Portland pays out $680,000 to defund the police activist, former city commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty over leaked incident report

The settlement was in response to a 2021 incident where the union's president and PPB staff leaked a report in which Hardesty was mistakenly identified as the suspect in a hit-and-run accident.

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The Portland Police Association has settled a lawsuit brought by anti-police activist and former Portland city commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty for $680,000.

The settlement was first reported by KGW8 and was in response to a 2021 incident in which the union's president at the time, Brian Hunzeker, and Portland Police Bureau staff leaked a report in which Hardesty was mistakenly identified as the suspect in a hit-and-run accident.

Within 24 hours of the accident, law enforcement ruled out Hardesty and determined that the actual suspect was from Vancouver. However, the initial report had already been leaked to the media. 

The far-left activists claimed the leak was a politically motivated attempt to tarnish her reputation. 

Shortly thereafter, Hunzeker resigned as president of the union and was subsequently fired from the bureau but was later reinstated through arbitration. He resigned earlier this year after the Willamette Week revealed that he was still a full-time Clark County Sheriff's Office employee.

In 2021, Hardesty filed her suit against the city, the police union, Hunzeker, and Kerri Ottoman, another officer involved in the leak.

Earlier this year she settled with the city and received $5,000 and a signed apology from Mayor Ted Wheeler, who also serves as police commissioner. 

The Union confirmed to local media Thursday that a settlement had been reached as the trial was set to begin Oct. 2. Though Hardesty had originally sought $3 million from the union and $1 million each from Hunzeker and Ottoman, The Oregonian reported that the parties had settled for $680,000.

In November, Hardesty was ousted from her position by political newcomer Rene Gonzalez after voters rejected Hardesty’s radicalism.  

During the over 120 nights of rioting in Portland perpetrated by Antifa and Black Lives Matter following the death of George Floyd in 2020, Hardesty denied that protesters engaged in violence and blamed Portland police officers for setting fires to "frame" Antifa.

She also falsely accused "undercover white supremacists" of starting the riots, including a month-long siege of the federal courthouse.

Hardesty in 2021, led a mob of far-left activists in an attempt to get a city worker fired for displaying a Thin Blue Line flag decal on his truck.

Despite calling to defund the police, in 2020 Hardesty called the police on a Lyft driver after a night out after she refused to keep the windows slightly open to comply with COVID-19 policies. Hardesty blamed the altercation on white supremacy.
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