‘We were going in’ Trump claims federal forces were ‘all set to go into Seattle’ when mayor ordered CHOP dismantled
- Trump said federal troops ‘were going in very soon’ and he ‘looked forward to it’
- But Seattle police went to reclaim Capitol Hill Organized Protest zone on June 1
- Mayor Jenny Durkan branded the gathering an ‘unlawful assembly’ last week
- The zone had seen two deadly shootings and crime rise by more than 500%
Donald Trump claimed federal forces were ‘all set to go into Seattle’ to dismantle the city’s occupied protest zone when Seattle police moved in to vacate the area.
Trump said federal troops ‘were going in very soon’ and he ‘looked forward to it’ but police officers went in first to reclaim the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) zone on June 1.
Mayor Jenny Durkan branded the gathering at the East Precinct and Cal Anderson Park an ‘unlawful assembly’ and demanded all barriers be removed in an order issued last week.
Donald Trump claimed federal forces were ‘all set to go into Seattle’ to dismantle the city’s occupied protest zone when the mayor finally issued the executive order to vacate the area
Seattle police showed up in force on June 1 at the city’s ‘occupied’ protest zone, tore down demonstrators’ tents and used bicycles to herd the protesters after the mayor ordered the area cleared following two fatal shootings
Police swarmed the zone known as CHOP at about 5am on June 1; at least 31 people were arrested, said Police Chief Carmen Best
Police cleared campers from Cal Anderson park on June 1 as city crews dismantle the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) area
Police officers in riot gear arrested 31 people within just 30 minutes in the zone – which had seen two deadly shootings and crime rise by more than 500 per cent in just over three weeks.
People had occupied several blocks around a park and the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct after officers abandoned the building on June 8 following clashes with protesters calling for an end to police brutality.
President Trump told Fox News: ‘We were going in, we were going in very soon.’
He said federal troops ‘were all set to go into Seattle’ and he ‘looked forward to it’ but Seattle police went in before them.
Clearing out: City crews dismantled the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) area outside of the Seattle Police Department’s vacated East Precinct on June 1
Seattle police on June 1 moved in to reclaim their precinct in the city’s ‘occupied’ protest zone
TIMELINE OF VIOLENCE IN SEATTLE’S CHOP ZONE
June 8: Protesters occupy the area; police abandoned the precinct
June 20: A 19-year-old man is shot dead and a 33-year-old man was wounded
June 24: Nearby businesses and property owners filed a federal lawsuit against the city
June 29: Two teens shot – one fatally – in Jeep at zone’s concrete barriers
June 30: Barricades at Seattle’s cop-free zone are torn down as protesters replace concrete barriers with trash cans and couches
Early hours : Mayor Jenny Durkan demand all barriers are removed after a 525 per cent spike in violent crimes in the area
5am: Police swarm the zone
5:30am: Eyewitnesses say officers have cleared the area
7am: Chief Carmen Best confirms police have taken back precinct
President Donald Trump has repeatedly criticized the Seattle protest area, as well as city and state leaders.
He tweeted last week that the protesters ‘have ZERO respect for Government.’
At least 100 police officers swarmed the zone known as CHOP at about 5am last Wednesday and a loud bang was heard at about 6.15am followed by a cloud of smoke.
Eyewitness Omari Salisbury said: ‘The Seattle Police Department basically reclaimed the precinct in less than 30 minutes, five feet at a time with the bicycle officers out in front.’
Police tweeted: ‘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.’
Officers tore down demonstrators’ tents and used bicycles to herd the protesters.
Police tore down fences that protesters had erected around their tents and used batons to poke inside bushes, apparently looking for people who might be hiding inside.
The move to dismantle the area followed the shooting death of a 16-year-old boy, named as Antonio Mays Jr, in the early hours of Monday morning.
A 14-year-old was also critically injured when eyewitnesses say armed security inside the zone fired 300 rounds.
Lorenzo Anderson, 19, was shot on the protest area on June 20.
His father, Horace Lorenzo Anderson, said: ‘This doesn’t look like a protest to me no more. That just looks like they just took over and said we can take over whenever we want to.’