Police captain under fire for interest in Nazis

Police captain under fire for interest in Nazis »Play Video
Mark Kruger.

PORTLAND, Ore. - A Portland police captain is under fire for his interest in Nazi history and an internal affairs investigation has determined the officer has done some sort of wrongdoing.

Community activists and a lawyer have accused the city of covering up evidence that shows Capt. Mark Kruger honored Nazi soldiers in a local park. But for months, the Portland Police Bureau said he was nothing more than a history buff.

In a lawsuit against Kruger dealing with use-of-force at war rallies, lawyers tried to find evidence that he placed plaques honoring Nazi SS soldiers at Rocky Butte.

In 2004, lawyer Alan Graf told the court that “Mark Kruger has tampered with, has hidden and has destroyed evidence.”

But now, according to The Oregonian, an internal affairs investigation revealed the city attorney’s office had those plaques since Kruger removed them during the lawsuit, and the plaques were never turned over.

Graf has now written to the U.S. attorney saying it is “deliberate obstruction by city officials into preventing the truth about the Nazi activities of then Sgt. Kruger from coming out.”

Community activist, Rev. Chuck Currie, is also calling for the state attorney general and the U.S. attorney to investigate.

“I think we need to look very closely at why this went on for so many years,” Currie said. “Why the police denied it; why the city attorney’s office denied it when they had obvious evidence this is occurring.”

He said he wants Mayor Sam Adams to fire Kruger.

“If you’re Jewish; if you’re black; if you’re gay in Portland, the last thing you want is a Portland police officer who has a history of Nazi sympathizing,” Currie said.

Sgt. Pete Simpson, spokesman for the Portland Police Bureau, said it’s too soon to say “which allegations have been sustained.” He said Chief Mike Reese is now deciding appropriate punishment for Kruger.

In an e-mail from then-Police Chief Rosie Sizer from a year ago this week, she told the rank and file she would not have promoted Kruger to captain if she felt that any of the allegations he was a Nazi sympathizer were true.

The mayor’s office said Tuesday it’s too soon to comment and no one from the city attorney’s office was available to discuss the matter. As for Kruger, KATU News was told he’s on vacation.