Police Prepare For Inauguration Day Demonstrations


Photo: KATU

As with many major cities, the Portland Police Bureau is aware of the potential for large gatherings or protests in the city on Wednesday, January 20, 2021, and is partnering with other city bureaus and regional law enforcement partners in preparation. The Portland Police Bureau encourages lawful demonstration and will work to preserve peace.

Currently, there is no known active threat of violence. The Police Bureau is making every effort to staff patrol and other resources in anticipation of events that day in order to in the best possible position to address crowd events if necessary, and to provide police service to the rest of the community.

"Criminal activity, will be addressed as swiftly as resources allow. People who engage in criminal activity are subject to arrest, especially those whose actions degrade the overall tenor of an otherwise peaceful gathering," said Chief Chuck Lovell. "Arrests may happen at the time crimes occur. Portland Police will aggressively pursue criminals, investigate crimes and make arrests days or even weeks later if necessary."

The Police Bureau encourages demonstration event organizers and organizations to follow established guidelines for obtaining a permit to use a federal or City of Portland park and/or use City of Portland streets for protest events.

The Portland Police Bureau recognizes the concerns brought forward by community members about disturbances, blocked traffic, and crime. Past events have affected the entire city in one way or another. Relatively recent disturbances in this city have resulted in violence and property damage. Due to these past unlawful actions, the Portland Police Bureau has set the following objectives and goals for its response to the upcoming protests:

* Protect people's constitutional right to assembly and free speech;

* Maintain peace, protect life and respond to incidents that threaten life;

* Prevent or stop violence, prevent or stop property damage;

* Discourage opposing groups from converging in order to prevent violence and best ensure community safety.

* Ensure follow-up investigation of criminal behavior that was not immediately addressed.

These goals and objectives are based solely upon the neutral interests of overall public safety, regardless of the view held or expressed by any particular group of protestors.

To the extent possible, the community is encouraged to avoid the areas impacted by events as there may be disruptions to traffic flow. Those who wish to report non-emergency crimes should consider making a report online, or even delaying the reporting of certain property crime with no suspect information until the next day.

The Portland Police Bureau's liaison team attempts to work with all event organizers to establish an environment where community members may safely practice their First Amendment Rights of speech and assembly. Organizers may reach out at PPBLiaison@portlandoregon.gov or through its Twitter account: @PPBLiaison.

Anyone with information about individuals planning to commit criminal activity is asked to share that information with the Portland Police Bureau. Information can be sent via email to CrimeTips@portlandoregon.gov

For persons requiring anonymity, information may be submitted to Crime Stoppers of Oregon.

Crime Stoppers of Oregon offers cash rewards of up to $2,500 cash for information, reported to Crime Stoppers, that leads to an arrest in any unsolved felony crime. Tipsters can remain anonymous.