Portland protesters swarm police precinct after Jacob Blake decision, photos show ‘press’ being arrested
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Protesters took to the streets of Portland on Tuesday following news of a Wisconsin prosecutor's decision not to press charges against a White police officer accused of shooting Jacob Blake over the summer.
Dozens of demonstrators, some allegedly carrying shields and wearing gas masks, descended upon a portion of the city surrounding Portland Police Bureau’s North Precinct shortly after 9 p.m., police said in a Wednesday summary of events.
They were reportedly protesting Wisconsin District Attorney Michael Graveley's decision not to bring charges against Kenosha Officer Rusten Sheskey, who allegedly shot Blake seven times during a domestic disturbance call Aug. 23. Blake, a Black man armed with a knife at the time of the incident, was left paralyzed from the waist down.
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Protest in Portland, Ore., on Jan. 5, 2021 (KPTV)(KPTV)
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Police responding to Jan. 5, 2021 protest in Portland, Ore. (KPTV)(KPTV)
Some people lit dumpsters on fire and threw bottles at police officers while others chanted "burn it down," police said. They also allegedly ripped fencing from a portion of the precinct’s perimeter.
"People placed burning material and barricades in the streets, blocking all traffic lanes of Northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard," police said. "People sprayed graffiti on public and private buildings all along the street."
PORTLAND MAYOR TED WHEELER PLEDGES TO 'PUSH BACK HARDER' AGAINST ANTIFA AFTER NEW YEAR'S EVE RIOT
Video posted to Twitter by on-the-ground reporter Justin Yau shows a police officer ordering people to "back up" as others appear to arrest a person wearing a helmet emblazoned with the word "Press."
"Press does not get to break the law," an officer can be heard saying, according to Yau’s video. "You want to be press? You got to obey the law."
Police said officers made "some arrests" but did not immediately provide additional information.
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Just last week, rioters caused tens of thousands of dollars in damage to Portland buildings over the course of two days when they smashed windows and ransacked businesses at the start of the new year.
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler responded by saying it’s time "to push back harder against those who are set on destroying our community."
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