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Portland man sentenced to 5 years for setting fire during protests

Portland protest was declared a riot in August 2020
KGW file
Portland protest was declared a riot in August 2020

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A Portland man has been sentenced to five years in prison after pleading guilty to first-degree arson for starting a dumpster fire near the city’s North Precinct during a protest nearly a year ago.

Authorities say Gavaughn Streeter-Hillerich, 23, was recorded intentionally setting fire to a large dumpster near the exterior of the police precinct on June 26, 2020.

The dumpster was pushed up against plywood on the windows, which had been installed to protect windows and prevent break-ins, according to the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the sentencing Monday comes two weeks after the district attorney brought new felony charges against 10 people for property damage in connection with civil unrest in the past year.

News release from the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office:

DA Mike Schmidt announces a 60-month prison sentence in civil unrest, arson case

PORTLAND, Ore. – Today, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt announced that Gavaughn Streeter-Hillerich received a 60-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to one count of Arson in the First Degree.

The guilty plea means Streeter-Hillerich intentionally damaged property owned by the City of Portland by starting a fire and thereby recklessly placing another person in danger of physical injury.

Streeter-Hillerich will be on three years of post-prison supervision upon release from the Oregon Department of Corrections.

Restitution to the City of Portland will be determined within 90 days.

This investigation started on June 26, 2020 when a large demonstration occurred near a building housing the Portland Police Bureau’s North Precinct and various private businesses.

According to court records, Streeter-Hillerich was recorded intentionally setting a large dumpster on fire near the building’s northwest exterior corner. The fire was set on top of the dumpster, which had been pushed up against plywood affixed to the building to protect windows and to prevent break-ins.

At the time Streeter-Hillerich set fire to the building, approximately 19 people were inside PPB’s North Precinct. Had the fire spread, it would have threatened the safety of those individuals.

During the course of setting the fire, Streeter-Hillerich suffered burns.

The sentence of this case, which resulted in a total of 60 months in prison, resulted through a global resolution of the three Multnomah County pending cases:

  • 20CR37037 - Arson in the First Degree (Guilty Plea)
  • 20CR37289 - Unlawful Use of a Weapon (Guilty Plea)
  • 20CR70247 - Coercion and Assault in the Fourth Degree (x2) (Guilty Plea)

The sentence imposed by the judge considers all of the criminal conduct, and not just exclusively the arson case.

This case was investigated by the Portland Police Bureau and prosecuted by Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney Shawn Overstreet.

Article Topic Follows: Oregon-Northwest

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