Law enforcement agencies in the State of Oregon are denying Gov. Kate Brown’s (D) request to assist with unrest in Portland, citing the “lack of political support for public safety, the uncertain legal landscape, the current volatility combined with intense scrutiny on use of force” which “presents an unacceptable risk if deputies were deployed directly.”
Washington County Sheriff Pat Garrett released a statement following Brown’s request for law enforcement agencies to assist Portland Police, committing only to support them in “indirect ways” such as “analyzing risks associated with social media, air support, assisting with a specific criminal investigation, etc.”
Garrett stated that the risk of deploying personnel is far too great for several reasons, including the lack of support for public safety.
“PPB is a terrific partner and I am very sympathetic to what they are enduring,” Garrett said. “However, the lack of political support for public safety, the uncertain legal landscape, the current volatility combined with intense scrutiny on use of force presents an unacceptable risk if deputies were deployed directly”:
Statement from Sheriff Pat Garrett pic.twitter.com/8I3pdVaiCn
— Washington County Sheriff’s Office (@WCSOOregon) September 1, 2020
Clackamas County Sheriff Craig Roberts also responded to Brown’s call for assistance, revealing that the governor did not even discuss the plan with his office prior to announcing it.
“Had Governor Brown discussed her plan with my office, I would have told her it’s about changing policy, not adding resources,” Roberts said. “Increasing law enforcement resources in Portland will not solve the nightly violence and now, murder.”
Roberts said it is essential to support a policy that “holds offenders accountable for their destruction and violence,” stressing that it is the “only way to make Portland safe again.”
That will require the DA to charge offenders appropriately and a decision by the Multnomah County Presiding Judge not to allow offenders released on their own recognizance, and instead require bail with conditions. The same offenders are arrested night after night, only to be released by the court and not charged with a crime by the DA’s Office. The next night they are back at it, endangering the lives of law enforcement and the community all over again.
“Had Governor Brown asked me, I would have told her that no amount of human resources will stop the ‘cycle of violence’ (her term) that is making Portland unsafe,” he added. “For that to occur, the criminal justice system will need do its part and hold offenders accountable.”
— Kellee Azar (@KelleeAzar) August 31, 2020
Brown released her plan, a “unified law enforcement plan,” to restore peace in Portland on Sunday.
As Breitbart News detailed:
According to the plan, the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office will “work with system partners to hold individuals booked for violent behavior, and to ensure that there is adequate jail space to hold such individuals,” while the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office will “prosecute serious criminal offenses, including arson and physical violence.”
Oregon State Police will also support Portland Police by offering both personnel and resources, which will “free up the Portland Police Bureau’s investigative capabilities to arrest and charge those engaging in violent acts.”
Her plan also listed the Clackamas and Washington County Sheriff’s Offices, specifically, asking them to “support the Portland Police Bureau with personnel and resources to keep the peace and protect free speech.”
Notably, Brown blamed the escalation of violence in the city, primarily, on “right-wing vigilantes” and “armed white supremacists” in remarks corresponding with the release of her plan.
“The right-wing group Patriot Prayer and self-proclaimed militia members drove into downtown Portland last night, armed and looking for a fight,” she said following the night that saw a man in a “Patriot Prayer” hat shot and killed.
“Every Oregonian has the right to freely express their views without fear of deadly violence. I will not allow Patriot Prayer and armed white supremacists to bring more bloodshed to our streets,” she continued.
“Time and again, from Charlottesville to Kenosha to Portland, we have seen the tragic outcome when armed right-wing vigilantes take matters into their own hands,” she added. “Gun violence is never, ever the answer.”