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(UPDATE) SPD Response to Federal Court Order Enjoining City Property Destruction Law

UPDATE: 06/15/2023, 1:48 p.m.

This morning, the Court entered an order clarifying that the preliminary injunction issued on June 13th enjoins only enforcement of SMC 12A.08.020(A)(2) (Graffiti) – not the section in full.  Officers can again take enforcement action under SMC 12(A).08.020(A)(1) (intentionally damaging the property of another). 

Original: 06/14/2023

Late yesterday afternoon, SPD received an order from a US District Court judge that enjoined, in full, enforcement of SMC 12A.080.020 – the City’s misdemeanor property destruction law.  This means that until further order of the Court, SPD cannot take action on damage to property under this law.  This is not a matter within SPD or City discretion; we are bound by the court order as it is written. 

We understand and share the concerns that are being relayed to us by our community, businesses and residents alike.  We know, as evidenced by the thousands of calls for service we receive each year reporting acts of vandalism and other forms of property damage that property damage is, in fact, a crime that is of significance to community members.  SPD is working closely with the Mayor’s Office and City Attorney’s Office to assess next steps with the Court.