After Police Fatally Shoot Man, a Nighttime 'Riot' in Portland

Authorities say Ore. protesters smashed windows, stole from businesses after officer-involved shooting
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 17, 2021 9:00 AM CDT
After Police Fatally Shoot Man, a Nighttime 'Riot' in Portland
Law enforcement personnel work at the scene following a police-involved shooting of a man at Lents Park on Friday in Portland, Ore.   (Beth Nakamura/The Oregonian/The Oregonian via AP)

Police in Portland, Ore., declared a riot Friday night after authorities say protesters smashed windows and burglarized businesses during demonstrations that started earlier in the day after police fatally shot a man while responding to reports of a person with a gun. The vandalism downtown came after the Friday morning police shooting but also was part of vigils and demonstrations already been planned for the night in the name of people killed in other police shootings nationwide, including 13-year-old Adam Toledo of Chicago and Daunte Wright, a Black man in a Minneapolis suburb, per the AP. Deputy Police Chief Chris Davis told reporters earlier in the day that a white man in his 30s was shot and killed by police. The man was pronounced dead at the scene in Lents Park, which is in a leafy, residential neighborhood of the city. Two officers fired a device that shoots nonlethal projectiles, and one officer, who is now on paid leave, fired a gun, police said in a statement.

Davis didn't know if the man who died had pointed a weapon at the officers and didn't say how many shots were fired. As police began to finish their on-scene investigation around 3pm, a crowd marched through the park, ripped down police tape, and stood face to face with officers in riot gear. Police left the park around 3:30pm, and the crowd remained and eventually stood in a nearby intersection, blocking traffic and chanting. Police said later Friday they used pepper spray on protesters in order to disengage. Some people hit officers with sticks and chased officers as they were leaving, police said in a news release. Officers deployed smoke canisters and then used a rubber ball distraction device, police said. Portland has been the site of frequent protests, many involving violent clashes between officers and demonstrators, ever since the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May. Over the summer, there were demonstrations for more than 100 straight days.

(More Portland, Oregon stories.)

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