Central Lutheran Church sits at the corner of 11th and E Olive and holds its place in the middle of the communities around Cal Anderson Park including hosting religious services and providing space to feed the hungry in partnership with the Capitol Hill Community Lunch nonprofit.
The old church has also found itself in the middle of the protests that have continued in the area around the park and the East Precinct and, like many buildings near Cal Anderson, has suffered property damage during the unrest.
Some blows have hurt more than others. In August and again in September, Central Lutheran’s historic stained-glass windows were damaged. It is now hoping to raise $60,000 to repair the broken glass.
“Please help us restore our windows to their former appearance so that we can continue our service to the Capitol Hill community and greater Seattle for another 117 years,” the church’s Central Council writes.
Mayor Jenny Durkan tells CHS that her office will “in coming weeks” launch two initiatives planned with local businesses and community representatives to “restore” Cal Anderson Park and take down the barricades around the East Precinct.
“It’s urgent,” the mayor said Tuesday. “It is our densest neighborhood with a very high ratio of people who are renters. There’s very little open space.” The mayor said business and property is also at the front of the discussion after months of demonstrations and ongoing police and protester clashes around the precinct, the park, and the Capitol Hill core.
Beyond reopening a park and clearing the sidewalk at 12th and Pine, the initiatives would be most important for their implications for the neighborhood’s 亚洲真人娱乐homelessness crisis and the ongoing, nightly protest and unrest. Continue reading →
Dozens of “direct action” protesters marched across Capitol Hill Monday night marking six months since the May 30th clash between demonstrators and police that brought fire, tear gas, and gunfire to Seattle’s core and sparked continuing unrest following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Police reported four people were arrested Monday night out of the group of around 100 for “property damage” and “obstructing a law enforcement officer.”
The “black bloc” marchers spray painted buildings, damaged banks, and reportedly used a baton to smash windows at a business. Images posted by SPD showed a damaged and tagged ATM, and shattered glass at the Broadway Starbucks. Later in the night following the arrests, police reported more attempts to break glass using bricks and an illegal fire at 11th and Denny. Continue reading →
The marches, rallies, and actions have once again shifted and there have been more nights than not lately with quiet streets around Capitol Hill’s walled-offEast Precinct. Some might think Seattle protest season has ended just as the drizzle season has arrived.
“The protest community is feeling the strain of almost 180 days of continuous action. Increasing COVID numbers, a change in Seattle police tactics, factionalization, and the logical progression of a protest into political activity have reduced daily turnout,” David Obelcz, a frequent protest live streamer and publisher of Malcontentment.com said. “It is worth noting the 150-day march and the November 4 march had more than 1,000 people. Anyone who is pouring one out for Black Lives Matter in Seattle is doing so prematurely.”
But the night of the 150-day march did seem to mark a turning point. In the weeks since, demonstrations have been spread out across the city including the International District, Northgate, and West Seattle, plus a tangle with some Proud Boys in Mill Creek, along with a couple nights of protest activity starting as it has for months in Cal Anderson. But groups on the Hill have been smaller and reports of vandalism at the East Precinct and business property damage have quieted since October. Even the E Olive Way Starbuckshas reopened though the neighborhood’s parking meters remain busted.
For larger rallies and marches, the changes seem to be a focus on a wider area of the city and a push toward quality over quantity. There are fewer events but a more robust deployment of resources including the safety of the “Car Brigade” and sometimes a split of marchers into two or more groups to stretch Seattle Police resources and limit law enforcement interference.
SPD also has new tactics and new equipment — though its deployment in the East Precinct has also become a relative rarity.
The causes of the Black Lives Matter groups and the anti-police “direct action” activists don’t cleave to a legislative schedule but another season has also passed. Continue reading →
A petition organized by members of neighborhood community groups, organizations, and businesses around Cal Anderson have launched a petition to show community support for the reopening of the park and removal of the concrete barrier wall surrounding the East Precinct:
Sign the petition here
From the Pike Pine Urban Neighborhood Council:
Cal Anderson Park, a 7-acre public park in the middle of Seattle, has been closed to the public since early July. Although many continue to use the park, its use is not supported by regular maintenance and repair and it has become an unwelcoming place for many. Since its closure there have been 2 deaths inside the park, sprawling encampments, piles of trash and human excrement, property damage and deferred maintenance. Reopening the park will provide much needed maintenance and allow for the park to be utilized by all. The City has installed large cement barriers and fences around the E. Precinct in response to property damage. While most businesses have removed the plywood from their windows and are open for business in the neighborhood, the barricades around the E. Precinct remain. Removing the barricades signals this is a safe and welcoming neighborhood. We created the petition and will send its signatures to the Mayor and City Council members – the support they say they need to act. But, to make an impact, we need a LARGE VOICE. Please sign the petition here: https://www.change.org/opencalanderson
The petition already had more than 200 sign-ups as of early Thursday afternoon. Continue reading →
In the early hours of a morning in October, Abi heard a familiar voice outside her window.
“He left me with a bodily response,” she said. “If I see him in public or I hear his voice, I’ll go into full panic mode and think I’m dying.”
The voice belonged to an old flame, a skater who frequents Cal Anderson Park who Abi, in her early 20s, claims emotionally abused her during their relationship. When she looked out the window, she saw his graffiti tag sprayed across the wall opposite her.
“I felt like that was a tactic to gain more control over me,” she said. “It had gotten to a point where I couldn’t accept that anymore.”
It was then that Abi decided to share her story online.
The #MeToo movement can also exist at a small scale, in a neighborhood, or in a community like the skaters who meet in Cal Anderson. There, an online document detailing one woman’s experience began collecting stories of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse within the Seattle skate scene. It grew with people adding their own accounts of abuse. Abi transitioned her Instagram feed to post these experiences, out abusers, and ultimately create an avenue for survivors to seek justice. Continue reading →
Seattle Police investigated a report of gunfire early Friday morning on the edge of Cal Anderson Park.
According to East Precinct radio updates, multiple people in the park reported a shootout involving a white sedan near Nagle and Pine around 4:20 AM.
Police responded to the area but did not immediately locate the vehicle or any suspects, There were no reported injuries or property damage.
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Seattleites who seem to have both an unending appetite for paid parking and complaining about it might have a new reason to support the controversial “direct action” protesters who gather and march on Capitol Hill nearly every night.
The city says protesters have destroyed dozens of parking pay stations and there are currently no plans for repairs. The vandalism has caused thousands of dollars in damage and lost revenue for the city.
“It is unfortunately true that close to 80 pay stations have been seriously vandalized, and graffiti has abounded,” a Seattle Department of Transportation representative wrote to a CHS reader who contacted the city about the problem and shared the message with us. “The Capitol Hill neighborhood has taken the brunt of much of the damage to the City’s parking infrastructure.”
Some of the lost revenue might be offset by an increase in parking tickets with parking enforcement officers again issuing fines after this summer’s COVID-19 grace period. With the pay stations busted, many more drivers are risking a ticket over using the city’s online payment system. And searching for a working meter is a waste of time. Vandals have destroyed pretty much every station for blocks around Cal Anderson.
SPD says it is looking into parking enforcement issues related to the damaged stations but has not yet provided an update to CHS. Continue reading →
Protesters and police said there was property damage and arrests in a Halloween night demonstration and march as part of continuing nightly actions targeting the Seattle Police Department and the East Precinct around Cal Anderson Park.
Earlier in the day, SPD announced what it says is a “new approach” to demonstrations including what officials called “de-escalation” efforts and “new strategies to address individuals taking unlawful actions in otherwise lawful crowds.”
“This year has brought unprecedented demonstrations to our region, posing new challenges for our community and the Seattle Police Department,” the SPD announcement reads. “Our department has itself been the focus of many of the ongoing protests about inequities in criminal justice, violence in law enforcement, and SPD’s own response to demonstrations.”
Halloween night, the most obvious tactic on display was SPD command’s use of a notably large number of vehicles and responding officers after marchers were reported damaging property in the area. SPD reported making multiple arrests at Broadway and Denny after officers moved on the crowd and the numerous “safety brigade” vehicles accompanying the march just before 11:30 PM.
The night started in Capitol Hill’s Cal Anderson Park with a festive atmosphere on Halloween night with a larger than usual turnout for the nightly marches with a few hundred Black Lives Matter protesters in costumes, masks and black bloc gathering. Continue reading →