One person was shot dead late on Saturday in Portland, Oregon, as a large caravan of US President Donald Trump’s supporters and Black Lives Matter protesters clashed in the streets.
It wasn’t clear if the shooting was linked to fights that broke out as the caravan of about 600 vehicles was confronted by protesters in the city’s downtown.
“Portland police officers heard sounds of gunfire from the area of Southeast 3rd Avenue and Southwest Alder Street. They responded and located a victim with a gunshot wound to the chest,” the Portland police bureau said.
The chaotic scenes came two days after Trump invoked Portland as a liberal city overrun with violence in a speech at the Republican National Convention as part of his “law and order” re-election campaign theme. The caravan marked the third Saturday in a row that Trump supporters have rallied in the city.
Videos from the scene showed sporadic fighting, as well as Trump supporters firing paintball pellets at opponents and using bear spray as counter-protesters threw things at the Trump caravan.
“All oons on the table” to resolve violent protests in Portland, including sending in federal law enforcement assistance, the acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said.
The Black Lives Matter demonstrations usually target police buildings and federal offices. With chants of “One person, one vote” and “No justice, no peace”, a crowd of about 1,000 demonstrators gathered outside a Wisconsin courthouse on Saturday to denounce police violence, a week after a cop shot Jacob Blake in the back and left the Black man paralysed.
Protesters chanted “Seven bullets, seven days” – a reference to the number of times Blake was shot last Sunday. Blake’s father, Jacob Blake Sr, called for end to police brutality.