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News / Northwest

Patriot Prayer member gets 3 days jail for riot conviction

By Associated Press
Published: August 2, 2022, 5:00pm

PORTLAND — A member of the far-right group Patriot Prayer caught on camera throwing a pepper spray can and slapping a woman after a protest in Northeast Portland has been sentenced to three days in jail.

Multnomah County Circuit Judge Benjamin Souede on Monday also sentenced 32-year-old Mackenzie Lewis to three years of probation, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported.

A jury last month found Lewis guilty of felony riot in the incident outside the former Cider Riot bar on May 1, 2019.

Lewis was one of six men with far-right ties who were indicted by a grand jury reviewing the clash, which started after Lewis and the Patriot Prayer group approached anti-fascists who were gathered at the bar.

Three of the men plead guilty to riot charges before trial. Souede acquitted Patriot Prayer leader Joey Gibson and compatriot Russell Schultz during their trial, finding that neither man had committed violent conduct.

Deputy District Attorney Brad Kalbaugh called for a 30-day jail sentence for Lewis, noting that the incident caused “significant alarm,” including from 19 people who dialed 911 that day.

Defense attorney Kelly Doyle asked for the crime to be treated as a misdemeanor so it could be removed from Lewis’ record. Lewis said time behind bars would “ruin his life.”

The judge said Lewis could serve the three days in jail on a schedule of Lewis’ choosing.

Gibson founded the Vancouver, Washington, based Patriot Prayer in 2016. He has held rallies supporting former President Donald Trump and supported other demonstrations organized by the Proud Boys — a group that’s been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.