Skip to comments.Vera Katz extends a new welcome mat for the city of Portland
Posted on 12/10/2001 1:33:57 PM PST by SAMWolf
Portland police have rejected U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft's request for help in questioning thousands of young Middle Eastern men because the interviews likely would violate state law, the bureau's acting police chief said Tuesday.
Andrew Kirkland, an assistant police chief who is in charge of the Portland Police Bureau while Chief Mark Kroeker is on vacation this week, said the bureau was immediately troubled by the request when it arrived late last week.
Ashcroft has announced a plan to interview 5,000 men on an FBI list as part of the nation's developing anti-terrorism efforts. But Kirkland said the federal government's multiple-page document on the plan and a list of 200 men in the Portland area contained "no specific information" about crimes for which they might be suspected.
"It was fairly general," Kirkland said, "and some of the things it asked of us we questioned if we could do them or if we wanted to do them."
Without giving details, Kirkland said he, Kroeker and city attorneys were concerned the request violated Oregon law prohibiting local police from questioning immigrants when there is no evidence they are connected to a crime and foreign citizenship is the only issue.
"You can't use personnel and equipment just to go out and randomly interview people solely on immigration," Kirkland said. Portland's is the only police department known to have refused to cooperate with Ashcroft's request for assistance in questioning people in an attempt to gather more information in the nation's intensifying terrorism investigation.
Because of the length of the national list, and Ashcroft's desire to complete the interviews within 30 days, the attorney general sees the help of local police departments as crucial.
Kirkland said he had heard that police departments in Ann Arbor, Mich., and Tucson, Ariz., were beginning to raise similar concerns.
Michael Mosman, the U.S. attorney for Oregon, said he wasn't concerned about the Police Bureau's decision and that other law enforcement agencies in the state "are more than willing to help." He added that he is confident the plan doesn't violate any state or federal laws.
Not all of the men on the list are from the Middle East and none is a suspected terrorist, Mosman said. "They're not people with a criminal history," he said. "As far as we know, every one of them is here lawfully and engaging in lawful lives... They didn't get on the list because of race or ethnicity."
When asked how they wound up on an anti-terrorism list, Mosman said they had come to the United States in the past two years on tourism, student and business visas from countries with terrorist links.
He said the effort was tantamount to a traffic officer arriving to the scene of a car wreck and attempting to interview everyone standing around. "We are interviewing a number of people nationwide just to get more information," he said.
Portland's decision, he said, was "a tempest in a teapot," especially since the bureau is actively involved with other efforts to fight terrorism.
Kirkland said he was personally concerned that a city with a growing immigrant population might view the interviews as racial profiling. But the decision, ultimately, was based on "troubles with (Ashcroft's) directive," he said.
Mayor Vera Katz had not seen the request, yet was aware of the bureau decision, calling it "a wise one." "I do have a concern when we're asked to do something that violates state law," she said.
Just think what this will do to the Portland economy as the real terrorists spend OBL's money since he has no real need for it now. Then, when she gets the rest on SSI, Welfare and into special free housing, she will have an unbeatable voting block! She will get relected Mayor.
When her Islamic terrorist groups grow over a million, she can safely run for governor.
Sam how is your Farsi? Farsi, the new language of Portland, Oregon, home for the weary Islamic terrorists and their loving families and left wing supporters!
Attention all weary and unwanted Islamic terrorists! Come home to Portland, Oregon! We love you, respect you and will honor your terrorism! John Ashcroft will not bother you in Portland, Oregon, your new haven/home/training ground!
You might want to ping your Klamath Basis Ping list so they can appreciate this!
Please pass along Sam's work here!
I don't know if you are aware of this situation.
While our brave military is putting their life on the line which you have been documenting so well here on Free Republic.
The left wingers who run Portland, Or. have refused to question about 200 Islamics, who might be terrorists!
This is Sam's way of letting the Freeper World know about these potential Islamic Terrorist abettors! Portland will probably welcome Johnny Jihad home as a hero!
I've already sent her a message, but let her feel the WRATH.....GO FREEPERS
We need a couple of big groups that scheduled conventions to cancel one in Portland for their payback and concern about the safety of their families across the nation!