The Mercury provides news and fun every single day—but your help is essential. If you believe Portland benefits from smart, local journalism and arts coverage, please consider making a small monthly contribution, because without you, there is no us. Thanks for your support!
Good Afternoon, Portland! And happy "Twosday" to all the numerology people out there. Hold on. Drink some water. Be kind to one another. Here's the news!
IN LOCAL NEWS:
• This morning, the Portland Police Bureau identified Ben Smith as the man responsible for fatally shooting one woman and injuring four others in Normandale Park on Saturday. Smith's identity was already public, verified by the Oregonian and OPB on Monday, after they spoke with his neighbors and family members.
• The Oregonian reports that Smith has been charged with second-degree murder, "four counts of attempted first degree murder, two counts of first degree assault with a firearm, and two counts of second-degree assault with a firearm."
• A morning press conference with Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, Police Chief Chuck Lovell, District Attorney Mike Schmidt, and federal officials didn't seem to unearth much new information about the Normadale Park mass shooting.
-Mayor Wheeler has not spoke to any victims/victims' families
-Wheeler said he doesn't regret past comments made on making left-wing protesters "hurt a little"
-Not currently being investigated as hate crime
-Chief Lovell not sure why shooter was wrongly defined as "homeowner"
— Alex Zielinski (@alex_zee) February 22, 2022
• Goodbye February fakeout, hello plummeting temperatures. Portland is expected to drop far below freezing tonight, so Multnomah County will open five severe weather shelters at 8 pm. Here's where they are and how long the county expects to keep them open.
• This week's spicy edition of Savage Love addressed young submissives, open relationships, and "banjo" vs. "harmonica" playing. Apparently, the last ones are naughty euphemisms.
IN NATIONAL NEWS:
• In a DRY but CONSEQUENTIAL update on the situation in the Ukraine, today Russia "recognized" Donetsk and Luhansk, two Ukrainian areas that are currently under Russian control—effectively expanding the country's borders. In response, the US and several European nations sanctioned Russian banks.
• The men convicted of murdering Black jogger Ahmaud Arbery were found guilty of federal hate crimes today. The jury found they had violated Arbery's civil rights and targeted him because he was Black.
• Effective immediately, your plans of escaping Portland for the pleasantly overcast streets of Spokane are dashed.
Here’s a story I wrote about Spokane, Washington. It was supposed to be the next affordable city, but it’s already too expensive (for locals anyway). https://t.co/zUd2i7f0ga
— Conor Dougherty (@ConorDougherty) February 20, 2022
• It’s back for 2022! America’s sexiest, funnest dirty movie fest, HUMP! Coming at ya starting THIS THURSDAY, February 24 at Revolution Hall—GET YOUR TICKETS NOW!
• Lastly, THE QUEEN HAS COVID. NO, THE OTHER QUEEN.