SEATTLE — Police said they had recovered weapons from Saturday’s riot during which there was damage to businesses and the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct, among other violence.
During a demonstration that brought out thousands, police said some people among the crowd set fire to several trailers at a construction site and vandalized cars in the parking lot of the Youth Detention Center at 12th Avenue and Alder Street.
On Wednesday, police showed arson evidence taken from the firebombing of the center. Detectives said the fires were set by rioters with Molotov cocktails.
There was damage to several businesses as the crowd moved north toward the East Precinct.
Police said that at about 4:25 p.m., officers saw a van following protesters as they marched on 12th Avenue.
That van reportedly stopped outside the East Precinct and was abandoned in the street. Police said that as the explosions occurred outside the precinct, people within the crowd almost simultaneously threw explosives at officers.
One explosion reportedly occurred along the north wall of the precinct on Point Street. It blew a hole in the wall of the building.
Following the explosions, arson and bomb detectives responded to the precinct. Police said they also noticed the abandoned van because of where and how it was parked. Once investigators determined that the van did not contain more explosives, would likely not detonate, and it was safe to move in, the van was impounded.
Police said a witness reported seeing the same van earlier in the day on Broadway with its back doors open and people standing around it and said they saw what appeared to be improvised shields, gas masks, baseball bats and a large assortment of pyrotechnic explosives inside the van.
Investigators later found firework pyrotechnics, bear mace, improvised spike strips and nails in the van, according to police. Gas masks, shin guards, helmets, other body armor and other items were also found in the van. Police said those were just some of the items found in the search.
On Wednesday afternoon during a news conference, Mayor Jenny Durkan asked for peace and an end to the violence and vandalism. “This does not get us closer to justice,” she said.
The investigation remains ongoing.
Anyone with information about Saturday’s riots and violent activity is asked to call the Seattle Police’s Violent Crimes tip line: 206-233-5000.
© 2021 Cox Media Group