The barricades that allegedly blocked a section of North Mississippi Avenue came down Sunday morning after a black and native family made a pilot deal with city officials to save a house in North Portland that had been lost due to the exclusion.
Mayor Ted Wheeler’s office did not immediately confirm the agreement and the terms were not clear.
The family appeared to have collected enough money to repurchase the house from its rightful owner, who bought it in a foreclosure action for $ 260,000 in 2018 and indicated his willingness to return it at his own expense.
Activists on Sunday issued a call on Twitter asking people to return to the house known as the “red house” and help clean up the street, saying police had agreed not to force the family to leave until these negotiations are underway – as long as the street has been cleared on Monday night.
Occupation in the house intensified last week as deputies from Multnomah County sheriff set out to carry out the court-ordered eviction. Faced with a large and shaky crowd, police fell back after several arrests, and those gathered built barricades that blocked several blocks. Police say guns were found at the scene and have seen at least one armed guard there in the days since.
Mayor Ted Wheeler said last week that police had been authorized to use “all legal means” to end the occupation of the house and the street, but police have kept their distance ever since. He later said the city is working for a peaceful solution.
Wheeler spokesman Jim Middaugh did not respond immediately to a request for comment on Sunday.
Julie Metcalf Kinney, who is a native American, and her husband, William Kinney Jr., who is black, owned the home for more than 23 years before losing it due to foreclosure because she did not pay the mortgage for nearly a year and a half. Julie Metcalf Kinney and the couple’s eldest son, William Kinney III, have reaffirmed their sovereign civic belief that the law does not apply to them and that the courts have no jurisdiction over them or their debts.
The Kinney family and their supporters say they are fighting a history of gentrification, discrimination and predatory subprime credit that has gutted the historically black neighborhoods of Portland and replaced them with apartments and condominiums.
We will update this story.