City Charges Three Occupy Seattle Protesters Arrested At Central District Home

By Jonah Spangenthal-Lee December 28, 2011

City prosecutors have filed charges against three men arrested at a Central District home which, police say, had been taken over by Occupy Seattle protesters.

A police report says a Central District resident called Seattle police on December 23 and reported that 6-8 men and women were "illegally entering into an unoccupied home" on 19th Ave. and E. Spruce, where they'd been staying for several weeks.

Police went by the home where they found the deadbolts on the front door had recently been changed, plywood used to board up the home had been torn off, and a lock into the basement of the home had been broken. Officers also found the furnace and power in the home had been turned on.

Officers spoke to two men outside the house, who said they had been living inside the home "legally" for a few weeks,  the report says. The men said they believed they were legally allowed to be in the house because a man named "Sean" had given them keys. Several other men and women staying at the home also told officers they were "beautifying" the inside of the house and "just needed a warm place to stay."

Police tell PubliCola they contacted the couple who own the property, who said they hadn't given the group of Occupiers permission to stay at the home.

A large group of officers—including a SWAT team—went by the home later that evening, and ordered the protesters to come outside. When they refused, officers went in and arrested them. Officers also arrested another man at the scene, who police say tried to enter the home while police were on-scene, and had an illegal 4-inch fixed-blade knife on him.

Police say they found murals painted on the walls, a portable gas stove the two men were using for cooking, and some marijuana inside the home.

City prosecutors have charged two men with trespassing, and filed a weapons charge against the man with the knife.

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