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Indiana man sentenced in federal court for role in 2020 Portland protests

Portland police allege 24-year-old Malik Muhammed threw incendiary devices like this at officers during a protest in October.
Portland Police Bureau
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Portland police allege 24-year-old Malik Muhammed threw incendiary devices like this at officers during a protest in October.

A federal judge in Oregon sentenced an Indiana man to 10 years in prison on Tuesday for his violent actions during Portland’s racial justice protests.

During the summer and fall of 2020, Malik Muhammad threw Molotov cocktails at police and smashed the windows of the Oregon Historical Society.

He was charged in both state and federal court. Earlier this year, he pleaded guilty to 14 felonies in state court, including attempted murder. Last month, he pleaded guilty in federal court to two counts of possessing unregistered destructive devices.

Muhammad will serve both his state and federal sentences — 10 years total — in Oregon.

It’s the harshest federal penalty stemming from the 100-plus days of protests that began in the summer of 2020.

Court documents state that in addition to traveling to Portland, Muhammad also went to Louisville, Kentucky in August 2020. There he engaged in tactical training and conducted firearms training with what federal law enforcement described as other “anti-government” and “violent extremists.”

According to court documents, Muhammad is a U.S. Army veteran diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder as well as bipolar disorder, according to court documents. At the time of the protests, Muhammad was not taking medication.

Copyright 2022 Oregon Public Broadcasting. To see more, visit Oregon Public Broadcasting.