People's Police Report
Shootings & deaths
Celebrate Our 25th Anniversary!!!Dear readers: Five years ago when the Portland Copwatch (PCW) newsletter reached its 20th anniversary, we observed: "Since late 1993, we've been publishing the People's Police Report three times a year to bring you news and analysis about Portland's Police, laws designed to be enforced selectively, the oversight system, and civil rights and liberties in general." We posted cover images of the 59 previous editions; with our 25th anniversary issue, we now have covers for PPRs #60-74 on line. Anniversaries are good times to look at where you are and what's next. We still believe that "while the PPB has its share of corruption, brutality and racism, things could be a lot worse if PCW were not around." In the last few years we have taken action to stop the City from reversing their pledge to dismantle the "48-hour rule," broken new ground by collecting data on statewide shootings, and watched the "Independent" Police Review conduct its own investi-gations for the first time since their 2001 inception (albeit, still dependent on the police to compel officer testimony). We will continue to be vigilant and bring important news to our readers, without whose support and encouragement we could not be doing this work for over a quarter of a century.
Portland Officer Uses "N" Word, County Pays Settlement; City Settles with
Emanuel Price, a Multnomah County worker assigned to oversee the Metropolitan Youth
Commission, received a $200,000 settlement from the county for being fired after he complained
about inappropriate racial remarks made during a presentation (Oregonlive, July 27). The remarks
by Portland Police Sergeant Timothy Sessions (#21772)* included the use of the "N" word and a "joke" about how a Latino
man mispronounced the word-- yet the City was not named in the lawsuit. It is unclear if Sessions
was investigated for misconduct-- in part because no Police Review Board reports have been
published since November 2017.
On August 8, Portland agreed to pay Anthony Allen $25,000 for when Officer Colby Marrs
(#52826) threw Allen off his bicycle, injured him and swore at him in 2015. The lawsuit raised
issues of profiling.
The 2016 annual stop data report was released in late June 2018. It uses statistical gymnastics to try
explaining why 13-14% of traffic and pedestrian stops are of African Americans in a city that is
6% black. The Oregonian's June 29 exposť on the over-representation of houseless persons
in arrests sheds new light on profiling issues. The O shows all African Americans are arrested at
over three times their representation-- 20% of the time. When it comes to the houseless
community, African Americans make up 16% of that community, and police arrest houseless black
persons at about a 1:1 ratio. However, other people of color are arrested below their
representation: Latinx persons, 10% of that community (and the general population) make up just
6% of arrests, and Native Americans, who are 10% of houseless persons but account for 2% of
arrests. (Native Amerians are only about 1/2 a percent of the general population). Pacific Islanders
are 2.6% of the homeless community but account for just .5% of arrests.
Portland Copwatch is a grassroots, volunteer organization promoting police accountability through citizen action.