Car drives through crowd as PSU protesters move into downtown Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Protests calling for a ceasefire in Gaza took to the streets after police cleared the occupiers from Portland State University’s Millar Library, bringing large crowds of other protesters into the mix.

The evening kicked off with a car that drove through the crowd and parked in the middle of a street, where KOIN 6 News reporters saw someone get out of the car and run away. Video footage showed a man spraying people in the crowd.

Protests continue after PSU library cleared, at least 22 arrests

According to the Portland Police Bureau, “PSU located the man responsible and took him to a hospital on a mental health hold.”

The man’s identity is unclear and police said they do not plan to reveal his personal information.

Protesters were spotted running from the building as police wearing riot gear entered the facility around 9 am Since then, protests have erupted in the areas off campus.

PPB previously said they did not plan to use tear gas on the protesters inside the building. However, chemical ammunition appeared to be administered in the open air once the protest made its way outside.

Authorities also noted officers were armed with 40mm less-lethal launchers, which they said are regulated by Portland police’s use-of-force policies.

KOIN 6 reporters saw protesters pushing and knocking down the police tape, eventually resulting in police threatening to arrest anyone who pushed the lines.

VIDEO: Protesters flee library as police make arrests at Portland State University

In a press conference Thursday afternoon, Mayor Ted Wheeler questioned the rationale behind the decision to damage local businesses in an effort to protest the ongoing Gaza-Israel conflict.

“If you believe that by damaging a business, which frankly harms the front line employees who work in those businesses – we have reports that they were hurt, that they were traumatized,” Wheeler said. “If you believe that damaging these businesses or trashing a library on a university campus will impact events in the Middle East, you are delusional.”

Stay with KOIN 6 News as this story develops.

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