President tells Fox News that Seattle closed down the CHOP protest zone only after learning that federal forces were about to be sent in.
By World Israel News Staff
President Donald Trump said the city of Seattle sent in police to close down the renegade autonomous CHOP zone that had occupied part of the city only after learning that the president was on the verge of sending in federal forces, Fox News reported Friday.
Speaking with Fox talk show host Sean Hannity Thursday evening, Trump said that the White House notified Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan that federal forces would be used to shut down the area of the city taken over by protesters, but Seattle police “went in before we got there.”
“We were going in, we were going in very soon,” Trump told Hannity. “We let them know that and all of a sudden, they didn’t want that. So they went in before we got there, but we were going in very shortly, very soon, and we would’ve taken the ‘CHOP’ … back very easily, but they went in, and frankly, the people just gave up. They were tired. They had it for a long period of time.”
Police retreated from the Capitol Hill area of the city in early June following rioting that damaged the East Precinct police station. Protesters barricaded the surrounding several blocks, declaring the area a “cop-free-zone” and renaming it the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone,” which eventually changed to the “Capitol Hill Organized Protest,” or CHOP zone.
In the several weeks that city officials let the protesters run the zone, several murders were committed and the area degenerated into a “dangerous kill zone” in which self-appointed enforcers ruled the streets.
Seattle police eventually moved in and cleared out the “CHOP” area on July 1 after pressure built to reimpose law and order.
Early into the incident Trump said he would deploy the National Guard, telling the mayor and Washington State Governor Jay Inslee to “take back your city NOW. If you don’t do it, I will.”
After Durkan repeatedly turned that down, Trump told Hannity he was prepared to take matters into his own hands.
“We were all set to go into Seattle,” Trump said. “Frankly, I looked forward to it.”
Trump had been moved by a tearful interview of the father of a young black man who was murdered in the CHOP zone and called to console Horace Lorenzo Anderson Sr. when his 19-year-old son was buried at the beginning of July.
Trump said he invited Anderson to visit the White House “when things get adjusted,” adding that the father “was treated very badly.”
“They didn’t even tell him what had happened when it had happened,” Trump said. “Very sad thing, but I did speak to him and had a great but very sad conversation, and so … when he’s ready, he’ll be coming down to the White House.”