Update: Portland police have named Gerson Perez-Gil, an 18 year old Latino, as the suspect.
For the second time in 16 months, a man connected to violent Antifa rioting has died in apparent street violence in Portland. It would seem that some of those who employ violence in the name of far-left ideologies are simply involved in violence in general.
On Sunday, January 31st, Isaiah Jason Maza, Jr., 18, was found stabbed to death on the 100 block of Northeast 120th Avenue.
Maza was currently facing up to thirty years in prison for charges related to an Antifa/BLM riot on July 22, 2020. According to a criminal complaint from the Oregon State Attorney’s Office, Maza was one of several men who tore down a piece of plywood covering a window at the Mark O. Hatfield Federal Courthouse.
Afterward, Maza was seen smashing the glass with a hammer and lighting the fuse of a homemade bomb, and hurling through the window. Maza allegedly placed the bomb inside the courthouse, where it injured a Deputy Marshall.
Maza was charged with assaulting a federal officer with a dangerous weapon, and willfully damaging government property. He faced up to thirty years in prison. On July 31, 2020, he was spotted on the street by US Marshalls and arrested after a foot pursuit. On August 3rd, an order of detention was signed by a judge. The order of detention says that Maza had a prior criminal history, was a violent person, and a flight risk.
However, it appears he was granted bail later on August 20th, and freed at some point.
We looked at the area he was found dead on Google maps for clues. Right where he was found dead there appears to be a homeless encampment on Google Street View! There are two apartment complexes in the immediate vicinity that have giant gates to keep non-residents out.
Below are photos provided by the Oregon State Attorney’s Office:
This is not the first time an Antifa-linked man has been found dead under violent mysterious circumstances.
On October 12th, 2019, some sort of violent street battle occurred outside of a notorious, and now shuttered, Antifa hangout called Cider Riot. Sean Kealiher was leaving Cider Riot with friends. At some point he was pinned between an SUV and the Democratic Party of Oregon [DPO] State Headquarters. According to Google Maps, Cider Riot and the state headquarters were .1 miles apart.
Men exit and abandon the SUV, which had fresh bullet holes. Kealiher is drug away by friends and eventually dumped at a local hospital. No one calls police, except for a homeless man who happened to be a witness. Prominent Antifa-linked Twitter accounts issue warnings for people not to talk to any law enforcement or post rumors online. Police put a $2.5k reward for information. Eventually, a lawyer for one of Kealiher’s friends told media that his client fired shots into the SUV, but maintains it was self-defense. To this day, the homicide is unsolved. Cider Riot shut down one year later, though the owner claims the bars reputation as “The Antifa Pub” had nothing to do with shutting down.
Kealiher once spent fifteen days in jail for interfering with a police officer and at least two videos exist showing him threatening individuals with violence.
Shortly after his death became known, Antifa began spray painting the DPO State Headquarters. This continued for at least 36 hours until the mother of Sean Kealiher personally pleaded with Antifa to stop vandalizing the building.
Rather than condemn the vandalism, The DPO issued an official statement of solidarity with the vandals, stating “Although the graffiti to our building is significant, any damage is insignificant compared to the community’s tremendous grief over this senseless death.” The DPO said they would not immediately clean up the graffiti, but allow to remain visible, and that they “can count on our support.” Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler also offered his condolences to Antifa. Portland had 52 homicides in 2020, nearly breaking the all time record set in 1993. I can’t find any instances of Ted Wheeler offering his condolences to friends and family of these homicide victims. Maybe he has, but I don’t see any instances reported in the media.
Kealiher’s death may have been caused by violence unrelated to his involvement with Antifa. However, it is not uncommon for rival Antifa groups to go to war with each other. Back in 2017 and 2018, there was a string of violent incidents centered around two competing Antifa groups based in Nashville, TN. The violence related to this feud occurred both in Tennessee and as far away as Michigan.
Of course, there was also the self-described Antifa member who killed a man execution style and then died in a shootout with US Marshalls on August 29th, 2020.
Antifa violently rioted to in Portland last August 29th to try to prevent a group of people from holding a demonstration in support of Donald Trump. Conservative activist Aaron Danielson was shot and killed execution-style by a self-described Antifa member Michael Reinoehl. The murder is discussed at length on the new documentary Crossfire. Video shows Reinoehl with a group of others, stalk and surround Danielson. Reinoehl then murders him, and the rest of the group help him escaping.
Danielson was later shot and killed by US Marshalls in Lacey, Washington after he aimed a gun at them.
This means that at least