Oregon City nixes Proud Boys events after riot in park
In the aftermath of the riot at Clackamette Park, Oregon City is canceling Proud Boys leader Daniel Tooze's reservation for a picnic shelter at the park this Friday.
Public records show that Tooze had reserved picnic tables at the park for the past three Fridays for "pro-American flag-wave and campaign events."
Oregon City police declared a riot shortly before 4 p.m. Friday, June 18 after dueling groups of left- and right-wing protesters unleashed pepper spray, fired paintball guns and used their fists to do battle on the green space at the confluence of the Clackamas and Willamette rivers.
Records obtained by Pamplin Media Group show one of the park's two shelters had been reserved by Tooze for "horse shoes and dinner for flag wave" on June 25, with attendance at the event estimated at 50 persons — but the reservation has now been canceled.
Citing the ongoing investigation into the previous riot, OCPD Capt. Shaun Davis said that he couldn't release any other names besides Tooze who have been identified so far as on city's list for being denied park-facility reservation requests.
"If we determine that anyone who was involved in the riot tries to make a park reservation, that reservation will be denied," Davis said.
Tooze previously reserved the park's main shelter on June 4, June 11 and June 18, according to the records. After the most recent skirmishing, Tooze and others wearing the colors of the Proud Boys hoisted flags for passing motorists on State Route 99E.
Oregon City Parks and Recreation staff marked the nearby horseshoe rink and picnic shelter as "not for use because of Flag Demonstration at Clack" on the days when Tooze had booked the main pavilion, per the records.
Tooze did not immediately respond to a request for comment, though he told a Pamplin Media reporter on June 18 that the shelter had been reserved for a GOP voter registration drive. Tooze then compared the actions of the black-clad counterprotesters known as antifa to "silencing the opposite political party, just like the Nazis did."
An official statement by Oregon City staff called the June 18 violence "unacceptable and does not represent the values and expectations" of the city, community or businesses. City officials said they don't take lightly their action to cancel Tooze's picnic-shelter reservation.
"However, we are not willing to risk further property damage and personal injury caused by the unacceptable behavior of a small group of individuals," the city's statement said. "The city stands with peaceful and nonviolent groups who wish to encourage and engage in conversation, the free exchange of ideas and community healing."
Oregon City officials expect parks to be used responsibly so that all visitors can exercise their rights, minds and bodies safely. They plan to act immediately to close parks in response to violent protests, as they did at Clackamette Park on June 18.
"Our parks are a necessity because they make us healthier as individuals, they are places for us to come together and enjoy our beautiful city and, more importantly, they help build stronger communities," city officials wrote. "This is your park. The city is here to manage them responsibly and to ensure that all visitors can use our parks safely."
Besides one case from last year, Davis said he didn't know of any other Proud Boys or any antifa members who have been charged with crimes in Oregon City.
"We're trying to identify all the people who were at the riot and whether they committed any crimes," Davis said. "We're also trying to identify any victims and determine whether they want to come forward as victims and forwarding that information to the district attorney's office."
Charges move forward
The Clackamas County District Attorney's Office has indicted alleged Proud Boys member Cole Robert Scott, 26, on felony charges of unlawful use of a weapon, menacing and failure to perform the duties of a driver related to an Oregon City bar fight in August 2020 ; Scott faces a July 2 court hearing on the charges.
Follow me on Twitter
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.