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Portland Police Association office set on fire amid protests

Portland Police Association office set on fire amid protests
© Mason Trinca/Getty Images

The Portland, Ore., Police Association office was set on fire Saturday night amid protests throughout the city, police said in a statement Sunday. 

Around 10:45 p.m. people broke into the Portland Police Association office and ignited a fire “within a few moments.” Police declared the situation a riot, according to the statement. 

Several people in the crowd were arrested and officers were able to distinguish the fire, police said. Portland Police did not use any CS gas, according to the statement. 

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Tear gas was deployed, The Associated Press reported citing pictures and videos from the scene, but the newswire noted it was not necessarily CS gas. 

Police said groups scattered into the neighborhood, with a large number people regrouped near North Interstate Avenue and North Lombard Street. As officers moved the crowd to the south on North Interstate Avenue, people in the crowds “threw rocks, gopher gassers, and launched paint filled balloons at officers,” injuring some officers, police said. 

The crowd was broken into smaller groups around 11:30 p.m. and “order was restored,” police said. 

People also gathered in a crowd downtown near the Justice Center and Federal courthouse tore down fences around Chapman Square Park and Lonsdale Square Park that had been put in place when the parks were closed or needed repair, police said. 

People also removed fencing around the Federal Courthouse and used it to barricade doors there, police said. Federal law enforcement came to address the crowd at some point as Portland Police were working in north Portland at the time, police said. 

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler (D) on Sunday called for the Trump administration to remove federal troops from the city. He said the federal law enforcement presence is “leading to more violence and more vandalism” and is “not helping the situation at all.” 

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“They're not wanted here, we haven't asked them here. In fact, we want them to leave,” the mayor said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpJudge rules to not release Russia probe documents over Trump tweets Trump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida MORE tweeted Sunday morning that he is “trying to help Portland, not hurt it.” 

“Their leadership has, for months, lost control of the anarchists and agitators. They are missing in action. We must protect Federal property, AND OUR PEOPLE. These were not merely protesters, these are the real deal!,” Trump tweeted. 

The president’s tweet in defense of the federal troops sent to Portland came after Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum (D) sued federal agencies on Friday over the detention of protesters. The American Civil Liberties Union also filed a similar lawsuit against federal agencies over deploying the agents to quell demonstrators in Portland. 

Wheeler said Sunday he agrees that the Trump administration's actions in his city are breaking the law. 

“The tactics that the Trump administration are using on the streets of Portland are abhorrent,” he said.