Amy Radil | KUOW News and Information

Amy Radil

Reporter

Year started with KUOW: 2005

Amy Radil joined KUOW as a reporter covering politics and government in 2005. She got her start in radio as a reporter for Minnesota Public Radio from 1997 to 2000. She then freelanced for four years from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, contributing primarily to two public radio programs, The World and Marketplace. Amy graduated from Williams College in 1994 and received an M.S. from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 1997.

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KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district. In District 7, which includes Magnolia, Queen Anne and downtown, three candidates are running.

We asked the candidates to meet us somewhere in their district that signified why they’re running.

KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district.

In District 6, which includes the Green Lake, Ballard and Phinney Ridge neighborhoods, four candidates are running.

We asked the candidates to meet us somewhere in their district that signified why they’re running.

KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district.

District 5, which extends north beyond 85th Street, includes Bitter Lake and Northgate. There, eight candidates are vying to represent the area.

We asked the candidates to meet us somewhere in their district that signified why they’re running.

KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district.

In District 3, which includes Montlake, Madison Park and parts of Capitol Hill, five candidates are running. We asked them to meet us somewhere meaningful in their district.

KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district.

In District 2, which includes the International District south to Rainier Beach, there are three candidates.

We asked them to meet us somewhere in their district that signified why they’re running.

KUOW Illustration/Kara McDermott

For the first time in a century, Seattle voters will choose their City Council members by district. In District 1, which encompasses West Seattle and South Park, nine candidates are running.

We asked them to meet us somewhere in the district that signifies why they’re running.

(Photo courtesy of the University of Washington)

Update: Two days after this story was published, on Tuesday, June 30, Gov. Jay Inslee signed Washington’s state budget. The new budget includes $20 million over the next two years for drug prevention and education.

The campaign to legalize marijuana promised that almost a quarter of the taxes from those sales would fund education and prevention efforts.

And pot is selling well: Washington state’s marijuana retail stores are selling over $1 million worth of marijuana a day.

Terrell Jackson reopened his family's Catfish Corner restaurant in Rainier Beach, closer to old customers.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

If you want to track displacement from Seattle’s Central Area, just follow the restaurants. Jackson’s Catfish Corner in Rainier Beach started on East Cherry Street. That former restaurant, a neighborhood mainstay, was sold last year and is now boarded up.

Lee Townsend with the Metroplitan Improvement District checks his "hotspots" in Belltown for litter...and worse.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Over the past year, street sweepers in downtown Seattle saw a dramatic increase in the number of syringes on the ground. But those numbers have declined since March. They’re a data point in the larger debate over policing and drug use downtown.

Maria Moses of Dockside Cannabis in Shoreline, Washington, shows off a jar where customers can smell a marijuana sample.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

When recreational marijuana became legal in Washington state, people wondered what would happen to medical marijuana dispensaries.

Gov. Jay Inslee answered that question in April, when he signed a law requiring they obtain licenses and join the state regulatory system.

But medical marijuana dispensary owners have more questions about emerging from the shadows, and they’re turning Robert McVay, an attorney with Seattle’s Canna Law Group.

Fishmonger Andrew Wichmann says cruise ship traffic is great for Seattle but doesn't do much for him directly. They can't bring food onboard. "We wouldn't survive without local clientele."
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

The cruise ship docked at 7 a.m.

By 8 a.m., Danielle Smith and her family were at Pike Place Market, walking through the stalls. They had 48 hours to enjoy the city before flying home to Atlanta.

Stephanie Schendel, a Bellevue Police Department recruit, rinses out her eyes after being pepper-sprayed.  She's assisted by recruit Melissa Calder, who used to be a Lamaze coach.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Some recruits at Washington state’s police academy have policing in their blood – their parents or grandparents were police officers. Stephanie Schendel is not among them.

“I don’t come from a law enforcement family; I come from a family of nurses actually, so this has been a lot for them,” she said.

Recruits from around the region, including Seattle Police Department, on the first day at the police academy.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Five years ago, Washington state’s police academy was almost empty.

But now the classrooms are bursting as police departments expand and baby boomers retire. And new leadership hopes to shape all these recruits into “guardians of democracy” in an effort to change police culture across the state.

The doors to the cafeteria at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, where a freshman killed four of his friends and wounded a fifth. He then killed himself. The school has grappled with many questions since the shooting, including where to eat.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Few enter the cafeteria at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, where five freshmen were fatally shot six months ago, including the shooter, and one was wounded. The building stands off from the rest of campus, its gray doors locked.

Guns line the walls of the firearms reference collection at the Washington Metropolitan Police Department headquarters in Washington, D.C.
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

For years, Tulalip tribal officials have been pressing for better access to criminal databases. Then the shooting at Marysville-Pilchuck High School last fall made the reason all too clear.

Tribal records should have blocked the purchase of the gun used in the shooting. But the records never traveled the seven miles between the Tulalip Tribal Court and the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.

The Tulalip Tribe leaders perform at Marysville-Pilchuck High School on Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014 -- two days after Jaylen Fryberg shot five students and himself in the cafeteria during lunch.
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

The arrest of a Tulalip man has put a spotlight on possible gaps in the background check system for gun buyers.

The protection order that would have blocked Raymond Fryberg, Jr., from buying a handgun was never entered in a state database. His son later used the gun in the shootings at Marysville-Pilchuck High School.

Legislation to bring together Washington’s two dueling marijuana systems is moving forward. As KUOW’s Amy Radil reports, the challenge may come in deciding which medical dispensaries get to stay open.

Amy Radil

Curious neighbors gathered near Roosevelt High School on Friday to hear about the strong measures city officials say they will take against the owner of many blighted properties in the neighborhood.

“It’s unfortunate that you’ve had to suffer through this for a long time,” Mayor Ed Murray told the crowd.

Street view of Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School, where gunfire damaged a school bus on Thursday afternoon.
Google Maps

Shots suspected of coming from a BB gun hit a school bus outside Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School in South Seattle on Thursday afternoon, according to Seattle police.

No students were on the bus at the time, and the driver was not injured, Seattle Public Schools said.

Amazon Vice President Greg Russell wants to help the Seattle Police Department make better use of technology.
Amy Radil

Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole has announced a long-awaited leadership shakeup, looking outside and within the department for four new assistant chiefs.

Josh Etzler, left, and colleague Jeff Stewart break for lunch in Tulalip. Etzler says marijuana retail stores could be undercut by tribes.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

In Les Parks’ perfect world, the Tulalip Tribes would not only legalize marijuana but fund research into its medical benefits.  

“I see Tulalip leading the country and being on this frontier for what this plant can do for mankind, basically,” said Parks, the Tulalips’ vice chairman and a longtime supporter of legalization, speaking from the tribe’s gleaming new government building, with sweeping views over Puget Sound.

Reporter Dominic Holden at his going-away roast after departing The Stranger,  Nov. 1, 2014. Holden submitted a complaint to the SPD after an incident in July 2013.
Joe Mabel

In the summer of 2013, Seattle journalist Dominic Holden, a reporter for The Stranger, filed a complaint with Seattle’s Office of Professional Accountability, saying a police officer tried to harass and intimidate him. The OPA sustained his complaint, saying the officer had broken rules on professional courtesy and deserved a one-day suspension without pay. The case was closed.

Then in February last year, Holden heard indirectly that the officer had appealed the finding. Interim SPD Chief Harry Bailey had reached a settlement with the officer in which the misconduct finding was, in fact, reversed.

OPA Director Pierce Murphy moved his offices out of SPD last year to make them more accessible for the public.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Complaints to Seattle’s police oversight office have risen dramatically in the first weeks of 2015. But officials say that’s not necessarily an indication of problems at SPD. It just means word about the organization is getting out.

TRANSCRIPT

If a Seattle resident has a complaint about an interaction with a police officer, they’re supposed to contact the city’s Office of Professional Accountability.

Only a fraction of those public inquiries are ultimately investigated for possible misconduct and officer discipline.

The ACLU of Washington has filed a lawsuit against Skagit Regional Health. It claims the public hospital’s policies create illegal barriers to abortion. Hospitals say they are required to offer abortions, but can’t make employees perform them.    

KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Early warnings for earthquakes already occur in Japan, and they’re being piloted in California. Now the University of Washington hopes to bring them to the Northwest.

Police agencies in Washington have started piloting the use of body-worn cameras. It’s a step supported by many officers, reformers, and the Obama administration to address police use of force. But both police and police watchdogs say the cameras are unworkable under current state law.

In December President Obama appointed former King County Sheriff Sue Rahr to his Task Force on 21st Century Policing.The group is charged with strengthening relationships between law enforcement and the people they serve. 

Amy Radil

In coming months, all patients in the University of Washington health system and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance will be asked for their permission to have medical records and leftover blood or tissue made available for future research.

Seattle City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen says he won't slack off in his last year: "Call me if you need a stop sign put in."
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Another longtime Seattle City Council member has announced he will not seek reelection this year. Tom Rasmussen said he’ll retire from the council after twelve years. His announcement follows Nick Licata’s similar news last Thursday.

A national campaign has highlighted the thousands of untested sexual assault kits held by police. Now the Seattle Police Department has pledged to send every sexual assault kit for testing by the state crime lab.

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