Occupy Portland: Some leave, others plan to defy order to vacate
As the midnight deadline for Occupy Portland to vacate two downtown parks approaches, it appears that some demonstrators have begun to disperse, while others plan on forcing the police’s hand.
“We’re going to sit-in and force them to arrest us,” Jordan LeDoux, an Occupy Portland spokesman, told The Times on Saturday evening.
On Thursday, Mayor Sam Adams ordered that the demonstrators vacate the parks by midnight Saturday, arguing that the encampment had become dangerous, a health hazard and a haven for criminals. If protesters don't leave, he warned, they'll be arrested.
According to the Oregonian newspaper, some have begun dismantling tents and leaving ahead of the eviction deadline.
But LeDoux said that at a meeting some demonstrators voted to stay at the parks.
“We’re going to have a significant number of people arrested if they come through and start arresting people,” he said.
At his news conference, the mayor said the turning points in his decision to force demonstrators to dismantle the encampment were the arrest of an Occupy Portland demonstrator accused of tossing a Molotov cocktail outside an office building and two nonfatal drug overdoses in the camp.
-- Stephen Ceasar
Photo: A demonstrator on Saturday holds up a sign that refers to the eviction notice of the Occupy Portland encampment. Credit: Photo by Natalie Behring/Getty Images.