This is picture of the man Amanda Rose claimed who assaulted her during the Aug. 29 protest. Rose took a number of pictures of him, including the one.
By Emily Mann & Brad Smith
ROGUE RIVER, Ore. -- A young woman was allegedly assaulted by a counter protester during a Saturday rally held in Rogue River.
Amanda Rose was attacked by a man during a protest -- the alleged assailant struck her in the mouth with a flag pole. “I was one of the first people to arrive,” she said. “It was around 9:45 a.m. when I got there. An hour later, I was assaulted.”
Rose had heard about SOEquity’s “You Are Enough” event because social and racial justice issues “are important to me.” While the scheduled cookout was canceled, Southern Oregon Coalition for Racial Equality members pushed ahead with a protest rally. She decided to join the rally.
“I know Rogue River very well,” she said. “I would say Jen Hook and I have worked together for three years. She has been a doula for a very long time, is well-loved and has given so much to her community. Jen’s been in the area for some time and saw how things were getting bad. We talked about it from time to time. I felt it was the right thing to do, being there and protesting. I was upset at how SOEquity was treated -- it wasn’t right.”
As the SOEquity event started, Rose said the counter protesters -- a mix of both local and out of town instigators and white nationalists -- were ramping up their rhetoric.
“It was bad. There was a lot of yelling and screaming. People drove pickups and motorcycles up and down the street,” she said. “It was getting heated. I stood between counter protesters and Clarence Carr, who was visibly upset and was being harassed by the cops. I did that as the cops surrounded him. There was an older man with a flagpole was right there. He was very upset. An older man. Like I said, he was very angry.”
She felt a deescalation was necessary. She placed herself between Carr and the counter protesters.
“I just wanted to keep the peace and calm down the situation,” Rose said. “I’ve done it before -- so I put my body between him and them. (Carr) was very upset.
As Rose stood between Carr and the counter protesters, the crowd chanted “Black lives matter!” She held up a fist and said the same thing.
That’s when the older man with the flag got angrier, she claimed.
“‘Put your fucking fist down, you fucking piece of shit’ -- that’s what he said to me,” Rose recalled.
Rose stated that the man shoved her twice and then hit her in the mouth with the flag pole.
Rogue River Police Dept. Chief Curtis Whipple and other police officers were nearby, Rose said.
“I said, ‘Can any of you do anything?’ and they moved me away from the street,” she said. “Whipple gave me a case number and I asked if they could have him leave.”
Rose said Whipple and some other officers made contact with the alleged assailant. She claimed Whipple told the man, “We’ll watch the (body cam) footage and then we’ll know what happened.”
The man, she said, went on his way.
Whipple never offered her medical aid.
“He took pictures of my face and didn’t say a lot,” she said. “My lips were bruised and swollen. He seemed brusque and distant. All the cops did. I asked him if I could see the body cam footage. He said it might be another week or so before he would get it.”
Rose said she kept seeing her alleged assailant during the rest of the protest.
“I took a couple of pictures of him,” she said. “He really got angry when I did that.”
In other media reports, Whipple asked the alleged assailant's family members to watch him or he'd have to be removed.
Since Saturday, Rose has been frustrated -- along with her husband.
“He’s called Whipple three or four times -- no response. My kids ask me if the police are ever going to do anything,” she said. “I don't know what to do.”
“I want to find out who this man is, I want to file charges,” Rose said. “I don’t know if I can trust the Rogue River cops.”
Before she left the protests, Rose said she’d spoken to a Grants Pass police officer -- Medford Police Dept. and the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office personnel were also there to help -- and the response upset her.
“I asked the officer why the man wasn’t arrested,” she said. “They said, ‘It was decided not to arrest anyone. It might cause a bigger problem.’”
“After hearing that and other things about the Rogue River police,” Rose said, “if at all possible, I wish someone else would handle my case. I can’t trust them.”
The Rogue Free Press emailed Whipple a number of times and requested the alleged assailant's name. There was no response.
UPDATE: As of press time Friday, Whipple still hasn't called Amanda Rose nor has he returned her husband's calls.
He did, however, have the time to appear on a local newscast . . . touting his "response" to the Saturday protest.
A few years ago, Curtis Whipple was the chief of the Talent Police Dept. He allowed an officer named Bill May to intimidate and harass citizens. Residents complained, as did city officials. Never was ever done about May's aggressive behavior.
Why he never took action -- who knows? What the RFP knows is this: A woman was assaulted and her alleged assailant was never taken into custody. In fact, he was allowed to roam the street -- allegedly under a family member's supervision.
Such behavior is unprofessional and unacceptable . . . yet it's enabled by a city council who's sorely out of touch with reality. It's the Rogue River "Good Ol' Boys Network" in action.
Amanda Rose deserves better.
UPDATE Friday: The Rogue Free Press contacted the DA's Office and learned Deputy DA Kelly Hager has been assigned to the case.
It should be noted that when one Rogue River resident was having problems with a racist neighbor, RRPD Officer Ty Darr did, according to the victim, went above and beyond to help them.
Emily Mann contributed to the article. She was at the protest and made contact with Amanda Rose. Rose later contacted The Rogue Free Press.