In case you missed it over the weekend, a man was shot dead inside Seattle's lawless "autonomous zone" early Saturday morning, with another person critically wounded a few minutes later. The Seattle police -- whose officers were forced to desert a precinct in the area -- released the following account later that day, noting that an angry, menacing mob prevented first responders from, well, responding as quickly as possible to the slaying. This ongoing disgrace is now officially a lethally dangerous ongoing disgrace:
Homicide detectives are investigating following a fatal shooting that occurred early Saturday morning at 10th Avenue and East Pine Street. One man was declared deceased at the hospital and another male is being treated for life-threatening injuries. On June 20th, at approximately 2:30 AM, East Precinct officers responded to a report of shots fired in Cal Anderson Park. This is inside the area referred to as the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP). Officers attempted to locate a shooting victim but were met by a violent crowd that prevented officers safe access to the victims. Officers were later informed that the victims, both males, had been transported to Harborview Medical Center by CHOP “medics”. Officers responded to Harborview and were informed that one of the victims, a 19-year-old male, had died from injuries. The other victim, also a male, unknown age, remains in the hospital with life-threatening injuries. The suspect or suspect(s) fled and are still at large. There is no description at this time.
The SPD's post was updated with a video demonstrating the hostile atmosphere officers encountered when they arrived on the scene to investigate (language content warning):
Beyond the people harassing and verbally abusing the cops, some protesters seemed to think that a police presence wasn't necessary because the victims had already been transferred to the hospital. But an early and imperative step in a homicide investigation is securing the crime scene, which was uniquely challenging under these outrageous circumstances. More details from the Seattle Times:
Late Saturday, the department released security video from cameras overlooking Cal Anderson Park that recorded a rapid volley of gunfire, and then people running...The Seattle Police Department abandoned its East Precinct, about two blocks from where the shootings occurred, on June 8 after days of violent confrontations with thousands of protesters...The empty precinct building, now boarded up and covered with graffiti, has been the hub of the ongoing occupation of the area, which includes Cal Anderson Park, one block west and across the street from the precinct...The protesters [shouted at] the officers that the victims have already been taken away. It would later turn out that one victim had been transported out by volunteer medics but another would be found later...The Seattle City Fire Department said it had medics and an engine company staged outside its station at 1500 E. Pine St. but per department policy would not enter the area — considered a scene of violence — without police protection.
One man who's been dubbed a "warlord" in the zone tweeted a video of paramedics waiting in an ambulance, portraying them as unwilling to treat the gunshot victims. But as the newspaper story explains, they were barred by official policy to enter areas that are deemed unsafe without adequate protection. The "CHOP" zone is, needless to say, a hostile and dangerous area for first responders (again, content warning):
1st responders were waiting for police protection since CHOP isn't safe for them. When the cops did show up to help the shooting victims, they were met by an angry mob that refused them entry,— (((AG))) (@AGHamilton29) June 21, 2020
If you want to set up an "autonomous" zone, you have to deal with the consequences. pic.twitter.com/kfYLJAVlc4
The city's incompetent mayor -- who has spent her time trolling President Trump, encouraging this lawlessness as "democracy" in action, and comparing it to the "summer of love" -- put out this useless statement via her office:
With one dead, one fighting for his life, and an unknown number of unidentified suspects on the loose, please recall how The New York Times described the "autonomous zone" -- namely, as a festive bastion of freedom and racial justice among the "liberated" streets. The local businesses love it, another media story gushed, shrugging off those who've been brave enough to say otherwise, and ignoring the many business owners whose stores remain boarded up and vandalized. As for the president's posture, it appears to be changing. Rather than saber-rattling about federally-directed interventions, it looks like he's decided to let this mess play out:
With surges in violent crime flaring up in some major American cities featuring woke political leadership and police on their heels, I'll leave you with this interesting observation about the media's strange lack of interest in certain narrative-unfriendly subjects:
It’s weird that there has been so few big / sweeping reports on what *happened* on those two nights of uncontrolled looting in Manhattan? It seems like super prime territory for great stories, given the density of news orgs & reporters in Manhattan, and I’ve barely seen anything.— Tom Gara (@tomgara) June 20, 2020
If Trump dislikes it, it must be defended -- and if it might help Trump, it must be downplayed or ignored.