PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) – The man who was beaten with a baton and pepper sprayed by federal agents in downtown Portland Saturday night says he was there to talk with officers.

Chris David, a Navy Veteran, told FOX12 he had never been to a protest before and something clicked watching videos of the federal response around the courthouse in Downtown Portland. He says he wanted to talk with agents on what he says is a violation of their constitutional oath.

“It seemed like they were trying to incite more than they were trying to end these protests, so I decided to go down Saturday night,” David said. “Watching what was happening finally pushed me over the threshold where I was willing to risk getting COVID in order to go protest.”

He says he took a bus to downtown and at first didn’t know where the protest was happening until he asked a group who looked like they were heading to it.

“The way I was going to induce them to talk to me was I was going to wear all my Navy gear,” David said. “I was going to wear my Naval academy sweatshirt, my Naval wrestling hat, and my backpack with all my civil engineer patches on it and stuff like that.”

Once he got to the Federal Courthouse, he says for a few hours he watched what was going on with the protests. At one point he says a group was trying to take down the fence surrounding the building. He said another group of people was trying to stop them.

David says he was getting ready to leave around 10:15 p.m. when he says federal officers came out of the building.

“Running at the protesters in the intersection and barreling into them knocking them down. When I saw that I walked out of the park into the street and I stayed in the street in front of the courthouse,” David said.

At that point he said tear gas canisters were flying through the sky and the attention of federal agents turned to him.

He says an officer pointed a gun at his chest, and another barreled into him knocking him back a few feet. That’s when he says he was hit several times with a baton and sprayed in the face with pepper spray.

“I took a pretty strong stance and relaxed my body and I let them beat me with batons,” David said. "What really got me to move was that pepper spray right to the face. That was an incredible incentive to turn around and give up on this one.”

He says he made his way to the park where he was helped by a street medic and eventually went to the VA Hospital. David says he has a few bruises and a broken wrist which will require surgery.

Tuesday, during a Homeland Security press briefing Federal officials said that the Department of Justice was investigating the incident. They also said that the people involved were from the U.S. Marshall’s Office.

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf told reporters federal officers will remain in Portland to protect Federal buildings.

Also Tuesday, several of Oregon’s Congressional delegation took to the House and Senate floor.

“This is the face of the Trump administrations interference in our community taking a difficult situation and making it worse,” Congressman Earl Blumenauer said.

For David he says he doesn’t want the original message of the protests to get lost in what is currently happening.

“Black Lives Matter is the reason we are out there, and we can’t lose sight of that and I sometimes think, this is a case of gas lighting again. Where in order to distract from one crisis, another new crisis is generated and we forget all about the Black Lives Matter movement because now it is an old white dude getting beat up by the cops,” David said.

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(10) comments

Manazuma

I am really sad that our city leaders have broken their oath to serve and protect our city. This will probably go on until the good citizens join together and defend the city and drive out the haters that are out every night ruining our beautiful city.

WebFootSTi

November 4th. mayor pookie is also up for re-election and the is pandering for votes from both sides. On the national side for the democrats it raises his standing with the DNC. I'm sure pookie will be running for governor in2022.

lanquan

You shouldn't have been there you clown. In the midst of a riot, you approach Federal Officers and try to have a question and answer session? That an idiot. They should sue YOU for being a dingbat

Just curious

This so called Navy veteran through common sense out the door. These Homeland security officers are probably trained to act that everyone is the enemy.

Delta85

So, He says this is what the face of Trump administration looks like. Ummm look in the mirror and you will see the face of a party trying to take over the country. Stop rioting and they go away how easy is that? Ohhh wait, total chaos is what the Democrats want until the election! The fix is so simple but NO Democrats will stand up to their own party to stop this ugliest. Portland being held political hostage of the extreme left... Where are the so called leaders?

Husky Loyalist

I don't care what his background is, he engaged in a riot and he got what he deserved. A real Marine would not be there unless he was waving the flag. This guy is a fraud.

failed_leadership

play stupid games, win stupid prizes

But..but...but

He got hit 5 times with (1) riot baton and that is what they consider beaten? Ask Rodney King what a beating is, now there was some over reacting. I got hit more than that when training defensive tactics and during combatives. And since when is a sweatshirt that says NAVY, Navy Gear? That is a sweatshirt, just like my buddies wouldn’t expect police to treat them differently if they were wearing a T-shirt with Ranger tabs on them, this guy should not expect special treatment wearing a Navy sweatshirt. Given a lawful order by law enforcement, in this case to disperse (yes, back up is all they asked, they didn’t black van him or do him like Lavoy Finicum), he should have followed that order, military personnel know better.

Eliza Cassan

He must have lived in Portland too long, forgot his training and accepted the Portland way of disobeying orders.

Eliza Cassan

He should not have approached them, it was obvious a riot was going on and was told to stay away, but also the officers should not use their batons unless they have been threatened or under attack. He was bigger than them but they can and do use pepper spray for those who refuse to move, they should have used that alone and not batons at that point, imo

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