Late breaking news on Sunday as reported by Oregonlive/Oregonian — it appears that 48-year-old Michael Forest Reinoehl has been identified by his family as the person in several videos and still images of the suspected killer of Aaron Danielson, a member of “Patriot Prayer”, a pro-Trump organization located in the Pacific Northwest.
The person in the video and still images is wearing a distinctive vest with tactical webbing over a white shirt and has a prominent neck tattoo. The possible identity of the person was first put out on “4Chan” based on the work of several “internet sleuths” looking at images of Antifa members known to be in and around Portland.
Based on that tentative identity, an anonymous caller telephoned Reinoehl’s sister in Sandy, Oregon, where Reinoehl was raised and threatened his family if Reinoehl did not turn himself in. His sister was scared by the caller and called the Sandy Police Department. She then went to the internet to watch the video and look at the images. Shortly thereafter she called Portland Police Department and reported that the person in the video and images thought to be the shooter was her brother Michael Reinoehl.
Rienoehl has an active online presence, openly associates himself with Antifa, and has posted many times on social media about his attendance at the nightly riots in various locations around Portland. As reported, he has recent addresses in nearby Gresham and Clackamas, Oregon.
Various news reports today have mischaracterized the circumstances of the shooting — most notably Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler — by claiming it was connected to the pro-Trump caravan of cars that went through downtown Portland earlier on Saturday evening. At the time of the shooting the caravan had already left downtown, traffic was flowing again as it normally would, and Danielson was walking by himself. Apparently he was identified by virtue of the “Patriot Prayer” hat he was wearing, and a voice can be heard on one video shouting “We’ve got a Trumper over here.”
Within moments, an individual in a distinctive vest over a white teeshirt shot Danielson in the chest and he died in the street.
Here is one of the better videos of the event. The images are very graphic.
— MyTwitVoice (@MyTwitVoice) August 30, 2020
Note there are no vehicles from the caravan earlier in the evening, and no pro-Trump flags. Danielson was alone walking on the street when the shooter walked up to him.
What is most outrageous beyond the fact of the shooting is that Reinoehl had been arrested by Portland Police on July 5 at 2:10 am in the downtown area where Antifa has been actively protesting for more than 3 months. When he was arrested he was found to be in possession of a handgun. He was charged by Portland Police with possessing a loaded firearm, resisting arrest, and interfering with police.
But no charges were filed by District Attorney Michael Schmidt, and the case was dismissed on July 30 with a “No Complaint” entry, which I interpret to mean the District Attorney’s Office did not file a criminal complaint in response to the arrest supported by probable cause. The Oregonian obtained a statement from a spokesman for DA Schmidt’s office claiming the July case against Reinoehl was still under review. Mr. Danielson’s family will be glad to know that I’m sure.
This is the same DA Michael Schmidt who announced publicly on August 11 that his office would “presumptively decline to prosecute cases where the most serious offense is a city ordinance violation or where the crime(s) do not involve deliberate property damage, theft or the use or threat of force against another person.”
It is being reported that Schmidt only took office on August 1, after the Reinoehl’s case was handled, but that is not true. Schmidt was elected to the position on May 19, running as a progressive candidate who promised to end “cash bail” and hire a dedicated “hate crimes” prosecutor. Even though he had previously been a prosecutor in the office, the union that represents the 75 deputy prosecutors endorsed his opponent. After Schmidt’s victory, and recognizing the changes he was promising to bring to the office — his predecessor resigned on June 16, just two weeks after rioting had started in downtown Portland, and six weeks before Schmidt was scheduled to take office.
Oregon Governor Kate Brown swore Schmidt into office early, and he took over on July 7. This was two days after Reinoehl’s arrest, and more than three weeks before the matter was dismissed by his office.
Video images of the fatal shooting captured a tall, thin white man in a hat and white tube socks running from the scene. The images showed a distinctive tattoo the man’s neck, and Reinoehl has a tattoo similar in appearance to the fuzzy image from the images.
In an interview with the Oregonian, Reinoehl’s sister told the outlet that he has been estranged from his family, including her, for more than three years. “… this whole thing surprises the daylights out of us, because we always thought he is a lot of bark, not a lot of bite,” she said. “But he’s also been very impulsive and irrational.”
Reinoehl is wanted on a failure to appear warrant in a June 8 speed racing case in Baker County in eastern Oregon. He also faces allegations including driving under the influence of a controlled substance, recklessly endangering another, unlawful possession of a gun and driving while suspended and uninsured.
On social media, he posted on June 16, “Every Revolution needs people that are willing and ready to fight. There are so many of us protesters that are just protesting without a clue of where that will lead. That’s just the beginning that’s that where the fight starts. If that’s as far as you can take it thank you for your participation but please stand aside and support the ones that are willing to fight. I am 100 % ANTIFA all the way! I am willing to fight for my brothers and sisters! … We do not want violence but we will not run from it either! … Today’s protesters and antifa are my brothers in arms.”
On July 2, Reinoehl wrote on Instagram, “We will not stop until there is change. Now more than ever we need to join together. Join the cause support the people that are willing to take a rubber bullet. Give them supplies food water Medical anything that can help. Bring balloons and paint for paint balloons. #blaklivesmatter #breonnataylor.”