The sister of Portland shooting suspect Michael Forest Reinoehl was both “relieved and also disappointed” by her brother’s death Thursday — and now fears it will kick off a fresh wave of violence.
April Reinoehl said she knew her Antifa-supporting brother’s death was only a matter of time. But she was shocked to learn it was a US Marshals task force — and not right-wing supporters — that took him out in Washington State.
“I wouldn’t say at this point that this counts as bad news. It’s just more news,” April told the Daily Mail, which broke the news of Michael’s killing in a phone call.
“Honestly I didn’t expect it to be the police, I expected it to be the people who had a contract out for him. I was expecting the angry population of people who were out for blood.”
April, who was estranged from the security guard, 48, expects that his death will spur even more violence.
“Hatred begets hatred. Anybody who saw him, in their eyes, standing up for the plight of the black people, being killed by a police officer, this is going to validate their feelings in their minds of all the anger that they have – whether or not it’s correct or righteous,” April said.
The teacher and mom of two described Michael as “impulsive” who let his “worst emotions guide his actions” — and then tried to rationalize them afterward. She also believed he wouldn’t go down with a fight.
“So I’m not surprised he got himself killed. I’m surprised a police officer did it,” she said. “I’m relieved and also disappointed by that.”
April explained, “At least it wasn’t vigilante justice that got him, because I think that would actually be worse. It would feed the violence a lot more.
“But at the same time, the nationwide dispute is very highly black people versus officers, and now you have a member of Antifa killed by an officer. So I can imagine things are going to get worse again.”
Witnesses said Michael exchanged heavy gunfire with feds using what looked like an assault rifle outside an apartment complex in Tanglewilde, Washington, just outside Lacey. Authorities said four officers opened fire, striking and killing him.
The US Marshals task force, comprised of local and state law enforcement officers, were attempting to arrest Michael on a warrant issued out of Portland earlier in the day.
April, 36, said that while she barely knew her older brother, she was mourning his death — and worried about his two children, an 18-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter, who were already trying to come to terms that their father could be a murderer.
Aaron “Jay” Danielson
“I’m pretty sure they’re already both pretty thoroughly devastated,” she said. “I don’t imagine they’re going to take it well.”
April identified her brother to police after the deadly Portland shooting, saying he was verbally abusive to their dementia-stricken mother and in a “downward spiral” of debt after a failed career as a professional snowboarder.
Michael — who described himself as “100% Antifa” — was killed the same day a Vice News interview aired in which he said he acted in self-defense when he shot Danielson on Saturday.
“I had no choice,” he said. “I mean, I, I had a choice. I could have sat there and watched them kill a friend of mine of color. I wasn’t going to do that.”