Portland Police Forced to Pay Former ‘Defund the Police’ City Commissioner $700,000

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Portland Police Forced to Pay Former Defund the Police City Commissioner $700,000

Portland police have agreed to pay former Portland City Commissioner and “defund the police” advocate Jo Ann Hardesty nearly $700,000 in a lawsuit settlement.

The settlement came after officers allegedly leaked false information about Hardesty’s involvement in a hit-and-run incident to the Oregonian.

Hardesty led to the calls to “defund the police” in her City, even demanding Mayor Ted Wheeler hand her control of the police bureau.

Initially, Hardesty was demanding $3 million from the police association.

This included $1 million from an officer and another $1 million from another officer.

However, Hardesty and the police department settled out of court.

The former City Commissioner was mistaken for a hit-and-run driver with a 911 caller back in March of 2021.

A police officer shared the information with a friend, who later shared the information on a livestream.

Although Hardesty was cleared of the hit-and-run, she decided to file a lawsuit against the police association and two officers.

A jury would have been asked to decide if police racially discriminated against Hardesty, who was the first Black woman to serve as a Portland city commissioner.

The Portland Police Association’s insurance company “made the business decision to settle” the suit, PPA President Aaron Schmautz told Fox News.

“The PPA is pleased to have this matter behind it,” Schmautz wrote.

During her time as a city commissioner, Hardesty repeatedly attacked the police.

As Conservative influencer Andy NGO noted on X:

“Since losing her re-election in disgrace in Portland, Jo Ann Hardesty has pressed forward with multiple lawsuits against tax-payer funded institutions and government in Portland. The city of Portland recently settled with her for $5,000,” he wrote.

“She is a frequent gambler and infamously called 911 on her Lyft driver over an open window—even as she had campaigned for the defunding of police. During the 2020 riots, she lied and said the arson attacks were a felony conspiracy plan by police to frame protesters. She later had to retract the lie.”

She even called for defunding the Portland Police during the 2020 riots, alleging that police “‘saboteurs’ were infiltrating the crowds of protesters who took over Portland’s street.

However, Hardesty’s radical stance to defund the police cost her reelection.

As Willamette Week reported:

Ted Wheeler issued a public apology to Hardesty this summer and the City agreed to pay $5,000 in legal fees.)

“Portland Police Bureau employees acting outside the course and scope of their employment leaked confidential information about Commissioner Hardesty,” Wheeler’s letter of apology reads.

“The leaks negatively impacted Commissioner Hardesty’s public image and undermined her efforts to bring about police transformation and reform,” he added.

“The City does not condone these actions. On behalf of the City, I apologize for the conduct.”

The attorney representing Hardesty, Matthew Ellis, tells WW that the two parties haven’t yet signed the settlement agreement but expect to within three weeks.

Hardesty has yet to respond to a request for comment from WW.

Aaron Schmautz, now president of the police union, said the PPA is “pleased to have this matter behind it” and says the union’s insurance company decided to settle the case.

In 2020, Hardesty called the police on a Lyft driver over Covid protocols.

READ: Crime-Ridden San Francisco Forced to Recruit Cops in Texas after Defunding the Police

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