PORTLAND, Ore. (News Nation) — Police are bracing for more protests in Portland, Oregon this weekend after a week of violent demonstrations.
Protesters filled pool noodles with nails and placed them in the road, causing extensive tire damage to a patrol vehicle, police said. They also launched items including rocks, frozen or hard-boiled eggs and fireworks toward officers early Saturday.
This marks the 71st consecutive day of protests over racial injustice and police brutality in the Northwest city, following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
“Officers are having rocks and chunks of concrete thrown at them,” police said on Twitter. “Individuals in the crowd are shining lasers trying to blind officers.”
Hundreds of people marched to the Penumbra Kelly Building, a property shared by the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office and the Portland Police Bureau, News Nation affiliate KOIN reported. Portland police declared an unlawful assembly Friday ordering everyone in the area to leave. Oregon State Police worked with Portland officers to clear the protesters.
Protesters remained for several hours before officers began to rush the crowd away from the building using crowd control munitions –smoke–not tear gas early Saturday. Several people were arrested, police said.
“As arrests were made, certain crowd members began throwing rocks towards officers,” police said in a statement. “As this criminal activity occurred, the crowd also blocked all lanes of traffic on East Burnside Street, not allowing vehicles to pass by. Several people in this group wore helmets and gas masks as well as carried shields.”
Most of the crowd left the area by about 2:30 a.m. Saturday, police said.
More than 400 people at protests have been arrested since late May, according to Portland police. U.S. agents arrested at least an additional 94 people during protests at the federal courthouse in July.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.