The members of the Portland Police Bureau's Rapid Response Team resigned from their voluntary positions on Wednesday after a fellow officer was charged for how he acted during the uprising that took place last summer.
What are the details?
The Post Millennial and local radio station KXL-FM have reported that the Rapid Response Team decided to disband while they were having a meeting with the Portland police union. About 50 officers, including detectives and sergeants, voted unanimously to leave the “riot squad”.
Members of the squad have been deployed to respond to several uprisings that took place in Portland. However, they decided to resign together after they found no support from the City Hall and the district attorney.
Police union director Daryl Turner shared on Wednesday during the “Lars Larson Show” that he believed the prosecution of Officer Corey Budworth was the final straw for the other officers.
Budworth was accused of using unnecessary force against photojournalist Teri Jacobs during a declared riot on August 18. He had initially been cleared by an internal investigation that took place in the police department,
However, Multnomah District Attorney Mike Schmidt announced on Tuesday that Budworth would be indicted.
“In this case, we allege that no legal justification existed for Officer Budworth's deployment of force, and that the deployment of force was legally excessive under the circumstances. My office will continue to do everything we can to ensure justice is done without error or delay and that we make sure our work and practices are rooted in fairness and equity,” Schmidt stated.
“It is important to remember that our officer has not been found guilty. Like every citizen, our officer is innocent until proven guilty. He faced a rapidly evolving situation,” the police union emphasized in a news release.
“It is an all-hazard incident response team that has received advanced specialized training to respond to incidents requiring higher levels of technical expertise. The primary role has been to provide public safety at crowd events when there was a threat to the community,” is how the Portland Police Bureau described the squad.
“Now that the riot team is no more, we have no clue what's going to happen. We don't have enough patrol officers to be pulled from the road to handle huge crowds. We are only backups with no gear,” a Portland police officer shared with the Post Millennial.