Aloha man charged with stealing gun during violent clash in front of Planned Parenthood

A screengrab from Joe Smothers Facebook Live during the July 13 event.

Salem police arrested an Aloha man accused of using physical force to steal a handgun from a Salem man during a clash in front of Salem’s Planned Parenthood on July 13.

Gordon Welsey Cronk Jr., 30, was arraigned on charges of second-degree robbery, being a felon in possession of a firearm and first-degree theft in Marion County Circuit Court on Monday. Police arrested him on Friday, July 23, and he was held in the Marion County Jail without bail.

A Marion County Circuit Court indictment returned July 22 accused Cronk of using physical force to steal a handgun from a counterdemonstrator at the event.

Proud Boys and counterdemonstrators clashed during the July 13 protest outside of Planned Parenthood at 3825 Wolverine St. N.E., an event organized by the Church at Planned Parenthood, which opposes abortion.

In his booking photo, Cronk has a prominent neck tattoo of the Proud Boys’ insignia. Court records show that Cronk was convicted of second-degree burglary in 2014 in Washington County Circuit Court.

Another man arrested in connection with the Planned Parenthood event, 64-year-old Ricky D Clark of Beaverton, is described in court documents as assaulting a man at the event.

According to a probable cause affidavit written on July 13 by Salem Police Officer John Parmer, Clark and five others surrounded the victim and kicked, punched and struck him with metal batons while he was laying on the ground.

Police footage of the attack showed Clark punching and kicking the victim, the affidavit said.

Parmer said he used his baton to push Clark off the victim. He wrote that Clark continued to push past him and resisted arrest.

Other officers took him to the ground and handcuffed him, he wrote.

During an interview with police, Clark said he had been a member of the Proud Boys for two years.

Court records don’t list any charges against Clark in connection with the Planned Parenthood disturbance.

Amy Queen, Marion County deputy district attorney, told Salem Reporter said she could provide no information about a possible prosecution of Clark.

A third man who was arrested related to the event, Shawn C. Davidson, 30, of Salem, was cited for second-degree disorderly conduct and released. 

UPDATE: At the request of the victim Salem Reporter removed his name from the article out of concern for being targeted for more violence.

Contact reporter Saphara Harrell at 503-549-6250, [email protected].

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