Portland, Oregon, was once known for its vibrant arts and food scenes, but now businesses are leaving and people are fleeing due to a rise in crime.
Officials across Oregon have expressed concern about rising crime in their communities, but the Portland metro area has seen a dramatic increase in crime compared to the statewide average.
Kristin Olson, host of the Rational in Portland podcast, attributes the rise in crime to de-carceration and the elimination of bail culture. Additionally, Portland’s anti-police culture only makes things worse.
Clackamas County District Attorney John Wentworth partially blames the city’s defunding of police for the crime problem.
With a plummeting number of police officers, it’s challenging to investigate crime, and the city ranks 48th out of 50 big cities for officers per capita.
Washington County District Attorney Kevin Barton says that Portland’s public safety problem needs leadership at all levels. Despite the situation, Clackamas County Commissioner Ben West believes that Portland can be saved if voters wake up and vote differently.
Local policies that prioritize police funding, make arrests, and prosecute suspects can provide a different outcome than Portland.