Protesters united against police brutality for the eighth consecutive night in Portland.
Thursday’s protests followed memorials in Minnesota and New York City for George Floyd, a black man whose killing by police in Minneapolis set off protests nationwide. Floyd died May 25 after he was restrained for nearly nine minutes by a white officer who knelt on Floyd’s neck.
In Portland, protesters have filled downtown streets and bridges. Smaller demonstrations have emerged statewide.
City leaders responded Thursday to the calls for reform by saying officers would no longer work inside Portland schools. Portland Public Schools Superintendent Guadalupe Guerrero first announced the district would end the program. Mayor Ted Wheeler said the city would also reassign the officers who had patrolled David Douglas and Parkrose schools.
The Portland Police Bureau has come under scrutiny by protesters and the state American Civil Liberties Union for its tactics responding to the demonstrations, which at times have escalated to damage to buildings and confrontations with police. Portland police have often used tear gas to disperse crowds.
Deputy Chief Chris Davis said at a Thursday afternoon press conference with Wheeler that Portland police did not use tear gas Wednesday, when an estimated 8,000 protesters amassed downtown. Thousands of people stood outside the downtown jail for hours. A chain link fence separated police and protesters.
A city-owned green space at Southeast Stark Street and 12th Avenue has emerged as a launching pad for the demonstrations. People planned to begin gathering there Thursday at 6 p.m.
Follow OregonLive for live coverage throughout the night.
— Brooke Herbert, Mark Graves, Jim Ryan, Jayati Ramakrishnan, K. Rambo of The Oregonian/OregonLive contributed to this report, which will be updated throughout the night.
(c)2020 The Oregonian (Portland, Ore.)
Visit The Oregonian (Portland, Ore.) at www.oregonian.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.