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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - If you're downtown this weekend celebrating the welcome back to Portland event, you'll notice a more visible police presence.

Last weekend Portland Police Bureau said they responded to a call of multiple people shot just after 2 a.m. near Southwest 3rd Avenue downtown. Six people were hurt, and 18-year-old Makayla Maree Harris was killed.

FOX 12 spoke with one of her relatives, who wants to remain anonymous for her safety. She said she remembers Makayla as a happy little girl.

"It's a great loss. It really is. It's a sad loss because everybody's - the community too - is looking for answers," she said.

This isn't the first time this relative has lost family members to gun violence, and she said enough is enough.

"All the way back to 2015, you know I lost my cousin and then February of 2016, lost my stepson and then over this past weekend my daughter lost her cousin," she said. "Defunding the police is not the answer, not in my opinion. We had what? Over 930 something officers, I believe, 18 months ago? Now, we have 500 something? that is unacceptable."

After this tragic shooting, Portland Police and the FBI said they would increase their visibility downtown to prevent crime and make the community feel safe as they gather for a weekend of welcome back events.

Some Portlanders out and about downtown said they're glad there will be a heavier presence.

"I think the general sense is yes. People will feel safer knowing there's a heavier patrol presence out. We all know what happened last weekend and what continues to happen in the city. Gun violence is terrible, and it's on the rise," Vince Young, a Portlander attending a downtown event, said.

Others, like Harris' relative, said it's not a great idea. She said possible suspects now know which area to avoid. She's also concerned that moving more resources to one area will slow response times to emergencies across the city.

"I'm tired of hearing it takes 10 to 15 minutes to get through to 911. You know, 10 to 15 minutes in the world I come from, you're dead," she said.

Portland Police said this weekend they'll prioritize calls that are life-threatening, but low priority calls might have to wait until more resources are available.

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(12) comments

Hookie

They must be giving away a bunch of free stuff because who in their right mind would want to venture into that dirty filthy downtown area ? They must have drove the bums and panhandlers into a different part of town ! No thanks Ted wheeler I will pass

Charlatan

Remember a few years back when NYPD decided they weren't going to do their job for a day to show everyone how badly they were needed and it completely backfired because the city didn't completely devolve into chaos like the police union said it would?

That was funny...

Eldonauran

It takes more than a day for these things to get bad. But, once the criminals figure out that the 'cop free day' isnt a day just to get them to commit crimes so that they are easily rounded up, crime will sky rocket. Locks only help keep honest people honest, and so does law enforcement presence. Absent of those, normally honest people can start listening to those dark parts of their own soul.

commentor

'If you're downtown this weekend celebrating the welcome back to Portland event, you'll notice a more visible police presence' Why would anyone in their right mind want to go into that burned out, boarded up ghetto called downtown Portland?

Clackakitty

Since Federal Agents can't enforce state laws, unless they are deputized by a local agency, I don't see what good they'll do. And we know after useless Ted threw a hissey fit last year because some PPB officers retained their Federal deputizations longer than he wanted, he certainly wouldn't ne allowing PPB to deputize any Federal agents.

Not to mention, FBI agents simply don't have the training to deal with most of the issues a local or county officer has to deal with. Throw an FBI agent in the middle of a domestic, and they'd be totally ineffective.

maxine

We now no longer have a functioning federal judiciary. Who exactly is going to hold federal agents accountable for not being deputized. A famous democrat is know for say don't ask for permission, just apologize after. Same thing here in Oregon, Kate owns the supreme court so try getting anything overturned that the unconstitutional legislature did during their last session.

Moved on

are in the tack gear.?

that be a trip two see

Jefferson

Federal police under Trump? Baaaaad. Federal police under Biden? Gooood :)

Delta Bravo

A year ago, the addition of federal law enforcement agents to protect federal buildings in Portland was vilified by local government and local press. Now we have the addition of federal agents to local law enforcement and neither the local government nor the local press is complaining. What has changed?

commentor

What has changed? The installation of a wannabe socialist administration comes to mind.

maxine

Lets see, Last year feds bad, this year feds good? We don't want federal law enforcement in Portland or Oregon.

pb sir

You don't really have a choice... the people of this City are (finally) speaking out... they want to feel as safe as possible, and they (we) are demanding more police presence... that means some Federal law enforcement is going to have to come in, because Portland Police are so short-handed (due to bad political leadership, de-funding and no hiring), that we will have almost no police presence pretty soon, if the bad management continues...

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