Portland listening session turns into extremist 'sh*tshow' as activists demand police force be disbanded

Last week a Portland police lieutenant named Jeff Niiya was accused of colluding with right-wing protest group Patriot Prayer after a string of his texts were released to the public. Lt. Niiya’s job is to coordinate with protest groups coming to the city and the texts show him doing just that, i.e. chatting with Patriot Prayer’s Joey Gibson about the group’s intentions and planned movements. As I noted last week, Lt. Niiya has previously been in close contact with a member of Antifa who became an outcast when other members of the group learned she’d be talking with police.

But the texts with Patriot Prayer were seen as something far more sinister by the far-left denizens of Portland. That included left-wing city commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty who declared the texts were proof police were in “collusion with right-wing extremists.” Portland’s Mayor, Ted Wheeler, called for an investigation saying, “It is imperative for law enforcement to remain objective and professional, and in my opinion, these text messages appear to cross several boundaries.” Portland’s Police Chief Danielle Outlaw agreed to investigate the texts to see if they showed anything improper. Yesterday, the Oregonian reported that it was Mayor Wheeler’s office that was asking for and receiving information about Patriot Prayer’s location and plans from Lt. Niiya:

The Mayor’s Office has relied on a Portland police lieutenant to keep tabs on right-wing protest leader Joey Gibson, sometimes texting him at all hours to ask about Gibson’s whereabouts or plans.

It’s the same lieutenant, Jeff Niiya, who has come under fire in the last week from Mayor Ted Wheeler and other city officials…

“Certainly the mayor’s initial comments gave the impression that he was unaware of the communications between Niiya and Gibson,’’ said Lt. Craig Morgan, president of the Portland Police Commanding Officers Association. “These texts show that not only was his top aide aware of the conversations, but he was requesting specific information about Patriot Prayer and Gibson as situations developed.’’

Despite the fact that it was the Mayor’s own office requesting the information Lt. Niiya was gathering on Patriot Prayer, the investigation prompted by Niiya’s texts remains ongoing. As part of that process, Police Chief Outlaw scheduled a listening session to hear the community’s concerns Thursday night. Reporter Andy Ngo, who attended the meeting, says it quickly became a “sh*tshow” and a “circus of identity politics and hysteria.”

It’s not hard to imagine why Antifa anarchists like the idea of a city without a police force. That’s pretty much what they got last August when Mayor Ted Wheeler allowed an Occupy ICE camp full of vile extremists to grow and fester. Protestesters became so violent that ICE officers called 911 for help but Mayor Wheeler ordered the police not to respond. When the same mob turned on a woman running a food cart and burned it down, the police never responded. In the end, it was Police Chief Danielle Outlaw who demanded the Mayor allow her to clear out the camp. Naturally, the protesters left behind loads of garbage for the city to clean up.

At this point, Chief Outlaw seems to be one of the few city officials with any sense. Hopefully, she won’t buckle under the pressure from extremists to condemn Lt. Niiya.