Published: Wed, July 04, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Violence erupts after right-wing group holds OR march

Violence erupts after right-wing group holds OR march

"Portland Police planned for today's protest so that people could exercise their First Amendment rights to speech and assembly", Deputy Chief Bob Day said in the news release.

First responders treated several people on scene, and one of the four transported to the hospital by ambulance received a "serious injury", police say.

Officers were searching for weapons and handcuffed at least two people.

The Federal Protective Service, among the law enforcement present Saturday, shut down the Terry Schrunk Federal Plaza as local police declared a riot.

As the scuffles continued, authorities wearing riot gear unleashed pepper spray - stun grenades that make loud noises and flashes of light - and canisters that release smoke and rubber balls, according to a news release, but said on social media that they did not use tear gas.

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Patriot Prayer, which is based in Vancouver, Washington, had a permit for a march and a 4 p.m. rally in a downtown Portland park Saturday afternoon.

Police made a handful of arrests from both sides, and officers seized utility knives, pepper spray and clubs, according to the newspaper.

Police arrested four people but said those arrests stemmed from criminal investigations that began before Saturday's protests and were not related to the day's events.

More participants may be arrested for disorderly conduct, assault, theft, robbery and reckless burning after detectives review video of Saturday's confrontations. "It is very important that antifascists keep up the pressure so that we can stop them once and for all".

A group called Eugene Antifa called on its supporters in a Facebook post to confront Patriot Prayer on Saturday. The group was behind a rally in San Francisco past year that was cancelled before it took place, after many had anticipated violent clashes.

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