Last week Multnomah County District Attorney MIke Schmidt charged a Portland cop with assault for an extra baton push or two to the back of a fallen rioter’s head last August 18, the same night the group tried to set fire to the Multnomah County Office Building.
Police internal affairs cleared him after an investigation. The rioter/photojournalist recently won a settlement in civil court–I don’t know what bearing that has on the DA’s decision, timing or prospects in court. The DA might be moving on these slight charges (fourth degree assault, a class A misdemeanor) to appease the left after he recently felt compelled to charge some of the more serious riot offenses of last summer and May Day of this year.
Schmidt threw a bone–with a crushing backhand–to the cops in his announcement:
“I want to start by thanking and acknowledging the Portland Police Bureau for their dedicated work on this investigation into one of their own,” Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt said in a statement Tuesday after the charges were filed. “I further want to thank the many members of the Portland Police Bureau who have showed up night after night in response to civil demonstrations that have at times turned violent. Despite these pressures, these law enforcement professionals remained professional, and their actions lawful.
Notably it’s not that “most” cops do their jobs honorably, but “many”, while the “mostly peaceful protesters” canard remains intact. Hapless police chief Chuck Lovell pleaded conflict of interest by way of involvement in the internal investigation and now legal case, and made no statement. The response by the defiant police union head got the usual bare notice–he can’t get arrested.
Then of course all fifty cops voluntarily assigned to the Bureau’s riot squad quit the detail in protest. Another place, another time maybe for such a move’s chances of shaming leadership or improving the cops’ position. Never one to fear shame or leave an opportunity for improving position unexploited, city commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, declaring the move proof of guilt in Maoist fashion, seized on the opportunity to push for disbanding the unit altogether. The Daily Mail:
City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty gloated in a statement on Thursday that the- resignations are a sign that ‘the good old boy network is crumbling and we can either be a part of the change or part of the status quo – but the arc of justice is bending quickly and it’s imperative that the Portland City Council lands on the right side of history’…
Hardesty, who proposed doing away with the crowd-control unit last fall, said her statement that the en masse resignations ‘are yet another example of a rogue paramilitary organization that is unaccountable to the elected officials and residents of Portland.’
She continued: ‘earlier this week, for the first time in Portland’s history, an officer from PPB’s Rapid Response Team was charged with a misdemeanor for assaulting a photojournalist during a protest last summer.
Portland cops, like Minneapolis’, are probably among the nation’s least corrupt or cruel. Here the ferocity of antifa’s attack on the police reflects their mostly unchallenged power and the city’s wealth and prospects. The activist grifter goes, like the bank robber, where the money is.
But the demoralizing of the police and decimation of their ranks proceed apace. Their move had no chance of shaming political leadership or public apathy, and like everything that happens now, what we’re served is a demonstration of how one-party rule with compliant media works.