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Multnomah Co. sheriff, OSP decline to assist with crowd control at Portland rallies citing tear gas ban

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Posted: Sep 24, 2020 7:18 AM

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    PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -- Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese has declined to offer sheriff’s office assistance with crowd control at planned rallies in Portland on Saturday.

In an email to Deputy Chief Chris Davis of the Portland Police Bureau, Reese acknowledge a request for the MCSO Rapid Response Team and Mobile Booking Team to support the bureau Saturday.

The far-right group Proud Boys have a rally planned for noon at Delta Park, even though the city denied a permit for the gathering based on COVID-19 health guidelines. Anti-fascist counter protesters are planning a separate rally at Peninsula Park, about three miles away.

In his email, Reese wrote that the two groups “have a history of violent interactions.”

Reese stated that the ban on the use of CS gas by Portland police officers leaves the bureau “with no sound tactical options to quickly disperse a large crowd engaged in dangerous acts of violence.”

“If officers have to use high levels of physical force to protect the safety of the participants, it may lead to substantial injuries and may not be effective in achieving the desired outcome,” Reese stated in his email.

Earlier this month, Mayor Ted Wheeler ordered the Portland Police Bureau to stop using tear gas for crowd control, as Portland was in the midst of more than 100 straight days of protests that often turned into riots.

“Unfortunately, given the directions your team is working under, our Rapid Response Team is not available,” Reese said.

Reese did offer the support of the Mobile Booking Team to assist in processing people arrested, while also assisting with patrol duties in east Portland, which will free up additional Portland police officers for crowd control at the rallies.

In a separate email from Oregon State Police to Davis, it states OSP has "some serious reservations on your request relating to crowd control," specifically addressing the ban on CS gas.

OSP acknowledges the ban is "due to circumstances beyond the control of PPB."

"If the decision (to) amend the CS gas prohibition is revisited, we are willing to discuss resource allocation. OSP has used CS gas judiciously, although it is a tool we must have available for community safety, officer safety and best policing practices," according to OSP.

OSP has offered uniformed patrol coverage to assist PPB on Saturday, as well as resources to aid in officer rescue and the transport of personnel.

The Portland Police Bureau on Tuesday said they were preparing for “mass gathering events” Saturday. Police Chief Chuck Lovell said in a press release Tuesday that the bureau was working with the mayor’s office and other partnering agencies in their response plans.

Wheeler on Wednesday issued a series of Tweets about the planned Proud Boys rally, saying, “Alt-right groups and white nationalists are intent on coming into our community. These groups empower racism, intolerance and hate. Those are not Portland values, and they are not welcome. Hate has no home in Portland.”

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Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 42436

Reported Deaths: 655
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah9228160
Marion5858108
Washington579076
Umatilla335444
Clackamas313965
Lane239227
Malheur191738
Jackson16846
Deschutes113213
Yamhill99415
Linn81015
Polk65415
Jefferson6049
Morrow5456
Lincoln51713
Union4672
Benton4426
Klamath4113
Douglas3506
Wasco34715
Hood River2771
Josephine2673
Columbia2661
Coos2460
Clatsop2430
Baker1203
Crook1092
Tillamook700
Curry571
Wallowa442
Lake370
Harney230
Sherman190
Gilliam110
Grant110
Wheeler10
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 910438

Reported Deaths: 17386
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles3006147000
Riverside667321295
San Bernardino627741072
Orange587251447
San Diego54941870
Kern33881416
Fresno30858436
Sacramento25445484
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Tulare17495286
Ventura14300164
Imperial12882336
San Francisco12152140
Monterey1139991
San Mateo11149159
Santa Barbara9814120
Merced9465155
Sonoma9402136
Kings824683
Solano738476
Marin7089128
Madera502074
Placer417857
San Luis Obispo414132
Yolo320759
Butte308752
Santa Cruz280225
Napa196215
Shasta188930
Sutter183712
San Benito144215
El Dorado13284
Yuba129310
Mendocino112921
Tehama8808
Lassen7661
Lake69515
Glenn6573
Nevada6168
Humboldt56710
Colusa5506
Calaveras34218
Amador33016
Tuolumne2714
Inyo22715
Siskiyou1930
Mono1802
Del Norte1781
Mariposa782
Plumas680
Modoc290
Trinity260
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Alpine30
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