In a letter to business owners and residents, Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best warns that the newly passed ordinances by city council bans officers from using nonlethal weapons when attempting to disperse large gatherings, so officers have “no ability to safely intercede to preserve property in the midst of a large, violent crowd”
And thus she writes:
“please know that the Seattle Police Department is committed to addressing life safety incidents and calls for service, and responding to ongoing demonstrations and unrest in the city. Please also know that the City Council Ordinance 119805 Crowd Control Tool goes into effect this weekend on Sunday, July 26, 2020. This ordinance bans Seattle Police officers the use of 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 adds “it is a fact that there are groups and individuals who are intent on destruction in our City...There is no reason not to assume we will continue to experience property destruction, arson, looting, and attempts to injure additional officers throughout the weekend and beyond."