A pair of undercover cops were the cause of all sorts of Seattle chaos. The investigation report just came back. They both got slap on the wrist reprimands and were totally exonerated of “racially biased policing.” No “criminal conduct occurred.” The county’s civilian oversight agency isn’t happy with the report. “The investigation should have found more violations by the officers,” they fume. “Someone without a badge would likely have faced a criminal charge.”
More cops than protesters
According to the report, most of the chaos and confusion which happened on Saturday, March 13, 2021, was caused by cops who didn’t know the event was saturated with undercover operatives from every agency in the area.
Protesters, generally Antifa® affiliated Black Lives Matter™ radicals, “gathered in downtown Seattle to mark the death of Breonna Taylor, a Black woman killed a year earlier by police in Louisville, Kentucky.”
One Black female detective working undercover for Seattle Police got spooked by “two men in an unmarked white truck following her vehicle aggressively.” The state requires front license plates, the truck didn’t have one.
It didn’t have one on the back either, but she didn’t know that yet. All that she did know is that the Antifa groups “had already called out the men as possible members of the Proud Boys.” Fearing for her life, she called for backup. They turned out to be more cops.
Seattle police quickly “swooped in to detain the men in the truck.” It didn’t take long to find out they weren’t Proud Boys, they just looked the part. Actually, they were undercover cops, assigned by the King County Sheriff’s Office to monitor the protests. Seattle PD cuffed and frisked the driver, “Detective Cyrus Bowthorpe.”
While his “supervisor, Sergeant Pat McCurdy, remained in the truck,” Bowthorpe told the officers to “examine the badge in his pants pocket.” They were both turned loose but an investigation ensued. When it all was over, Bowthorpe was “suspended for one day without pay,” while McCurdy got “demoted.” They both soon quit.
The mission they preferred
As described in the investigation report, “then-Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht chastised Bowthorpe and McCurdy in writing for violating their orders.” She said the two cops “decided to conduct the mission that you preferred over the mission you had been assigned.”
Their actions “created substantial risk of a blue-on-blue encounter.” Specifically, the undercover Lieutenant they were trailing was about ready to shoot someone and apparently almost did.
The investigation determined that the King County cops “violated numerous policies when they pursued the Seattle detective’s vehicle.” It was blamed on “an unprecedented lapse in communication that endangered everyone involved.”
It turns out that a “number of undercover police vehicles were monitoring the protest from a distance that night, without one another’s knowledge.” McCurdy and Bowthorpe were assigned to perform covert surveillance to protect Sound Transit light rail stations. That was boring.
“McCurdy sat in the passenger seat as Bowthorpe drove a leased, unmarked white Dodge pickup truck. The county cops had removed the license plates from the car, a violation of department policy.” When they saw “a dark-colored Nissan Rogue SUV also circling the crowd, which McCurdy said he recognized from previous protests,” they followed it.
They claim suspicion “that it was supplying aid or something more dangerous to the protesters, like Molotov cocktails.” The plan was to chase the vehicle away. “Just get right on their bumper like, ‘hey I am here, leave!’ And if they leave and look like they’re going to keep going – let ’em go,” Bowthorpe testified. “That tactic is not used or sanctioned by the King County Sheriff’s Office.“