Police investigate social media posts reporting 'rash of bias crime attacks' in Portland

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PORTLAND, Ore. – Police investigators are looking into several reports of bias attacks against the LGBTQ community in Southeast Portland, officials said Monday.

On Sunday, February 10, officers responded to reports of an assault near Southeast 15th and Morrison Street. Once there, the officer noted “that the person was intoxicated and appeared to have fallen.”

The person was taken from the scene in an ambulance and later called police from the hospital to make an assault report.

“Initially it was not reported as a bias attack, but online posts suggested the victim believed it may have been,” police said on Monday (Feb. 18).

The case has been assigned to the bureau’s Bias Crimes detectives for a follow-up. At this point, police said, their detectives have not been able to confirm that a crime occurred or whether anyone else was involved in the person’s injury.

Portland Police said they are aware of social media posts suggesting a rash of bias crime attacks on the city’s LGBTQ community. Detectives are encouraging any victims or witnesses to report any of these bias-motivated crimes to law enforcement.

Under Oregon law, bias crimes are defined as any criminal act that targets a victim based on the suspect's perception of the victim's race, color, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or national origin.

Detectives work to determine whether or not bias elements are present during the reported crime that align with Oregon law as defined in the Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS):

If you have been the victim of a bias crime assault or you are witnessing one, immediately call 9-1-1. If you have been the victim of a different bias crime and the suspect is no longer present, such as vandalism or graffiti, please call the non-emergency line at 503-823-3333.

You can learn more about bias crime investigations and reported bias/hate crime statistics within the City of Portland online.

Additionally, the City of Portland is a partner in Portland United Against Hate, which is a community initiated partnership of Community Based Organizations, Neighborhood Associations, concerned communities and the City.

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