Anti-fascist and other far-left groups rioted in multiple American cities on Inauguration Day 2021. In Portland, Oregon, antifa marchers vandalized the Democratic Party offices, according to police and videographers who were at the scene. Some of the protesters made statements against President Joe Biden, who was sworn into office on January 20. Anti-fascist protesters in Seattle also vandalized businesses and burned flags, while protesters in Denver burned flags and a march in Sacramento had few issues, according to reports.
Independent journalist Brendan Gutenschwager, who was at the scene in Seattle, wrote: “‘F*** Trump, f*** Biden too, they don’t give a f*** about you.’ Protesters chant hours after today’s Inauguration in DC.”
“No more cops. No more Proud Boys. No more presidents,” read literature for a January 20 demonstration organized by Antifa Sacramento.
In some cities, peaceful protests also occurred, sometimes in the same communities, even as others resorted to vandalism, assault and other criminal behavior. According to Reuters, Portland police arrested eight people “on suspicion of offenses including rioting and reckless burning,” and Seattle police arrested two people, one for assault and another for property damage.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Marchers in Portland Lit a Dumpster on Fire, Police Say
Julio Rosas, a senior writer with the conservative website Townhall.com, shared videos from Portland. “On the ground in Portland, Ore. for @townhallcom,” he wrote with one video. “A group of Antifa marchers just attacked the city’s Democratic Party office. They broke windows and spray painted the building. Some of them had a hard time breaking the windows.”
He reported that some rioters carried a banner declaring, “We don’t want Biden – we want revenge! For police murders, imperialist wars, and fascist massacres.”
Portland police issued a press release Wednesday evening. It read in part:
At about 2:45 p.m., a few officers on bicycles rode onto a parking lot on the south side of Revolution Hall. Dozens of people pressed in on the officers and then took one of the officers’ bicycles. Other officers came to assist. Within a few minutes, police recovered the bicycle and tried to leave the property to the south. Many in the crowd began blocking or stopping officers as they attempted to leave. Some officers had to push people away with their hands so they could leave.
At that point, additional officers arrived to provide support and “recovered some long poles and a large knife from people in the crowd,” according to the press release. Officers “dropped one smoke canister between themselves and the crowd of people to ensure they could safely ride away.”
The press release indicates a crowd of about 150 people then began walking, “blocking streets as they moved.” Police made announcements on a loudspeaker encouraging the crowd to obey traffic and other laws, they said. However, as the crowd continued to move, some people broke windows and painted graffiti on the Democratic Party offices, and some “moved dumpsters in the street and lit the contents of one on fire,” according to the press release.
As the crowd began to break up, “police identified specific people in the crowd who were responsible for crimes and began arresting them. … By about 4:30 p.m. peace had been restored to the neighborhood,” police wrote.
According to police, the following people were arrested:
- Kyle Romstad, 22, of Portland, charged with Criminal Mischief II
- Kaiave Douvia, 22, of Portland, charged with Criminal Mischief I
- Jean V. Paris, 18, of Albany, charged with Interfering with a Peace Officer, Criminal Mischief III, Resist Arrest
- Alyssa Hartley Davis, 18, of Albany, charged with Interfering with a Peace Officer, Disorderly Conduct II
- Austin N. Nuchraska, 25, of McMinnville, charged with Possession of a Destructive Device, Criminal Mischief I
- Nicole Aria Rose, 25, of Portland, charged with Criminal Mischief I
- Darnell Kimberlin, 31, of Portland, charged with Reckless Burning, Criminal Mischief II
- Davis Alan Beeman, 38, of Vancouver, Washington, charged with Riot, Disorderly Conduct II
American Flags Were Burned in the Streets of Seattle, Video Shows
Seattle police on Wednesday evening wrote on Twitter, “Police are monitoring a group in #DowntownSeattle. Multiple sites have been vandalized. One arrest made for property damage.”
Police said they also arrested a woman on an assault charge and reported that windows at the courthouse were smashed. “Police have arrested a man in the 1900 block of Pike Place for investigation of burglary and for the property damage seen in these photos,” they wrote.
According to Gutenschwager, American flags were burned on the streets of Seattle. Around 8 p.m. on the west coast, he wrote, “One arrest made as police order the group to disperse from near Pike Place Market in Seattle #J20 #Seattle #Antifa #SeattleProtests.”
He indicated that antifa was behind the Seattle rioting, tweeting, “‘Out of your house, into the street!’ Antifa chants as they shine lights into residences near the Space Needle.”
He also wrote that the group smashed windows at Starbucks. Here’s video from the Starbucks, which he says was “broken into.”
He also wrote that “trash cans are knocked over to prevent police vehicles and bikes from following in the street.”
Businesses were tagged with graffiti and vandalized, including an Amazon Go store.
Denver Anti-Facists Burned American & Trump Flags at the State Capitol Building, a Report Says
The Denver AntiFascist League tweeted, “Big victory today Denver! Thanks for coming out to stand against fascism and in solidarity with Black and Indigenous activists. We’re doing good things out here Denver. Stay strong, stay united. And stay tuned for more antifascist action.”
According to Colorado Public Radio, a group of several dozen people who “identified themselves as anti-fascists” and carried communist flags “chanted anti-Trump and anti-Biden slogans” and burned both an American flag and a Trump flag outside the state capitol, which was closed on January 20. They also “got into confrontations with a local freelance photojournalist and with an anti-abortion preacher from Kansas,” reported CPR, adding that a single Trump fan also showed up at the Capitol on Inauguration Day.
According to CPR, there were also peaceful protests on Inauguration Day in Denver. “Around a hundred demonstrators from the Black Lives Matters movement and other progressive and organizations on the left rallied at the state capitol,” CPR wrote, adding that they spoke about regaining political power.
Sacramento’s March Saw Only Minor Incidents
Around 11 a.m. local time, Sacramento police wrote, “At this time there are no demonstrations occurring at the Capitol. Some small groups of people, wearing all black, shields, and helmets have begun to congregate at local parks in the area of the Capitol. Follow this thread for updates.”
Later in the day police indicated only minor incidents had occurred, including some fencing that was pushed over, two traffic stops, a report about a vehicle containing Molotov cocktails that turned out to be false, and a “vehicle confronting demonstrators as they marched” that resulted in a citation for illegal possession of pepper spray.
Antifa Sacramento wrote, “Today! We stand with the community we are a part of & together we will march against far-right terror! And to stop the fascist creep!” They indicated that they were talking about the far-right.
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