Police in Oregon arrested seven white men over Independence Day weekend on charges that included threatening law enforcement and harassing a black family.
According to the Lincoln City Police Department, the group was “confrontational and highly intoxicated” during the incident.
The department said in a news release that officers had arrived on the scene late Saturday evening during Fourth of July celebrations after bystanders had reported the group of white men for shooting off illegal fireworks on the beach. When officers arrived, the group allegedly surrounded them and began “taunting and challenging” them for seizing the fireworks.
It was at this point that police learned the same group had allegedly been harassing a black family nearby, “yelling racial slurs at them, insulting them, and using Nazi salutes towards them.”
After the black family informed police that they felt threatened by the group’s actions, police formed a barrier between them and the group of white men and allowed the family to leave the beach and return to their room.
While this was happening, some in the group began challenging the officers to fight, while others resumed shooting off “multiple large illegal aerial fireworks.”
Additional law enforcement was called to the scene before officers moved in to make the arrests.
The department said that the seven men, who ranged in age from 22 to 45 and were all from Clark County, Wash., were arrested for the following crimes: “Riot, Interfering with Police, Disorderly Conduct II, Harassment, Possession of Illegal Fireworks, and Offensive Littering.”
Due to current coronavirus restrictions, six of the arrested individuals have been released and issued criminal citations. The seventh, who was found with no ID and refused to identify himself, was “transported to and booked into the Lincoln County Jail for fingerprint identification” and charged with the same crimes as the others.