Seattle mayor says closing close autonomous zone after shootings - Business Insider
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Seattle mayor says ities will shut down the cop-free autonomous zone after outbursts of violence and 2 shootings

CHAZ, CHOP
Signs in the area known, among other names, as the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, on June 14 in Seattle.
David Ryder/Getty Images
  • Mayor Jenny Durkan of Seattle on Monday said the police were to reestablish a presence in the area known as the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone.
  • Three people were shot, one fatally, in a spate of violence around the area on Saturday and Sunday.
  • "The cumulative impacts of the gatherings and protests and the night-time atmosphere and violence has led to increasingly difficult circumstances for our businesses and residents," Durkan said.
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Seattle's mayor on Monday announced that ities would take back control of an area near the city's capitol after a spate of violence over the weekend.

The area had been declared a cop-free "autonomous zone" by protesters and attracted nationwide attention, including condemnation from President Donald Trump.

"The cumulative impacts of the gatherings and protests and the night-time atmosphere and violence has led to increasingly difficult circumstances for our businesses and residents," Mayor Jenny Durkan said Monday.

"The impacts have increased and the safety has decreased."

She said she would work with protesters to reintroduce a police presence in the area of the city, about four blocks, that has been dubbed by protesters the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, among other names.

CHAZ Seattle
A band playing a free show in front of the Seattle Police Department's East Precinct in the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone on June 10 in Seattle.
David Ryder/Getty Images

Protesters demonstrating against the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis seized control of the area in early June, declaring it free of police control, after a series of clashes with the city's law enforcement.

But a series of shootings in the area over the weekend added urgency to calls for the police to reestablish a presence in the area.

CHAZ shooting memorial
People at a makeshift memorial to one of the victims of a June 20 shooting in the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone.
Toby Scott/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

On Sunday a 17-year-old man was shot in the arm there but refused to talk to the police, the Associated Press reported.

On Saturday, a 19-year-old man was shot dead and a 33-year-old man critically injured in another outbreak of violence, according to local reports. The police say they were denied access to the area to investigate.

During the daytime there is a said to be a festival-like atmosphere in the area, with demonstrators handing out free food, with art displays and lectures.

But during the night there have been pockets of violence, and armed men have been seen patrolling the streets.

Trump and others have made the zone a key part of their campaign against the protests that have swept the US in the wake of Floyd's death.

Trump at one point threatened to intervene by compelling ities to seize control of the area. He also called the protesters "terrorists."

But Durkan rejected Trump's demands, saying she favored working with the protesters to address their concerns.

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