The former president of We Heart Seattle has landed in legal hot water in Oregon, with charges in a recently-filed indictment ranging from identity theft to stealing personal property.
Kevin Dahlgren first made headlines up and down the Pacific Northwest with a series of YouTube videos of visits to homeless encampments. In those videos and on social media, he’s frequently been vocal in his criticism of local governments’ policies on homelessness, both in Seattle and Portland. That includes the assertion that municipal social services “have been completely monopolized by the left and then radicalized.”
In April of 2022, he was named the president of We Heart Seattle, a registered nonprofit that bills itself as “an action-based, boots-on-the-ground movement” that cleans up homeless encampments. Shortly after Dahlgren became president, the group launched a Portland chapter where it’s conducted similar work.
In the indictment filed in Multnomah County, Dahlgren now faces seven counts of first-degree theft of property valued at $1,000 or more, seven counts of identity theft, and five counts of official misconduct.
Court documents don’t provide additional details, although the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office has said that the charges stem from Dahlgren allegedly stealing the identities of the unhoused in Gresham, Oregon.
Shortly after the indictment came down, Dahlgren’s brother started a crowdfunding page asking for $50,000 to cover “legal and living expenses.”
Dahlgren stepped down from his position as We Heart Seattle president in early 2023 to “focus on his work in Gresham,” the organization’s current President and Founder Andrea Suarez told KIRO 7.
“We have no direct knowledge of the facts surrounding the charges against Kevin Dahlgren in Oregon, and we are confident that the Oregon judicial system will resolve these matters equitably and fairly,” she continued. “We learned about the allegations in Oregon when they were reported in the news earlier this month -- these allegations were previously unknown to the We Heart Seattle Board.”
“We are heartbroken to hear about the possible violations of individuals’ rights and hope that these matters will be resolved equitably for all involved,” Suarez added.
Correction: A previous version of this story stated that Dahlgren was the president of We Heart Seattle. It has been amended to reflect that Dahlgren stepped down from the position in early 2023.
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