Portland sees surge in shootings after mayor disbands police department's gun crimes unit

by Laura Mize · Sep 22nd, 2020 11:26 am

Last Updated Sep 23rd, 2020 at 8:16 pm

The city of Portland, Oregon, had nearly three times as many shootings in July and August 2020 as it did for those same months in 2019, new statistics released by the police department show.

The surge of gun violence followed the decision by Mayor Ted Wheeler to disband the police department's gun crimes unit, a move he announced in early June. The city saw 223 shootings in July and August, compared to just 77 for July and August 2019. So far in September 2020, there have been 64 shootings in Portland. September 2019 had fewer than half that many.

Protesters have said the department's gun crimes unit targeted black men unfairly. In August, Wheeler said he may reinstate some sort of gun crimes unit after seeing the extreme rise in shootings.

? The Department of Justice recently designated the city an "Anarchy Jurisdiction," partly because of the skyrocketing number of shootings.


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