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Portland To Pay $300K Settlement Over Police Brutality Lawsuit By Protestor Michael Weisdorf

The #Portland City Council is anticipated to ratify a $300,000 settlement for a lawsuit filed in August 2020 by Michael Weisdorf, a 41-year-old man who accused Portland police officers of assaulting him during a #BlackLivesMatter protest, resulting in two fractured bones in his arm.

Weisdorf sought $530,000 in his lawsuit, attributing $30,000 to medical expenses and $500,000 for emotional distress caused by the alleged police assault during a #BLM gathering at North Portland’s Peninsula Park on July 18, 2020.

The incident unfolded when demonstrators moved towards the Portland Police Association headquarters, prompting the police to declare a riot and intervene with officers in riot gear. Weisdorf claimed that as he crossed over Interstate 5, officers forcefully detained him, causing severe injuries to his arm, leading to surgery and a two-day hospital stay.

Following an investigation by the City of Portland’s Risk Management Division, it was recommended to settle to avoid potential liability in a trial. The proposed settlement of $300,000, drawn from the city’s insurance and claims fund, would be remitted to Weisdorf's legal representative, Gregory Kafoury of Kafoury & McDougal.

Weisdorf described a lasting impact from the incident, expressing ongoing physical discomfort in his left arm and heightened apprehension around Portland law enforcement. He emphasized the need to address the alleged excessive use of force by the Portland Police Bureau and the significance of upholding the law among sworn officers.

This settlement follows previous cases where the city settled lawsuits related to allegations of police misconduct during protests, including a $100,000 payment to another protester for alleged excessive force during a separate demonstration at North Portland’s Kenton Park in September 2020.

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