Ferguson Protests in Seattle

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Phoenix Jones and Shade outside the U.S. Courthouse while monitoring the protest Monday night.  Photo courtesy of Jimmy Lovaas.

A grand jury decision to not indict Officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown came down at 6:00 PM Pacific time on Monday night. The reaction reverberated throughout the nation with protests happening in several cities including Seattle.

A large group of protesters had already gathered at Westlake when the decision was announced. Though initially starting off peaceful, it grew and got rowdier over the next several hours.

KOMO News reported that some protesters threw can foods and fireworks and one even threw a knife. In return, SPD reacted with pepper spray and percussion grenades. At one point, protesters made it onto I-5 causing a shutdown of the highway and SPD worked with the state patrol to regain the freeway.

As the protests flowed through the streets of Seattle, disrupting traffic and clashing with both SPD and WSP, Phoenix Jones bided his time.

After midnight, Phoenix Jones posted that he was preparing to go out there alongside fellow superhero Shade. Apparently, seeing vandalism committed moved him to action.

Twitter prep

Within an hour of posting his intent to patrol, he had some feedback for the public.

Twitter Monday report

Phoenix Jones reported via twitter that it was a peaceful protest, however there were expletives shouted. He also reported there was a shooting. Not sure how a shooting factors into a peaceful protest.

The SPD Blotter reported a slightly different account. The Blotter described individuals within the crowds throwing bottles and rocks at officers. There was property damage and vandalism consisting of spray painting and broken glass. By 1:00 AM on Tuesday morning, 5 people had been arrested.

I have not been able to obtain any corroborating evidence or reports of any shooting that night in Seattle.  One man was arrested on weapons charges, but I haven’t found any credible reports on any actual shooting that night.

Phoenix Jones also reported that Ghost was possibly out in plain clothes. Omega was apparently on patrol down in Tacoma.

The protests have continued throughout the week.

On Tuesday, a protest that started with UW students blocked traffic, but was overall fairly peaceful.  Friday protests brought a disruption to the downtown Christmas tree-lighting and caused Westlake Center mall to shut down several hours early.

Saturday night brought out yet another protest, so that meant another night of superheroes.

This protest proved to be the most violent and seemingly the least related to the Ferguson decision. An officer was injured when someone threw a rock through the window of the SPD vehicle the officer was driving.

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Midnight Jack, Phoenix Jones, and Omega look over at the protesters.  Photo courtesy of Omega.

Phoenix Jones along with Omega, Midnight Jack, and Ghost convened along with the protest on Capitol Hill. Omega said they came across intel that anarchists were planning to cause trouble. If any group has become an arch-nemesis to Seattle superheroes, it’s anarchists.

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Protesters out on Saturday night.  Photo courtesy of Omega.

The superhero quartet gathered at 9:30 PM in an attempt to get ahead of the group that was to meet at 10:00 PM. Omega counted at least 100 protestors, several in various masks and even helmets.

The superheroes trailed beside the protest group, helping with obstacles that some of the protesters disturbed. Occasionally, protesters would throw “junk” at the superheroes, but no rocks or anything the injured them.

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Phoenix Jones follows closely behind the protesters.  Photo courtesy of Omega.

Omega also handed out hand-warmers to homeless people he encountered during the cold night.

SPD had a decent presence, but Phoenix did not seem pleased with SPD’s response to the unruly protesters.

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Towards the end of the night, the protest group broke up in smaller groups and eventually dispersed.  By the end of the night, protesters had broken a plate glass window at the Ferrari dealership at 12th and Union. SPD had difficulty finding specific individuals though they did monitor the crowds as best they could.

The superheroes then drove around afterwards, but the cold seem to keep the streets fairly cleared.

It is unclear what if any protests will continue later on.

ECHO versus the Anarchists on Veterans’ Day

Though superhero patrols are usually relegated to the hours of darkness, this past Veterans’ Day brought out a number of superheroes out into the light.

Members of the Emerald City Heroes Organization (ECHO) had heard some intel of potential anarchist activity to occur on Veterans’ Day. Superheroes in Seattle have quite the colorful history with anarchist types. El Caballero especially has had more than his share of dealings with anarchists. So it is no surprise that he would be at the forefront of watching out for subversive anarchist activity.

Red Ranger met up with El Caballero and heading down to downtown to find a smaller-than-expected group of so-called anarchists readying for the march. The group was getting appeared to be readying themselves with flags, banners, masks, and the like. Meanwhile, the 2 superheroes kept a safe distance and a watchful eye.

Also, Shockwave later was in contact with the ECHO duo and he provided “mobile support.”

The small group did their little protest/march. SPD had a presence for part of it, also keeping an eye on the assemblage. It lasted for a couple hours and ended where it started.

For the most part, it was just random ranting and angry diatribe. Other than a bit of traffic slowdown here and there, the group was relatively peaceful and trouble-free. As far as the superheroes were in regards to the alleged anarchists group, it was a war of words versus silence. The superheroes just watched for trouble, while allowing the group to demonstrate their 1st Amendment rights, despite how disagreeable the cluster may have been.

Though the tension was thick enough to cut with a batarang, relative peace and harmony prevailed and no major incidents were noted.

 

Here is the report by Red Ranger as posted on the ECHO Facebook page:

ECHO Patrol Log: 11-11-2014
Report By: Red Ranger
Roll Call: El Caballero, Red Ranger, Shockwave
Location: Westlake and Capitol Hill
Patrol Time: 12:30 – 15:30

ECHO received some intel about an anarchist protest that would be occurring in downtown Seattle today, so we headed there to make sure everyone involved was staying safe and not harming others or property, as they have in the past.

The patrol started with El Caballero and I meeting up and mobilizing into the main downtown area. Shockwave got in touch with us later and provided mobile support.

We shortly arrived at Westlake Center and found the crowd of black-clad anarchists gathering themselves and preparing for their march. We expected a much larger group to be protesting, but the turnout was only about 25-30 people. With them they had their black bandannas, Guy Fawkes masks, as well as several flags and banners including a defaced and upside-down American flag (on Veteran’s Day, no less…). We staked them out from afar for a while and did a few laps around the block, running into some other anarchist disturbers who were following us and seemed to be trying to cause trouble, shouting hateful speech and jeering at us. We didn’t stop to pay them mind and they seemed to get bored pretty quickly.

Shortly after 13:00, the anarchist mob began shouting and ran into the streets, disturbing and slowing down traffic. They proceeded to march and chant down the block and we followed, keeping a close eye on them. Soon a few SPD bike officers arrived and followed slowly behind the march, but the police’s presence faded in and out over its course.

The protest continued for another couple hours and went all around the downtown area, but the anarchists caused no trouble aside from aggressive, anti-patriotic shouting and slowing down traffic a significant amount, even draping their banners over vehicles that were stopped by their protest.

We followed the anarchist protesters all the way back to their starting point in Westlake Center and saw them pack up, bringing their little parade to a close. With no serious harm done, El Caballero and I decided to call off the patrol and we parted ways at around 15:30.

Although this kind of thing isn’t at all what one would want to see on Veteran’s day, we are happy that the protest didn’t become dangerous and that everyone was staying safe. Peace and harmony prevailed!

**((Note: I have included a video clip from my chest-mounted camera of our patrol around the anarchist protest. I do apologize for the awkward camera angle and incorrect time stamp, but I suppose I still have a few kinks to work out. — Red Ranger))**

Superhero Patrol Log for November 6, 2014

Though it’s been quiet on my page for the last couple weeks, the superheroes of Seattle have been busy.

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Dragon, Red Ranger, White Baron.  Photo courtesy of Dragon.

The Emerald City Heroes Organization got in a patrol on a Thursday evening a little over a week ago. The trio of Dragon, Red Ranger, and White Baron patrolled the Capitol Hill area. They encountered one situation involving some yelling between a couple. They observed the situation from a safe distance to see if any intervention was needed. White Baron used his tech to inquire if everything was alright. Noting the situation appeared to be de-escalating and seeing no actions they though could take to help, they left the scene with some in trepidation.

There had been some tips about increased car prowls in the Harborview area. The 3 superheroes patrolled that area and took opportunity of the relative calm of the night to take some picture. They continued their patrol through “Glass Alley” and by several of the clubs on Capitol Hill. Per ECHO’s usual protocol, it was noted that both peace and harmony reportedly prevailed.

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View from Harborview.  Photo courtesy of Dragon.

Of significant note, Dragon had return to patrolling after taking some time off to handle personal matters.

Here is ECHO’s account via their Facebook page:

ECHO Patrol Log: 11-06-2012
Dragon Reporting From “The Lair”
Roll Call: White Baron, Red Ranger, Dragon
Location: Capitol Hill
Patrol Time: 21:30-2:30
I have been on a sabbatical for 5 weeks and finally was able to get back to patrolling.

Patrol started with Red Ranger and Dragon patrolling down Broadway, going past various clubs as they made their way south.

We had water and food on us, but very little demand for it as we encountered almost no street-folk.

We met up with White Baron at midnight, and patrolled going north on Broadway, past Seattle university, Cal Anderson Park, Glass Alley and Harborview.

We encountered a couple where the girl was yelling at her date to not touch her. I hung back to “rest” and observe the situation. When the yelling got louder Baron flipped his flashlight and voice amplifier on to ask if everything was okay. We were told by both individuals that “everything was fine”. We weren’t entirely comfortable leaving that situation but it seemed to have de-escalated on its own after that.

The view was pretty good from Harborview so we snapped a few pics and made our way back to Glass Alley and some of the clubs that were letting out at that time. We called patrol at 02:30, walked with Baron back to his vehicle. Ranger was dropped off at the Stronghold and proceeded back to “the Lair”

Aside from a little drunken yelling, Peace and Harmony Prevailed!

Trick or Treat…or Shoot!

Well past midnight on Halloween night, shots rang out in the U-District. A couple superheroes, who seem to be magnets for crime, were not too far off and soon rushed to the scene. After a marathon patrol in the U-District, Black Knight and White Baron found themselves near a very violent event.

The night began with Red Ranger of ECHO and Boomer of USID making a quick run through the U-District at around 9:30. As they night progressed, White Baron and Black Knight joined them and later on, so did Girl Scout.

A combination of college-aged antics and alcohol-fueled revelry made for a busy nice for the quirky quintet. Dealing with those antics is a story in itself, as more can be found on the patrol log posted by ECHO. The fearless five looped around the U-District several times, aiding where they saw the need. The crew noted potential drunk drivers and even removed a decorative hazard at one point.

By 2:30 AM, the parties seemed to die down and the weary superheroes thought their work might be coming to a close, however…their night was far from over. The group had thought they would call it a night, but the work of superheroes is never done.

Soon after, Black Knight and White Baron were walking north on University Way NE near NE 50th Street. Black Knight reported hearing 6-8 “pops” and started heading in that direction. They then said they heard another 6-8 “pops”.

Correctly assuming it was gunfire; they confirmed it with someone else near the scene. White Baron thought he saw the shadow of a man head west.

It was gunfire, as reported by the SPD Blotter. An argument had broken outside a bar at the 5200 block of University Way NE. Violence started with a punch, but then the punchee got a gun out and started firing. In turn, someone else got a gun out and also starting firing. In all, over 20 shots were fired and 5 people were injured.

When Black Knight and White Baron got to the scene, they saw a black man lying on the ground, surrounded by a crowd, in the alleyway near NE 52nd Street by Pizza Ragazzi. Civilians were already attending to the man.

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SPD arrives.  Photo courtesy of Red Ranger

911 was called and emergency services arrived. Black Knight said SPD had posted at several corners and cordoned off areas, and they arrived on scene with weapons drawn. Black Knight reports then medical services were then cleared to proceed.

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Emergency services on scene.  Photo courtesy of Red Ranger

3 shooting victims were transported to Harborview Medical Center (HMC) with non-life threatening injuries. Another victim was brought to HMC by a friend. A fifth victim was treated at the scene and released.

The 2 superheroes then met back up with Red Ranger and Boomer and stayed on scene till cleared to leave by SPD.

As reported by KOMONews.com, the suspect fled on foot. A canine unit tracked the suspect to Ravenna Park, but the trail was lost at that point.

The suspect is a black male, 25-30 years old, 5’10”, and was wearing a black beanie, prescription sunglasses, grey pea coat, and black pants. If you have any information in regards to this incident, please call SPD detectives at (206) 625-5011.

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Black Knight talks to a witness apparently dressed as Shakespeare.  Photo courtesy of Red Ranger

He’s not being “tricky,” but White Baron refers to Black Knight as his “lucky charm” since he seems to encounter “treats” like this whenever the 2 patrol together. The superheroes finally called it a night for the second time at approximately 3:45 AM.