Portland’s protests descended into chaos Friday night at the federal courthouse as protesters threw fireworks and police used tear gas and pepper balls.
Videos showed protesters launching fireworks at the courthouse. Police deployed tear gas and pepper balls to try and control the crowd, and several protesters arrived with leaf blowers to blow the gas away.
The courthouse has been set on fire multiple times during the ongoing unrest, including Wednesday night when Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler arrived to speak with protesters and was hit with tear gas. The mayor said that he “saw nothing that provoked this response.” A building near Wheeler had reportedly been set on fire and rioters were throwing explosives, according to reporter Andy Ngo.
Portland has now seen 7 straight weeks of unrest, which began nationwide after the May 25 death of George Floyd. Peaceful demonstrations descended into riots on many occasions, costing the city a total of around $30 million.