Portland Mayor Supports ‘Kettling’ After Civil Liberties Complaints

March 16, 2021 by Daniel Mollenkamp
Portland Mayor Supports ‘Kettling’ After Civil Liberties Complaints
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler poses for a photo outside City Hall in Portland, Ore. (AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer, File)

PORTLAND, Ore. –  A mayor-led press conference that prominently featured law enforcement on Monday afternoon condemned the “violence and intimidation tactics” of groups operating in Portland which they described as lawless, prone to property damage, and bad for the community.

The press conference was called following the mass arrest of more than a dozen people in Portland on Friday, March 12, which led to the recovery of weapons, including firearms and bear mace, police say.

The members of this group were detained after the police observed property damage, police said at the event. 

Portland Deputy Police Chief Chris Davis claimed that this is the same group that has been operating in the area for some time. 


“This was a group of people who have come to believe that they are entitled to damage other people’s property, threaten community members and assault police officers,” Davis said.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said during the event that he supports Friday’s use of the technique known as “kettling,” a controversial crowd control tactic, and that it was “used appropriately as a law enforcement tactic.” City Attorney Robert Taylor echoed Wheeler’s claims that the kettling on Friday was “peacefully used,” without tear gas or impact munitions, in order to end criminal conduct, and was legal.


Oregon Justice Resource Center, CAIR-Oregon, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon put out a written statement on Saturday, March 13, denouncing the use of the tactic as indiscriminate and abusive, also accusing law enforcement of violating constitutional rights to privacy and Oregon law by requiring individuals to take off their COVID-19 protective face masks, be photographed, and to show identification before being permitted to leave. 

“PPB officers commit violence and break the law again and again at lawful protests because they know the mayor, the police chief, and the City of Portland will not hold them accountable, by PPB disciplinary processes or by shifting resources, even though the lack of accountability keeps the public unsafe,” according to the statement 

Media was forced out of the kettle area on Friday, according to press present at the event.

Several community leaders, including former state Sen. Avel Gordly, also spoke at the event to say that violence and destruction don’t serve peaceful protests such as Black Lives Matter, which call for police reform and the safety of the Black community in the city.

During the conference, the acting U.S. Attorney for Oregon Scott Asphaug described his workplace as “ground zero” for acts of criminality which, he says, are falsely described as protest. 


“The people who work here support the voices of racial and social justice and will not be intimidated from doing our jobs by the ugly graffiti or broken windows,” Taylor said.

The mayor has held multiple conferences to condemn “anarchist violence” in the city since last summer, including one on New Year’s Day in which he said he would seek to implement “restorative justice measures.” During this latest call, Wheeler indicated that there was “no interest” in the measures from the legislature, though he also claimed the community is coming together against this violence.

A+
a-

In The News

Health

Voting

Cities

January 19, 2023
by Dan McCue
DC Ranked No. 9 for Bed Bugs in New Orkin Survey

WASHINGTON — Like many things in Washington, it all depends on how you look at it. When it comes to... Read More

WASHINGTON — Like many things in Washington, it all depends on how you look at it. When it comes to bed bugs, things have slightly improved in the District of Columbia since the height of the pandemic, when the pest control firm Orkin ranked it No.... Read More

January 17, 2023
by Dan McCue
NYC Mayor Vows to Dismantle ‘Inequity’ in Women’s Health Care

NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Eric Adams outlined his vision for a new “New York City Women’s Health... Read More

NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Eric Adams outlined his vision for a new “New York City Women’s Health Agenda” Tuesday aimed at ending what he called “decades of systemic inequity” that has negatively impacted women across the city’s five boroughs. “For too long health... Read More

January 9, 2023
by Dan McCue
Over 7,000 Nurses Walk Off Job in NYC

NEW YORK — More than 7,000 nurses at Mount Sinai Medical Center and Montefiore Medical Center walked off the job... Read More

NEW YORK — More than 7,000 nurses at Mount Sinai Medical Center and Montefiore Medical Center walked off the job this morning after talks to avert a strike fell apart overnight. The nurses are seeking better wages and working conditions. “Despite Montefiore’s offer of a 19.1%... Read More

December 14, 2022
by TWN Staff
Los Angeles Declares Homelessness Emergency

The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday unanimously ratified newly sworn-in Mayor Karen Bass’ declaration of an emergency in regard... Read More

The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday unanimously ratified newly sworn-in Mayor Karen Bass’ declaration of an emergency in regard to homelessness. Bass began her first day in office by declaring a state of emergency, vowing to move swiftly to help thousands of homeless people off... Read More

December 7, 2022
by Tom Ramstack
Firefighters Seek Contempt Citation Against DC for Ban on Beards

WASHINGTON — Washington, D.C., firefighters are asking a federal judge for a contempt citation against the city for its ban... Read More

WASHINGTON — Washington, D.C., firefighters are asking a federal judge for a contempt citation against the city for its ban on beards. Firefighters argue the ban violates the freedom of religion of their Muslim and Jewish members. The District of Columbia says the ban helps to... Read More

September 30, 2022
by Kate Michael
Landmark Bills Offer Decarbonization Funding but Cities Not Ready

WASHINGTON — The effort to mitigate climate change, reduce greenhouse gases, and decarbonize is a national priority of many countries,... Read More

WASHINGTON — The effort to mitigate climate change, reduce greenhouse gases, and decarbonize is a national priority of many countries, but since the transportation, building, and electricity sectors produce nearly two-thirds of GHG emissions in the United States alone, it’s clear that cities are going to... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top