"We are a nation of laws, and the President's attempts to intimidate our communities with threats of violence could not be more un-American", she said. The agents' presence in the city has ratcheted up the intensity of protests in recent days, as agents have deployed tear gas and have been seen hitting and punching protesters.
Thousands of people gathered Monday night, including dozens of moms who protected protesters from officers outside a federal courthouse.
On July 8, Attorney General William Barr launched the initiative by sending federal agents to Kansas City, where violent crime is up 40% since a year ago. Court papers in one case - against a man arrested for shining a green laser in the eyes of Federal Protective Service agents - show that Portland police turned him over to federal authorities after federal officers identified him, in part with the testimony of their undercover officers.
Crowds in Portland had recently numbered fewer than 100 people but swelled to more than 1,000 over the weekend - and they are once again attracting a broader base in a city that's increasingly unified and outraged.
After the Department of Homeland Security deployed scores of Border Patrol police and federal marshals in combat fatigues to Portland, Oregon last week, Mr Trump said he could do so in other Democrat-led cities. The courthouse, which has been a focus of protests, is now covered with graffiti and boarded up, with only thin slits in the plywood to be used as peepholes.
"This is precisely the type of tyrannical deployment of power that the Founding Fathers were specifically anxious about", said Jeffrey A. Engel, director of Center for Presidential History at Southern Methodist University.
The state attorney general filed a lawsuit in Federal District Court seeking a restraining order, accusing federal agents of unlawful tactics.
During the hearing - held by videoconference because of the coronavirus pandemic - Rosenblum said she was asking the court to "declare it not acceptable for federal officers to use unconstitutional police state-type acts to detain citizens of OR without cause". That effort, named for a four-year-old boy who was killed by a stray bullet, sent about 225 federal agents to the city. The department is also investigating "suspicious devices" outside the courthouse that could have caused "serious harm to those in the building", spokesperson Kerri Kupec said.
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Biden, who served as Democratic President Barack Obama's vice president, said officers had the right to protect federal property but could do it without "resorting to these egregious tactics - and without trying to stoke the fires of division in this country".
The letter, addressed to U.S. Attorney General William Barr and Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary Chad Wolf, said the deployment was "unprecedented and violates fundamental constitutional protections and tenets of federalism".
"We'll stop when there is no protester that needs our protection", Barnum told CNN. Videos taken by bystanders show unidentified federal agents grabbing individuals and pulling them into unmarked vans.
She added, "Instead, they bring more troops to the streets. That description is offensive", Wolf said.
A group including two OR lawmakers sued four law enforcement agencies Tuesday over the deployment of militarized federal officers in response to Black Lives Matter protests in Portland. State and city elected officials have called for the federal officers to leave Portland as clashes between protesters and federal police continue to escalate. According to DHS, the officers are wearing the insignias of their agencies and unique identifiers; they are arresting only people suspected of involvement of attacks on federal property; and they are identifying themselves to arrestees, although not to crowds.
Federal officers pepper spray a protester in a cloud of tear gas Saturday night.
Chanting "Feds stay clear!"
"It's appalling to me, and it's a unifying thing".