Oregon state regulators fault Cider Riot owner for actions in May Day brawl

More fallout from the May Day brawl that took place in Portland outside a business called Cider Riot. A state regulator called the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) has concluded the owner of Cider Riot, Abram Goldman-Armstrong, should face administrative charges for his behavior that day:


The investigators allege Goldman-Armstrong, who was at Cider Riot during the altercation, photographed patrons using “illegal weapons”. He was also aware of multiple people getting injured throughout the confrontation, which lasted more than a half-hour.

“Goldman-Armstrong stated that his patrons were only acting in self-defense but clearly, according to the video, he was present and watching as patrons displayed aggressive behavior,” wrote state inspector Genny Welp.

The Cider Riot owner never tried to remove these patrons from his pub, investigators allege, which state rules require.

He and the security guard working that day, Joseph LeVasseaur, also provided false statements, the investigators allege in the report…

The report recommends Cider Riot’s owner and staff to be charged with providing false statements, failure to evict and permitting unlawful and disorderly activity, all state alcohol license violations. A charge of destroyed or concealed evidence also appears in the report, but the details of that allegation are redacted.

Several members of the group Patriot Prayer have been arrested and charged for their involvement in the riot that day, including founder Joey Gibson. Additionally, Goldman-Armstrong has filed a $1 million lawsuit against Gibson and the group.


But regardless of what happens with the lawsuit or the regulator’s report, Goldman-Armstrong may not be the owner of Cider Riot for much longer. Last week he put his business and the Cider Riot brand up for sale:

In an interview, Goldman-Armstrong said a costly expansion in 2016 coupled with cider sales below what he and his investors had projected left them with little choice other than to put their facility, equipment and brand on the market.

The cidery had previously cut staff and Goldman-Armstrong, who started Cider Riot in his North Tabor neighborhood garage in 2013, said he hadn’t drawn a paycheck in three years.

“We never had deep pockets,” he said. “This was always a bootstrap kind of enterprise. And we were left with a lot of overhead.”

Goldman-Armstrong claims the sale has nothing to do with the riot. Earlier this month he was banned from Providence Park for displaying an Iron Front symbol at a soccer game.

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