Refund the police? City leaders want more money for PPB amid staggering rise in violent crime

Months removed from protests in the streets and calls to defund – or even abolish – the Portland Police Bureau, the city is confronted by the stark reality of a staggering increase in crime and violence. 

As the Portland City Council prepares to update the city’s budget, city leaders say there’s a renewed political will to refund the police.  

“It’s been pretty painful to watch, being in this line of work,” acting PPB Lt. Ken Duilio says. “The level of gun violence is at a rate we’ve never seen, ever, in the city of Portland. Historical.”

Duilio is a former member of the PPB’s Gun Violence Reduction Team, or GVRT, which was eliminated by the City Council in 2020 when the council stripped the bureau of more than $15 million in funding. 

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