Game Over: Seattle police finally move in to dismantle “autonomous zone”, arrest more than a dozen people

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Seattle, Washington – The insanity that was once dubbed as CHAZ and then referred to later as CHOP is has now ended, thanks to police finally clearing the area and making arrests.

It’s official like a referee’s whistle – and the ending of CHOP was hastened after Mayor Jenny Durkan issued an executive order in the early morning hours of July 1st.

According to the executive order issued by the city’s mayor, the following was noted:

“The City’s obligations under the First Amendment do not require the City to provide limitless sanctuary to occupy City property, damage City and private property, obstruct right of way, or foster dangerous conditions.”

Essentially, the mayor finally acknowledged that what was happening in CHOP was neither peaceful nor a lawful protest – it was an occupied area where those who were at odds with the dogma synonymous with CHOP could easily find themselves in harm’s way if present there.   

Much like when we had a literal “walk of shame” being filmed as the CHAZ/CHOP occupiers berated this individual while ousting him from the area earlier in June.

Police were said to have warned those occupying CHOP during the morning of July 1st that they would be allotted 8 minutes to safely exit the area and provided directions on where to exit the area as well.

However, some were said to have defied the directive, and Seattle Police were said to have enacted 13 arrests as a result.

The Seattle Police Department noted on Twitter how there has been several violent crimes that have plagued the CHAZ/CHOP area since its inception – even including murder:

“Since demonstrations at the East Precinct area began on June 8th, two teenagers have been killed and three people have been seriously wounded in late-night shootings. Police have also documented robberies, assaults, and other violent crimes.”

Considering that there are still at-large suspects associated with these crimes that were mentioned by police, the SPD also stated that they were going to be adorned in more protective gear than what they’d normally wear during the clearing that occurred:

“Because suspects in recent shootings may still be in the area, and because numerous people in the area are in possession of firearms, Seattle Police officers involved in this morning’s response will be equipped with additional protective gear.”

SPD Chief Carmen Best issued a statement in relation to the clearing of CHOP as well, stating the following:

“As I have said, and I will say again, I support peaceful demonstrations. Black Lives Matter, and I too want to help propel this movement toward meaningful change in our community.

But enough is enough. The CHOP has become lawless and brutal. Four shootings – two fatal – robberies, assaults, violence and countless property crimes have occurred in this several block area.”

The framing of CHOP as being lawless isn’t a frivolous statement either, as SPD noted that during the occupation of the area between June 8th to the 30th resulted in 65 crimes that were reported. Within that same area, there were a total of 37 crimes reported for the entirety of 2019.

It only took CHOP 22 days to nearly double a crime rate of an entire year in one area.

Although, it is rather curious the timing of the immediate action taken against CHOP by way of Mayor Durkan. One might wonder just what crafted such a quick response.

Well, perhaps it was inspired by CHOP inhabitants deciding to stage themselves right outside of the mayor’s home days earlier.

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Murdered officer's grave desecrated before headstone even placed

Law Enforcement Today reported on when Mayor Durkan found herself the recipient of numerous people outside of her home on June 28th. Here’s that report in case you missed it. 

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The situation that is CHOP, formally dubbed as CHAZ, is still an issue plaguing the city of Seattle – and that issue recently found itself right on the doorstep of Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan’s home.

What’s worse, is that this group of protesters were led by none other than a Seattle City Councilmember.

Word was that the infamous “autonomous zone” was meant to be dismantled as of June 28th, yet it still stands reportedly.

Instead, city Councilmember Kshama Sawant thought it would be a move in good taste to speak to a group of people occupying the CHOP area on June 28th to discuss the protesters demands.

But it didn’t just end with speaking to the group – Sawant also escorted the protesters to the home of Mayor Durkan. One of the protesters present during the gathering outside of the mayor’s home stated the following about the rationale of bringing the protest to the mayor’s house:

“We came down to Jenny Durkan’s mansion to bring the demands of the movement and of the families who have been impacted by police violence to her doorstep as she seems to not be able to hear our demands any other way.”

Whether one agrees with how the mayor may or may not be addressing matters as of late, there’s something genuinely off-putting about rallying outside of someone’s home where their children sleep. Furthermore, the idea that an elected official would consider it to be in proper form to join in on said form of demonstration is concerning.

And Mayor Durkan was not thrilled about Sawant’s engagement in said act – and the mayor’s office called her out by name in a statement regarding the careless act:

“Mayor Durkan and her family are in the state program to keep their address confidential because of the death threats mostly related to her work as Seattle’s U.S. Attorney under President Obama.  Instead of working to make true change, Councilmember Sawant continues to choose political stunts.”

The statement by the mayor’s office continued, highlighting that while protesting is all good and well – but bringing a demonstration to someone’s home is where the line is drawn:

“Tonight [Councilmember Sawant] did so without regard for the safety of the Mayor and her family. The Mayor was not even home – she was working at City Hall.  Seattle can and should peacefully demonstrate but should not put families and children at risk.”

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