News and Commentary

Rioter In ‘Anarchist Jurisdiction’ Of Seattle Hits Police Officer In Back Of Head With Baseball Bat
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON - AUGUST 9: A police officer stands in front of counter protesters during the Seattle Police Officers Guildâs rally to stop defunding of the Seattle Police Department on Sunday, August 9, 2020 at Seattle City Hall. The Seattle City Council passed a resolution to reduce the Seattle Police Department by up to 100 officers through layoffs but the council failed to pass a 50% cut of the Police Departmentâs remaining 2020 budget on August 5, 2020.
Noah Riffe/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

An alleged Antifa rioter attacked a Seattle Police Department officer from behind on Wednesday night, striking the officer, who was wearing a helmet, in the back of the head with an aluminum baseball bat.

“In total, officers arrested 13 individuals for charges ranging from property destruction, resisting arrest and failure to disperse as well as assault on an officer,” the Seattle Police Department said in a statement. “Multiple officers were injured to include one who was struck in the head with a baseball bat cracking his helmet.”

Multiple journalists posted online that the individual appeared to be Antifa.


The Seattle Police Department added:

Around 10:45 PM a protestor approached the East Precinct and threw an explosive that went through a roll-up gate and exploded near waiting bike officers.  A few minutes later additional people cut wires powering the security cameras to the precinct.

Officers identified the individual who threw the explosive and attempted to arrest the person. As a group off bike officers attempted to make the arrest they were then assaulted with bottles and rocks. Police deployed pepper spray and blast balls in an attempt to create space between the officers and the protestors.

The group of protestors again moved through the streets setting dumpsters on fire and throwing explosives at officers.

The department posted photos on their website of the police officer’s helmet that showed that the helmet sustained serious damage from the attack.

Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that Seattle had been designated as one of three “anarchist jurisdictions” in the U.S. over how it has handled recent civil unrest. The designation comes as the Trump administration is reportedly reviewing plans to strip the designated cities of federal taxpayer money.

The DOJ released the following criteria that was used to make the determination of which cities would be designated “anarchist jurisdictions”:

  • Whether a jurisdiction forbids the police force from intervening to restore order amid widespread or sustained violence or destruction.
  • Whether a jurisdiction has withdrawn law enforcement protection from a geographical area or structure that law enforcement officers are lawfully entitled to access but have been officially prevented from accessing or permitted to access only in exceptional circumstances, except when law enforcement officers are briefly withheld as a tactical decision intended to resolve safely and expeditiously a specific and ongoing unlawful incident posing an imminent threat to the safety of individuals or law enforcement officers.
  • Whether a jurisdiction disempowers or defunds police departments.
  • Whether a jurisdiction unreasonably refuses to accept offers of law enforcement assistance from the Federal Government.
  • Any other related factors the Attorney General deems appropriate.

The DOJ released the following details on Seattle:

  • For nearly a month, starting in June, the City of Seattle permitted anarchists and activists to seize six square blocks of the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, naming their new enclave the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” (CHAZ) and then the “Capitol Hill Occupied Protest” (CHOP).
  • Law enforcement and fire fighters were precluded from entering the territory.  The Seattle Police Department was ordered to abandon their precinct within the CHOP.
  • Person-related crime in the CHOP increased 525% from the same period of time in the same area the year before, including by Mayor Durkan’s own count “two additional homicides, 6 additional robberies, and 16 additional aggravated assaults (to include 2 additional non-fatal shootings).”
  • The CHOP was allowed to stand for nearly a month, during which time two teenagers were shot and killed in the zone.
  • The Seattle City Council, Mayor Durkan, and Washington Governor Jay Inslee publicly rejected federal involvement in law enforcement activities within the city of Seattle.

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