Seattle police sweep Cal Anderson Park as anarchists take over an empty house across the street

Seattle police were scheduled to sweep through Cal Anderson Park Wednesday morning. Instead, they city put the sweep on hold because a homeless person who has been living in the park filed a request for a restraining order. The city wanted to wait for the judge to issue his decision before moving forward. Yesterday the judge did issue his decision, refusing to issue a restraining order.

The judge’s order is here. He completely rejected her argument that the tents in the park constituted political speech and were being singled out because the city opposed that speech. The decision states, “…there is no evidence that the intended evictions are based on the content of Ms. Yeager’s supposed expressive speech.” He also dismisses her arguments under the 4th, 8th and 14th Amendments. KOMO News reports Yeager has since moved to a tiny house village elsewhere in the city so the sweep won’t affect her anyway.

With that decision, police showed up at the park this morning and began by issuing a dispersal order:

Police quickly made their way inside the barrier set up by anarchists and started making arrests:

Having quickly lost the battle the people inside the park resorted to dragging tents out of the park and whining about the police:

People who stayed in the park were arrested and literally dragged out.

This reporter for NPR says the police “explode[d] into violence” but of course this video doesn’t show what the anarchists were doing that prompted these arrests. Finally, there’s video of a backhoe cleaning up the garbage left behind.

Police reported a total of 10 arrests had been made. Notice the pile of bricks which were probably intended to be used as weapons. But it seems police have a special super power they can use against anarchists: They show up early.

Police are now stationed around the park and being heckled by stragglers:

So Cal Anderson Park has now been cleared. Unfortunately, yesterday some of the anarchists from the park took over a nearby unoccupied house that is just down the street.

A neighbor called the police but they can’t act without a request from the owner:

The group quickly issued a list of demands:

And then they held a press conference threatening that more occupations like this would continue to happen unless their demands were met.

Naturally, the occupiers are stans for socialist city council member Kshama Sawant. It’s probably safe to assume Sawant supports this squatting on private property. Maybe someone will ask her.

So the bottom line is that after six months the city has cleared Cal Anderson Park and started a multi-day cleanup effort. Unfortunately, there is now a new anarchist occupation just down the street.