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A man under investigation for allegedly shooting a Trump supporter in Portland was already accused of carrying a loaded gun in another protest and has called himself an anti-fascist.
Police had previously arrested Michael Forest Reinoehl, a Black Lives Matter supporter who described himself as “100% ANTIFA,” before became the subject of an investigation into the fatal shooting Saturday night of a demonstrator after a pro-Trump rally, according to The Oregonian. The 48-year-old has not been named or charged though it was reported that he may have been identified through video footage from the incident.
This is the suspected shooter in Portland. He has not yet been arrested. pic.twitter.com/EOpohjdbA6
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) August 30, 2020
Aaron “Jay” Danielson, who supported the conservative group Patriot Prayer, died after being shot in the chest in the street following a caravan of President Donald Trump’ supporters that had gone through downtown Portland on Saturday.
Disturbing video footage showed the chaotic scene in the moments after the shooting and what appeared to be the person who fired the shots flee on foot from the scene and out of camera view.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) August 30, 2020
In July, Reinoehl had been charged with illegally possessing a loaded firearm, resisting arrest, and interfering with police. But it seems prosecutors did not pursue the allegations and the father of two was reportedly let go as the charges were dropped with a “no complaint,” court records indicated. Reinoehl spent no time behind bars for the arrest.
Social media posts showed that Reinoehl identified as Antifa and has taken part in many of the riots in Portland, which have been ongoing for nearly three months. His frequent social media messages reportedly included the hashtags #blacklivesmatter, #anewnation and #breonnataylor.
And there it is pic.twitter.com/5JsfcSHOJo
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) August 31, 2020
He also had a warrant for his arrest from another incident in June when he allegedly was street racing illegally with his 17-year-old son.
“Every revolution needs people that are willing and ready to fight. There are many of us protesters that are just protesting without a clue of where that will lead. That’s just the beginning that’s where the fight starts,” he had written in June on his Instagram account.
“If that’s as far and you can take it thank you for your participation but please stand aside and support the ones that are willing to fight. I am 100% ANTIFA all the way! I am willing to fight for my brothers and sisters! Even if some of them are too ignorant to realize what antifa truly stands for,” he added.
He had also written about his experience in the U.S. Army, which he said he “hated.”
“I was in the army and hated it. I did not feel like fighting for them would ever be a good cause. Today’s protesters and antifa are my brothers in arms. This is a Cause to fight for This truly is fighting for my country!” Reinoehl wrote on social media.
Described as a professional snowboarder, The Oregonian reported that Reinoehl has been estranged from most of his family but his sister said they had reached out to police after learning of the shooting.
“We reached out to police and confirmed that we recognized Michael in the screenshots,” Reinoehl’s 36-year-old sister, who did not want to be named, told the outlet.
“On the one hand, this whole thing surprises the daylights out of us, because we always thought he is a lot of bark, not a lot of bite,” she said. “But he’s also been very impulsive and irrational.”
She explained that she had been awakened early Sunday with a call threatening that “our whole family was in danger unless we turned him over.”
“That’s how I found out,” she told The Oregonian, explaining that her brother has a son and daughter.
“I have friends, family and loved ones on both sides of the conflict,” she said. “Violence begets violence and hatred begets hatred. This is not the solution. My heart goes out to the victim. It always has, before I even knew my brother was involved.”
Seattle conservative activist Katie Daviscourt told The Post Millennial that Danielson “wasn’t a violent type. [He] just loved this country and our president.”
Exclusive: The victim of last night’s deadly shooting in downtown Portland is Aaron Danielson, who went by Jay. His family has been informed of his death.
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) August 30, 2020
“Homicide detectives are aware of videos circulating on social media that show the shooting,” the Portland Police Bureau said in a statement Sunday.
“It is important for detectives get a full and accurate picture of what happened before, during, and after the shooting. If anyone was a witness, has video, or has information about the homicide, they’re asked to contact the primary detectives,” the statement continued.
“It is still early in this investigation, and I ask everyone to give the detectives time to do their important work before drawing conclusions about what took place,” Police Chief Chuck Lovell said. “If anyone can provide information about this case, I ask them to please reach out to our detectives. This violence is completely unacceptable and we are working diligently to find and apprehend the individual or individuals responsible.”