SEATTLE—Mason McDermott and his father caught a would-be arsonist and put out the fire he set at their auto repair shop, but they couldn’t get police to come out and arrest him.
The McDermotts’ 49-year-old business is on the edge of central Seattle’s Capitol Hill Occupied Protest, six blocks controlled by demonstrators, and police were instructed not to go there.
“Multiple times, we called them,” McDermott told me on my Seattle radio show on KTTH-AM , referring to police. “They made it seem like they were going to come, [but] absolutely not. They did not.”
By McDermott’s count, he and his father, John McDermott, called 911 between 15 and 18 times two weeks ago about the man they caught trying to set their business ablaze.
But officers had been advised to avoid CHOP short of a mass casualty event, despite Police Chief Carmen Best’s claim June 15 that “there is no cop-free zone in the city of Seattle.”
Two weeks later, how much has that changed?
“We’re told we can’t go in. They won’t let us,” one police officer told me Saturday.
And early Monday, a drive-by shooting in CHOP left a 16-year-old boy dead and a 14-year-old seriously wounded.“Enough is enough,” Best told reporters hours later. The Rise of CHOP Since early June, the country has turned its collective attention to a leaderless movement in Seattle, but fortunately, that movement never really had a chance.Seattle’s experiment with an occupied, police-free activist zone of six blocks—now known as the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest, or CHOP—has turned out to be an abject failure after rampant gun violence, two homicides, at least one attempted rape, and frequent skirmishes.CHOP sprang up after the May 25 death of a black man, George Floyd, at the hands of a white police officer 1,650 miles away in Minneapolis. Now it apparently […]