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GOOD MORNING, PORTLAND! Get ready to yell "OH HELL YEAH!" Because starting today, Monday April 17, the Mercury's delicious, gut-filling PIZZA WEEK returns, featuring $3 creative, one-of-a-kind slices at 36 locations! And it's happening all ding-damn week long! Now I hope you enjoy this ding-damn NEWS.


• In case you missed it on Friday, students at North Portland's Ockley Green Middle School walked out of classes to bring attention to allegations around the mistreatment of Black teachers, as well as some alleged very sketchy behavior from the school's vice principal. Read the story—which contains some truly jaw-dropping info—by our Courtney Vaughn.

• Remember Portland Police Officer Brian Hunzeker—the guy who was fired for leaking lies about former Council member Jo Ann Hardesty, but was recently reinstated? Welp, Hunzeker is off the force AGAIN. This time he resigned after being caught holding down a second job in Washington state as a Clark County sheriff’s deputy, raking in a six-figure salary while still working for the PPB. (What a piece of work this guy is! I suppose we should be grateful he wasn't using a city squad car to deliver Door Dash.)

• Speaking of cops who have trouble maintaining control, a new study reveals that indiscriminate use of tear gas by Portland Police on one particular day during 2020's mostly peaceful racial justice protests were "high enough to cause severe, irreversible health effects," according to this report from OPB, and at one point "briefly hit more than 2,200 times the safe limit." Excessive tear gas use, such as this, has been documented to cause a host of maladies, including blisters, asthma attacks, vomiting, organ damage, pregnancy loss, and abnormal menstruation. (It's almost as if police have a casual disregard for human life and civil rights! Better give them more money.)

• Hey lovers of local comedy! It will behoove you to know that one of Portland's best comedy venues, the Siren Theater, has moved from its Chinatown digs to bustling Mississippi Avenue! Find out the reason why (along with the big hilarious plans for the new space) from this piece by our Suzette Smith. 

• RIP to former Oregon Secretary of State Bill Bradbury, who died on Friday at the age of 73.


Four dead and 28 were injured in the nation's latest deadly mass shooting, this time at a birthday party in a small Alabama town. Police are not saying if they have a suspect in custody, probably because they do not have a suspect in custody.

• A Russian activist and journalist has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for the dastardly crime of... *checks notes*... ummm... speaking out against Putin's war on Ukraine?

• Today in "prepare to lose your got-damned mind": A Black Kansas City 16-year-old, Ralph Paul Yarl, mistakenly went to the wrong house and after ringing the doorbell was immediately shot twice by the white homeowner. While Yarl is reported to be in stable condition, the homeowner has already been released from custody.

• More trouble for deeply corrupt Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas: New reporting from the Washington Post indicates that Thomas has claimed hundreds of thousands in income in recent years from a family-owned real estate business. The only problem? The company went out of business in 2006. 👀

• Attention space nerds! (Of which I am one.) 🤓 SpaceX has temporarily canceled the first scheduled launch of the most powerful rocket on earth, Starship, due to a stuck valve. The rocket, when it finally passes a barrage of tests, will take a crew and cargo to the moon, and later (fingers crossed), to Mars.

• And finally... if you hate mowing the lawn as much as I do, help has finally arrived.