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News / Northwest

Patriot Prayer leader Joey Gibson pleads not guilty to felony riot charge

By Shane Dixon Kavanaugh, oregonlive.com
Published: August 27, 2019, 6:04pm

The leader of the right-wing group Patriot Prayer on Tuesday pleaded not guilty to a felony charge stemming from a May Day melee outside a Portland cidery.

Joey Gibson, 35, was arraigned on one count of riot, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison. Prior to his brief court appearance, the Vancouver-based provocateur held a march around the Multnomah County Justice Center with about two dozen supporters.

His next court date is scheduled for Oct. 11.

Gibson is one of five men facing criminal charges in a clash between right- and left-wing activists outside Cider Riot in Northeast Portland.

Like Gibson, the other four men — Matthew D. Cooper, Russell E. Schultz, Mackenzie Lewis and Christopher R. Ponte — have all been accused of riot and are fixtures at Patriot Prayer marches and rallies.

Ponte is also accused of third-degree assault. All but Schultz have been named as defendants in a $1 million lawsuit filed by the cidery’s owner.

Abram Goldman-Armstrong claims Gibson and other right-wing protesters showed up to his business during a post-May Day celebration, fought with customers and injured at least one person.

Portland police say they continue to investigate the brawl, which included fist fights, beatings with metal batons and blasts of bear spray.

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