PORTLAND, Ore. — The president of Portland’s police union says Mayor Ted Wheeler has “failed miserably” in fulfilling his duties as police commissioner.
Daryl Turner posted his criticism of the mayor on the Portland Police Association’s Facebook page.
“There is no place for personal, political bias when it comes to providing public safety services to our communities. In that respect, our Mayor, who is also our Police Commissioner, has failed miserably,” Turner wrote.
Turner's statement comes a week after police cleared the Occupy ICE PDX protest that lasted about five weeks.
Background: Cleanup of Occupy ICE PD cost $24,742
When the protest began, Wheeler instructed police not to interfere with demonstrators outside the Immigration Customs and Enforcement holding facility in Southwest Portland, with the exception for safety risks.
The union for ICE is threatening to sue the city, saying police didn’t protect one of its agents, who called for help after protesters surrounded his car.
Wheeler said those claims are inaccurate and inflammatory. On Thursday, he said if the ICE union can prove police failed to respond, he’d love to see it.
“The attorney for the ICE union contends that there is a policy that I directed which led the police to not respond to calls from ICE employees. That is factually wrong. And the police chief yesterday provided a ream of evidence to the contrary. We’ve asked [union attorney] Mr. Riddell to provide whatever contrary evidence he can provide and so far he’s come up with goose eggs,” Wheeler said.
Police Chief Danielle Outlaw said federal employees were told that Portland police would respond to their calls if safety was at risk.
Thursday's statement is the latest attack by Turner against Wheeler. In July, Turner criticized Wheeler's homelessness policies and called Portland a "cesspool." That was in response to Wheeler's support for an investigation into police interactions with the city's homeless.