One of the problems in dealing with the rioters in Portland is that the Multnomah County DA Mike Schmidt is not holding or charging most of the people arrested, meaning they were free to keep rioting and there were no real consequences for their actions.
Gov. Kate Brown said that she had a “plan” for dealing with the rioters which involved calling in assistance from sheriffs’ offices from nearby counties. But apparently she hadn’t even asked them before she announced the plan and they said no, because why should they come in to help, only to have the cases dismissed? Their reply made it clear that the problem was in the failure to hold the criminals accountable.
But now the feds and the Oregon State Police may have come up with a clever way of getting around Schmidt.
Oregon State Police are sending in federally deputized troopers to respond to protest-related violence in Portland — effectively circumventing the Multnomah County DA's office, which OSP has criticized in the past for not prioritizing prosecutions.
— Deborah Bloom (@deborahebloom) September 1, 2020
The Oregon State Police confirmed that they are working with the U.S. Attorney’s office to see what arrests they’ve made could qualify for federal charges. Plus, on top of that, the U.S. Marshals have federally deputized the troopers making them essentially federal agents. So if the rioters attack them, they are attacking federal agents and can be prosecuted for it by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Rioters attack them in virtually every riot.
“OSP is not criticizing any officials and we respect the authority of the [Multnomah County] District Attorney, but to meet the Governor’s charge of bringing violence to an end we will use all lawful methods at our disposal,” an Oregon State Police spokesperson said. [….]
“The U.S. Attorney and Multnomah County D.A. work together every day deciding which cases each will prosecute.”
Part of the reason this came about was because they had the OSP helping to protect the federal courthouse so the deputizing was to give them more freedom of movement in the courthouse. But now it has the added benefit of giving more prosecutorial options.
Way to go, feds. Even with Democratic political fail, the federal government is doing what it can to help out and shut down the crazy.