Washington State GOP chairman: Seattle has devolved into 'complete lawlessness' without police

Contrary to what Democratic Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan told CNN Thursday night, the city's self-declared autonomous zone is not a patriotic "block party," Washington state GOP Chairman Caleb Heimlich stated Friday.

In an interview on "Fox & Friends First" with hosts Carley Shimkus and Todd Piro, Heimlich recounted his own experiences observing the so-called "Free Capitol Hill," describing a tense interaction between protesters and police officers.


Emotions reached a boiling point Thursday in the six-block downtown area when a few officers re-entered the “cop-free zone” on the way to the boarded-up, abandoned East Precinct building. The official who ordered police to flee the nearby precinct has still refused to come forward, though both Durkan and Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best have denied responsibility.

"As we approached that precinct, we actually witnessed firsthand as about a dozen officers attempted to walk through the blockade to come back to work at the precinct and saw about a hundred protesters flock to them, pick up barricades, and physically force them back out of the zone," Heimlich recalled.

"And so, as we are seeing from the mayor who is saying, 'Oh, this is a peaceful protest. It's a block party'...The police are not supported by the elected officials. They're not allowed to do their job, so they retreated," he added.

However, lack of a police presence in the Capitol Hill district doesn't just impact the "CHAZ" protesters. According to Best, response times around the area have tripled without the precinct.

"It's complete lawlessness," Heimlich remarked.

"You can't get cars in there. So, you can walk to work and commute. But...whether you're a business owner, whether you're a citizen [who is] living in your apartment, you have no say which is frankly un-American," he added.

"We're seeing, really, the fruit of the failure to enforce the law from the mayor, from the governor, from our attorney general here in Washington state. And, our once-great city is just descending into chaos," Heimlich told the "Friends First" hosts.

In a list of demands to the city of Seattle, Free Capitol Hill wrote in a June 9 Medium post calling for the abolition of the Seattle Police Department, abolition of imprisonment, re-trial for all people of color currently incarcerated, redistribution of police funding to social programs, reparations for police brutality victims, and decriminalization of acts of protest.


Heimlich said their demands are "patently just ridiculous."

"We really need an adult -- whether it's Mayor Durkan or Governor Jay Inslee -- to step up and actually enforce the law," he concluded. "We're all for peaceful protest but this has descended well-beyond that."