Homeless encampment cleared in Beacon Hill

Sep 15, 2023, 8:32 AM | Updated: 8:53 am

homeless encampment cleared beacon hill...

(Photo from Sam Campbell)

(Photo from Sam Campbell)

Seattle city crews cleared out a homeless encampment in the Beacon Hill neighborhood.

Police said about 50 people were staying at the encampment near 25th Avenue South and South McClellan Street.

The mayor’s office confirmed Thursday the clearing was prompted by an “ongoing public safety threat posed by the encampment.”

The spokesperson did not specify which incidents threatened public safety. However, just one week ago, a man was shot near the same camp. Police did not confirm whether he was staying in the camp or had any connection to it.

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In an email to The Seattle Times obtained by KIRO Newsradio, a neighbor wrote:

This encampment is emblematic of the city’s abject apathy, bureaucracy, and shunning of responsibility. Despite hundreds of letters and emails to the city and its agencies from the community, and hundreds of 911 calls collectively, there’s been frighteningly little done by the city to address the situation, which continues to deteriorate, destroy property values, destroy small businesses, threaten a minority church congregation bordering the encampment, and makes us prisoners in our own homes while reps from the maze of agencies blame one another.

Along with several police officers accompanying the cleanup crews, the city said outreach workers were there to try and arrange housing. Authorities on the scene pulling out pallets and shopping carts.

According to the Mayor’s office, out of the 29 people at the encampment, nine accepted referrals to shelter, and three individuals will be relocating to the new tent city. The remaining individuals are relocating from the site, some of which accepted services like case management but not shelter.

“The immediate resolution of this site is due to significant public safety and hazard risks including a documented increase in violence and dangerous activity including a homicide last Friday,” Jamie Housen with the Mayor’s Office wrote in a statement.

Officials said the cleanup may take several days.

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Homeless encampment cleared in Beacon Hill