Anti-Trump protests in Portland turn violent; police deem it a ‘riot’

PORTLAND, Ore. — Police in Portland arrested several people Thursday as an anti-Trump protests turned violent, with demonstrators breaking windows of businesses and starting a dumpster fire downtown.

Police termed Thursday’s night’s protest a “riot” due to “extensive criminal and dangerous behavior.”  About 4,000 protesters took to the streets of the Oregon city in what started as a peaceful march, with chants such as “we reject the president-elect.”

Police said Friday morning they had arrested 26 people from the protests on charges that included disorderly conduct and interfering with a peace officer.

Over the course of the evening, “anarchists” in the crowd threw objects at officers, vandalized local businesses and damaged cars, Portland Police Sgt. Pete Simpson said. They told demonstrators who had not returned to the designated square where the protest took place that they would be arrested for unlawful assembly.

In a series of Twitter posts Thursday night, police said they were dealing with increasing vandalism and aggressive behavior from protesters, and had to employ pepper spray and use batons to quell the violence.

Protests and marches continued in other US cities including New York, Los Angeles, Denver, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Baltimore and Dallas. Demonstrations also took place internationally, including Israel, London and Manila, Philippines.

Some of the roughly 1,000 protesters in Oakland, California broke store windows, left graffiti on buildings and threw M-80 firecrackers, Molotov cocktails and bottles at police officers, authorities said. Police arrested 11 people.

In Los Angeles, about 185 protesters were arrested Thursday night into Friday morning, police Officer Norma Eisenman said — including some on suspicion of blocking roads, and minors accused of violating curfew.

Trump tweeted that the demonstrations that began hours after polls closed Tuesday night were “very unfair,” but the day after praised protestors for having “passion for our great country.”

CNN, the Associated Press and PIX11 digital producer Paige Leskin contributed to this report.