Aaron Danielson, who is also being called Jay Bishop by some, was identified as the man who was shot and killed after a pro-Trump caravan broke down in Portland, Oregon, according to a leader of Patriot Prayer and a major Oregon newspaper. He was affiliated with Patriot Prayer and wearing a hat with its name when shot.
An Oregon newspaper has named the man under investigation for shooting Danielson as Michael Reinoehl. Eight weeks ago, Reinoehl wrote on Instagram, “Happy black lives matters day!!! #blacklivesmatter #breonnataylor #anewnation.” On July 4, he shared a video of a demonstration on Instagram, writing, “F*** Donald Trump #blacklivesmatter #breonnataylor #anewnation.” The video shows people chanting “F*** Donald Trump.” It also contains repeated use of the N word, although it’s not clear who is saying it. Another photo on Instagram showed a demonstrator on a statute that had the words “No Gestapo” painted on it. “😂 he replaced the statue,” wrote Reinoehl. He was previously accused of racing with his son while under the influence and bringing a gun to a protest.
Federal authorities shot and killed Reinoehl as they moved in to arrest him. “Initial reports indicate the suspect produced a firearm, threatening the lives of law enforcement officers,” the U.S. Marshals Service revealed in a statement. “Task force members responded to the threat and struck the suspect who was pronounced dead at the scene.”
Vice is reporting that Reinoehl is making a self defense claim, saying he believed he and a friend were going to be stabbed. “I had no choice. I mean, I, I had a choice. I could have sat there and watched them kill a friend of mine of color,” he told Vice. “But I wasn’t going to do that.”
He told Vice that he is a “former military contractor and father of two” who provided “security” for Black Lives Matter protests.
Reinoehl wrote previously on Instagram,
Every Revolution needs people that are willing and ready to fight. There are so many of us protesters that are just protesting without a clue of where that will lead. That’s just the beginning that’s where the fight starts. If that’s as far as you can take it thank you for your participation but please stand aside and support the ones that are willing to fight. I am 100% ANTIFA all the way! I am willing to fight for my brothers and sisters! Even if some of them are too ignorant to realize what antifa truly stands for. We do not want violence but we will not run from it either! If the police continue to pick on and beat up innocent citizens that are peacefully voicing their objections, it must be met with equal force! We are currently living through a crucial point in Humanities evolution. We truly have an opportunity right now to fix everything. But it will be a fight like no other! It will be a war and like all wars there will be casualties. I was in the army and I hated it. I did not feel like fighting for them would ever be a good cause. Today’s protesters and antifa are my brothers in arms. This is a Cause to fight for This truly is fighting for my country! I have children that need to live in a world run by Common Sense and human decency. And I will do anything to make sure that happens. Now is the time to change the course of humanity. If we fold now just because they show some Force we will be lost for another hundred years. And I don’t think the planet will let us live that long if we don’t straighten shit up. Please be safe strong and United. I love you all❤️💪🙏 #Antifa #blaklivesmatter #f***thepolice
In one Instagram photo, Reinoehl, 48, showed off a “battle scar” from a demonstration. Multiple photos show protests and riots. “Juneteenth Portland Oregon #f***thepolice #blaklivesmatter,” he wrote with one picture. “Hands up don’t shoot!” he wrote with another. “Elmo says make sure you stock up on condoms cuz it’s time to f*** the system,” said another post.
Graphic photos emerged of Danielson’s body lying at the scene. Be forewarned that the pictures are very disturbing. A video, which is also disturbing, appears to show a person open fire at close range as Danielson walks down the street and another shows people tending to Bishop.
This video shows a person rushing up to Danielson, referring to him as “Jay.” Confusion erupted on social media over the different names; however, he’s referred to as Aaron “Jay” Danielson in an approved GoFundMe and as Jay by a friend in a graphic video at the scene. A tweet shared by President Donald Trump and a major Oregon newspaper referred to the deceased man as Jay Bishop, and some on social media claimed he used that as a pseudonym to protect himself from antifa, although that was not confirmed. Confusing matters, people are sharing the criminal history of a different Jay Bishop who isn’t the man who died. The Bishop who defended MAX train accused stabber Jeremy Christian is not Danielson.
An apparently fake GoFundMe account in Jay Bishop’s name was taken down, confusing people more. Although it’s clear he did go by the name Jay at times, it’s not clear whether Danielson ever used Bishop.
According to Oregon Live, after the caravan broke down, “altercations broke out.” The newspaper described Danielson as a “friend and supporter” of Patriot Prayer, which is based in Vancouver, and the New York Times described him as “affiliated with a right-wing group,” though The Times did not name Danielson. Oregon Live described the organization as “a right-wing organization that for years staged regular protests in Portland.”
Portland has been the focal point of unrest since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Conflicts between Trump and local officials over federal law enforcement’s presence in the city have generated headlines. Danielson’s death caused a verbal clash between Trump and Portland’s Mayor Ted Wheeler over who is to blame.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Death Led to a War of Words Between Trump & Wheeler Over Violence in Portland
“Rest In Peace Jay!” Trump wrote on Twitter on August 30. He retweeted a post by a Trump supporter that read:
This is Jay Bishop.
He was a good American that loved his country and Backed the Blue.
Flag of United States
He was murdered in Portland by ANTIFA.
Jay, we will never forget you.
Rest In Peace my friend.
Donald Trump Jr. tweeted this video compilation:
Wheeler said in a news conference, “This afternoon my heart is heavy. My heart goes out to the family and friends of the man who was killed last night on the streets of our city. I mourn with you.”
He pledged to hold accountable “those who are responsible.” He said he was denouncing “the violence” and said it “doesn’t matter who you are and what your politics are, we need to all stop the violence.”
Wheeler urged people not to come to seek “retribution” and “stay away to deescalate this situation.”
However, Wheeler’s further comments provoked controversy and a strong retort from the president.
In the press conference, Wheeler strongly criticized Trump for everything from rhetorical attacks on “Democratic mayors” to former Republican Senator John McCain. “Do you seriously wonder, Mr. President, why this is the first time in decades that America has seen this level of violence? It is you who have created the hate and division,” Wheeler said.
“It is you who have not said the names of Black people who were killed by police officers. … It’s you who claim that white supremacists are good people.” He called Trump “anti-Democratic.” He said America needs “for you to be stopped,” referring to Trump.
He said the people at the pro-Trump caravan rally “were supported and energized by the president himself. President Trump, for four years, we’ve had to live with you and your racist attacks against Black people. We learned early of your sexist attitudes toward women.”
Trump retweeted an author/comedian’s tweeted that read, “Hey Ted Wheeler, Nobody believes that Trump hurting your feelings with mean words is why ANTIFA is burning Portland to the ground.”
The president countered:
Ted Wheeler, the wacky Radical Left Do Nothing Democrat Mayor of Portland, who has watched great death and destruction of his City during his tenure, thinks this lawless situation should go on forever. Wrong! Portland will never recover with a fool for a Mayor….He tried mixing with the Agitators and Anarchists and they mocked him. He would like to blame me and the Federal Government for going in, but he hasn’t seen anything yet. We have only been there with a small group to defend our U.S. Courthouse, because he couldn’t do it…..The people of Portland, like all other cities & parts of our great Country, want Law & Order. The Radical Left Democrat Mayors, like the dummy running Portland, or the guy right now in his basement unwilling to lead or even speak out against crime, will never be able to do it! LAW & ORDER!!!
2. Danielson, Who Was Described as Having a ‘Huge Heart’ by a Patriot Prayer Leader, Was Guarding the Caravan at a Mall While Armed With a Knife & Paintball Gun, Reports Say
According to the Portland Tribune, Danielson “arrived with an associate hours earlier at a suburban mall in order to offer make-shift security services for the caravan of Trump supporters.” The newspaper described that associate as Chandler Pappas. They were “both wearing matching Patriot Prayer hats, visibly armed with paint ball guns, knives and bearing other tactical gear,” according to the newspaper.
The man believed to be Danielson said in an interview, according to that newspaper, “We’re all about independent journalism. Andy Ngo has been assaulted for being an independent journalist, he’s not even right-leaning. The Overton Window has been pushed so far to the left, that like normalcy seems-.” He was then cut off. The newspaper described the Overton Window as “a concept used in political theory to describe the range of ideas acceptable in public discourse.”
According to the Portland Tribune, Pappas showed up with a paintball gun at a “dueling counter protest” at Gresham City Hall three days before and said, “I came here ready for war…I’ll drop you on your f****** head.”
Joey Gibson wrote on Facebook, “I am getting a lot of questions so I thought I would make this post. 1st- We love Jay and he had such a huge heart. God bless him and the life he lived. 2nd-I am going to wait to make any public statements until after the family can. 3rd- If you planned on going to the boat cruise, please go! I know that Jay would love to look down from heaven and see tons of American flags on the Columbia river today. I will not be attending but I hope all of you enjoy yourselves out there. Fly them high for Jay. God Bless all of you.”
Patriot Prayer has made the news before.
In January 2019, according to Oregon Live, police clarified that they found three rifles in a case on top of a downtown garage before a protest. The mayor had referred to it as a “cache of guns” and said they were tied to Patriot Prayer.
But police said they found four people on the parking garage with three rifles in cases, and they had concealed weapons permits and didn’t break laws or endanger the public.
According to Oregon Live, the men said they planned to “act as a quick extraction team” if a member of their group was injured during the protest.
3. Danielson Was Shot & Killed After Clashes Between Different Groups
KGW-com reports that a “bear deterrent spray can that had been hit by a bullet” was near Danielson’s body along with an “extendable baton, which Danielson was seen in security footage holding in his hands before the shooting.” He had a loaded gun in his waistband.
The television station said what led up to the shooting is still not clear, with some witnesses saying others “were aggressors toward Danielson” and another claiming Reinoehl and another person “were hiding and appeared to square off with Pappas and Danielson.”
Portland Police Bureau Chief Chuck Lovell asked for anyone with information, including video or eyewitness accounts, to come forward.
Prior to the shooting, “there was a political rally involving a vehicle caravan that traveled through Portland for several hours,” he said in a news conference. “There were some skirmishes between rally goers and counter demonstrators, and police made several arrests. The caravan covered miles of area, and officers responded to different locations as identified problems arose and provided a presence and even made arrests when warranted.”
The vehicle caravan had already cleared the area when the shooting occurred. Officers are still gathering information to determine what “led up to this death.”
People “are free to disagree but criminal activity, especially violence, is out of bounds,” Lovell said.
A 16-year-old African American teenager was recently shot and killed in another incident, he noted, adding that this death had not generated news headlines. “Portland desperately needs calm,” Lovell said.
According to The New York Times, Danielson, who is not named in the story, was “affiliated with a right-wing group.” He was shot and killed on August 29 “as a large group of supporters of President Trump traveled in a caravan through downtown Portland.”
The group was part of a “pro-Trump rally,” the Times reported, which drew “hundreds of trucks full of supporters into the city.”
The Times reported that Trump supporters and counter-protesters “clashed on the streets, with people shooting paintball guns from the beds of pickup trucks and protesters throwing objects back at them.”
Oregon Live described Patriot Prayer as “a loosely organized right-wing group that has repeatedly been involved in brawls with left-wing antifascist groups.”
Danielson was from Portland. A review of Oregon court records shows the only criminal history in the name Aaron J. Danielson was traffic-related, such are careless driving.
4. A GoFundMe Page Was Set Up to Help Danielson’s Family
Gibson shared a GoFundMe page in the name of Danielson that he said is the authentic one; he warned people that there are also fake GoFundMe pages being set up, too. Almost $5,000 had been raised at the time of publication.
“Aaron ‘Jay’ Danielson was a Portland citizen who went downtown to express his opinions during the unrest and was shot and killed on the evening of Saturday August 29th. There are multiple fraudulent go fund me accounts that are set up. This is the OFFICIAL page where the family will be supported. Please do not donate to other pages claiming it is for the family. Thank you for your support,” the official GoFundMe page reads.
Support erupted for Danielson among conservatives posting on Gibson’s page. “I think his family should sue the city council an the mayor and the gov for letting this happen and not protecting the citizens…they want to blame Trump but he has been offering help and the mayor and gov has denied it,” wrote one woman.
“This is so devastating. To be murdered for your beliefs. Wheeler and Brown are Trump blaming instead of taking responsibility. It is absurd and I sadly believe this is the beginning of a civil war that has been brewing for sometime. RIP Patriot,” wrote another person on the page.
5. Graphic Photos Showed Danielson’s Body Lying at the Scene
Graphic photos emerged of Danielson’s body lying at the scene. He was wearing a baseball cap with the words Patriot Prayer written on a flag. One photo shows heavily armed police officers coming to his aid.
We’ve blurred his face in the above and below photos.
“Jay is my beloved friend,” a woman wrote on Facebook. “I am beside myself. More importantly, please please be safe.”