August 14, 2013 10:00The Portland Police Bureau has been made aware of dozens of letters being distributed in various Portland neighborhoods that are concerning to people with disabilities.
The letters claim that some residents of the neighborhood receive disability payments and the letter states that names of people on disability are being posted publicly so others in the neighborhood can see them.
While the letters are not overtly threatening, many people are reporting feeling insecure in their neighborhoods after the letters have been distributed.
While distributing these letters may not constitute a crime, the Portland Police Bureau would like to remind residents that two Oregon laws address "hate crimes" specifically and include "the persons perception of disability."
These crimes are defined in Oregon Revised Statutes 166.155 (Intimidation in the Second Degree) and 166.165 (Intimidation in the First Degree).
If you receive one of these letters and you would like to file a police report, you may do so by visiting the Portland Police Bureau website and filing the report online.
Visit http://www.portlandpolice.com and click the "Police Report: Submit Online" tab, then follow the listed instructions.
If you do not wish to file a police report, the Portland Police Bureau encourages residents to dispose of or recycle unwanted letters.
Anyone with specific information about the person or persons distributing these letters may provide it by email to: CrimeTips@PortlandOregon.gov
Community residents are encouraged to become involved in their neighborhood watch programs and neighborhood associations and can learn more by visiting http://www.portlandonline.com/oni.
Community residents with disabilities can contact the Disability Program by calling (503) 823-9970 or the Commission on Disability at (503) 823-4432 to learn how the commission is organizing around this issue. Additional information can also be found at http://www.portlandoregon.gov/oni/28994
Sgt. Pete Simpson