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Police: They Chanted, 'Kill a Cop, Save a Life'

Portland police declare a riot on Saturday night
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2020 2:40 PM CDT

(Newser) – Portland's 79th straight night of protests turned to violence Saturday night when demonstrators allegedly hurled objects that injured two officers, CNN reports. Police said one object was a 9.5-pound rock hurled by a someone with "press" written on their clothing. "Portland Fire & Rescue treated two Portland Police members injured by rocks thrown by individuals in the crowd," police said. "Both of them went to the hospital for further treatment." For more:

  • A 'riot': Police declared a riot just before midnight and engaged in a long back-and-forth with Black Lives Matter protesters that appeared to whittle them down, Oregon Live reports. The police advanced and set off smoke devices, retreated, faced off against them, chased them down, slashed their tires, and later detained one person.

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  • Green lasers: Police also said protesters tossed glass bottles, frozen eggs, and rocks, and aimed green lasers at officers—lasers that are illegal in Oregon, per the Hill. A security camera at the Penumbra Kelly Building, which is being used by the local sheriff's office, was said to be painted over.
  • Chanting: According to the Portland Police Bureau, some chants included: "Kill a cop, save a life," as well as "What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now! If we don't get it, burn it down!"
  • Drunken driver: At one point a Porsche SUV drove into the Portland Police Association building, KOIN reports. Officers gave the driver—27-year-old Nicholas Zadrozna—a sobriety test, arrested him, and charged him with reckless driving and DUI. Damage to the building was minor and Zadrozna was later released with a citation.
  • Faceoffs: Right-wing counter-protesters also marched Saturday and faced off in skirmishes against protesters. Media reports differ, but OregonLive has pro-police protesters "firing some kind of pellet gun" and the AP reports that the two sides "traded paint balls and pepper spray."
  • 911 Calls: Fox News reports that over 60 emergency calls went ignored Saturday night as Portland officers focused on the demonstrators. Police said the calls included vandalism, theft, hit and run, burglary, harassment, and stolen cars.
  • Demands: Protesters have vowed to keep up until politicians reform the criminal justice system; many want to see the police bureau's budget cut and more money invested in Black Portlanders. OregonLive looks at 40 police shootings since 2003 and finds that the victims were "disproportionately Black" and suffered from mental illness at least half the time. No officers were ultimately punished or indicted despite attempts to suspend or dismiss some of them.
(Read more Portland stories.)

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