OR State Patrol to Portland Police–No Tear Gas, No Logistical Help
Basically, Oregon State Patrol and other law enforcement agencies are telling Portland: 'no tear gas, no help.'
According to Willamette Week online, PPD (Portland Police Department) had requested assistance from the OSP and Multnomah County Sheriff's Department in providing security for last weekend's coinciding rallies between the pro-American Proud Boys and leftist anarchist counter protesters.
However, both OSP and MCSO declined to send in their officers, citing safety concerns over not being able to utilize tear gas if conditions became unmanageable. Mayor Ted Wheeler earlier this year banned the use of the gas by Portland Police or other units who may be operating within the city limits.
According to a statement from the OSP Superintendent:
"OSP is reluctant to offer troopers to support PPB's crowd control elements. If the decision amend the CS gas prohibition is revisited, we are willing to discuss resource allocation."
CS refers to the chemical name for the most commonly used tear gas, or crowd control gas used nationally and even worldwide by law enforcement.
The same kind of reply was also given by the MCSO. According to Willamette Week, Multnomah County Sheriff Mike Reese said this in his email reply to the request:
"We are concerned that the prohibition on the use of CS gas leaves PPB with no sound tactical options to quickly disperse a large crowd engaged in dangerous acts of violence. If officers have to use high levels of physical force to protect the safety of the participants, it may lead to substantial injuries and may not be effective in achieving the desired outcome."
The OSP said they would be willing to interdict (intercept) criminal elements before they enter the city, and the MCSO said they would help process arrests, but it's a no to providing boots on the group at the protest scenes; at least not without tear gas available.
The decisions now call into question how PPD will be able to control situations where there are violent protests, or possible confrontations between different protesting groups. The Willamette Week says these decisions are a sharp rebuke to the Mayor when it comes to his ability to provide safety and security in areas where upheavals are taking place in the city.