The Portland Committee on Community Engaged Policing (PCCEP) presents ALIEN BOY

The Portland Committee on Community Engaged Policing (PCCEP) presents ALIEN BOY


PCCEP logo

The mission of the Portland Committee on Community-Engaged Policing (PCCEP) is to work with the Mayor/Police Commissioner, Portland Police Bureau, and Portland's diverse constituencies to solicit and exchange information between the community and Portland Police Bureau (PPB) to achieve the desired outcomes of equitable policing which exceeds constitutional requirements, and meaningful community engagement with and trust in PPB.

After the screening, there will be a debriefing and a chance to dialogue with each other and members of PCCEP.

Alien Boy: The Life and Death of James Chasse
Brian Lindstrom
90 minutes

On September 17, 2006 James Chasse was stopped by three law enforcement officers in Portland, Oregon in broad daylight. A dozen eyewitnesses watched in horror as the officers tackled, beat, kicked, and tasered James until he lay motionless on the pavement with 16 broken ribs and a punctured lung. He died in the back seat of a Portland Police car about two hours later.

James had not committed a crime so why did the officers attack him? Who was James Chasse? The officers told witnesses he was a drug dealer, a homeless person - a non-person, a ghost. Not true at all. James was a writer, an illustrator, and a musician; he had a home and a family and friends who loved him. He was a small, shy, gentle person who lived with schizophrenia.

Alien Boy: the Life and Death of James Chasse examines his childhood, his intense involvement in the early Portland punk music scene (the song "Alien Boy" by The Wipers is about him), the heart-breaking onset of his schizophrenia, and his brave efforts to avoid institutionalization and maintain his independence.

Using interviews, personal writings, archival footage, official documents and videotaped depositions of the involved police officers, the film explores James Chasse's life and the police actions and decisions that led to his death. What emerges is an intimate and complex story of one man's life, the Chasse family’s struggle for justice, and a city and a system grappling with accountability.

Special Admission