Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan Celebrates Federal Forces Leaving the City

SEATTLE, WA - MARCH 16: Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan speaks at a news conference about the coronavirus outbreak Monday, March 16, 2020, in Seattle. Gov. Jay Inslee ordered all bars, restaurants, entertainment and recreation facilities to temporarily close to fight the spread of COVID-19 in the state with by far …
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Mayor Jenny Durkan (D) announced that federal forces have left Seattle and celebrated the news Tuesday while accusing President Donald Trump of deliberately increasing violence in the city.

“.@DHSgov notified me that federal forces deployed to Seattle have demobilized & left. The President’s actions to target Democratic cities with federal forces is chilling and increased violence in Portland, Seattle & other cities — exactly what the President intended,” Durkan said.

Policing decisions, she continued, should rest with Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best:

Recently, Best provided a letter to residents and business owners, essentially informing them that police will not “risk their personal safety to protect property” following the City Council’s ban on “less lethal tools, including pepper spray that is commonly used to disperse crowds that have turned violent.”

“Simply put, the legislation gives officers NO ability to safely intercede to preserve property in the midst of a large, violent crowd,” Best wrote.

“For these reasons, Seattle Police will have an adjusted deployment in response to any demonstrations this weekend – as I will never ask our officers to risk their personal safety to protect property without the tools to do so in a safe way,” she added.

Durkan, however, continued in reprimanding the Trump administration for sending federal agents in cities beset by violent protests, including Portland.

“While continuing to denounce these federal actions in Portland and across the country, we will not be diverted from the work of dismantling systemic racism in order to build a more just city and nation,” she said.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) also celebrated the withdrawal of federal officers.

“This demobilization means Washingtonians no longer have to worry about the White House’s aim to provoke confrontation and undermine peaceful protests,” Inslee said in a statement.

“Those peacefully protesting have raised the public’s consciousness of the urgent need for racial justice, and I have no doubt they will continue to use their voices to call for action,” he added. “We must continue making progress toward a better and more just Washington for everyone.”

Violence erupted in Seattle over the weekend as protesters took to the streets to stand in solidarity with the violent protesters in Portland. Fifty-nine officers were injured as a result of the “peaceful” protest, and at least one was hospitalized.

As Breitbart News detailed:

Seattle Police declared a riot and arrested dozens of people on Saturday after a demonstration in the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood — a protest aimed to stand in solidarity with Portland protesters — turned violent. The protest, which saw roughly 1,000 participants, began as a march but descended into a state of anarchy, as rioters set fires, vandalized property, hurled explosives, and assaulted police officers.

According to the SPD Blotter, rioters pelted officers with “explosives, rocks, bottles, and wood,” resulting in injuries ranging from “abrasions and bruising to burns and a torn meniscus.” Fifty-nine officers were injured as a result of the violence, and at least one was hospitalized.

The police department posted bodycam footage from the violent riot, showing assailants hurling objects, including explosives, at officers.

Durkan blamed the explosion of violence squarely on the president, stating that his actions “were responsible for what happened this weekend.”

“We don’t need the help that the president’s offering, and, in fact, I think the president’s actions have directly escalated and were responsible for what happened this weekend,” the mayor said during a Monday appearance on CNN’s OutFront.

“Many people who were interviewed by media said they came to the protest because of what’s happening in Portland. The protest itself was billed as something in solidarity with Portland,” Durkan added.

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