Portland Courthouse Now A ‘Fortress’ Again After Second Wave Of Riots
PORTLAND, OREGON, USA - DECEMBER 31: 2020 A banner hangs on the fence near the Federal Courthouse as people gather to protest against police brutality in Portland, Oregon, United States on December 31, 2020. (Photo by John Rudoff/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
John Rudoff/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Portland courthouse that became the target of “anti-fascists” attacks over the summer — some so serious that then-President Donald Trump deployed federal agents to protect the building — is again the target of massive protests, and the facility is now a veritable “fortress” as a result.

“Non-scalable fencing has been reinstalled at Mark O’Hatfield Courthouse in Portland, Oregon, on Sunday after rioters vandalized the building over the weekend,” according to Fox News, which spoke directly to the Department of Homeland Security.

Local reporters captured the reconstruction in action, posting pictures of the changes to social media. One reporter for the Oregonian captured evidence that officials were blocking off a sidewalk surrounding the courthouse that had been marked with graffiti, including the phrase “Nazis work here.”

The federal government erected fencing around the courthouse last summer, after a series of protests by suspected members of Antifa turned into violent and destructive riots, often targeting the courthouse’s first-level offices. Then-president Donald Trump authorized federal agents with an elite branch of the Customs and Border Protection agency to protect the building — a move that mainstream media sources quickly labeled controversial.

“After flooding the streets around the federal courthouse in Portland with tear gas during Friday’s early morning hours, dozens of federal officers in camouflage and tactical gear stood in formation around the front of the building,” The New York Times reported in July. “The aggressive incursion of federal officers into Portland has been stretching the legal limits of federal law enforcement, as agents with batons and riot gear range deep into the streets of a city whose leadership has made it clear they are not welcome.”

After the Trump administration struck a bargain with Oregon state officials, empowering them to take responsibility for protecting the courthouse, the fences came down. At the time, the Portland police heralded the change as a marker of peace between government officials and the “anti-fascists.”

“We are removing the fence to show our willingness to have dialog and peaceful communication toward starting to heal our community. We are open and listening to discussions of how the community envisions its police serve them in the future,” the Portland police tweeted at the time.

Sunday afternoon, the fencing went back up, per Fox.

That decision follows a distinct uptick in violence in downtown Portland — violence that began shortly before President Joe Biden was inaugurated — and has continued through February and into March. As The Daily Wire noted just days after Biden’s inauguration, federal officials were also retasked with defending federal government buildings in the area and, at one point, even went so far as to confront protesters directly, firing tear gas and non-lethal pepper balls to clear the area.

This past week, beginning on Thursday, protesters marked the one-year anniversary of Breonna Taylor’s death with a new round of demonstrations, again targeting the courthouse, covering the outside with graffiti, and starting small fires around the building’s entrance.

Biden, notably, called Trump’s response to the courthouse attacks from the summer “egregious.”

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