SPD increases efforts to put ‘shooters in handcuffs’ after East Precinct gun violence

Seattle Police commanders say they’re taking a laser focused approach to identifying and arresting suspects of violent crime in the wake of an uptick of shootings in the city, several of which have occurred in the East Precinct.

Chief Kathleen O’Toole highlighted the department’s recent strategies to tackle gang violence with “predictive analysis” at a briefing Tuesday. The cornerstone of the increased effort is a daily meeting at the department’s Real Time Crime Center, where officials discuss every violent crime that occurred over the past 24 hours.

In the meetings which began last month, O’Toole said information on suspects vehicles and known gang affiliations is widely distributed and specific officers are tasked with making arrests. SPD also began holding a weekly violent crime meeting with regional and federal law enforcement agencies.

“Shooters in handcuffs, that’s our top priority,” O’Toole said. The effort recently led to the recovery of a stolen vehicle connected to the August 13th killing of 24-year-old Antonio Jones at 26th and Columbia.

The car’s owner told police she saw her vehicle in a YouTube video, which officers used to identify the suspect and arrest him. Still, few arrests have been made in the city’s most recent shootings.

The number of shots fired in Seattle has increased significantly, with 252 in 2015 compared to 193 last year. 64 people have been struck by gunfire this year — 9 more than this time last year — but there has been one less fatal shooting compared to 2014.

According to O’Toole, most of those victims are heavily involved in criminal activity and already known to police.

“Yesterdays victim is tomorrow’s shooter and vice versa,” she said.

(Source: SPD)

(Source: SPD)

On Sunday, a 24-year-old man was left in critical condition after he was shot at Boren and Main, just a few blocks from where Chinatown/ID community organizer Donne Chin was gunned down weeks earlier. The weekend before, a gun-related Capitol Hill homicide claimed the life of Ramon Mitchell, 23, who died after being shot several times outside the Baltic Room at Pine and Melrose.

In the wake of the shooting, Baltic Room owner Jason Brotman told CHS he and other Capitol Hill club owners are exploring a new ID scanning software that would track who has been kicked out of a club earlier in the night. He also rejected claims that hip hop shows are somehow connected to the city’s uptick in violence.

“No matter what music were playing… that’s not going to impact the availability of guns,” he said. “We got the whole gamut, and I don’t want to put this on one type of music or one genre of music.”

Mitchell was gunned down in a parking lot operated by Republic Parking Northwest where Baltic Room crowds sometimes congregate after shows. Neither the Baltic Room nor Republic have outside security cameras. In an effort to “ease tensions” on the block, a representative from Republic told CHS the 24-hour lot will start to close from 2:30 AM to 5 AM everyday.

“Somebody was shot across the street, it was really out of our control,” said the representative. “We haven’t done anything to create the situation.”

The Republic employee asked to remain anonymous.

O’Toole also highlighted the importance of regional and federal partnerships in her Tueday media briefing. Eight federal agents with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms have been assigned to work directly with SPD on ballistics and intelligence analysis. The ATF recently came under scrutiny for quietly installing surveillance cameras at two Central District intersections.

A small group gathered Saturday night to take part in the anti-crime vigil organized by Social Outreach Seattle and Daniel Goodman, a Capitol Hill resident who recently wrote an open letter to Mayor Ed Murray and other city officials after being beaten and robbed while walking home from a gay bar.

Concerns about gunfire have grown this week especially in the Central District where near-nightly reports of gunshots continue to be reported. Tuesday around 11:15 PM after the afternoon press conference, SPD was out near 24th and Columbia following reports from multiple callers about gunfire in the area. Callers reported hearing 9 or more shots. Police found no shell casings — and, fortunately, no victims.

SPD’s presentation from Tuesday’s conference is below.

Gun Violence3

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11 thoughts on “SPD increases efforts to put ‘shooters in handcuffs’ after East Precinct gun violence

  1. Brotman is right. Had it been a gay J-pop Hello Kitty themed dance night instead of a no-dress-code hip hop night, there would have been an equal chance of gang related shootings in the parking lot used by his patrons.

  2. Thank you for reporting on this CHS! We haven’t been able to find anything about the recent CD shootings online. Nothing… Not even a mention on the Tweets by Beat. On 8/20 I heard +/- 15 shots around 1 am. On the 24th there were 6 shots just before 10 pm. And last night, as you mentioned, 10 shots at 11:15 pm. These all took place on 25th and Columbia. You can see over a dozen bullet holes on the North side of the closed school on the Southeast corner of the intersection. A neighbor also had a bullet fly into her window. The location is one block West of where Antonio Jones was killed on 8/13. We have lived In the CD for 6 years and have never heard so many shots. It’s insane. And to have zero reporting other than CHS is even more mind blowing!

    There is a community EPAC meeting tomorrow at 6:30 at Seattle University in Chardin Hall room 142 if anyone is interested in more information. Hopefully the police will be able to explain how they are dealing with this huge uptick in gun crime.

    Thanks again CHS for being the only news source that gives a shit about our neighborhood. I really appreciate it.

      • I called 911 after hearing multiple shots near 24th and Columbia on 08/24 at 10:00 PM. They sent out a few squad cars, but looks like they weren’t able to locate a suspect or shell casings.

        This morning, 08/26, there were fireworks near 24th and Columbia around 1 AM (we could see them from our window), but they did sound similar to gunshots.

    • That is really scary. I live just a few blocks south of you. Didn’t hear the gunshots or sirens last night, but I did on the other nights. There is a predictable few block area where there is gun violence that any of our neighbors could point to on a map. It blows my mind that there aren’t police regularly patrolling the area between dusk and 3am. I will be working during the meeting tomorrow, but hopefully CHS will be there to report back and/or there is a written summary of it available online somewhere. If anyone who reads this goes to the meeting, please suggest that we have police officers patrolling from 20th-30th and Marion to Jackson at evenings, night, and early morning at least during the summer. This area of our neighborhood needs to be a top priority.

    • Heard these shot sounds, too, from around 18th and Spring, and noted the time as 11:15 pm. They were in very rapid succession, as from a semiautomatic handgun.

  3. It’s less about the music played and more about the crowd attracted to the venue. Walk by the Baltic Room on any given night on the weekend and the crowd is totally different from any other Capitol Hill nightclub. Rowdy douchebags with too much hair gel, and their trashy girlfriends in acrylic heels. It’s a bizarre contrast to the rest of the Hill.

  4. There were more shots fired last night, a car pulled up on 24th and cherry and began firing down cherry, right in front of the Twilight. The group that hangs out there every fucking day returned fire on the car, I saw it all happen outside my window. This is the fourth night in a row where multiple gunshots have been fired, every time I see cops just drive by after the fact. why aren’t the police in the area patrolling before the shots are fired??!? I am scared to live in my neighborhood now, it just makes me feel helpless and scared.

  5. SURE, LIKE THEY ARE TRYING TO FIND AND “PUT IN HANDCUFFS” THE SHOOTER OF ELDERLY DISABLED NATIVE AMERICAN JOHN T. WILLIAMS??? WHAT A NOT SO FUNNY JOKE AND VERY BAD EXAMPLE FOR SOCIETY AS A WHOLE??? THE OLD WILD WILD WEST IS THE NEW WILD WILD WEST??? REMEMBER H. RAP BROWN SAID, “VIOLENCE IS AS AMERICAN AS CHERRY PIE”??? NEXT, CIVILIANS WITH ARMED DRONES AND DROPPING NON-TOXIC NON-TERRORISTIC VIETNAM “POLICE ACTION” NAPALM???

    Omari Tahir-Garrett, VIETNAM VETERAN (1967), WORLD TRAVELER, HISTORY / ANTI-COLONIAL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER AND CANDIDATE FOR SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL (2018)

    WEBSITE: OmariForCityCouncil
    WEBSITE: AFRICATOWN / CHINATOWN NEWS DIGEST

  6. IS THIS ELDERLY DISABLED NATIVE AMERICAN KILLING, EVER INCREASING CRIME, THE RESULTS OF CITY, COUNTY AND STATE ‘S “WEED AND SEED” PROGRAM / DOPE SALES AT “UNCLE IKE’S RICO-RACKETEERING ORGANIZED CRIME OPERATION AT 23RD AND UNION???

    WHAT ABOUT THE SHOOTINGS AND KILLING INSIDE “THE TWILIGHT” AT 25TH AND CHERRY ACROSS THE STREET FROM THE AFRICATOWN PEACE ACADEMY IN HORACE MANN BUILDING??? IS THE CITY MOVING TO REVOKE “THE TWILIGHT’S ILLEGAL LIQOUR LICENSE (DRUG SALES, GUN VIOLENCE AND TOO CLOSE TO GARFIELD AND HORACE MANN SCHOOLS)???

    THE LOOMING TEACHER’S STRIKE, “BLACK LIVE’S MATTER” MOVEMENT STUDENT ACTIONS, ROBBERIES, SHOOTINGS / MURDERS AND “BOILING POINT” GENTRIFICATION / ETHNIC CLEANSING TENSION IN AFRICATOWN, SCHOOL OPENING POLITICAL DRAMA (REMEMBER BERNIE SANDERS); SHOULD KEEP SEATTLE FRONT AND CENTER IN THE NATIONAL MEDIA??? HOPEFULLY GOVERNMENT ANTICIPATED STUDENT / COMMUNITY VIOLENT CONFLICT WILL RESULT IN POSITIVE CHANGE???

    UNFORTUNATELY THE ANTI-BLACK EUROPEAN COLONIAL SETTLER “JUDEO-CHRISTIAN” NEWS MEDIA HAS HAD TO LEARN THE HARD WAY??? PUBLIC SCHOOLS NEED TO IMMEDIATELY CHANGE THEIR GEORGE WASHINGTON / JEFFERSON SLAVE OWNER CURRICULUMS TO REFLECT “UNITED NATIONS” ANTI-COLONIAL REALITY???

    MAY INDIGENOUS PEOPLES WORLD WIDE AND ALL OTHER PAST AND PRESENT VICTIMS OF “GUN VIOLENCE” (AND OTHER “WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION”) REST IN PEACE.

    NO, “DRONE TERRORISM” IS NOT THE SOLUTION??? Omari Tahir-Garrett, VIETNAM VETERAN, WORLD TRAVELER, HISTORY / ANTI-COLOONIAL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER AND CANDIDATE FOR SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL (2018)

    WEBSITE; OmariForCityCouncil
    WEBSITE: AFRICATOWN / CHINATOWN NEWS DIGEST
    WEBSITE: prison2president