Portland mayor, police chief say they won't tolerate violence or vandalism during protests
PORTLAND, Ore. —
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and Police Chief Mike Marshman held a news conference Wednesday, discussing their plans for several upcoming marches and protests.
Several smaller protests and marches are planned this week, including a rally Thursday by local students protesting President-Elect Donald Trump's Secretary of Education pick, Betsy DeVos.
Though Facebook attendance numbers obviously don't correlate to exact attendance, the city is prepping for thousands of people to protest Trump's inauguration.
Thousands of people took to Portland streets on the day of the election last year, as well as several days after it. One of the protests turned violent, as anarchists broke windows of local businesses and caused havoc on downtown streets.
"I want to make it clear that will not be something we will tolerate," Wheeler said. "I've asked the bureau to protect the First Amendment rights of those peacefully protesting. We are not going to allow people to go on freeways, that's for the safety of everyone. We'll do our level-best to stop people from blocking public transit."
Marshman also addressed the violence and vandalism that occurred during the November protests, and pleaded with the public to remain peaceful.
"That's a crime. We're going to balance [peaceful protesting and violence]. We don't want random acts of vandalism, potential of personal injury," Chief Marshman said.
The Women's March on Portland has a permit and a designated route. Organizers of the RISE UP and Resist Fascism protest haven't obtained permits.
You can watch the entire press conference below: