U.S. Attorney General meets with Central District reps, praises SPD reform, and, yes, brings cash for community policing programs

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Attorney General Loretta Lynch addresses the media alongside Chief Kathleen O’Toole and Mayor Ed Murray (Image: CHS)

Seattle’s efforts to combat gun violence while simultaneously curbing excessive policing tactics is drawing a lot of attention — and even more cash — from the federal government.

On Thursday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch visited the Central Area as part of a national community policing tour where she highlighted, among other things, the progress the Seattle Police Department has made in meeting federal mandates to address excessive use of force by officers.

On the same day Lynch was in town, the Department of Justice monitor tasked with overseeing SPD’s use of force consent decree filed a report about how the department was progressing with internally tracking use of force incidents.

The monitor found that SPD was doing a good job in three out of four categories, including investigating the most severe use of force incidents. However, the monitor’s report said SPD sergeants “still had a ways to go” in adequately investigating mid-level use of force incidents by officers, like those involving tasers and pepper spray.

Lynch praised SPD and City officials for making progress towards coming into full compliance with the consent decree:

Thanks to the consent decree and the commitment to change it represented, the Seattle Police Department has adopted policies and instituted trainings to address bias, curtail the use of force and implement new mechanisms of accountability. Those reforms have not only led to positive results in Seattle, but have become a model for similarly situated departments throughout the country.

SPD Chief Kathleen O’Toole was hired last year as the mayor searched for the right person to guide the department through its consent decree process.

Even as reforms are implemented, tensions continue to surface in the process. While many city officials and community leaders have praised the firing of officer Cynthia Whitlatch for her “sustained policy violations involving bias, abuse of police discretion, and escalation of a contact” in a July 2014 arrest on Capitol Hill, the Seattle Police Officers Guild and some East Precinct officers see the chief’s decision to sustain the findings of the Office of Professional Accountability as a betrayal of a veteran officer.

When asked about articles in the police union newspaper that have mocked the consent decree, Lynch said in a Thursday media briefing that her interactions with officers during the day had been positive. “I think that change is hard. It can be hard to be introspective,” she said.

Lynch had a packed schedule of community meetings Thursday, which included visiting with teens at El Centro de la Raza and a meeting at the Northwest African American Museum where Central District and community activists discussed their experiences with SPD. Participants included Rev. Harriet Walden of Mothers for Police Accountability and Shaun Knittel of Social Outreach Seattle, as well as City officials. The roundtable discussion was closed to the media.

Previous stops on Lynch’s tour included Birmingham, Alabama, East Haven, Connecticut, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Lynch wraps up her tour on Friday in Richmond, California.  Lynch’s exit from the 23rd and Massachusetts museum Thursday afternoon caused a minor traffic backup with her large FBI security detail in tow.

Lynch’s Seattle stop also underscored a flood of DOJ cash coming into the City. On Monday, the Justice Department announced a $600,000 grant that will be used for expanding body worn cameras for SPD officers.

Body-worn cameras are widely supported by SPD and the City. However, the Seattle Community Police Commission has repeatedly called for a moratorium on the used of the cameras until public disclosure laws can be amended to protect people’s identity. Storage and privacy were the biggest issues identified following an early look at SPD’s use of body cameras.

Seattle was also awarded a $260,000 DOJ grant this week to hire three “crime prevention coordinators” — people who act as conduits between neighborhoods and precincts. The grant was the largest part of $3.2 million in crime prevention grants coming to Washington state. Earlier in the day, Council District 3 candidate Pamela Banks announced her plan to hire at least a dozen former gang members to help quell violence in the city.

Last week, the DOJ awarded nearly $500,000 to the Puget Sound Regional Crime Gun Task Force, which focuses on tracing shell casings and firearms used in crimes in order to identify shooters. The grant will also help pay for a special prosecutor specifically focused on gun crimes, as well as funds for Harborview Medical Center to provide outreach to victims of gun violence.

A Labor Day shootout at Powell Barnett Park was the latest in a string of gun violence incidents around Seattle this summer. On Sunday, August 30th, a man suffered serious injuries when he was shot in a reported gunfight outside the Douglass-Truth library near 24th and Yesler. East Precinct and City Hall representatives met with community members in August at a neighborhood crime meeting to discuss recent gun violence. There has been a 23% increase in reports of shots fired this year in Seattle.

District 3 candidate Banks chose the park for the Thursday morning announcement of her “Jobs Stop Bullets” public safety campaign.

During her visit, Lynch also announced $44 million in nationwide grant funding to be used to combat human trafficking. Seattle was one of 16 sites selected, and will receive $1.5 million over the next three years to support law enforcement efforts and victim services.

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7 thoughts on “U.S. Attorney General meets with Central District reps, praises SPD reform, and, yes, brings cash for community policing programs

  1. AS THE FOUNDER, ORIGINAL INCORPORATOR OF THE AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM AND CULTURAL CENTER AT THE FORMER COLMAN SCHOOL SITE, I WAS NOT NOTIFIED OR AWARE THAT THE HEAD US GOVERNMENT / FBI AGENT LORETTA LYNCH WOULD APPEAR AT AND DISCRACE OUR ON GOING EFFORT TO DEVELOPE A WORLD CLASS AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM AND CULTURAL CENTER AT THE FORMER COLMAN SCHOOL SITE HERE IN SEATTLE???

    J. EDGAR HOOVER FBI AGENT CARVER GAYTON (GOOGLE CARVER GAYTON JFK ASSASSINATION) WAS APPOINTED EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE FAKE NORTHWEST AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM (NAAM IS A SCAM) TO LEAD THE UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON / FBI TAKE OVER OF OUR GRASSROOTS EFFORT TO DEVELOPE AN EL CENTRAL DE LA RAZA TYPE AFRICAN CULTURAL INSTITUTION HERE IN AFRICATOWN / CENTRAL DISTRICT???

    THEN SEATTLE URBAN LEAGUE NEGRO MAYOR NORM RICE (NOW CHAIRMAN OF THE FAKE NORTHWEST AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM) BLOCKED OUR EFFORT TO DEVELOPE A CULTURAL INSTITUTION TO DEAL WITH INCREASING FBI / CRACK COCAINE VIOLENCE (SEE SAN JOSE MERCURY SERIES “DARK ALLIANCE” ON US GOVERNMENT / COL. OLIVER NORTH’S CREATION OF THE CRACK COCAINE TERRORISM EPEDEMIC IN EVERY BLACK COMMUNITY IN AMERICA).

    IN 1985 OUR FIRST BLOCK GRANT APPLICATION WRITTEN BY ME WAS ENTITLED, “YOUTH ANTI-VIOLENCE FULL EMPLOYMENT PROJECT”. THEN SEATTLE CITY COUNCILMAN NORM RICE AND ANDREW LOFTON (CURRENT EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF SEATTLE HOUSING AUTHORITY) PLACED CITY LETTER HEADHEAD OVER OUR BLOCK GRANT PROPOSAL AND RECEIVED $25,000 TO BEGIN UNCONSITUTIONAL SEATTLE GOVERNMENT / URBAN LEAGUE TAKE OVER OF OUR YOUTH ANTI-CRIME CULTURAL PRIDE, SELF-RESPECT AND AFRICATOWN / CENTRAL DISTRICT COMMUNITY SELF-DEVEOPMENT INSTITUTION???

    HEAD GOVERNMENT / FBI AGENT LYNCH’S APPEARANCE AT THE NAAM SCAM VENUE ALONG WITH URBAN LEAGUE ORGANIZED CRIME RICO-RACKETEERING CEO PAM “DOWNTOWN” BANKSTER (CURRENT CANDIDATE FOR SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL) IS DISCRACEFUL, INSULTING AND MORE “LIBERAL SEATTLE DIRTY POLITICS???

    ADDING CLEAN POLICE TO SEATTLE’S US GOVERNMENT ESTABLISHED DIRTY POLICE DEPARTMENT IS LIKE ADDING CLEAN WATER TO A GLASS OF DIRTY POISON WATER??? LYNCH HAS BEEN USED KNOWINGLY OR UNKNOWING TO PERPETUATE SEATTLE’S ETHNIC CLEANSING OF BLACK PEOPLE OUT OF SEATTLE’S HISTORIC AFRICATOWN / CENTRAL DISTRICT???

    YES, “THE MORE THINGS CHANGE, THE MORE THEY REMAIN THE SAME”??? OmariTahir-Garrett, VIETNAM VETERAN (1967), WORLD TRAVELER, HISTORY / ANTI COLONIAL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER (FRANKLIN HIGH, GARFIELD HIGH AND IMMACULATE ALL GIRLS CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL), CO-CHAIR OF THE BLACK ALLIANCE FOR EDUCATION (1970 TO PRESENT) AND CANDIDATE FOR SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL (2016 AND 2018)
    WEBSITE: OmariForCityCouncil
    WEBSITE: AFRICATOWN / CHINATOWN NEWS DIGEST
    WEBSITE: prison2president

  2. FYI
    PUTTING MORE MONEY IN THE SAME RAT HOLES ONLY FEEDS AND FATTENS THE SAME RATS THAT ARE “RESPONSIBLE” FOR THE PROBLEM??? HOW DOES THAT IN ANYWAY SOLVE THE PROBLEM??? THIS / THAT KIND OF THINKING IS THE PROBLEM???

    Omari Tahir-Garrett, VIETNAM VETERAN (1967), WORLD TRAVELER, HISTORY / ANTI-COLONIAL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER (FRANKLIN HIGH, GARFIELD HIGH, IMMACULATE ALL GIRLS CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL), CO-CHAIR OF BLACK ALLIANCE FOR EDUCATION (1970 TO PRESENT), ANTI-APARTHEID CANDIDATE FOR UNITED STATES SENATE (1983 AND AGAIN IN 1984) AND CANDIDATE FOR SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL (2015 AND 2018)
    WEBSITE: OmariForCityCouncil
    WEBSITE: AFRICATOWN / CHINATOWN NEWS DIGEST
    WEBSITE: prison2president

  3. THIS YOUTH VIOLENCE FORUM WAS NOT OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC (ie THE REAL PEOPLE WITH REAL WORKABLE SOLUTIONS LIKE PROACTIVE COMMUNITY BUILDING, KNOWLEDGEOF SELF, SELF- PRIDE, SELF / COMMUNIY DEVELOPMENT, SELF DETERMINATION AND SELF-DEFENSE???
    WHY WAS THE POLICE GUILD’S SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE PAM “DOWNTOWN” BANKSTER INVITED AND NOT ALL CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATES???

    THE FACT THAT THE SEATTLE MAYOR, POLICE CHIEF AND US ATTORNEY GENERAL LORETTA LYNCH WERE PRESENT AND SPOKE ABOUT AWARD OF GOVERNMENT MONIES AND GOVERNMENT POLICIES MADE THIS A VIOLATION OF CITY, STATE AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENT “OPEN MEETINGS LAWS” AND A VIOLATION OF SEATTLE ETHICS AND ELECTION COMMISSION RULES AND REGULATIONS!!!

    NOW, ADDING CLEAN POLICE TO SEATTLE’S FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ESTABLISHED BIAS / CORRUPT / VIOLENT / LYING / DIRTY POLICE DEPARTMENT, IS LIKE ADDING CLEAN WATER TO A GLASS OF DIRTY POISON WATER??? WHAT ABOUT CITY’S $8,000,000 YOUTH ANTI-VIOLENCE MONEY / GUN BUY BACK PROGRAMS WAISTED BY URBAN LEAGUE CEO JAMES “GUNSLINGER” KELLY (NOW GUNSLINGING FOR THE CITY OF SEATTLE)??? YES, THIS IS THE SAME JAMES “GUNSLINGER” KELLY THAT PLEADED GUILTY TO FLASHING A LOADED AUTOMATIC PISTOL ON AN “EFFECTIVE YOUTH ANTI-CRIME VIOLENCE LEADER INSIDE RAINIER BEACH HIGH SCHOOL??? WHAT A SICK HYPOCRITE AND NOT SO FUNNY TERRIBLE TERRORIST JOKE???

    NOW THE FEDS GIVE THE CITY OF SEATTLE FUNDED URBAN LEAGUE’S CEO AND POLICE GUILD’S SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATE, PAM “DOWNTOWN” BANKSTER MORE MONEY TO PROMOTE MORE POLICE GUILD JOB SECURITY YOUTH GUN VIOLENCE IN AFRICATOWN THROUGH OUT THE GREATER SEATTLE AREA??? WHAT KIND OF CORRUPT POLITICAL NONSENSE IS THIS???

    POURING MORE GOVERNMENT MONEY INTO THE SAME POLITICAL RAT HOLES IS THE SAME AS POURING MORE GOVERNMENT CHEESE DOWN REAL RAT WHOLES??? THIS ONLY CONTINUES TO FATTEN REAL AND GOVERNMENT “NON-PROFIT RATS??? HOW DO YOU THINK WE GOT INTO THE ADULT AND YOUTH VIOLENT CRIME MESS IN THE FIRST PLACE??? WHY NOT ASK CITY OR “RESERVATION INDIANS” HOW THEY ENDED UP IN THE SAME CRIME / CULTURAL CHAOS MESS AS BLACK REFUGEES FROM EUROPEAN COLONIAL SETTLER “JUDEO-CHRISTIAN” TERRORISM MIS-NAMED “AFRICAN SLAVE TRADE???

    Omari Tahir-Garrett, VIETNAM VETERAN, WORLD TRAVELER, HISTORY / ANTI-COLONIAL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER, CO-CHAIR OF BACK ALLIANCE FOR EDUCATION (1970 TO PRESENT), FOUNDER AND CURRENT PRESIDENT OF AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM AND CULTURAL CENTER AT THE FORMER COLMAN SCHOOL SITE,
    LYNCH HAS BEEN USED KNOWINGLY OR UNKNOWING TO PERPETUATE SEATTLE’S ETHNIC CLEANSING OF BLACK PEOPLE OUT OF SEATTLE’S HISTORIC AFRICATOWN / CENTRAL DISTRICT???

    YES, “THE MORE THINGS CHANGE, THE MORE THEY REMAIN THE SAME”??? OmariTahir-Garrett, VIETNAM VETERAN (1967), WORLD TRAVELER, HISTORY / ANTI COLONIAL SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER (FRANKLIN HIGH, GARFIELD HIGH AND IMMACULATE ALL GIRLS CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL), CO-CHAIR OF THE BLACK ALLIANCE FOR EDUCATION (1970 TO PRESENT), FOUNDER AND CURRENT PRESIDENT OF AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MUSEUM AND CULTURAL CENTER AT THE FORMER COLMAN SCHOOL SITE, FIRST BLACK CANDIDATE TO RUN FOR UNITED STATES SENATE IN WASHINGTON STATE (1983 AND AGAIN IN 1984 RESULTING THE DEMOCRAT DEFEAT OF “IVY LEAGUE NAZI” REPUBLICAN DARLING SLADE “ANTI-INDIAN / BLACK” GORTON) AND CANDIDATE FOR SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL (2015 AND AGAIN 2018)
    WEBSITE: OmariForCityCouncil
    WEBSITE: AFRICATOWN / CHINATOWN NEWS DIGEST
    WEBSITE: prison2president

  4. WE DON’T NEED ANY MORE “DOWNTOWN BANKSTER” ,SOLUTIONLESS, STATUS QUO POLITICAL HACKS IN THE MOLD OF JAMES “GUNSLINGER” KELLY (FORMER HYPOCRITICAL CEO OF CORRUPT URBAN LEECH / CITY GUN BUY BACK PROGRAM FAME)??? PAM “DOWNTOWN” BANKSTER AND JAMES “GUNSLINGER” KELLY HAVE SIMPLY EXCHANGED JOBS TO MAINTAIN THE KNEE-GROW OWN NOTHING, FIGHT FOR NOTHING, YASSAH BOSS, ANTI- BLACK, PRO-GENTRIFICATION POLITICS???

    THE VOTERS HAVE SPOKEN??? NOW THE FEDERAL GRAND JURY NEEDS TO COMPLETE ITS INVESTIGATION OF THE URBAN LEAGUE / SEATTLE SCHOOL DISTRICT / CITY OF SEATTLE RICO-RACKETEERING ORGANIZED CRIME OPERATIVES???

    YES, THE RED, BLACK AND GREEN PAN AFRICAN CROSS WALKS IN AFRICATOWN / CD ARE HERE IO STAY AS IS THE CHINESE GATE OVER THE PUBIC STREET IN “CHINATOWN” AND THE RAINBOW COLOR CROSSWALKS ON CAPITOL HILL??? Omari Tahir-Garrett

    Website: OmariForCityCouncil
    Website: AFRICATOWN / CHINATOWN NEWS DIGEST
    Website: prison2president

  5. I am going out on a limb by posting this here.

    Omari is courageous enough to say what he thinks so I will be also.

    Give credit where credit is due. The D Machine is good at their number one priority, keeping people in the duopoly corral.

    This article is about one phase of a nationally coordinated effort to defeat the fledgling grassroots movement in Seattle that sees the Sawant election and the current campaign as its electoral expression.

    Make no mistake, the D Machine takes this seriously. People getting the notion that they can get some of their basic needs met by organizing themselves and then electing representatives who are part of their organizations is the worst nightmare for the duopoly.

    This article is about the nationally coordinated effort of the D Machine to disabuse people in Seattle (and people everywhere who look at what is happening here) of the idea that they can pick representatives of their own, people who are not anointed by the duopoly.

    The Sawant campaign is facing off against the very bedrock of the duopoly, the most successful most powerful political force the world has ever known.

    The duopoly has, for all practical purposes, all the money and resources in the world at its disposal. And they have a dependent network that includes every successful D or R politician and all the operatives and hacks who are part of that dependent network.

    This is a lesson for anyone who has any illusion about the Ds being benign in comparison to the Rs. The Ds are experts at crushing independence and democracy. They put into practice the phrase by any means necessary. Brace yourself for what is yet to come. The class war rages daily is not just a cliche. The D Machine knows this and acts accordingly. We are being tested. Do we know it and will we stand up to them no matter what?

    The Avocado Declaration says it best:

    Are we willing to stand up to the rule of corporate domination and its central political agent that has deceived and betrayed our people, the Democratic Party? This is the most Fundamental Issue of American politics in our epoch.

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