Trending Topics

Protesters and Police Clash as Demonstrators Mount Barricade to Keep Black Family from Being Evicted from Home They’ve Lived In for 65 Years

Demonstrators and law enforcement clashed as Portland protesters erected an autonomous zone Tuesday, Dec. 8, by surrounding a Black family’s home with barricades in order to keep police out and prevent the family from being evicted.

The Kinney family has lived in their Mississippi Ave. home for 65 years, but the property was foreclosed on in 2018. Although the family challenged the foreclosure, a Multnomah County Judge sanctioned the eviction in February and instructed the county sheriff to remove the family from the home.

Mississippi’s “Red Home” where police attempted to remove a Black family who has lived there for 65 years. Twitter/ PDXzane

For months, protesters have staged a demonstration outside of what’s known as the “Red House on Mississippi” to prevent the family from being removed, and on Dec. 8, protesters intensified their efforts by surrounding the house with barriers to keep police out as they attempted to execute the eviction.

“Portland has a new autonomous zone here on Mississippi Avenue,” Zane Sparling of the Portland Tribune wrote on Twitter.

“The Kinney family says their home was foreclosed on because they owed less than $100K, while the vacant land next door is with $10 million.

Sparling also shared video footage of parts of wooden fences, among other materials being used as barricades around the Kinney’s Red House. He noted that the neighborhood was once the “heart of Portland’s Black community,” but that gentrification had displaced many families.

Signs posted around the barrcades bear messages like “Red House Sovereignty” and “Evictions Hurt Everyone.”

An eviction moratorium remains in place into next year amid the pandemic, but the judge who ordeded police to execute an eviction notice on the Kinney home did so before the moratorium was in place.

“The judgment was issued prior to state and federal emergency moratoriums. The eviction moratoriums do not apply to evictions based on post-nonjudicial foreclosures, such as this case,” the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a press release.

Police arrived at the home on Tuesday morning where 100 protesters had gathered. Demonstrators clashed with police and deflated tired on patrol cars. Seven people were arrested for trespassing during the incident.

Sparling said there had been no sign of police since they were pushed back by protesters earlier in the day and since the barrier was constructed.

On Tuesday evening, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said there will be “no autonomous zone in Portland.” He authorized local police to use all “lawful means to end the illegal occupation.”

Back to top