The suspect in a deadly shooting shot and killed by Seattle Police Tuesday night in the Central District was a resident and maintenance employee at apartments in the building also home to the Northwest African American Museum whose behavior people familiar with the circumstances say had become more and more threatening.
Wednesday night, SPD released an edited video showing clips from building security video that captured the parking lot shooting that left one person dead and another critically wounded and police body-worn video showing what SPD says is Taylor approaching police on S Massachusetts and raising his gun as officers opened up with a hail of gunfire, killing the Black suspect.
CHS reported here on the Tuesday night gun violence and police shooting outside the the museum and housing complex as 911 callers reported gunfire in the area and multiple police converged at the museum and gunned down the suspect.
Coast Property Management, the regional company that manages the Urban League Village affordable apartments, tells CHS that suspect Gregory Taylor was a resident and had worked for years “cleaning and keeping our grounds tidy.”
“We are heartbroken about this tragedy, and our thoughts and concerns are with the individuals involved and their families,” a statement from Susan Pickering, chief operating officer at Coast Property Management, reads. “We’re limited in what we can share out of respect for the privacy of everyone involved, but we can confirm that Gregory Taylor was a resident at Urban League Village. He also worked at the building about five hours a week cleaning and keeping our grounds tidy, which is a role he held when we took over management of the property in 2018.”
Pickering says Coast Property is working with investigators “to do everything we can to assist in their understanding of what took place.”
Police say their video shows the suspect raising his gun to fire at officers
The victim shot and killed and the second victim who survived the shooting inside their vehicle in the parking lot have not yet been publicly identified but people familiar with the situation have countered SPD’s description that the suspect and victims had “some sort of a relationship,” saying that Taylor’s behavior was increasingly threatening and there had been past incidents of brandishing a firearm.
UPDATE: SPD said Thursday following this CHS report that they were correcting the “previously released information” about a connection between the suspect and the victims:
UPDATE: the department previously released information indicating a possible relationship between the victims & suspect in Tuesday's shooting. As the investigation has progressed, it now appears there is no connection between the victims and the suspect. https://t.co/YLPHWyN8hf
— Seattle Police Dept. (@SeattlePD) February 11, 2021
UPDATE: The Central District’s Omari Salisbury of Converge Media said Thursday morning that the two victims were at the complex with a friend who lived there so he could run in to get his laptop. The young man, the son of a Converge employee, returned to the car to find his friends had been shot. Salisbury called on the community to put thoughts about the victims in front of politics and protests against the police.
Taylor’s past behavior had been reported to police and building management, CHS is told. The company responded with the statement from Pickering when we asked about the concerns. We’ll also follow up with SPD to learn more more about any past incidents with Taylor and residents at the complex.
The Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle which developed the project has not responded to CHS inquiries.
The videos released by SPD Wednesday night include chilling audio of the surviving victim talking with 911 dispatchers and Seattle Fire personnel about what had happened and pleading for help for her dying friend.
The killing of a Black man by Seattle Police brought out protesters Tuesday and Wednesday night. The night of the shooting, some community members convinced protesters to leave the scene as police investigators continued to collect and document evidence and interview witnesses. Wednesday, a group gathered in Jimi Hendrix Park before marching to the East Precinct where there was at least one reported arrest.
SPD’s internal force investigation team is reviewing details of the “officer involved” shooting. The Office of Police Accountability and the Office of Inspector General will also conduct concurrent separate investigation. Unlike most jurisdictions in the country, SPD conducts its own internal investigations of these incidents because it is currently restricted under a federal consent decree that shapes its policies. Officers who discharged weapons during the incident are typically placed on paid administrative leave during investigations. The bodycam video was also released under policy requirements.
In the last 10 years, there have been 57 fatal police shootings in Seattle, according to SPD data. 17 — around 30% — involved Black people that officers shot and killed. Seattle’s Black residents make up about 7% of the city’s population.
The most recent fatal police shooting in the East Precinct happened following a 2014 Madison Park bank robbery as police shot and killed the suspect as he fled near Viretta Park.