Seattle police arrest 24 as crews clear homeless camp at Cal Anderson Park

The city has started a multi-day cleaning operation to remove a homeless camp in Cal Anderson Park. Seattle police made several arrests at the camp Friday.

SEATTLE — The first day of a “multi-day maintenance” and cleaning operation to remove a homeless camp in Cal Anderson Park has come to a close. Seattle police began clearing the camp Friday morning to allow the parks department to clean up the area.

The police department said 24 people were arrested as of 5 p.m. for various charges, including felony harassment, trespass, failure to disperse and resisting or obstructing arrest. 

City spokesperson, Rachel Schulkin, said in a press release Friday that a house near the park that was occupied by activists on Thursday has been “secured” by Seattle police without incident at the request of a homeowner. 

Schulkin also said anyone experiencing homelessness should call 211 for assistance. Belongings, such as IDs and personal items, still within the park will be stored in accordance with city policy, and individuals have been given information on how to retrieve their belongings.

On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Richard Jones denied a request for a temporary restraining order aimed at stopping city crews from clearing out the camp in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.

According to court documents, the plaintiff, Ada Yeager, did not provide a strong enough argument to warrant stopping the clean up of the camp.

Yeager, who has lived in Cal Anderson Park since June 2020 along with 50 other people, filed the motion Wednesday[1] to stop the city from following through with its plans.

Mazzone Law Firm, the firm representing Yeager, said in a statement Thursday, “Ada did not file this suit believing she needs a court to validate her human rights. She filed this suit because she will not disappear.” 

The statement continued, “While Ada is disappointed in today’s ruling, she is thrilled with the community’s widespread resistance to the City’s raid of her home and community.” 

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