Oregon sheriffs have rejected a request by Gov. Kate Brown to send personnel and resources to help “keep the peace and protect free speech” in Portland. It’s not that the sheriffs don’t want to help keep the peace. It’s just that they don’t believe Portland is serious about accomplishing this.
Clackamas County Sheriff Craig Roberts said, through a spokesperson, that in Portland “it’s about changing policy, not adding resources.” Truer words have seldom been spoken.
The same offenders are arrested night after night, only to be released by the court and not charged with a crime by the DA’s Office. The next night they are back at it, endangering the lives of law enforcement and the community all over again.
Why should Roberts put the safety of his men on the line in a jurisdiction not his own that operates so stupidly?
Washington County Sheriff Pat Garrett (a famous name in sheriff history) also declined to send his people to Portland. He promised to support the Portland police in “indirect ways, like analyzing risks associated with social media, air support, assisting with a specific criminal investigation, etc.” In other words, his department will assist in ways that won’t expose his folks to the physical risk inherent in Portland’s lax approach to dealing with thugs.
As Garrett put it:
The lack of political support for public safety, the uncertain legal landscape, the current volatility combined with intense scrutiny on use of force presents an unacceptable risk if deputies were deployed directly.
The Oregon Association of Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police also issued a joint statement. It said:
These are incredibly challenging times in Oregon and throughout our Country. Law Enforcement has clearly heard and recognizes the need to make improvements to ensure it is meeting the needs of all communities it serves. With that said, abandoning Law Enforcement or the need for policing, is not working. It has only shown that it undermines the rule of law and puts our community at greater risk.
Over the weekend, members of our associations were approached to assist with policing in the City of Portland. Unfortunately, due to the lack of support for public safety operations, the associated liability to agencies who would be assisting in Portland and the lack of accountability for those arrested committing criminal acts, we cannot dedicate our limited resources away from the communities we serve.
In response to this clear repudiation of left-liberal policing polices, the best Brown could do was to say that her plan is “meant to allow for this kind of flexibility in supporting each other as we all collectively deal with the difficult situation in Portland.”
File that one under “more mush from the wimp.”
While Mayor Wheeler and Gov. Brown fiddle, Portland burns.