Portland officers clashed with protesters who barricaded a Black family’s home in an attempt to keep them from being evicted.
On Tuesday (Dec. 8), over 100 demonstrators surrounded the Kinney’s home — dubbed Red House on Mississippi — with barriers to delay their removal.
Based on footage shared by Zane Sparling of the Portland Tribune, the barricades — made of wooden fences and other material — were surrounded by signs with messages like “Red House sovereignty” and “Evictions hurt everyone.”
The Kinneys — whose gentrifying neighborhood has already displaced many Black families — reportedly faced a foreclosure in 2018 after 65 years of living in their home on Mississippi Ave. “The Kinney family says their home was foreclosed on because they owed less than $100K, while the vacant land next door is with $10 million,” Sparling reported.
Despite challenging the decision, a Multnomah County Judge authorized the eviction in February and recently instructed authorities to execute the notice.
When law enforcement arrived at the home, however, protesters deflated patrol car tires, leading to the arrests of seven demonstrators who were charged with trespassing. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has since sanctioned police to shut down any other blockades in the city.
“I am authorizing the Portland police to use all lawful means to end the illegal occupation on North Mississippi Avenue and to hold those violating our community’s laws accountable,” he wrote on Twitter. “There will be no autonomous zone in Portland.”
An eviction moratorium was put in place on the Red House and extends into next year, but it reportedly does not apply to the Kinney family.
“The judgment was issued prior to state and federal emergency moratoriums. The eviction moratoriums do not apply to evictions based on post-nonjudicial foreclosures, such as this case,” the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a press release.
I am authorizing the Portland Police to use all lawful means to end the illegal occupation on North Mississippi Avenue and to hold those violating our community’s laws accountable. There will be no autonomous zone in Portland.— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) December 9, 2020