Earlier this month, a Portland man was brutally stabbed to death protecting his transgender-identifying friend from a convicted criminal, who was allegedly targeting the “LGBTQ+ person.”
More than two weeks later, why haven’t we heard about this seemingly “anti-trans” hate-fueled murder on the streets of an ultra-liberal haven? It’s self-evident: The suspect is black.
The homicide victim, 32-year-old Colin Michael Smith, a white male, was with friends outside of the High Dive Bar in the early hours of July 2 just before 2:00 a.m. when a black man—whom authorities have now identified as 24-year-old Rahnique Usef Jackson—targeted and harassed an LGBTQ+ member of Smith’s group, witnesses allege. Smith reportedly stepped in, sticking up for his friend, who identifies as a transgender woman. That’s when Jackson allegedly stabbed Smith several times, killing him.
“It was a hate crime,” the victim’s sister, Danielle Smith, told KOIN News in a TV interview. “She was trans [allegedly the intended target], he [the suspect] didn’t like it, and Colin—defending his friend—was in the way. And that’s what happened. It’s just tragic.”
Fleeing the scene of the fatal Sunday stabbing, Jackson evaded law-enforcement capture for days until he was arrested by members of the U.S. Marshals Service on Friday, July 7, the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) announced in a press release. Jackson was then transferred to the bureau’s homicide unit, interrogated by PPB detectives, and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center on charges of second-degree murder, a Class A felony, and unlawful use of a weapon, a Class C felony.
And last week, a grand jury indicted Jackson, represented by a court-appointed public defender, on those charges plus a bias crime in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt announced Thursday via press statement his office issued. Jackson is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday when he’s slated to plead guilty or not guilty.
While the vast majority of national news sites have yet to pick up this story of anti-transgender persecution resulting in a late-night street slaying, the local media have sanitized their headlines. The Oregonian, the Portland-based newspaper of record, titled its article on Jackson’s arrest, “Man arrested in last week’s stabbing in SE Portland,” and the Portland Tribune similarly published a piece, “Suspect arrested in killing of popular Portland restaurant worker,” with no mention of the apparent motive.
Like illegal alien Gerson Fuentes, who repeatedly raped a 10-year-old Ohio girl, and Black Lives Matter ideologue Darrell J. Brooks, who mass murdered senior citizens and a child attending a Christmas parade, Jackson is afforded non-editorialized descriptors absent of modifiers and the go-to flourishes that the vulturous, pouncing media oft-employs to politicize a tragedy.
Of course, if the races were reversed in this tragic case of interracial violence, and Jackson were a white man accused of murdering a black victim, we would know every single aspect of the suspect’s life down to the most minute details: where he went to high school, his mother’s maiden name, the first car he owned, etc. Reports of a “white supremacist,” “transphobic” murderer knifing an “LGBTQ ally” would be spotlighted on the front page of The Washington Post and be center stage in CNN’s coverage.
Also telling: You won’t find Jackson’s mugshot anywhere.
You won’t see his face plastered across the Internet like other accused anti-trans bigots. The local outlets, whose reporters are adept at navigating Oregon’s public records policies, haven’t done their due diligence in locating and publishing a mugshot of Jackson, who was previously convicted of strangulation in 2019 and sentenced to 18 months of supervised probation after violating the firearms provision of a soft-on-crime deferred sentencing program. (Jackson’s harassment charge was dismissed and felony fourth-degree assault accusation was dropped in the 2018 case prior to his firearms violation.)
Via public records request, Townhall has obtained a digital copy of Jackson’s booking photo from 2018:
However, a corrections records coordinator with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) denied Townhall’s written request formally asking for Jackson’s mugshot in the Smith murder case. “Unfortunately, we cannot provide a photo at this time. Oregon law requires a conviction on the case before we can provide the booking photo,” the records officer responded in an email.
MCSO’s communications department also pointed Townhall to the statewide law, House Bill 3273, which took effect in January 2022, as modified by Section 8 of Senate Bill 48, restricting the release of booking photos, except under certain circumstances: 1) to the suspect; 2) to another police agency; 3) to the public if it serves “a law enforcement purpose;” and 4) upon conviction.
(At the time, MCSO notified the public that it is no longer making mugshots publicly available, as previously posted on MCSO’s inmate roster. A disclaimer now sits on the MCSO site, declaring that the sheriff’s office is acting in compliance with the state legislation that’s sympathetic to suspects. MCSO’s procedural manual has also been updated to reflect the legislative change.)
Since its passage, which was celebrated by serial arrestees and career criminals, the Democrat-pushed package has protected the privacy of violent offenders and hindered critical reporting on political violence that frequently rocks riot-torn Portland. Most impacted is journalist Andy Ngo, who unmasked a horde of far-left militants jailed during the city’s 2020 Antifa-BLM uprisings.