman who had a child. https://t.co/ysDPVWezeh
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) October 14, 2020
On 11 Oct., around 300 antifa rampaged through downtown Portland in a planned Day of Rage riot. They toppled statues of past presidents, including Lincoln, tried to burn down a museum, & smashed up businesses. One cafe was shot at w/a gun. Only 3 arrested. https://t.co/VArLwFDuCU pic.twitter.com/vJtvn6Gl9n
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) October 13, 2020
The chaos and destruction was a part of what the criminals referred to as the “Indigenous Peoples Day of Rage.” Which is strange because there did not seem to be any pictures of the chaos which depicted the true indigenous people of the country, native Americans…hmmm…head scratcher.
After tearing down century-old bronze statues of Lincoln & Roosevelt, antifa built their own statue in downtown Portland. They say it is an elk. The previous bronze elk statue was set on fire & severely damaged by antifa during the summer rioting. pic.twitter.com/9rie7j48dQ
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) October 13, 2020
Groups continued their path of destruction which ultimately damaged in various degrees the Portland State University Campus Public Safety Office, the Oregon Historical Society building, multiple restaurants, coffee shops, jewelry store, phone store, and a bank. You know, nothing says social justice like destroying buildings.
The owner of one of the businesses damaged, a black man, John Jackson, reported that his deli, Heroes, had two windows that were shot out and another that was destroyed by some type of blunt object, like a baseball bat. Jackson compared the damage to his deli, and city, to be similar to the horrors he saw while serving in the military during Desert Storm.
Jackson learned that his deli was targeted because he supports police among other first responders. Fox news reported they had a screen shot of a tweet from a suspected member of Antifa which read:
“We’re trying to compile a list of all non-friendly businesses in PDX. AKA any company that’s hanging blue lives garbage in their store or anything else that’s anti the BLM movement.”
Jackson, not caring that anyone was bothered by his support for law enforcement doubled down and said:
“We’re for all heroes and we don’t support zeroes. So, if you’re a bad cop, we don’t really have time for you. If you’re walking your beat and you’re taking care of your people or you’re saving lives, we love you.”
Meet John Jackson. He’s a veteran of the Army AND the Marines. He owns a cafe called Heroes American. Antifa in Portland is targeting him for supporting police. They shot at his cafe and broke his windows. Why doesn’t his Black life matter to Antifa? pic.twitter.com/dmCg9WcMqa
— Robby Starbuck (@robbystarbuck) October 13, 2020
Now, thanks to this incident, Jackson said that his decision has been made as far as who he is voting for in the general election, the same man he voted for in 2016, President Donald Trump. He said:
“This solidified my Trump vote. I’m done with this weakness and we need some real strong leadership.”
Despite pleas from people like Jackson, who believe the nightly occurrences of violence should stop, Democratic Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler claims that he is committed to doing whatever it takes to make people feel safe, while allowing the nightly chaos to continue. He has also removed $15 million dollars away from the annual police budget.
Cuts like this have caused the agency to eliminate their transit police unit, school resource officer program, and a gun violence reduction team. After removing this significant amount of funding from the agency, he refuses to reduce the budget any further, unless and until there is a better option, in his mind, at handling homelessness and mental health calls for service.
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