The latest chapter in our chronicle of vehicular violence and the threat of people intentionally driving their cars into vulnerable road users comes from just across Portland city limits in Gresham. And what’s even more cause for concern this time around is that it involves an employee of the City of Gresham Transportation Division.
According to a story published yesterday in The Gresham Outlook, Gresham TD Field Operations Supervisor Doug Holley is under investigation for having a large sticker in the window of his personal vehicle that read, “All Lives Splatter: Nobody Cares About Your Protest.” The sticker included an image of an SUV running over people.
Here’s more form the Outlook:
According to a city employee, who wished to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, Field Operations Supervisor Doug Holley had the window sticker on his personal truck while parked outside a city-owned building near Hogan Butte Nature Park on Friday, June 5.
Three complaints filed to the city stated the bumper sticker was “very violent and racist” and was poorly representing the city of Gresham as Holley was allegedly on the clock while driving the truck.
Allegedly, after complaints about “All Lives Splatter,” the truck Holley was driving had a new sticker in the same location. The second sticker showed an image of President Donald Trump holding up his middle finger with the words “Nobody cares about your protest.”
This reprehensible sentiment is becoming more common due to the month-long protests against systemic racism and policy brutality following the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
In early May we shared the story of a man who shot a bicycle rider after chasing him in a large SUV. And in the last month alone we’ve documented seven separate incidents of people driving cars into protestors, including one case of a man driving over participants in the Black Liberation Ride on June 19th.
And this is not a new phenomenon. More than three years ago we began taking a closer look at vehicular violence. In 2018 we learned that two Portland business owners joked online that the way to deal with protestors is to, “drive right thru [sic] killing as many as who will stand in my way” and that, “running over bicyclists and pedestrians is the only way they’ll learn.” Eight days after that story we reported on a man who was arrested for driving his truck through people who were protesting downtown against the shooting of Patrick Kimmons by a Portland Police officer.
The fact that a Gresham city employee would place a sticker like this on his vehicle is even more shocking given that it was just five years ago that Russel Courtier, a man with ties to white supremacist groups, intentionally drove his Jeep into a Black man named Larnell Bruce and killed him. And just last year Courtier was found guilty of a hate crime and sentenced to 28 years in prison.
We hope the City of Gresham takes this very seriously. We asked the City Manager’s office for a response this morning and they confirmed they’re aware of the situation and that, “An investigation is underway and the City is reviewing the matter.”
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org
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