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Seattle is a step closer to more civilian oversight of the city's police department.

Mayor Ed Murray announced Wednesday that long-awaited police accountability legislation is ready to go before the City Council. 

At a hearing in Olympia Tuesday, citizens supporting a pair of bills in the Washington legislature involving the use of deadly force by police said it’s too hard to keep law enforcement officers accountable. But some officers who showed up to testify said it’s not a change of legal language that's needed.

In Chicago, where the number of shootings last year soared, it's often young people who become both perpetrators and victims.

The Cook County Juvenile Justice Center holds about 200 to 300 young residents awaiting trial at the Temporary Detention Center. Among these residents are Leonard and Nigel, both 17 years old.

Because of the rules of the juvenile court, Nigel and Leonard's full names and specifics about their cases can't be disclosed.

File: King County, Wash. Sheriff John Urquhart testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh

King County Sheriff John Urquhart doesn't think much of President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration.

"We don't ask somebody about their immigration status,” Urquhart said. “We don't ask for a green card.  We don't ask for anything like that. And that policy is not going to change."


Protesters crowd into the University of Washington's Red Square.
KUOW photo/John Ryan

UPDATE 1/22/17, 1:25 p.m. The victim's condition has improved to serious. He remains in the intensive care unit at Harborview Medical Center but is breathing on his own.

UPDATE 1/21/17, 1:31 p.m. University of Washington Police said they have released the shooting suspect taken into custody Friday night and that no suspects remain outstanding. 


Fleeing, unarmed people shot in the back. Mentally ill men and women, not suspected of any crime, stunned by a Taser while they lay on the ground. People already detained or incapacitated who were beaten, with police accounts falsely describing the force as necessary.

A 161-page report from the Justice Department details harrowing accounts of excessive force by the Chicago Police Department and highlights systemic failures that allow the violence to continue even as members of the public attempt to protest or report the brutality.

The Muslim Association of Puget Sound, which is the largest mosque in the Puget Sound area, received a threat after the Orlando shooting on Sunday, June 12.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Police chiefs from six cities on the Eastside met with community members Tuesday night.

They held a safety forum at the Muslim Association of Puget Sound (MAPS), the largest mosque in the Northwest, to address concerns in the local Muslim and immigrant communities.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler plans to start a national search for a new police chief starting in February.

In his first press conference as mayor, Wheeler said he will give the public an opportunity to weigh in on his hiring choice.

“When we get down to the top few of finalists, let’s say three today as a marker, I’d like to have an opportunity for the public to be able to vet the finalists,” he said.

The number of law enforcement officers shot and killed in the line of duty increased sharply in 2016 relative to 2015, according to a preliminary report from The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.

The overall number of officer fatalities rose by 10 percent, remaining lower than the average for the previous ten years.

Suzanne Adams during her visit to KUOW.
KUOW Photo/Jenna Montgomery

Bill Radke speaks with Suzanne Adams about how her experiences as a former police chief and a transgender woman have helped her train Seattle Police Department officers on how to properly interact with the trans community.  

In this March 12, 2015, file photo, Seattle police officer Debra Pelich, right, wears a video camera on her eyeglasses as she talks with Alex Legesse before a small community gathering in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File

On Thursday, a dozen Seattle police officers strapped on body cameras for the first time.

By the end of 2017, 850 officers will be using them. 

Fourteen-year-old Demarco Webster Jr. was helping his dad move to a new apartment a few months ago, when he was shot and killed.

His stepdad, Juawaun Hester, says they had intentionally waited to start the move until after midnight in order to avoid any trouble.

Hester says Demarco didn't even like going outside if he didn't have to.

"I don't understand man, and you know what's going on now is like the future children, the good children, the smart children, with scholarships and they're the ones who's dying to the gun violence," Hester says.

Deadly encounters between police and civilians often made 2016 a year full of palpable tension. Across the country, demonstrators took to the streets to protest police shootings, while at the same time officers in a number of states were targeted and killed by gunmen.

Both situations have prompted law enforcement to examine use-of-force policies.

File: King County, Wash. Sheriff John Urquhart testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh

A lawsuit has brought to light allegations that King County sheriff John Urquhart tried to quash a rape accusation against him.

The Washington State Patrol is cracking down on drunk drivers for the holidays.

A police officer and another person were shot Thursday night in Mount Vernon, the Washington State Patrol said.

A suspect was taken into custody early Friday, the Washington State Patrol said in a tweet.

law court crime
Flickr Photo/Joe Gratz (CC BY-NC-ND)/https://flic.kr/p/bkUna

The federal courthouse in Seattle helped pilot the use of cameras in courtrooms. But the governing body for federal judges has now pulled the plug on the cameras.

Law enforcement officers in Oregon would be required to collect data on the race, ethnicity, age and sex of people they pull over under a measure proposed Wednesday by the Oregon Department of Justice.

The idea is the result of a task force created to find ways to eliminate law enforcement profiling.

A coroner’s inquest is set to begin Monday in Pasco, Washington, spotlighting the police shooting death of Antonio Zambrano-Montes. The Franklin County coroner has been fighting and negotiating for nearly two years to have it.

The Seattle Police Department will soon have a bigger presence in neighborhoods. Community members will be trained to handle non-emergency incidents. They will be part of the Community Service Officer program, which the city is bringing back to Seattle after a 12 year hiatus.

There are plenty of recent stories involving white police officers who have shot and killed black men, including some who are on trial for those shootings. Then there's the case of a white cop who did not shoot a black man holding a gun — and it may have cost him his job.

It started with a 911 call for help in Weirton, W.Va., on May 6 at 2:51 a.m. An emergency dispatcher in turn put out a call for an officer.

"Had a female stating they needed someone right now. She sounded hysterical," the dispatcher said. "Hung up the phone, will not answer on call back."

Updated at 4:45 p.m. ET

The judge in the murder trial of former North Charleston, S.C., police Officer Michael Slager declared a mistrial on Monday after the jury said it could not come to a unanimous decision.

"We as the jury regret to inform the court that, despite the best efforts of all members, we are unable to come to an unanimous decision in the case of the State vs. Michael Slager," a letter from the foreman of the jury read.

Master Police Officer Jerry GIlley lost his partner Dep. Richard Herzog in 2002.
KUOW Photo/Amy Radil

Members of the King County Sheriff’s Office and their families gathered at the downtown Seattle courthouse Friday. 

They came to view a new memorial for 16 officers who have died in the line of duty in the agency’s history.

They said they are also mourning the death this week of Tacoma Police Officer Reginald “Jake” Gutierrez, who was shot while answering a domestic violence call.

Updated at 6:40 p.m. ET

The jury in the murder trial of former North Charleston, S.C., police Officer Michael Slager told the judge on Friday afternoon that it's having trouble coming to a unanimous verdict.

They will resume deliberating Monday.

Slager is accused of murder for shooting Walter Scott multiple times as he ran away from the officer in 2015, after a routine traffic stop.

Chris Kerns and his son, Nolan, laid flowers in honor of the fallen Tacoma police officer on Thursday.
KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

A steady stream of people came to Tacoma Police headquarters Thursday. They came to pay tribute to the officer who was shot to death Wednesday while responding to a domestic dispute.

Three women embrace as they stand at a growing memorial, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, at Tacoma Police Department headquarters in Tacoma, Wash. A Tacoma Police officer died Wednesday night at a hospital after being shot multiple times earlier in the day.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Bill Radke talks to King County Sheriff John Urquhart about the details surrounding the shooting death of a Tacoma police officer. The officer was responding to a domestic violence call, the most common calls that lead to an officer's death. Urquhart discusses the particular challenges of domestic violence calls and why they carry such a risk for everyone involved.  

Police across the Northwest and the country are mourning the shooting death of Tacoma police officer Reginald “Jake” Gutierrez. He was a 17-year veteran of the department. His death is also having an effect on police recruits.

Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks at University Methodist Church in Seattle on Wednesday night.
Sonya Harris photo

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has some advice for his supporters in Seattle on working with backers of President-elect Donald Trump.

Sanders told a packed crowd at University Methodist Church on Wednesday night that both groups share similar concerns.

A police officer in Charlotte, N.C., will not face charges in the shooting death of Keith Lamont Scott.

Scott's death in September unleashed two days of unrest in Charlotte, when protesters took to the streets and in some cases threw objects at police and smashed windows.

R. Andrew Murray, the Mecklenburg County district attorney, said during a news conference Wednesday that he was "entirely convinced" that Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Officer Brentley Vinson "was lawful in using deadly force."

Mina Sultana, co-president of the Muslim Student Association at the UW, advises all Muslim students to walk with a buddy on and off campus and 'be extra cautious of their surroundings.'
KUOW PHOTO/DAVID HYDE

The 911 call came in two days after the presidential election from the security guard at Nathan Hale High School in Seattle.  He was reporting a possible hate crime.  

The target was a 16-year-old student who was on her way to school when a man she did not know allegedly grabbed her by the arm and refused to let her go. 


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