Tracking Down of Suspected Portland Murderer a ‘Significant Accomplishment’: Barr

September 4, 2020 Updated: September 4, 2020

The tracking down of Michael Forest Reinoehl, a self-described member of Antifa, is a major accomplishment in efforts to restore law and order to Portland, Attorney General William Barr said Friday.

“The tracking down of Reinoehl—a dangerous fugitive, admitted Antifa member, and suspected murderer is a significant accomplishment in the ongoing effort to restore law and order to Portland and other cities,” Barr said.

“I applaud the outstanding cooperation among federal, state, and local law enforcement, particularly the fugitive task force team that located Reinoehl and prevented him from escaping justice. The streets of our cities are safer with this violent agitator removed, and the actions that led to his location are an unmistakable demonstration that the United States will be governed by law, not violent mobs.”

Unrest has shaken Oregon’s largest city since May 28.

Reinoehl was suspected of shooting dead a supporter of the right-wing Patriot Prayer group over the weekend. He was killed by law enforcement officers in Washington state late Thursday.

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Attorney General William Barr speaks during a roundtable discussion on “America’s seniors” hosted by U.S. President Donald Trump in the Cabinet Room at the White House in Washington on June 15, 2020. (Leah Millis/Reuters)

Portland police officials obtained an arrest warrant for Reinoehl, Barr confirmed, saying the suspect fled from Oregon before being located by a fugitive task force.

Officers spotted Reinoehl shortly before 7 p.m. after he exited an apartment they were surveilling. He got into a vehicle to leave as officers moved in to apprehend him.

“When Reinoehl attempted to escape arrest and produced a firearm, he was shot and killed by law enforcement officers,” Barr said.

The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office earlier said the suspect fled from the vehicle on foot before shots were fired at him. “We can confirm at this time that the suspect was armed with a handgun,” the office said.

The U.S. Marshals Service said Reinoehl “produced a firearm, threatening the lives of law enforcement officials.”

The shooting came shortly after Vice News announced it had interviewed Reinoehl, who had gone underground after being identified by his sister.

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In this still image from video, Michael Forest Reinoehl speaks to a reporter about the shooting in Portland, Ore., in an undated interview. (Vice News)

Reinoehl admitted to killing Aaron “Jay” Danielson but claimed it was in self-defense. As of now, no evidence supports that portrayal.

Portland police declared Danielson’s death a homicide this week.

Reinoehl described himself on social media as a member of Antifa, a network of far-left, anarcho-communist groups bent on destruction and violence.

Portland officials have remained silent on the new development in the case. Most blamed Patriot Prayer and President Donald Trump for the violence, even though a supporter of the group was the one killed.

People gathered on Thursday night at a police precinct, where they hurled rocks at officers and mourned the death of Reinoehl, who they claimed was helping fight against right-wing “invaders” into Portland.

A pro-Trump car caravan entered the city on Saturday but the event had concluded by the time of the shooting.

Portland Protests
A man is being treated by medics after being shot during a confrontation in Portland, Ore., on Aug. 29, 2020. (Paula Bronstein/AP Photo)

Groups planned a large gathering on Friday night. According to Antifa-linked groups, they are gathering at 8 p.m. at Kenton Park in Portland to call for “no cops, no prisons, total abolition.”

One demonstrator told The Epoch Times this week that the gatherings won’t stop “until we get justice.”

Asked what the demands were, the man added: “Stop shooting and killing us.”

Barr’s department is probing the heads of groups behind the rioting nationwide, a top law enforcement official said this week.

“I’ve talked to every police chief in every city where there has been major violence and they all have identified Antifa as the ramrod for the violence,” Barr added in a cable news appearance. “They are flying around the country. We know people who are flying around the country. We know where they’re going.”

“We see some of the purchases they are making before the riots of weapons to use in those riots,” he said. “So, we are following them.”

Roman Balmakov contributed to this report.

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