I’ve been incredibly busy as of late, and most of my focus has been on the Twitter and live stream side of things, including some research projects, but I wanted to take a moment to share some good news.
Shortly after the Portland protests started, a class action case, Don’t Shoot PDX v City of Portland, was filed in federal court primarily in regards to the excessive force and use of tear gas in the midst of a global pandemic.
A few weeks ago, another case was brought forth by the ACLU, Tuck Woodstock v City of Portland, specifically addressing unlawful detainment and interference of press and ACLU and National Lawyer Guild neutral observers from doing their jobs.
Both cases have brought forth good temporary restraining orders, that have so far been fairly ignored by the city, but will give weight to future hearings and possible sanctions.
A new case was filed in Multnomah County court today that seems to attempt to bridge the gaps from these cases. The People’s Law Project is starting a third class action suit against the city alleging that people following lawful orders were being detained unlawfully, as well as putting forth the claim that declarations of riot and unlawful gathering were made capriciously, and ‘violent’ actions by protesters were a result of escalations caused by the police.
Much of this mirrors what I have seen from covering these protests the last few weeks, and the sentiment put forth by one of the Plantiffs sums up the general mood of the press community.
While protesters have never caused Mr. Evans to fear for his safety, he no longer believes there is a safe way to report on the protests due to the Defendants’ conduct described herein
Please feel free to read the complaint here, and pass along to others.
2020.07.07 FINAL Complaint_Evans BLM Class Action