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Portland police declare unlawful assembly during protest

Portland protest731
Maggie Vespa/KGW
Hundreds of protesters gathered late Friday night by the federal courthouse in downtown Portland.

(Update: Violence at Saturday night protest)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Portland Police Bureau declared an unlawful assembly during Saturday night’s protest when people gathered outside a northeast Portland precinct and threw bottles toward officers.

Activists and state officials urged people at Saturday night’s protest to re-center the focus on Black Lives Matter, three days after the Trump administration agreed to reduce the presence of U.S. federal agents in Portland.

Groups gathered Saturday evening in various areas around downtown Portland to listen to speakers and prepare to march to the Justice Center and Mark O. Hatfield Courthouse. 

Earlier, more than 1,000 people showed up in downtown Portland late Friday and early Saturday to peacefully protest, about three days after the announcement that the presence of U.S. agents there would be reduced.

Friday’s overnight protest mimicked that of Thursday, which was the first time in weeks that demonstrations ended without any major confrontations, violence or arrests.

In a news release early Saturday, the Portland Police Bureau described the crowd as subdued and said there was no police interaction with protesters.

The change in tone outside a federal courthouse that’s become ground zero in clashes between demonstrators and federal agents came after the U.S. government began drawing down its forces under a deal between Democratic Gov. Kate Brown and the Trump administration.

At one point in the night, a small firework was shot over the fence. As it sizzled out on its own, protesters pleaded with others to remain peaceful. Later, a few small fires were occasionally started outside the courthouse, with at least one put out by other protesters.

Unlike previous weeks, protesters were not centered mainly outside the courthouse, but scattered throughout downtown.

Read more at:

Portland Police Bureau news release:

Mass gathering on SW 3rd Avenue disperses after several hours
Portland Police Bureau - 08/01/20 2:49 AM

During the evening of July 31, 2020 hundreds of people came together in a mass gathering along Southwest 3rd Avenue between Southwest Madison Street and Southwest Salmon Street. People gave speeches outside the Justice Center starting at about 9:00 p.m. Vehicular traffic was blocked by people standing in the traffic lane Southwest 3rd Avenue. At about 10:30 p.m. the speeches ended and the majority of the people congregated outside the Mark O. Hatfield U. S. Federal Courthouse.

Through the rest of the night and into the next morning the crowd was subdued. Some lit fires, climbed the fence outside the federal courthouse, threw objects and chanted. For the most part they stood crowded together on Southwest 3rd Avenue, between Southwest Madison and Southwest Salmon, talking in small groups.

On August 1, 2020 at about 1:30 a.m. people started a bonfire in the middle of Southwest 3rd Avenue in front of the federal courthouse. People brought plywood and other flammable material to keep it going. Over the next hour the number of people dwindled to a few dozen.

There was no police interaction with the crowd.

Article Topic Follows: Oregon-Northwest

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