PORTLAND – Portland Police were warning homeowners of vacant properties after a suspected squatter with Occupy Portland was arrested at a Northeast Portland house.
Sunday night officers were called to a burglary in the new duplex on the 500 block of NE Bryant Street.
The owner told police he thought someone may be inside. One side of the duplex was associated with the Occupy Portland movement, according to police.
A large banner hanging in from the front porch read, "Together we are (sic) unevictable."
Kari Koch with Portland Liberation Organizing Council said the duplex was in foreclosure and being contested by the property owner. The group claimed a bank illegally sold the property to a developer, who then built the duplex.
"It's just frustrating you know, were playing by the rules. We're working hard and trying to build and keep going in the community and then they do this," said developer Vlad Rudnitski. "It's just unfortunate."
Officers found lockboxes removed and fencing between the duplex and the house to the west removed and was piled up in the backyard.
Inside, police arrested 24-year-old Derek John Charles Zika for burglary and trespassing. he was reportedly guarding the property for members of the Occupy Portland movement, who planned to use it as a community center.
Homeowners needing help were asked to contact the Neighborhood Response Team for a "Trespass Agreement," which can allow for police officers to immediately take enforcement action against trespassers.