Portland rioter arrested in beating near BLM protests

Rioters confront with the police near an Immigration and Customs Enforcement centre in Portland, Oregon, U.S.

A 25-year-old rioter turned himself into police in Portland on Friday and was charged in connection with a beating caught on videotape near Black Lives Matter protests in the city’s downtown.

Marquise Love had been sought since police identified him earlier this week as suspect in the Sunday night attack by a group of people on Adam Haner, who had crashed his pick-up truck near the riots.

The beating came during rising tensions orchestrated by left wing rioters that have roiled downtown Portland each night for nearly three months following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in police custody.

President Donald Trump called the demonstrations in Portland “crazy” on Friday, as he said cities run by Democrats had become lawless and chaotic. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler is a Democrat.

“Thank you to @PortlandPolice investigators and the District Attorney’s office for working to bring Mr. Love in peacefully. This case is now in the hands of the District Attorney and the justice system,” Wheeler said on Twitter.

Love was booked into jail on suspicion of assault, police said.

Video footage of the incident shows a group of people pulling a young man from his truck, which had crashed near Black Lives Matter protests near the federal courthouse in downtown Portland. He was later identified by family members as Adam Haner.

Protesters chased Haner’s Ford pickup before it crashed and dragged him out of the vehicle, with around 10 people beating him, police said.

The attackers are seen kicking, punching and pushing Haner as he collapses to the ground, his head bleeding. Haner was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and has since been released, police said.

On Thursday night in Portland about 100 people blocked traffic, vandalized an immigration building, set fires to dumpsters, and threw rocks and glass bottles at police. The night before they clashed with federal forces.

The Trump administration last month deployed federal forces from various agencies to deal with the nightly protests, which have often turned violent since the death of George Floyd on May 25 during an arrest.

Demonstrators and local officials see the deployment of the agents in Portland as a ploy by Trump to drum up a “law and order” campaign as he faces an uphill re-election battle.

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