Downtown Seattle could get a police precinct, sheriff runner-up expected to return to police academy if nominated

ByShannon J. Cortes

Apr 15, 2022

1. The Seattle Police Department may open a “mini compound” in a storefront owned by the Low Income Housing Institute on downtown Third Avenue, and is also considering a second location at LIHI’s Frye Apartments in Pioneer Square, Mayor Bruce Harrell’s office and LIHI Director Sharon Lee confirmed.

The Third Avenue storefront, a short-lived Shake n Shake venue, is on the ground floor of LIHI’s Glen Hotel Apartments, a low-income, single-occupancy apartment building. Before the pandemic, the block housed a Kress IGA grocery store and a TJ Maxx discount store, but both closed in 2020, leaving most of the block tenantless to attract foot traffic. The site is one block from Third and Pine, a site of the recent street-level crime crackdown known as Operation New Day. According to Lee, “illegal market activity” has worsened since police swept through Third and Pine, as drug dealers and sellers of stolen items moved to nearby locations.

Lee said people broke into the building and slept, urinated and defecated in hallways and stairwells. “Residents upstairs are afraid to go out at night; they are afraid to walk the neighborhood,” Lee said. “So we decided to offer the city the use of the space as a place where community service officers or bike officers can use it to park their bikes, take a bathroom break, write reports and keep an eye on the street.”

LIHI would provide the space to the SPD at a “nominal” cost, Lee said.

The Frye Apartments, located across from the Prefontaine Fountain and the gated grounds of City Hall, once had a mini-neighborhood on the first floor, Lee said, but the space was occupied until recently by Aladdin Bail Bonds. .

A spokesman for Harrell, Jamie Housen, said the mayor’s office “is in the early stages of reviewing what a neighborhood neighborhood might look like. We continue to explore all options to improve public safety downtown, including a more permanent police presence. The two LIHI buildings “have been offered as potential options, but are by no means the only locations being considered,” Housen said.

A spokesperson for the Downtown Seattle Association said the DSA would welcome a permanent police presence downtown. Maintaining this effort is essential for the people who live and work along Third, and it is essential that more and more workers and visitors return to the heart of the city. … If a mini enclosure is something that will help increase security, then it should be welcomed,” the spokesperson said.

2. Acting King County Sheriff Patti Cole-Tindall, one of three finalists for the permanent sheriff position, is expected to attend the state police academy for 19 weeks and be certified by the Police Training Commission. state criminal justice if selected and confirmed as sheriff. meanwhile, an undersheriff chosen by Cole-Tindall would serve as sheriff, King County Executive Dow Constantine’s office confirmed.

Cole-Tindall, 57, mentioned the requirement during an interview with members of the press on Tuesday. Although Cole-Tindall attended the state’s Basic Law Enforcement Academy decades ago and is a commissioned officer, she has spent most of her career outside of law enforcement, working as an investigator for the state’s Division of Employment Security and the county director of labor relations before joining the sheriff. office as head of the Technical Services Division, which oversees various operations, including courthouse security, the automated fingerprint identification system, and the county’s 911 system.

“[When] I went through [the police academy] 30 years ago I was 30 years younger,” Cole-Tindall said. “And that’s a lot…It’s about doing guns, Tasers, traffic checks – things that as a police administrator aren’t things I would use in my job daily.” Cole-Tindall said she would also have to pass a physical assessment test which includes “push-ups, sit-ups and squat thrusts” before entering the academy.

A King County Executive spokesman, Dow Constantine, said when the county has a permanent sheriff but the sheriff is unavailable, an undersheriff fills the position. Although Cole-Tindall named Jesse Anderson as acting undersheriff when she became acting sheriff earlier this year, she could appoint a different undersheriff if she became permanent sheriff, and that person would then serve as sheriff in his absence.

Constantine will appoint a permanent sheriff in early May. The other finalists are Maj. Reginald Moorman of the Atlanta Police Department and Killeen, Texas Police Chief Charles Kimble.