Mayor Durkan lays out Seattle's policing strategy following deadly shooting

Jan 23 2020, 2:42 pm

At a press conference on Thursday, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, flanked by law enforcement and city officials, laid out the city’s law enforcement strategy in the wake of a deadly shooting this week.

“We are not immune to gun violence,” said Durkan during the conference about a shooting in Downtown Seattle this week. “If this had been a fistfight, eight people would not have ended up in the hospital.”

During the conference, Mayor Durkan said a call to action on gun violence across America is necessary: “We will not allow this to be the new normal. We know that gun violence is not acceptable and we know that the guns in this incident were not meant to be in the hands of those who had it.”

Although the downtown core has faced an uptick in gang-related violence, the city says Seattle has some of the US’s safest gun laws, including the Extreme Risk Protection Order to take guns out of the hands of individuals with a high risk of harming themselves and others, as well as mandatory reporting of lost and stolen guns, intervention programs, background checks, and a ban of firearms in public places.

Regarding the shooting on 3rd Avenue and Pine Street yesterday,  Seattle Police Cheif Carman Best and Fire Chief Harold Scoggins alerted the public that officers arrived on scene within 15 seconds, as the police had already been monitoring the area due to an unrelated incident.

Upon arrival, officers reportedly provided life-saving efforts and began locking down the scene. Officers weren’t sure if they still had an active shooter, as the shots allegedly rang out over a block and a half.

Police say they arrived on scene with limited information. They say two subjects were in front of the McDonalds having some sort of dispute with a third party when shots were fired.

One female, approximately 50-years-old, died on the scene, and seven other victims were taken to Harborview Medical Center with gunshot wounds, including one of the suspected shooters. Police say they identified him by reviewing video footage.

He has since been taken into custody.

The other two suspects, Marquise Latrelle Tolbert and William Ray Tolliver, have a prior history of over 70 combined arrests, according to police. The SPD says they currently have shell casings of three different firearms, but have not yet obtained the guns used in the shooting.

Durkan says the city has talked to the FBI, the sheriff, US marshalls, US attorneys, as well as businesses in the area in order to secure the area so that people can feel safe again.

“We want to figure out what’s going on in that ecosystem,” said Durkan, “Seattle is safe, and we want to help you help us.”

The mayor has acknowledged that violence is on the uptick in the region. Police report having have talked to federal prosecutors to use every tool we have to make sure gangs and guns will not be a problem in any city or neighborhood in Seattle. “Compared to other cities, the Seattle Police Department is doing an excellent job,” she said.

SPD says additionally, they have begun a series of operations to get guns and drugs off the streets. They will be deploying two mobile precincts at the courthouse and on 4th and Pine while adding additional gang detectives as well as rotating officers into the mobile precinct and downtown.

Seattle city officials are reminding people that the suspects are still at large and remain armed and dangerous. If you have any information about this shooting, please contact the Seattle Police Department’s tip line at (206) 233-5000. Video or photo evidence can be shared directly with detectives by visiting this page.

Seattle men

Seattle Police Department