Police: Rioters threw flares at Seattle officers

Riots broke out Sat. night at site of last summer's fatal woodcarver shooting


Associated Press

SEATTLE -- Seattle police say about 30 rioters attacked them with lit flares, fireworks and a fire extinguisher during a demonstration near the intersection where a woodcarver was killed by an officer last summer.

The department reported Sunday that the group painted anti-police obscenities on the street and a nearby building Saturday night, and they placed large staples that had been fashioned into tire-flattening spikes in the intersection. They threw lit flares at patrol cars.

The rioters were dressed mostly in black and many had bandanas covering their faces. Three were arrested.

Native American woodcarver John T. Williams was shot and killed in the area seconds after Officer Ian Birk ordered him to drop his small knife. The shooting has been ruled unjustified, but prosecutors recently announced they would not file criminal charges.

Seattle's mayor declared Sunday John T. Williams Day.

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