A group of demonstrators set a police union building on fire as the officers forced them to disperse by deploying chemicals and declaring a riot.
Police said in a statement that three officers were injured, including two who were rushed to a hospital after trying to clear the protesters outside the Portland Police Association building.
Even though demonstrations throughout the city started peacefully, the circumstances became chaotic after nightfall.
A small group of protesters marched to the Portland Police Association (PPA) building and set it on fire when officers declared a riot around 11:30 pm.
Footage of the incident shows blazes and smoke in the building as officers used smoke canisters and flashbangs to move the demonstrators away.
This comes after the PPA labor union was targeted on July 18 as it represents members of the Portland Police Bureau, which demonstrators have demanded to defund.
Portland Police confirmed that the declaration of a riot was a result of the ‘terribly dangerous’ fire.
The officials wrote on Twitter: “A riot was declared after a group broke into the @PPAVigil offices, started a fire, and continued to feed the fire more fuel. This is a terribly dangerous situation. Officers moved the crowd so the fire could be extinguished before it could grow out of control.”
They added: “Again, this is a riot. All people, including members of the press and legal observers must leave immediately to the north. Failure to adhere to this order may subject you to arrest, citations, or crowd control agents, including but not limited to, tear gas and/or impact weapons.”
According to Oregon Live, the small group of fire-setting protesters were outnumbered by peaceful demonstrators until officers arrived.
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