<<Governor Tina Kotek has directed Oregon State Police to assist the Portland Police Bureau to push back against increasingly frequent instances of street racing and street takeovers in the city.>>
<<Street takeovers and street racing have become an increasingly frequent and visible problem in Portland in recent years, drawing concerns about the disruptive and in some cases deadly activity. Despite efforts to crack down, some incidents have been difficult for police to break up. >>
<<After a recent incident outside the Lloyd Center, a PPB spokesman said street takeover events can involve dozens of vehicles and hundreds of people, requiring a large and coordinated police response to safely end them, and PPB doesn’t always have enough officers available.>>
<<Portland has seen a number of street takeovers in the last few years, in which cars block roads or even bridges and drive dangerously while crowds of people watch.
In at least one street takeover at Southeast Seventh Avenue and Morrison, a witness says it took Portland police half an hour to get there.
Meanwhile, street racing has also claimed the lives of multiple Portlanders.
Now, in a letter sent in February but just released this week, Governor Tina Kotek offered Oregon State Police troopers to help Portland police address concerns around racing, street takeovers and drunk driving enforcement on a monthly basis.
She says Mayor Ted Wheeler initially asked for regular patrols on Portland highways, but due to staffing, she said that’s not possible.
This proposal is something Portland Police Association president Aaron Schmautz says is encouraging.
“To do the missions you have to have a lot of things in place,” Schmautz said. “There’s a lot of frustration around the inability to respond to those things because they’re very dangerous. They manifest themselves in really large – we’ve had shootings, fatal car crashes. … I think officers in Portland in particular are thankful for any help we can get.”>>
<< A person was taken into custody after allegedly menacing a city worker in Southeast Portland on Thursday, according to the Portland Police Bureau.
Police identified the suspect as 33-year-old Nathan Robinson. While he was being apprehended, Robinson was minorly injured from a dog bite when a K9 unit was deployed, PPB said. He is being treated at a local hospital and then is expected to be booked in the Multnomah County Detention Center.
Robinson is charged with unlawful possession of a loaded firearm in public, menacing and unlawful use of a weapon, according to PPB.
At the scene, PPB told KOIN 6 News that the suspect, later identified as Robinson, was in a homeless camp and was threatening a rapid response worker — who was trying to clear the camp — with a gun. Robinson allegedly refused to surrender.>>
<<When asked for a comment on the situation, a city spokesperson said they do the “utmost to ensure the safety” of its crews.
“The crews today did exactly what they were trained to do: they left the area, called 911 and reported the situation directly to IRP,” the spokesperson stated.
Authorities, including the PPB’s Special Emergency Reaction Team, responded to the incident near Southeast 92nd Avenue and Southeast Steele Street just before 9:15 a.m. As a result, SE 92nd Ave. was closed to traffic for several hours but has since reopened.>>
<<A Portland woman has launched her own crusade to battle the out-of-control problem of car thefts.
She says he has now helped hundreds of her fellow Portlanders track down their stolen cars over the last year or so.
According to the latest PPB data, just in January and February alone in 2023, 1,789 vehicles have been reported stolen across the city.
This trend has led to large groups of Portlanders connecting on Facebook to help each other track down stolen vehicles.>>