SPD subpoenas footage of protests from local media organizations

“For more than three centuries it has now been recognized as a fundamental maxim that the public (in the words sanctioned by Lord Hardwicke) has a right to every man’s evidence. When we come to examine the various claims of exemption, we start with the primary assumption that there is a general duty to give what testimony one is capable of giving, and that any exemptions which may exist are distinctly exceptional, being so many derogations from a positive general rule.”  United States vs. Bryan (1950)   On June 22, the Seattle Police Department delivered a subpoena to the Seattle …

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Black Lives Matter asks court to find SPD in contempt for violating restraining order (UPDATED)

This afternoon, attorneys for Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County filed a motion with U.S. District Court Judge Richard Jones asserting that the Seattle Police Department violated his preliminary injunction last Saturday during the evening’s protests, and asked the judge to find the city in contempt. Update 7/28/3:30PM:  see below Update 7/29/20 9AM:  Judge Jones has moved the City’s filing deadline to 5pm Wednesday, and has set a hearing for 9am Friday 7/31.

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Robart grants DOJ request to enjoin Council’s crowd-control ordinance (UPDATED)

Earlier this evening, the Department of Justice filed a motion for a temporary restraining order to prevent the Seattle Police Department from implementing the City Council’s ban on crowd-control weapons.  This follows Judge James Robart’s refusal earlier this week to prevent the ordinance from taking effect this weekend. UPDATE: in a hearing this evening, Judge Robart indicated that he will be granting the DOJ’s request, enjoining implementation of the Council’s ordinance, and rolling the status quo back to the order that Judge Richard Jones made on June 12. UPDATE 2: here is the temporary restraining order. UPDATE 3: added Mayor …

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Judge Robart leaves Council’s ban on crowd-control weapons in place, for now

In a nine-page ruling this afternoon, U.S. District Court Judge James Robart declined to stop the City Council’s ban on crowd-control weapons from going into effect later this week — at least for the moment. Robart did acknowledge that the ordinance will need to be reconciled with SPD’s court-approved policies on crowd control and use of force, but at the urging of the Office of Police Accountability and Office of the Inspector General he will wait until they provide their recommendations next month before wading into that issue.

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“Defunding SPD” is going to be a lot harder than anyone thinks

Yesterday’s acknowledgement by the city that the Council’s ban on “less lethal” weapons violated the terms of the 2012 Consent Decree points to a much larger issue: efforts to “defund” and re-imagine the Seattle Police Department will face a complex web of legal, labor, and contractual impediments that will drag out the process for several months or possibly years.

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