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Public Safety

Federal judge overseeing Seattle police reform: “Black lives matter”

Just moments after federal judge James Robart, who oversees police reform in Seattle, threatened to steamroll the Seattle Police Officers Guild, he said something no one…

Exposing sexual assault at Washington colleges

While the issues of sexual and domestic violence have come out of the shadows over recent decades, there is one place where it too often…

Frustrations rise around Seattle police reform

On Wednesday, the civilian Community Police Commission (CPC) approved their final recommendations for police reform in the city, marking notable movement on a long-clogged process.…

Oregon derailment was one of many for Union Pacific

This story originally appeared on OPB/EarthFix. After last month’s fiery oil train derailment in the Columbia River Gorge, federal regulators put the blame on Union…

Reminder: Puget Sound has a ton of nuclear weapons

The ad pierces your consciousness and catches you by surprise. Plastered on the side of King County Metro buses, it hurls you momentarily back in…

Former Seattle Chief: Are police really ‘protecting and serving’?

"This is what people want from their police: They want their police to protect and serve." - Norm Stamper In a candid conversation, former Seattle…

Megaquake drill illustrates how underprepared region is

This story originally appeared in OPB/EarthFix. A Portland firefighter and a national guardsman check for bodies in a pile of crumpled cars at the base…

What if Seattle police were like Scotland’s?

A story from abroad, which I heard from a friend at a party the other night, points to ways of understanding police work here that…

Reformers aren’t celebrating police union leader’s resignation

With the news that the president of the Seattle Police Officers Guild, Ron Smith, was resigning, some corners of social media Tuesday night lit up like…

The surprising ties between poverty, gentrification and asthma

There’s a map that simultaneously illustrates Seattle’s rich/poor divide, and shows how quality of life can differ in unexpected and dramatic ways across that divide.…

Police killed his brother. Andre Taylor wants to change how they’re prosecuted

The system has never been kind to the Taylors. As the War on Drugs infiltrated black and brown communities in the ‘80s, Che Taylor’s mom…

Following shootings, Seattle’s police reform faces scrutiny

In a press conference Thursday, Mayor Ed Murray expressed solidarity with the black community following the police shootings in Baton Rouge and St. Paul this…

Missing dash-cam video raises questions about police oversight

More than two years after the Seattle Police Department learned that its in-car video cameras were frequently dropping frames, at times leaving gaps of more…

Time for a ‘tectonic shift’ in policing, says former Seattle chief

Imagine a peaceful day in Ferguson, Missouri, two years ago this summer. Officer Darren Wilson stops 18-year-old Michael Brown and politely points out that walking…

The man who tried to end homelessness

Back in 2005, King County announced a bold project: it would end homelessness within ten years. The man put in charge of the initiative was Bill…

Washington is on a massive gun-buying binge

After a season of mass shootings nationwide, Washington state is on track to set an all-time record for gun purchases. There isn’t a gun registry…

Megaquake planning must focus on recovery, not just survival

Last week, over 100 state agencies, private businesses, and non-profits participated in the Pacific Northwest’s largest earthquake drill, called Cascadia Rising. As an earthquake and…

After Orlando, some grieve, others buy guns

Twelve hours after the largest mass shooting in modern American history, in which 50 people in an Orlando gay nightclub were gunned down as they…

Police commission calls for ban on blast balls

A civilian police advisory commission is calling on the Seattle Police Department to temporarily cease carrying blast balls, which are used for moving large crowds…

After Murray’s threats, council backpedaled on homeless proposal

The first plan Councilmember Sally Bagshaw devised to deal with The Jungle – one of Seattle's largest homeless encampments — came as a response to Mayor Ed…

Seattle mayor threatened councilmember, texts show

Last month, shortly after staff from Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and Gov. Jay Inslee’s offices introduced their plan to shut down the East Duwamish Greenbelt,…

Seattle looks to tech to track shootings

On a breezy afternoon, Mayor Ed Murray stood outside the Rainer Beach Community Center, steps from Rainier Avenue. He emphasized the importance of violence prevention,…

Is legal pot really leading to more underage use?

Hamza Warsame, a promising 16 year old student at Seattle Central College, died last December when he fell from a six story apartment balcony. Given…

Murray’s Jungle closure plan meets council resistance

When government representatives from Seattle and Olympia unveiled the plan to close the Duwamish Greenbelt — known informally as the Jungle — Mayor Ed Murray…

Addiction and homelessness: fixing the vicious cycle

Only one in three heroin users have stable housing. The other two are either homeless, on the verge of being homeless or in jail. So…