The Multnomah County Republican Party signed an agreement with a security service run by Proud Boy associate Daniel Tooze Sr. to patrol a May 6 meeting at a Northeast Portland church, according to documents shared with WW by a party leader.
The agreement, signed May 6 by party secretary Sean Yates, vice chairman Alan Conner, and sergeant at arms Curt Schulz, reads, “We are greatly pleased to discover you, and your extensive experience with church events, weddings and various patriotic events.”
It added, ”Dan, as we have discussed, our focus is on having a safe event with no problems. We appreciate that you are a proficient, private volunteer security group with vast experience in event security.”
As WW first reported, the May 6 meeting was held to vote on the recall of county party chairman Stephen Lloyd, who was criticized for trying to make the Multnomah County GOP more inclusive and open its meetings to the public.
Though the party is a minor political force in left-leaning Portland, the move to hire someone associated with the Proud Boys for security is a notable development. The Proud Boys are a self-described “Western chauvinist” organization with a history of enacting violence against leftist protesters in Portland. Its members are also closely linked with the Jan. 6 storming of the U.S. Capitol.
The security agreement speaks to the severity of street-level conflict between political factions in Oregon. Supporters of former President Donald Trump have repeatedly brawled on Portland streets with masked anti-fascists and other leftists. At least one confrontation broke out in the past week between a self-proclaimed Republican carrying a gun and armed leftists in the streets of North Portland during a protest march.
The Multnomah County GOP event was held May 6 at Portland City Blessing Church in the Montavilla neighborhood. The presence of the Proud Boys, who wear distinctive Fred Perry polo shirts, was first noted the day after the event on the social media site NextDoor, where a neighbor complained of Proud Boys displaying weapons and drinking in the street.
Tim Sytsma, a precinct committee person for the county Republican Party who helped it find the space and assisted with the recall petition, tells WW the event was a “recall meeting for the Republican Party of [the county] to recall our chairman” and that “the group was a volunteer security group from a gentleman from Oregon City. We have a signed document that they provide volunteer private security for churches, weddings and patriotic events.”
Sytsma shared the documents with WW.
The Multnomah County Republican Party did not respond to request for comment.
Tooze confirmed to WW that he’d provided security for the event, and said it was because the newspaper reported that the party had scheduled a May 6 meeting to recall Lloyd.
Tooze told WW: “A friend of the Republican Party asked if I would watch guard at the door for what they were worried about: your hit piece done on their meeting, because you guys are antifa, and they were worried about you guys and your antifa friends harassing their meeting. Have a nice day.”
He then hung up.
The friend Tooze referred to was Sytsma. Sytsma confirms he asked Tooze for his help with security services but says he didn’t know Tooze was affiliated with the Proud Boys.
“I was aware it’d been rumored, but Proud Boys didn’t come up in our conversations,” Sytsma says. “I didn’t request Proud Boy assistance. I had heard he did private security, and I had met him at a few events, and he was in plain clothes. I didn’t know he was associated with the Proud Boys.”
Tooze is listed as the registered agent of Proud Security Inc. and Proud Pawn and Arms Corp, according to the state’s business registry. Neither company is listed on the contract with the Multnomah County GOP.
Facebook posts by Tooze over the past two years documented by leftist groups show he associates with the Proud Boys. It is not clear whether he is a formal member.
In a post dated Aug. 10, 2019, Tooze commented on an article in a conservative publication alleging that antifa was descending on Portland disguised as Trump supporters: “The Proud Boys will be there for your protection from Ted Wheeler’s army of socialist terrorists.”
In another post dated Aug. 17 of that year, Tooze wrote: “Proud Boys will do what they can along with Oregon Women for Trump and other real patriot groups.”
On June 13, 2020, Tooze posted side-by-side photos of BLM protesters and Proud Boys marching. The BLM picture was labeled “the infection,” and the Proud Boys were labeled “the disinfectant.”
Last year, Tooze ran for election to the Oregon House of Representatives but lost.
Last week, WW reported that the county’s Republican Party was going to hold a recall vote on Lloyd on May 6. The party did not disclose the location of the meeting and therefore WW did not report it.
The recall petition, obtained by WW, read: “We dare not announce where and when we are meeting in the city of the original Antifa group, Rose City Antifa, which continues to actively hurt people and damage property nightly in Portland!”
Sytsma says Tooze brought about 10 men to the event: four inside the church, two at the door, and a “rotating” patrol of three or four who drove around the neighborhood “making sure things were calm.”
In the agreement, Tooze is listed as a “Private Volunteer Security Consultant” in Oregon City.
Former chairman Stephen Lloyd confirmed to WW by phone that he is no longer chair of the Multnomah County GOP because of the recall vote that took place May 6. He confirmed he was at the event but declined to speak on the record.
Margo Logan, a member of the party who is currently running for the Portland Public Schools board, attended that meeting to speak in support of Lloyd. She tells WW that a few security men, who she says she thinks were Proud Boys, tried to stop her from entering.
“I didn’t let them stop me, I walked around them. Later they realized I was probably a good person,” Logan says. “I’ve seen them before, I went to one of their picnics at the Salem Capitol. So pretty quick when I was walking around them, a guy recognized me and said I’ve seen you at the rally. I asked, ‘What’re your guys doing? Why are you being goons for their people?’”
Church leaders say they were in the dark about who had rented the space.
Victor Yektiurip, associate pastor at the Portland City Blessing Church, tells WW: “This was not a church event at all. They had a meeting in our facility, and we didn’t know that they hired whatever the security was.”
He says the church started receiving complaints from neighbors that night, “so we were totally regretful of making the decision and allowing this group to come and use the facility.”
On May 8, party secretary and now-chairman Alan Conner wrote to the church’s pastors thanking them for the rental of its “comfortable warm location for these policy discussions.”
That was shared with WW. The party leaders wrote: “We were blessed to find, and to our knowledge the event was successful without injury or incident. Recently there have been reports of stickers left in the neighborhood, we are following up with both our security consultant and with members of our group to see that, if true, these items are removed.”
A NextDoor post May 7 by someone who lives in the area described what happened, estimating roughly 30 men provided security and patrolled the outside of the church.
“The effect of this was that Proud Boys were patrolling our blocking groups from 5 pm to midnight. These ‘patrols’ were pure intimidation—they were drinking, shouting to each other, shining flashlights into our neighbors’ homes and faces, and displaying weapons. They circled, harassed and threatened another neighbor on this street who was working out. They vandalized our block with Proud Boys stickers.”
The person added, “I was spit at, yelled at, and cursed at.”
Lt. Greg Pashley, a spokesman for the Portland Police Bureau, said “a sergeant checked the area of that church after an anonymous call regarding some kind of event there. The sergeant did not find evidence of any crimes or need for police response. The sergeant advised dispatch to send police back if someone called in to report a crime. They were not called to return. There were no arrests.”