Federal Agents Depart Seattle

Agents demobilize and leave the city
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 29, 2020 2:01 AM CDT
Federal Agents Depart Seattle
A man raises his hands as he kneels near a police line Saturday, July 25, 2020, during a Black Lives Matter protest near the Seattle Police East Precinct headquarters in Seattle.   (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

The feds have left Seattle. The federal security detail deployed to the city amid ongoing civil unrest withdrew after pressure from state and local officials, Gov. Jay Inslee's office said Tuesday. Inslee was among those arguing that a show of force by the feds could lead to more violence and the same nightly clashes that are going on in Portland, where federal agents were also deployed, the Seattle Times reports. "I have confirmed with [Customs and Border Protection, which sent the tactical team] that their personnel demobilized and left Seattle," a Department of Homeland Security official wrote to Seattle officials. The local officials had said they were never consulted and never gave consent to the feds' arrival, KOMO News reports.

It was never made clear exactly how many agents had been deployed or where they were located. A US attorney downplayed their withdrawal: "As I stated Friday, a handful of law enforcement officers were summoned to Seattle to protect our federal buildings. [Seattle Police] Chief Best, who would know, saw no federal law enforcement officers clashing with protesters throughout all of this chaos. She saw none, because the officers who were summoned to Seattle were exactly where I said they would be: protecting federal buildings and the functions in those buildings." He added that the team was "needed elsewhere," but it was not clear where it might head next. (More Seattle stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.