Protesters in Portland gathered outside Democrat mayor Ted Wheeler’s apartment Monday night to ‘celebrate’ his birthday by letting off fireworks and singing ‘happy tear gas to you’.
A fire was lit in the street outside the 58-year-old’s apartment block in an upmarket area in the north of the city, as around 200 people gathered while blasting music, sounding horns, banging pots and pans, and playing drums.
Activists – some of whom were carrying balloons and wearing party hats – danced to the Macarena and were heard shouting slogans including ‘Black Lives Matter‘.
Protesters in Portland gathered outside mayor Ted Wheeler’s apartment building on Monday night to ‘celebrate’ his birthday by starting a fire in the street and letting off fireworks
Police moved in after looters broke into a business and started a fire in the lobby, which was underneath an occupied apartment building
Protesters blared music, let off fireworks, sounded horns and banged drums before officers moved in and dispersed them
Police arrived around 11pm after fires were started in the street, declared the scene a riot, and ordered the demonstrators to leave, KOIN reported.
When they refused, officers charged at the crowd and made arrests. It is unclear exactly how many people were arrested.
Videos showed a trash can and picnic table were set on fire, with other pieces of furniture from outside nearby businesses added to the flames.
Marchers stood nearby holding a large sign that said ‘resign’.
Additional footage showed windows had been smashed at several nearby businesses, including what appeared to be a dentist’s office.
The building had also been daubed with graffiti while a small fire had been started in the lobby.
Activists also danced to the ‘Macarena’ and sang ‘Happy tear gas, war crimes Wheeler/Happy tear gas to you,’ to the tune of ‘Happy Birthday’, KATU reported.
Monday marked the 95th consecutive day of demonstrations in Portland, which began after the killing of George Floyd during his arrest in Minneapolis.
Protesters had started gathering in the north of Portland around 8pm before making their way to the mayor’s apartment, where fires were lit shortly before 11pm
Police arrived on the scene at 11pm, declared the gathering a riot, and were then filmed charging the crowd and making arrests
Some of the demonstrators carried party balloons and wore birthday hats, while others carried large signs telling the mayor to ‘resign’
A man with a megaphone and clutching something in his left hand speaks to the crowd, which had blocked a street in the north of Portland
On Sunday night, activists had targeted a police building at the Penubra Kelly Building, with the gathering quickly declared unlawful after projectiles were thrown.
Police said that 29 arrests were made after the crowd refused to disperse. One was charged with illegal possession of a firearm, while most were charged with disorderly conduct or interfering with an officer.
Tensions ratcheted up in the city after 39-year-old Aaron ‘Jay’ Bishop, a member of the right-wing pro-Trump group Patriot Prayer, was shot dead overnight Saturday.
Video showed what appeared to be a man following Bishop down the street before gunshots rang out, leaving him sprawled on the floor.
A person of interest to the investigation has since been identified as Michael Forest Reinoehl, a 48-year-old father-of-two who described himself online as ‘100% antifa’.
Reinoehl’s estranged sister said she confirmed to police that she recognised her brother in screenshots from the night in question.
Police have yet to confirm the man’s identity, and he has not been formally arrested.
‘On the one hand, this whole thing surprises the daylights out of us, because we always thought he is a lot of bark, not a lot of bite. But he’s also been very impulsive and irrational,’ she said.
Police said they moved in to clear the crowd after a business was burgled and furniture dragged into the street where it was set on fire (remains of the fire above)
In total police say 19 people were arrested, some of whom were carrying knives and a collapsible baton, after vandals attacked a nearby business
Walls were daubed with graffiti by some members of the protest group, prompting police to declare the gathering a riot and move in
‘Violence begets violence and hatred begets hatred. This is not the solution. My heart goes out to the victim. It always has, before I even knew my brother was involved.’
She claimed her brother is troubled and that they have not been in touch for three years.
In the past, she said he’d stolen their mother’s seizure medication and is in debt.
He has a son and daughter from a previous relationship but is no longer involved with the mother.
President Trump has since weighed in on the situation, threatening to send the National Guard to Portland to quell the violence.
‘Rest in peace Jay!’, he said, after learning of Danielson’s death.
He then tweeted: ‘Portland is a mess, and it has been for many years. If this joke of a mayor doesn’t clean it up, we will go in and do it for them!’ he wrote.
‘The Radical Left Mayors & Governors of Cities where this crazy violence is taking place have lost control of their ‘movement’.
‘It wasn’t supposed to be like this, but the Anarchists & Agitators got carried away and don’t listen anymore – even force Slow Joe out of basement!’