PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland police Friday night declared as a riot a demonstration downtown against the acquittal of a teen who killed two people and injured another during a protest in Wisconsin.
The protest of about 200 people was declared a riot after protesters started breaking windows, throwing objects at police and talked about burning down the Justice Center, KOIN TV reported.
The protesters gathered following the acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse, 18, in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Portland Police Bureau Chief Chuck Lovell said shortly after the verdict that officers were working on plans for Friday night and the weekend, KOIN reported.
By about 8:50 p.m., about 200 protesters had gathered in downtown Portland and blocked streets.
By 9 p.m.., windows were broken and doors of city facilities were damaged. Police tweeted objects were being thrown at officers in the area., KOIN reported.
The police tweeted: “A crowd has gathered near SE 2nd Avenue and SE Madison Street and participants have begun breaking windows and damaging doors of city facilities in the area. People are throwing objects at police officers in the area.”
Portland saw ongoing, often violent protests after the murder of George Floyd last year by police in Minneapolis. Some activists complained that the police were heavy-handed in their response.