A separate incident saw a mother and her 13-year-old daughter found dead in a Vienna apartment earlier on Friday.
Austrian media reported that the father was a prime suspect in the deaths which were likely caused by strangling or choking.
The real story here, which most of the news outlets writing about this completely skip over, is that the city of Portland has been a mess ever since 2020. That's when police were defunded and crime began to go up sharply. And thanks to the passage of Measure 110 (also in 2020) drug use on the streets and homelessness have gotten worse as well.
For the last several months, Gov. Tina Kotek has gone through a series of steps involving a task force making recommendations about what to do about these problems. All of this was political theater designed to reach the obvious conclusion that the state needed to do something about Measure 110. And that's where we are now.
Just a few years ago, Measure 110 was sold as a bold new vision for dealing with the drug problem, one that would replace the old, harsh system of imprisoning people. The results have been a disaster.
My own take on this, having watched the downfall of Portland from afar for many years now, is that neither decriminalization nor locking people up with solve this problem because this isn't a problem that can be solved. There is no magic pill that turns homeless addicts into reformed, productive members of society. Offering clean needles and endless services won't do it and neither will putting them in jail. Even those interventions that work can't keep up with the pace of new addicts showing up on the streets.
But the addicts aren't the only ones who matter.
That's what I think the ACLU and similar activists tend to overlook. We can't solve the problem of fentanyl addiction, but we can keep the street cleaner and open for business so people who aren't fentanyl addicts have a nice place to live. We can make it possible for people with physical handicaps to move down the sidewalk rather than being forced to traverse the streets because of all the tents blocking the way.
Locking people up is a brute force means of doing that but it's better than not doing anything at all. If the choice is between lots of addicts walking around, stealing and pissing on the street and lots of addicts locked up in jail, jail is the better option for everyone else. At some point, everyone else has to matter.
You don't have to take my word for it. It's Oregon Democrats who are about to repeal Measure 110. They have learned this lesson the hard way. The new bill should pass sometime in the next 10 days.