Portland Police Association – Tired of Officials Enabling Violence

 In Politics

Daryl Turner, President of the Portland Police Association, called out city officials on October 22, saying that they are enabling the violence that has plagued the city in recent years, according to Blue Lives Matter.

PPA President Turner called out city officials to quit  “sitting on their hands” and “draw a line in the sand” over their refusal to support police to move against the violence from “fringe groups.” It was only a matter of time before the Portland police rebelled at the criticism from having to stand down during the violent “protests.”

“A culture of enablement”

His Facebook post from October 22 reads in part:

It’s time for City Council to quit sitting on their hands and openly and collectively decry the violence and destruction forced upon the many and caused by a few.

Our officers and our community face those who believe they can harass, assault, and victimize Portlanders at will with no threat of arrest, indictment, or conviction. Our job as law enforcement is to protect the public and enforce the law. People who endanger or victimize others should be held accountable for their actions.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has provided a simple solution:

“The courts have held that the proper response to potential and actual violence is for the government to ensure an adequate police presence, and to arrest those who actually engage in such conduct, rather than to suppress legitimate First Amendment conduct as a prophylactic measure.”

Let’s be clear: police officers work to uphold the Constitution, including the right to free speech. When protests are peaceful, it’s our job to ensure that our community can say their piece and say it without fear of violence.

But when violence erupts at a protest, it is incumbent on the Police Bureau to step in and stop the violence through arrests. And, in turn, it is incumbent on our criminal justice system to ensure wrongdoers are held accountable for their person and property crimes. Providing adequate resources and support to accomplish that is one of the most important roles of government.

Ted Wheeler, the Mayor of Portland, is also the police commissioner, which explains a lot. He has asked for an emergency declaration restricting the time, manner, and location of protests, according to Oregon Live. Which is not what Officer Turner asked them to do. He asked them to condemn the violence and allow police to stop it with arrests.

But the bottom line is what Officer Turner describes as a culture of enablement and a lack of support from the council.

“The culture of enablement, restriction of enforcement, criticism of police when we act, and criticism of police when we don’t act, along with an over-emphasis on de-escalation and disengagement has led us to our present, unacceptable situation.” Daryl Turner

 

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