Politics

New Emails, Texts Show How Seattle Leaders Let Chop Spiral Out Of Control

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Internal communications between Seattle authorities shed new light on how the police department’s East Precinct and the surrounding area became occupied by demonstrators in the Capitol Hill Organized Protest, or CHOP, over the summer, according to local media.

Fire officials sought help from the protesters’ self-declared security team after police pulled back, which “failed to produce results,” Seattle-based KING-TV reported this week. The station cited emails and text messages obtained through public records requests.

“East precinct. They disabled the door locks so they can’t be locked,” Seattle Fire Department Chief Harold Scoggins wrote in an email to Raz Simone, the purported head of CHOP’s makeshift security, according to the report.

The fire chief also reached out via text message.

“Raz, I just got word that 4 people just broke the door at SPD and entered the building,” he reportedly said. “A way to keep SPD out of the space is secure that building during the protest. Can you guys work with us on that?”

Protesters occupied the neighborhood June 8, shortly after police pulled out of the East Precinct building following a week of tumultuous protests over the death of George Floyd.

Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25 after an officer was seen on video kneeling on his neck for nearly nine minutes, prompting demonstrations around the country.

Activists declared the neighborhood around the East… (Read more)