Feds Investigate Seattle Police for Possible Excessive Use of Force

We tend to think of Seattle in stereotypical ways: earthy, mellow, panoramic, rainy.

But it’s not all Patagonia and lattes out there, as the news yesterday about the Justice Department’s investigation of Seattle police would indicate.

The DOJ is looking into a possible pattern of the SPD using excessive force and discriminating against African Americans, Justice announced here yesterday.

At issue in the federal investigation are several high-profile incidents involving police violence.

Last April, a detective was videotaped kicking a male robbery suspect and stating that he would beat the “black p*ss” out of the suspect;

In June, an officer was videotaped punching a 17-year-old African American girl who protested the arrest of a friend for jaywalking; and,

In August, police shot another man a  woodcarver after he faied to drop his carving knife. Seattle Police Chief John Diaz told the Seattle Times that he welcomes the DOJ investigation and considers it like a “free audit.”

“We have nothing to hide,” he said. “We’ve been open and transparent with the Department of Justice, which makes for a good working relationship.”