In a chilling incident that highlights the dangers of defunding the police, a Portland doctor named Mary Costantino found herself brutally attacked while walking in the city but had to wait more than 20 minutes for any police response.
Portland woman knocked out by attacker blames city for slow police response: ‘We did this to ourselves’ https://t.co/5y7qrF4VOJ
— Fox News (@FoxNews) August 2, 2023
The incident occurred on July 28 around 10:30 PM when Costantino was strolling with a friend in Southwest Portland. Out of nowhere, she was struck unconscious when a man threw an aluminum water bottle at her, and when she came to, blood was gushing from her mouth. Fearing for her life, she immediately dialed 911.
“I thought I was going to die, so I tried to give a report of the attack,” Costantino said. “I wanted there to be some record of what happened to me.”
Fortunately, her friend managed to scare off the assailant, sparing her from further harm.
The police confirmed the brutal attack through TriMet surveillance video, labeling it unprovoked. However, officers didn’t arrive until 20 minutes after Costantino was attacked. By that time, she had given up and returned home.
As a radiologist, Costantino understands the importance of public safety, but she doesn’t blame the police for what happened to her. Instead, she points the finger at her city’s decision to defund the police.
“I do not hold the police accountable for this at all — I hold our city accountable for defunding the police. We don’t have enough police force to protect our citizens, and we did this to ourselves,” she
This incident is not an isolated one in Portland. The city has been grappling with prolonged police response times for years. In July, the average wait for a high-priority call was a staggering 23.7 minutes — the longest in over a decade.
Lt. Nathan Sheppard from the Portland Police Bureau acknowledged the staffing challenges. “Our goal is always to help as much as we can, as quickly as we can. But with our staffing being at historic lows, this has become a challenge for us,” he said to Fox News.
The bureau is facing about 80 sworn vacancies, a number that has declined since September but is still problematic.
Costantino’s story serves as a stark warning about the consequences of defunding the police. However, she is one of the innocent suffering as she said she was not in favor of defunding police, nor did she support candidates with aims to advance that plan.
“I did not support Jo Ann Hardesty, who advocated for defunding the police in 2020,” Costantino said, revealing that she cast her vote for Republican Christine Drazan.