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OR – LE – A Neighbor Describes What Happened When Law Enforcement Stopped Responding to an Armed Encampment in North Portland

Few recent events in Portland have drawn as much national attention as the Red House Eviction Defense. The armed occupation of three blocks of North Mississippi Avenue interrupted the foreclosure seizure of the “Red House,” the home of the Kinneys, a Black and Indigenous family facing eviction during winter amid the pandemic.The standoff has become a flashpoint of gentrification, racial inequity and radical activism in Portland. The occupiers initially arrived in the neighborhood in early September. But the occupation grew significantly in size and energy after Multnomah County sheriff’s deputies and Portland police officers, following a court order, arrived in the early morning hours of Dec. 8 to evict the Kinneys. Nobody had as close a view of the occupation as a man living near the Red House. That neighbor reached out to WW to respond to our account of the eviction defense (“Beyond the Barricades,” Dec. 16, 2020). He asked not to be identified out of fear of political reprisal, but WW independently confirmed he lives less than a block from the encampment, inside the blockades used to seal off neighborhood streets from police. This is his story, as told to WW reporter Tess Riski.  [full article]

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