Police Disrupt Drug Rings in Pioneer Square and Chinatown/International District Encampments

Real and fake firearms. Knives, machetes and a sword. Stolen purses, tablets, cell phones, watches, clothing, and perfume. Over $20,000 in cash. And drugs. Nearly a pound of crack cocaine, plus varying quantities of heroin, methamphetamine, marijuana and pills. These items and more comprise the myriad evidence detectives will be poring over and cataloging as they build criminal cases against ten people arrested today associated with predatory drug dealing and behavior at encampments located in Seattle’s Pioneer Square and Chinatown/International District neighborhoods.

Detectives from Seattle PD’s Major Crimes Task Force worked together with Anti-Crime Team officers, bicycle patrol officers, SWAT and K9 to address chronic complaints of crime in two West Precinct neighborhoods.

These investigations culminated in the service of seven search warrants and the arrest of ten individuals for drug violations, weapons violations and arrest warrants. Police do not believe that these drug rings are connected, but were operating independently with similar patterns of criminal behavior.

2nd Avenue S and S Washington

Police served warrants on two tents at an encampment at 2nd Avenue S and S Washington. Police served an additional warrant on an apartment at 6th Avenue S and S Washington, and another warrant at an apartment located in the South Precinct. Police believe that these apartments were serving as a base of operations that supplied drugs to to the streets, and facilitated the collection and resale of stolen property. In all, six people were arrested at these locations.

Cooked crack cocaine cakes seized from an apartment in the 600 block of S Washington
Evidence seized from search warrants served at 2nd Avenue S and S Washington

10th Avenue S and S Dearborn

Police also served warrants on two tents at an encampment at 10th Avenue S and S Dearborn. Police served an additional warrant on a house in the 3000 block of Beacon Avenue S. Once more, police believe that this home was serving as the primary base of operations. Four people were arrested in these locations.

Evidence seized during warrant service at 10th Avenue S and S Dearborn
Drugs seized during warrant service at 10th Avenue S and S Dearborn

Working With the Navigation Team

While there are those who profit from intimidation and predatory behavior, there are many others that suffer because of it. Officers and detectives worked closely with members of the Navigation Team to ensure that homeless individuals living near these criminal enterprises were provided outreach services and referrals to shelter.

Active and Ongoing Investigation

These investigations are still in their early stages. Much work remains to be done. With the exception of those arrested for warrants, the rest have been arrested for probable cause. More arrests may be made as a result of these investigations. Until charges have been filed, this information is preliminary and subject to change.