After a mass resignation of an elite squad of Portland police officers, the head of the union on Friday unloaded on anti-cop city officials for making his members the villains in a social justice melodrama fraught with relentless lawlessness.
Daryl Turner, executive director of the Portland Police Association, was responding to the department’s Rapid Response Team, or RRT, quitting as a unit.
The 50 officers, who volunteered for the assignment, did so after the district attorney charged an officer with misdemeanor assault for striking a protester with a baton during a riot last August.
“For months, the city of Portland endured a sustained level of destruction and violence on our streets like never before,” Turner said, and in response to the nightly violence, “local politicians celebrated the destruction of our city as if looting, arson, property damage, physical violence, and even murder were permissible and lawful First Amendment activities.”
Turner noted that Portland cops, including the RRT, “held the line.” “They put themselves in harm’s way to restore order and peace when destruction and mayhem struck. Rather than acknowledging and thanking those officers, rather than prioritizing public safety and peace, politicians criticized the RRT, further fueling the fires in our city.”
Turner further said that RRT members volunteered because they believed in protecting the community.
What they did not volunteer for was “to have Molotov cocktails, fireworks, explosives, rocks, bottles, urine, feces, and other dangerous objects thrown at them. Nor did they volunteer to have threats of rape, murder, and assault on their families hurled at them. They did not volunteer to suffer serious injuries, to be subject to warrantless criticism and false allegations by elected officials, or to suffer through baseless complaints and lengthy investigations devoid of due process,” Turner added.
Turner blamed the resignations on the “political venom” leveled against the officers for simply doing their jobs.
“When elected officials turned nightly violence into political banter for their own personal agendas, those politicized actions put Rapid Response Team members and public safety at risk,” Turner continued. “The reality is our dedicated RRT members have had enough and were left with no other alternative but to resign from their voluntary positions.”
Turner maintained that “roving gangs of black-clad rioters do not speak for the hundreds of thousands of residents and business owners of Portland who want a safe and clean city. Yet local politicians supported them. These rioters, bent on destruction, hijacked social and racial justice movements. Yet local politicians supported them. These rioters burned and looted our city. Yet local politicians supported them.”
Exacerbating the problem is that the same DA who charged the officer seemed unwilling to hold rioters accountable. According to local media in Portland, prosecutors dropped 891 of the 1,108 criminal civil-unrest cases that police brought to them between May 29, 2020, and June 11, 2021.
A couple things were inevitable when big-city liberals began demonizing police and calling for “defunding” them.
First, crime would escalate. Second, cops would grow hesitant, or even reluctant, to enforce the law, or even to serve.
Portland offers Exhibit A.
Android Users, Click Here To Download The Free Press App And Never Miss A Story. It’s Free And Coming To Apple Users Soon.