A protester catches on fire after a Molotov Cocktail is thrown on the 100th day of protests in Portland.
A protester catches on fire after a Molotov Cocktail is thrown on the 100th day of protests in Portland. Nathan Howard / Getty News
This was originally published by The Stranger's sister publication The Portland Mercury on Sunday, September 6. Follow the Mercury for daily coverage of Portland's ongoing protests.


One hundred days, one hundred nights. That’s how long protesters have taken their frustrations and demands for justice to the streets of Portland, calling for an end to violent and racially biased policing. The 100th day of demonstrations drew smaller crowds than the movement’s initial marches in early June, but featured familiar scenes: Impassioned speeches by Black Portlanders, traffic-halting marches led by unifying chants, and a militant response by local law enforcement.

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The day began with a number of family-friendly events held across Portland. At Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School, volunteers doled out free pizza, snacks, artwork, and kids clothing while hundreds of attendees listened to live music and various speakers from a stage set up in the school’s baseball field. Lents Park drew a similar scene: Organizers handed out free food—and houseplants—between speeches and hip-hop performances.

By nightfall, several hundred protesters had regrouped in Southeast Portland’s Ventura Park, where organizers planned a march to Portland Police Bureau’s (PPB) East Precinct, located at SE 106 and SE Stark. The group had barely left the park when they were confronted by a line of PPB officers and Oregon State Police troopers, blocking the group from marching west on SE Stark. After a PPB loudspeaker ordered the group to disperse, the street lit up with commercial-grade fireworks and several small fiery explosions—purportedly lit by molotov cocktails tossed from the crowd. The explosion caught at least one person’s clothing on fire, and nearby medics rushed to extinguished it. A number of officers also attempted to help put out the fire. Other law enforcement officers shot canisters of smoke and tear gas into the crowd, rushed at the protesters, and arrested many in the process. This scene repeated itself several times as the night went on—with the layers of tear gas drawing people out of their homes to hand out water to protesters and yell at police for spreading a toxic cloud of gas across their neighborhood. Videos captured by reporters on the scene showed aggressive arrests, where officers tackled people onto concrete and repeatedly punched protesters as they were held down by other police.

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The night ended in more than 50 arrests, according to the PPB. Two of those arrested were carrying knives. In an early morning press release, PPB said that several officers were injured by thrown rocks and fireworks. Because protesters were dressed in body armor and helmets (like the police officers who met them), PPB said “it was clear that the intent of the crowd was not peaceful protest.”

Here’s a look at the 100th day of Portland protests, in images:

••••

Artist Idris Jah’Son displays his work at the Black Lives Matter rally at Dr. King Elementary School.
Artist Idris Jah’Son displays his work at the Black Lives Matter rally at Dr. King Elementary School. Cata Gaitán

A Black Lives Matter car caravan was one of many events celebrating the 100th consecutive day of protests in Portland.
A Black Lives Matter car caravan was one of many events celebrating the 100th consecutive day of protests in Portland. Garrison Davis

Speaker Ragina Rage addresses the crowd at Lents Park.
Speaker Ragina Rage addresses the crowd at Lents Park. Annie Schutz

Among the attendants at Saturday afternoons Black Lives Matter rally at Lents Park, a dapper bearded dragon named Sleddy.
Among the attendants at Saturday afternoon's Black Lives Matter rally at Lents Park, a dapper bearded dragon named "Sleddy." Jake Johnson

On the walking paths at Lents Park, protesters stencil the names of Black people killed by police.
On the walking paths at Lents Park, protesters stencil the names of Black people killed by police. Annie Schutz

A crowd 1,000 strong march toward the East Precinct.
A crowd 1,000 strong march toward the East Precinct. Tojo Andrianarivo

Police in full riot gear are ready and waiting to meet protesters.
Police in full riot gear are ready and waiting to meet protesters. Elaine Kinchin

Fireworks explode as police attempt to stop protesters from marching on Stark Street near 113th Avenue.
Fireworks explode as police attempt to stop protesters from marching on Stark Street near 113th Avenue. Tojo Andrianarivo

After incendiary devices are thrown, police fire tear gas into the park and surrounding neighborhood.
After incendiary devices are thrown, police fire tear gas into the park and surrounding neighborhood. Elaine Kinchin

Oregon State Troopers, called in by Gov. Brown to assist police, arresting protesters.
Oregon State Troopers, called in by Gov. Brown to assist police, arresting protesters. Mathieu Lewis-Rolland

Seven arrestees are seated and handcuffed on a curb. (After this photo was taken, officers pushed all press out of the area.)
Seven arrestees are seated and handcuffed on a curb. (After this photo was taken, officers pushed all press out of the area.) Cata Gaitán

Police munitions light a neighbors Prius on fire.
Police munitions light a neighbor's Prius on fire. Mathieu Lewis-Rolland

A member of the press photographs the action.
A member of the press photographs the action. Mathieu Lewis-Rolland

[Editor's Note: The Mercury would like to thank the many freelance reporters and photographers who risk their safety on a nightly basis to provide much-needed information and context for these continuing protests. We appreciate you!]

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