PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - An alarming video showing a Portland police officer punching a protester repeatedly is now under investigation.
The video was captured as tensions are escalating between protesters and police. Protests and riots have occurred nightly in Portland for nearly 100 days.
Monday night Portland police say they arrested 19 people after a riot was declared. The night before that, police say 29 people were arrested.
“These people have nothing whatsoever to do with Black lives matter. This is flat out anarchy. They have a different agenda entirely,” said Tom Drewes, who lives in the building where Monday night’s riot occurred.
But, the video of some of these arrests is raising questions about the tactics used by police.
FOX 12 cameras captured an officer appearing to punch a protester several times on the ground. Another video of a separate incident shows an officer rush into a crowd, tackle a protester to the ground and punch them several times in the head.
We reached out to Portland police about the video, which the Portland Police Bureau said has been referred to its professional standards division, however, PPB could not provide any specifics about the video.
The video has also been referred to the Independent Police Review department of the city auditor’s office. IPR says it is investigating the video and trying to identify relevant people in it.
IPR says if you have any information about the video, or any specific instances of police excessive use of force, you should contact their office.
The videos were taken just hours after other law enforcement agencies around the region said they would not be sending staff into Portland to assist Portland police Monday. It was in response to a request by the governor to send officers from other agencies into Portland as part of a unified law enforcement plan.
The Gresham Police Department was the latest to decline Governor Kate Brown’s request on Tuesday.
In a statement, Gresham Police Chief Robin Sells said the department was caught off guard by the governor’s request. She went on to say:
“Staffing in the Gresham Police Department is down significantly from this time last year, so any request for assistance would need to be evaluated in light of our staffing constraints, as well as what type of assistance is being requested.”
She concluded by saying that officers from Gresham will not be assisting in Portland.
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