Protesters in Portland clashed with federal agents in a demonstration targeting a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement building that started Wednesday night and lasted until it was broken up early Thursday, officials said.
The demonstrators spray-painted windows on the building, broke several windows and shined laser lights at agents inside.
This prompted local police to declare the event a riot, meaning authorities could use tear gas and other riot control methods to break up the crowd, Portland police said in a statement.
Clashes ensued, with protesters hurling rocks and bottles at agents who came out of the building and at police, the statement said.
To those near SW Bancroft St and SW Bond Ave at the ICE Building: The gathering has been declared a riot.
All persons near SW Bancroft St and SW Bond Ave must disperse by traveling to the NORTH. You are ordered to disperse immediately.
— Portland Police (@PortlandPolice) August 20, 2020
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Tear gas and stun grenades were used by authorities around midnight to break up the crowd but it wasn’t clear which law enforcement agency used them, The Oregonian reported.
The gas wafted through the open windows of residents living near the locations where the protester-police confrontations took place, prompting complaints from the residents, the newspaper said.
Police arrested two people, and several officers suffered minor injuries after they were hit with rocks, the Portland police statement said.
Overnight on 19–20 Aug, hundreds of #antifa blocked an intersection by a hospital in order to attack @ICEgov Portland facility. Responding officers were hit w/rocks. Antifa then started fires on the street. They later smashed the windows of ICE building. https://t.co/hQ3sQ32cTP pic.twitter.com/1gDcAJDPXE
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) August 20, 2020
Demonstrations in which fires have been set, objects have been thrown and police have fired “crowd control munitions” have gripped Oregon’s biggest city for more than two months following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Participants have repeatedly broken into the offices of a police union headquarters building and last month clashed for weeks with federal agents dispatched to protect a U.S. courthouse targeted by protesters.
In another Portland protest that started late Tuesday and lasted into early Wednesday, demonstrators broke out the windows of a county government building, sprayed lighter fluid inside and set a fire.
.@PortlandPolice has declared the gathering near the Multnomah Building a riot after individuals vandalized, repeatedly smashed first floor windows with rocks and threw burning material into an office. https://t.co/PtByF6Gx6h
— Multnomah Co Sheriff (@MultCoSO) August 19, 2020
Antifa smash out windows of the Multnomah Building in Portland tonight and throw lit materials inside to set the ground floor on fire. They did this to multiple other buildings over the course of their 80+ days of terror in the city. #PortlandRiots pic.twitter.com/2Q2zO7GVDU
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) August 19, 2020
Leaving destruction in its wake, the crowd that had vandalized the county building then marched through residential areas yelling “Black lives matter” and “No justice, no peace.”
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