Portland police declare ‘riot,’ use CS gas to break up crowd; arrests reported

Police in Portland, Ore., declared a disturbance to be a “riot” on Tuesday night as they tried to break up a crowd of demonstrators.

Law enforcement officers used CS gas – a type of tear gas – in bid to restore order, while a limit on the ability of police to use the substance was in effect, FOX 12 of Oregon reported.

“If you do not disperse to the east you are subject to arrest or use of force, to include crowd control munitions,” Portland police wrote on Twitter.

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Portland has been a site of frequent riots and protests since the May 25 death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis. Other riots and protests have occurred in multiple cities across the country as crowds protest what they say has been a pattern of police brutality against African-Americans and other minorities.

The period of unrest across the U.S. has drawn frequent calls from President Trump and other critics for the restoration of “law and order,” and has in many cases called into question the Democratic Party leadership of many of the affected cities.

Tuesday’s disturbance in north Portland, around the 1800 block of North Lombard Street, was declared a riot around 10:15 p.m. local time, FOX 12 reported.

The area was close to a Portland Police Association building, the report said.

Several rioters were seen being arrested, FOX 12 reported.

A Portland, Ore., police vehicle is seen in the city in an undated photo.

A Portland, Ore., police vehicle is seen in the city in an undated photo.

Rioters were seen setting up trash bins to block the road and starting a fire in the area, the station reported.

Others were seen throwing water bottles at police, OregonLive.com reported.

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In June, a federal judge granted a 14-day temporary order against the use of tear gas, unless lives were at risk, OregonLive.com.

The order was later extended to July 24, according to the newspaper.

Members of the crowd began scattering in several directions, although the crowd hadn’t fully dispersed by 11:30 p.m. local time, OregonLive.com reported.

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