Target: Chief Michael Reese of the Portland Police Bureau
Goal: Take responsibility for the use of pepper spray on protestors and hold officers who used pepper spray accountable
Recently, Portland police officers used pepper spray against civilian protestors. The demonstrators, gathered in Portland’s Lloyd Center, were protesting against unequal financial burdens on the middle class. The protest quickly went from peaceful to frantic.
The Portland Police Bureau claims that the use of pepper spray was justified, as some protestors were being belligerent toward several officers. The group also did not have the proper permit to demonstrate. However, this course of action was not deemed justifiable by all parties involved. The protesting group, called Portland Action Lab, claimed they did not receive any notification that they needed prior permission to march. They also believe that if they had informed the police of their exact march route, the police would have intervened and halted the march. The group maintains they did nothing wrong and that many of the protestors on whom pepper spray was used were minors.
Police should not be allowed to physically assault the citizens they are sworn to protect. A lack of a permit should not be a valid excuse for physical escalation, especially when there is little to no evidence that the protestors were being excessively belligerent. These actions are even more horrifying when learning that many of those exposed to pepper spray were minors.
Sign the petition letter below, and take a stand against police brutality. Police officers should keep the peace, not incite panic. The Portland Police Bureau needs to take responsibility for these transgressions and hold these officers accountable for their actions. Police brutality can never be tolerated, especially when it results in harming children.
Dear Chief Michael Reese of the Portland Police Bureau,
Recently, several of your officers used pepper spray on several protestors during a recent demonstration at Lloyd Center in Portland. You claim that this protest was conducted without a permit and that several demonstrators were being belligerent toward police officers. However, the demonstrators do not see it this way.
They were not notified that a permit was needed and believed that if they were to give police a detailed route for the march that police would impede on their right to protest. The demonstrators also claim that they were not being excessively belligerent. It is especially shocking to find out that many of the protestors who had pepper spray fired upon them were minors.
These actions taken by your officers are morally reprehensible. While the group did not have a permit, this hardly justifies the level of brutality shown by your officers. What started out as a peaceful protest turned frenzied due directly to the actions taken by those for whom you are responsible.
Please accept guilt for the actions that transpired at Lloyd Center. Those officers who made the choice to use pepper spray need to be held accountable for escalating the situation and causing harm to minors. You cannot undo the damage that has been done, but you can do what is right and make amends for it.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Lucas Krech