Mayor Murray and Chief O’Toole issue statements on May Day violence

Today, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray released the following statement after five Seattle police officers were injured during violent May Day protests:

“I want to thank the Seattle Police Department for its extraordinary work today to protect the safety of people and property during this year’s May Day events,” Mayor Murray said. “It is unfortunate and deeply regrettable that in a City that goes to incredible lengths to respect First Amendment rights, there are some who disregard our values and engage in senseless acts of violence and property destruction. This City condemns any acts of physical violence against our police officers, and my thoughts are with the officers who were injured.”

Nine people were arrested after windows were broken, and protesters lit fireworks, and threw rocks, flares and several Molotov cocktails at police officers.

“Seattle Police Department supports peaceful protest, but has zero tolerance for any acts of violence towards persons, police and property,” said Chief Kathleen O’Toole. “While we hope for peaceful demonstrations, we need to be prepared for the unexpected. Officers underwent enhanced crowd management training and developed a comprehensive preparation plan for May Day, and the numerous protests that take place in our city year round. We will review today’s events in order to continue to improve our crowd management practices. I want to thank all of officers for their service, particularly the five who were injured. My thoughts are with you.”

Mayor Murray and Chief O’Toole visited the injured police officers at Harborview Medical Center this evening.