Ringing in the new year, Antifa militants rioted in downtown Portland outside the federal courthouse, launching commercial grade fireworks and multiple Molotov cocktail-style firebombs at local police officers.
The night of violence on New Year's Eve was planned. "In Solidarity with BLM," the Pacific Northwest Youth Liberation Front (PNWYLF), an outspoken Antifa organization in the Portland area, announced the group's gathering ahead of time. "New Year, Same Goal!" the account tweeted. "Autonomously organized, bloc up & be water." Organizers banned any recordings of the crimes committed to evade possible incrimination, also instructing participants to dress in the traditional unidentifiable black clothing.
Approximately 100 rioters descended upon the Mark O. Hatfield federal courthouse, starting multiple fires in yet another attempt to burn the facility down. The Portland Police Bureau reported that several individuals tried to use tools to break into Multnomah County Justice Center, although unsuccessful.
Multiple fires were started. A crosswalk signal was torched as was various tinder piled along Southwest 3rd Avenue and Southwest Main Street. A roaring fire was set ablaze in the middle of the street during their New Year's celebration. Comrades cheered the flames on.
A man brandishing an axe danced around a street fire.
A giant dumpster was also lit by rioters and melted to the pavement. The raging fire poured out onto the concrete below.
Rioters were warned by loudspeaker and social media to evacuate the area and exit to the south and west immediately. Those who failed to comply were subjected to arrest, citation, and crowd control tactics.
Few if any heeded the warning, PPB stated via press release. No tear gas was deployed during the event, but inert smoke and impact munitions were used.
Cops citywide were pulled from answering emergency calls to respond to the scene. Federal Protective Services and Multnomah County Sheriff officers also assisted and were targeted with dangerous projectile, such as large rocks, full-sized bricks, and frozen water bottles. Authorities were outnumbered at one point and pushed backwards by the encroaching crowd.
The chasing mob even forced one police vehicle to retreat as rioters shouted expletives. "You f*cking b*tch!" can be heard screaming in the cop car's direction.
A few officers were hit with paint balloons that may have been laced with a caustic substance, PPB cited, causing a burning sensation to the skin. While no Portland Police officers were hurt, other members of law enforcement officers suffered injuries.
Among the numerous local businesses terrorized near the police headquarters, far-left activists vandalized a Chase Bank.
Antifa rioters ransacked and destroyed another Starbucks location left in ruin. Insurgents smashed through the coffee shop's glass doors.
"F— colonizers" was graffitied on the boarded storefront while debris covered the ground.
Pandora's shattered jewelry showcase displayed signage that read: "Sale 50% off select styles." The videographer documenting the aftermath commented: "It's 100 percent off now."
It appeared that rioters used an electric Bureau of Transportation scooter to break the windows of Ecru Modern Stationer, a stationary boutique that sells greeting cards, journals, and notebooks. A bin of Christmas wrapping paper spilled outside.
The riot ended by 2:00 a.m. Arrests were made, but police have not yet named suspects.