Portland riot declared amid 'autonomous demonstrations' at ICE facility; officers threatened with knife

May Day riot led to at least 6 arrests, including for one man who allegedly menaced officers with a knife

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Portland protests on May Day devolved into a riot overnight when about 100 people engaged in "autonomous demonstrations" near an ICE facility and police made at least six arrests, including for one individual who allegedly was menacing officers with a knife.

The police took to Twitter to post several pictures of the damage to stores in the area. Three Starbucks had their windows shattered and a Hilton in the city was tagged with graffiti. Police also posted what appeared to be an instruction pamphlet on how to make a slingshot with a sling and a hammer.

KATU reported that the group arrived at the federal courthouse, which was where the riot was declared.


The report said targeted arrests were made and by about 11 p.m., the group dissolved. The station reported that a separate group clashed with federal authorities stationed at the city’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement building. The clash reportedly led to officers firing pepper ball rounds.

Several demonstrations happened on May 1 around Portland that remained peaceful, the Portland Police Bureau said in a statement, but one devolved into a riot and downtown businesses were damaged.

Windows were damaged downtown on May Day. (Portland Police Bureau)

Windows were damaged downtown on May Day. (Portland Police Bureau)

"We appreciate those who engaged in their First Amendment rights this afternoon in a peaceful manner. Once again, under the cover of darkness, several dozen people decided to damage and destroy multiple businesses in our downtown area resulting in a riot," Portland Police Chief Chuck Lovell said in a statement. "The situation became extremely dangerous when a man brandished a knife at officers when officers were simply doing their job. The officers appear to have exercised restraint and professionalism and safely apprehended this suspect. I am proud of all of our employees who worked to minimize further damage and arrest some of the criminals involved."

Between 9 and 10 p.m. local time Sunday, one group of about 30 individuals gathered near the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility and another group of about 80 to 100 people gathered in Shemanski Park. Both events had been promoted as "autonomous demonstrations," according to the Portland Police Bureau, which the department said are "similar to prior events where participants engaged in criminal behavior including arson, assault, vandalism and theft."

A man allegedly threatened officers with a butterfly knife. (Portland Police Bureau)

A man allegedly threatened officers with a butterfly knife. (Portland Police Bureau)

A number of shields were brought to the park, which indicated those within the group intended to engage in criminal acts, police said. The group marched toward City Hall and began engaging in vandalism by breaking windows and spray painting the building. An unlawful assembly was declared and police used a loudspeaker to order the crowd to disperse.

A riot was declared as individuals ignored orders to disperse and continued to break windows of businesses. Police said several people used umbrellas to block officers from viewing criminal acts.

By 11:30 p.m., the group near the ICE facility had grown to between 50 and 60 people, and, as officers were making a focused arrest, a male in the crowd was trying to push through the officers’ line, the police department said. He allegedly reached into his pocket and pulled a butterfly-type knife on officers from about six feet away. Officers used munitions and the male backed up, then walked away.

Jeremiah Day, 22, of Portland, was arrested for menacing officers with a butterfly knife. Day allegedly ran from police for about two blocks after he was located by bicycle officers and still had the knife in his hand when he was being placed under arrest. No officers were injured.

Objects seized from demonstrators included a hammer and instructions on how to make a sling shot. (Portland Police Bureau)

Objects seized from demonstrators included a hammer and instructions on how to make a sling shot. (Portland Police Bureau)

Officers made several other focused arrests.

Phoebe Loomis, 36, of Portland, was charged with second degree criminal mischief, and a helmet, gloves, metal tool, bear spray, and gas mask were seized. Quang Ngyen, 20, of Kent, Wash., was charged with first degree criminal mischief and second degree disorderly conduct. A hammer, sling shot and instructions on how to make a sling shot, were seized. Krystopher Donnelly, 27, of Portland, was arrested on a warrant for riot, first degree criminal mischief and resist arrest. Darren Stephens, 36, of Portland, was arrested for a warrant for second degree criminal mischief.


Officers earlier had intervened in an altercation at Southwest 4th Avenue and Southwest Columbia Street, where one person was arrested and a baseball bat was seized. Police said video of the incident circulating online does not capture the entire event "or the portion when the crimes were committed."

Michael Isaacs, 26, of Portland was charged with menacing and second-degree disorderly conduct. Several items, including a baseball bat, body armor, a knife and a flare, were seized, police said.