The cops' version: We were angels


This morning, after I posted my assessment of last night's protest in Laurelhurst, the Portland police issued a statement containing their version of that incident. It is here.

According to  the police, the "bull rush" of the protesters, and the slashing of the tires on the car of one of the attendees at the protest, were justified. As in their tweets last night, the police say people in the crowd threw numerous objects at officers, and pointed lasers at them.

The police statement also goes out of its way to make the point that people who identify themselves as "press" are really just protesters. This backs up law enforcement's courtroom argument that they shouldn't have to treat journalists any differently from protesters.

The cops also admit slashing the woman's tires. No mention is made of the fact that they also smashed out the back window of the car, while she was in it. They say "a person moved a car slowly in front of police, interfering with their attempts to safely move people out of the road." Given how they were manhandling protesters, that statement is almost comical, but also chilling.

Even if the police description of the protesters' conduct is accurate, their response was overblown and needlessly brutal. And from what I saw on Twitter, their account of the incident is misleading at best.

Comments

  1. Does anyone see the irony here? These incidents of police brutality where an unarmed Black man or woman is killed are nearly always accompanied with a police description of events that sounds like B.S. There's a checklist of things they have to say that usually includes fearing for their lives. What is clearly a crime is wrangled into shape for the district attorney to look the other way and even if charges are filed, the system is rigged to exonerate the officers. I mean just look at the Rodney King video. How could that not be seen as a man on his knees not fighting as the officers beat the shit out of him? What would they have said happened without the emergence of the video?
    Well, there are lots of videos of these events in Portland. If the police want to paint a rosy picture of their behavior, it's not going to be easy. But how ironic that a big part of police brutality killings is the official spin that follows. And now they're spinning their response to the protests about it.

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