As I pointed out yesterday, the behavior wasn’t too good on either side of this May Day brawl in Portland. Among the videos I posted was one in which a woman named Heather Clark, who was with the Antifa group, collapsed in the street unconscious after apparently being hit in the head by someone from the right-wing group. However, in the video I posted you couldn’t actually see the contact or who was responsible.
OMG A GIRL GOT KNOCKED OUT CLEAN, pic.twitter.com/C3wdqOKLIT
— Mike Bivins (@itsmikebivins) May 2, 2019
Reporter Andy Ngo, who was present but had been blinded by bear repellant spray at this point, reported today that Cider Riot, the bar where this took place, is threatening to sue the right-wingers for $1 million. They are also claiming the attack on Clark was attempted murder.
Independent channel "Stumptown Matters" captured footage of when Heather Clark ran in to fight & was knocked out in the antifa brawl. Cider Riot bar is suing the right-wing protesters for $1m for negligence & trespass. Antifa says this was attempted murder https://t.co/k47GyChCaM pic.twitter.com/exCiimM4cp
— Andy Ngo (@MrAndyNgo) May 4, 2019
I don’t think this was attempted murder but it was certainly battery and, as I said yesterday, the person responsible should be arrested regardless of which side of the brawl he was on. Today, I looked at several more videos of this incident trying to understand what happened and I think this clip shows who was responsible. Let me set the scene.
After the fight between two guys in the street, the combatant for Antifa was acclaimed the winner by people on both sides. He walked up to Joey Gibson and said something like “you guys have to leave now.” He and Gibson shook hands and, in his own video, Gibson can be heard encouraging everyone to leave. He said there was a deal and since they lost the fight they needed to go.
Most of the right-wingers left but there’s one black guy in a green striped shirt who is with Patriot Prayer (I don’t know his name) was very worked up. Maybe he was spat on or hit with something but he’s clearly angry and challenging everyone from Antifa to another fight. No one wants to fight but he goes across the street for one last word with Antifa.
At this point, you can see the big Antifa guy who won the earlier brawl looking at Joey Gibson like ‘Hey, are you going to get this guy out of here?’ Gibson walked up and put his arm around the guy in the striped shirt and started walking him back across the street.
And that’s when Heather Clark is trailing and saying or doing something and the guy in the striped shirt shoved her back toward the bar pretty hard. At this point, Clark became furious and the rest of the Antifa crowd is angry that someone pushed a woman from their group. Clark rushed toward the right-wingers and Joey Gibson and someone else held Clark back. In his clip, you can hear Gibson kept repeating “I’m sorry. I’m sorry” the Antifa crowd who are now angry.
As Clark tried to push into the Patriot Prayer group, a big guy with a baton came over and swung hard. He’s wearing a helmet with an American flag on the back. Here’s my one caveat and it’s a big one: You can’t actually see the moment of contact in this clip because someone else passes in front of the camera. However, from the position and the timing, it looks like he’s the person who hit Clark. Here’s the clip queued up to about 10 seconds before the strike. The photo above is a screengrab which shows the guy with his baton held back ready to swing just before Clark went down:
The whole idea of Patriot Prayer was that these guys were supposed to be better than the pro-political violence Antifa thugs they were squaring off with. And in many cases over the past year, I think they have been. But hitting an unarmed woman in the head and knocking her out is just more thuggery. The guy responsible should be arrested and if Joey Gibson knows who the guy is (either the baton-wielding guy or someone else) then he should be offering the police his name and address. Maybe he’s already doing that, I don’t know. But this is definitely a test of whether one side in this ongoing battle is really any different from the other.