SEATTLE — As four people were shot following an illegal street racing event early Sunday morning in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, officers responding to the incident reported a crowd resisting their efforts.
Police said one of the victims, a 20-year-old woman died on Tuesday from her injuries.
Dashcam video released by the Seattle Police Department Wednesday shows a patrol car arriving at the scene just before 1:30 a.m. on July 23.
In the video, a patrol vehicle can be seen pulling up to the large crowd that gathered at the intersection of East Pike Street and Broadway. Within the first few seconds, a can is thrown at the car, missing the front bumper.
Deputy Chief of SPD, Eric Barden, said that the officers tried to move in with lights, sirens, and PA announcements to disburse the crowd.
Several members of the crowd turned with their cellphone lights on to film the car.
One man came close and began to pose in front of the patrol car, while some members of the crowd filmed it on their phones. That’s when a half dozen people started to lean on the hood, while three others jumped up and began dancing on top of it.
A drink was also thrown, splashing across the patrol car’s windshield.
As the officer began to back up, several people began moving Lime bikes into the officer’s path, preventing him from going forward.
The crowd then began to carry large traffic barriers in front of the car as the driver backed up an entire block, as others threw cones at the car.
“When they were confronted by folks with signs and bicycles and other items that were placed in the way of the officers that were approaching with some defiance,” said Deputy Chief Barden. “So the officers stopped to avoid a more serious confrontation, still issuing orders to disburse and to disband the crowd did not the crowd eventually became more aggressive advancing on the officers.”
A second police cruiser is seen in the video, with the crowd throwing one of the traffic barriers on top of the hood of the car.
Deputy Chief Barden said at that point, officers had to force their way in to respond to the shooting and found two people down in front of the QFC.
“Officers had to physically push the crowd back to gain access to the victims of that shooting and trying to maintain order and create a space where Seattle Fire could come in and take over life-saving activities,” he said.
The complete video can be found on the Seattle Police Department’s YouTube page. A word of caution, there is strong subject matter.
“This particular incident was unique in that the number of folks that had previously been at the Capitol Hill Block Party, at the time bars were letting out, it was a Saturday night, Sunday morning it was just a confluence of a number of events all at the same time that added to the difficulty,” said Deputy Chief Barden.
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