Spurred by a never-before-seen mob rush into the U.S. Capitol, Portland activists returned to the streets on Wednesday evening, Jan. 6 for a much more familiar activity: breaking windows and spraying graffiti.
Portland Police Bureau officers say the group gathered at Chapman Square Park in the central city around 9:15 p.m., marching to the Central Precinct on Southwest 2nd Avenue, where they began painting slogans.
At some point, marchers arrived at the newly-constructed Multnomah County Courthouse on Southwest 1st Avenue at Madison Street, where demonstrators attempted to gain entry to the security fencing and then failed to pry open the doors to the courthouse while others used umbrellas to shield the unlawful activity, according to a news release.
At least one window at the courthouse was broken, as were numerous other windows at other downtown storefronts.
Police declared the event an unlawful assembly; no arrests were made and authorities had limited engagement with the crowd beyond making amplified announcements.
"As officers were preparing to engage the unlawful assembly, the group broke up and moved away," police said. "The group had mostly moved off by 11:30 p.m. No force was used."
Jennifer Dowling — a reporter for KOIN 6 News, the Tribune's media partner — reported seeing a smashed glass door at Virginia Cafe, several shattered windows at a Target department store on Southwest 10th Avenue, a large window broken at the UnionBank Tower on Southwest Broadway, broken glass at a Starbucks on 4th Avenue and at the Washington Federal Bank on 5th Avenue. Anti-police graffiti was also applied to City Hall.
Observers told the Tribune the group of 50 or 60 employed "smash and run" tactics on Wednesday, rather than more sustained looting of businesses seen on New Years Eve.
Workers boarded up the Target the next morning, KOIN reported.
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