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Top Oregon Democrat's legislative director arrested at Portland riot for interfering with police officer


Arrestee Kristina Narayan works for Tina Kotek, speaker of Oregon's House of Representatives

Image source: Multnomah County Sheriff's Office

The legislative director for the Democratic speaker of Oregon's House of Representatives was arrested at a riot in Portland, Oregon, last weekend for interfering with a police officer, the Washington Free Beacon reported.

What are the details?

Kristina Narayan, 29, was arrested along with 58 others during a riot that began Saturday night and continued into Sunday morning, the paper said, citing a Portland Police Bureau report.

Narayan has worked for House Speaker Tina Kotek since 2016, the Free Beacon said. Kotek represents northeast Portland, Townhall reported.

Narayan was booked just after 2 a.m. Sunday for the misdemeanor; she was released the same day without bail. The Free Beacon said Kotek's office didn't respond to a request for comment.

What happened at the riot?

Portland police said "multiple fire bombs, mortars, rocks, and other items were thrown at law enforcement" during the riot.

"Many in the crowd were carrying large shields ... and dressed in protective gear including helmets, gas masks, body armor, and all black clothing," police added. "It was clear that the intent of the crowd was not peaceful protest. Therefore officers were positioned in such a way that prevented the march from reaching East Precinct."

Police said individuals in the crowd "began throwing multiple fire bombs at officers" just after 9 p.m.

TheBlaze reported that one of the Molotov cocktails caused a rioter to catch on fire:

Video Shows Portland Protester Catch Fire During Police Clash | NBC News youtu.be

More from the police:

This criminal activity presented an extreme danger to life safety for all community members, and prompted a declaration of a riot. The crowd was advised over loudspeaker that it was a riot and they were to leave the area to the east immediately. They were warned that failure to adhere to this order may subject them to arrest, citation, or crowd control agents, including, but not limited to, tear gas and/or impact weapons. Individuals within the crowd began throwing illegal fireworks/mortars at officers. Others were seen throwing rocks. At least one had a "wrist-rocket" type of slingshot launching unknown objects. In order to defend themselves from these assaults, officers used crowd control munitions, including tear gas. Officers made numerous targeted arrests.

For the next four hours, the crowd appeared to meander through the Mill Park community, attempting to get to get around the police blockade and reach East Precinct. Officers moved ahead of the rioters to prevent them access. Rioters lit fires in the streets, including dumpsters, garbage cans, and wooden pallets. Officers moved in to push the crowd back in order to extinguish the fires.

What do we know about Kotek, the Oregon House speaker?

In July, Kotek criticized Portland police for the "unacceptable" practice of using tear gas to disperse rioters.

"It was an unnecessary escalation by the [Portland Police Bureau] against people exercising their freedom of assembly and freedom of speech," Kotek said in a letter to Democratic Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, the Associated Press said. "It showed an utter inability to exercise restraint. Smart policing is when an officer can differentiate a minor provocation from a serious threat. Nothing about this was smart."

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