Law & the Courts

Portland Rioters Attack ICE Building, Local Dem Headquarters after Biden Inauguration

A rioter throws a tear gas canister back at law enforcement officers during a rally for the abolishment of ICE in Portland, Ore., January 20, 2021. (Lindsey Wasson/Reuters)

Portland, Ore., Police declared an unlawful assembly Wednesday night after roughly 150 rioters damaged a federal immigration facility in the city, authorities said.

Rioters threw rocks and eggs and vandalized the Immigration and Customs Enforcement building, Portland police Sgt. Kevin Allen said Wednesday night, adding that some were seen carrying pepper ball guns, electronic control weapons, shields, fireworks and rocks.

“We have observed property damage to the building,” the Portland Police Bureau wrote on Twitter. “Anyone who is involved in criminal behavior including: vandalism and graffitting is subject to arrest or citation.”

Federal law enforcement used “crowd-control munitions,” he said, while police announced Thursday morning that some arrests had been made and that they were standing by “to address crimes” in the surrounding neighborhood.

Portland saw a number of demonstrations on Wednesday as President Joe Biden’s inauguration was underway in Washington, D.C., according to Fox News.

Antifa demonstrators who gathered to express dissatisfaction with Biden sparred with police, forcing officers to retreat and taking at least one police bicycle. 

Roughly 150 people attended a “J20” protest against Biden and law enforcement around 2 p.m., marching from Revolution Hall to the Democratic Party of Oregon’s headquarters. The group smashed windows and vandalized the building with graffiti.

Video clips show people holding signs saying, “We are ungovernable” and “We don’t want Biden – We want revenge!” for “Police Murders,” “Imperialist Wars” and “Fascist Massacres.”

Police officers arrested eight adults in total, on charges ranging from rioting and possession of a destructive device to reckless burning.

Rioters “showed aggression by swarming officers and throwing objects” when officers entered the crowd on bicycles to ask a demonstrator to remove metal poles affixed to a banner that could be used as a weapon.

Police recovered long poles and a large knife from people in the crowd, they said. Officers deployed a smoke canister after the crowd blocked them from leaving.

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