It took four officers to subdue a man high on drugs and suffering a crisis who fought with Seattle Police after making his way inside a Capitol Hill elementary school Tuesday morning, according to emergency dispatch reports.
SPD was first contacted about the man behaving erratically outside the 19th Ave E side of the campus around 8 AM as parents dropped off kids for the school day. Just before 9 AM, the arriving officer put out a call for “fast backup” assistance as he struggled to take the man into custody inside the school’s gymnasium, according to East Precinct radio reports.
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According to Seattle Fire dispatch, their units were called to the scene to help take the man into custody as officers reportedly pinned him down inside the gym for a quarter of an hour. The man was reportedly high on drugs and indicated he had smoked crack cocaine before the incident.
From its colleges including Broadway’s Seattle Central and 12th Ave’s Seattle U to its middle and high schools, Capitol Hill campuses deal with crisis situations nearly every day but most incidents don’t make the news. In March, CHS reported on a man arrested after he made threats at Meany Middle School in the wake of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.
Tuesday at Stevens Elementary, the man was eventually taken for treatment without further incident. We are not aware of any additional injuries in the altercation.
UPDATE: A SPD spokesperson tells CHS that the man was taken to Harborview for evaluation and “invol’ed,” or kept under “involuntary commitment,” a legal process that confines someone who may be suffering a health or mental crisis and may be a risk to themselves or others.
UPDATE x2: According to an email sent to school families by Stevens Elementary, the man was originally contacted by police around 9 AM before making his way back to the campus and into the gymnasium.
UPDATE x3: Children and staff sheltered in place during the disturbance though one group of students was present in the gymnasium during the arrest, CHS is told.