U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Government Website

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Safely connect using HTTPS

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock () or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.


  1. Home
  2. About Us
  3. Site Links
  4. Archived
  5. News Archive
  6. Portland Riots Read-out: July 24

Archived Content

In an effort to keep DHS.gov current, the archive contains outdated information that may not reflect current policy or programs.

Portland Riots Read-out: July 24

Release Date: July 24, 2020

The Bottom Line:

The situation in Portland for the past 55 straight days, continues with violent anarchists rioting on the streets of Portland as federal law enforcement officers work diligently and honorably to enforce federal law; they do so by defending federal property and the lives of their fellow officers.

In response to nightly attempts to raze and damage the Hatfield Federal Courthouse, DHS made the decision earlier this week to put up a stronger fence around the building’s perimeter. While more secure fencing has kept much of the criminal violence away from the courthouse building, it has now become a consistent target of the rioters, who try to tear it down and breach it using ropes and various tools. As federal officers left the building to address attacks on the fence, night after night they have been met by rioters with hard projectiles, mortar style fireworks and lasers that can cause permanent blindness. Reports on the ground also indicate that rioters’ laser attacks have increased in intensity.

The Past 24 Hours:

By 9:15 p.m. local time over 1500 protestors had peacefully assembled near the Hatfield Federal Courthouse.

Around 10:49 p.m. local time the attack on federal property and officers began when the rioters began to use lasers that can cause permanent blindness against federal officers in the courthouse.

At 11:33 p.m. local time the crowd began to throw trash over the fence protecting the courthouse. At 11:38 p.m. local time federal officers arrived at the scene and immediately came under heavy laser attack.

At 11:45 p.m. local time it was reported that the first fireworks were launched at the courthouse.

At 11:49 p.m. rioters attempted to climb the fence, despite repeated warnings not to do so. Laser attacks continued against the courthouse and officers.

Shortly after midnight local time rioters set fire to trash that had been thrown over the fence earlier in the evening. Some rioters then threw objects over the fence and used leaf blowers to increase the spread of the flames. The rioters persisted with their mortar-style firework attacks.

Around 12:30 a.m. local time law enforcement officers were forced to use pepper balls as rioters began to rock the fence aggressively despite the officers’ repeated warnings to cease. Minutes later at 12:39 a.m., rioters started tying rope to the fence in an effort to tear it down. The rioters then began using tools such as hacksaws and bolt cutters in an effort to tear down the fence. When federal officers exited the courthouse building in response to the attempted destruction of the fence, they were immediately assailed with hard projectiles, mortar-style fireworks and lasers.

After officers had reentered the courthouse building, violent anarchists began attaching multiple ropes to the fence in an effort to pull it down while others continued to try to raze the fence with tools.

Around 1:10 a.m. local time rioters breached a door of the fence. When federal officers responded to the breach, they were once again attacked with mortar-style fireworks. Other rioters continued their attempts to push over the fence and lift the jersey barrier.

At 1:24 a.m. local time the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) tweeted that there was “violent and unlawful behavior occurring outside the Federal Courthouse” and warned people to “Stay out of the area.”

At 1:26 a.m. local time federal officers had to go outside of the fence in order to repel the rioters and thereby protect the courthouse and personnel inside. As they entered the street they were immediately assailed with mortar-style fireworks and hard projectiles. Around this time, knives that were previously thrown over the fence at federal officers were recovered.

At 2 a.m. local time PPB finally declared a riot and urged people to leave the area. A total of three fence panels had been torn down by rioters.

At 5:20 a.m. local time there were still fires in the vicinity of the courthouse.

At 5:30 a.m. local time violent opportunists were observed attempting to take down additional fence panels. Pepper balls were deployed but protesters successfully breached the fence.

At 5:50 a.m. local time officers deployed to extinguish a fire that had been started by the crowd and were assaulted yet again with fireworks and projectiles. The officers moved back inside the building.

DHS officers conducted 7 total arrests resulting from the night’s violence.

One injury to a DHS officer has been reported; and no injuries to protestors or rioters have been reported.


Last Updated: 02/05/2021
Was this page helpful?
This page was not helpful because the content