SIDRAN MAKES FRONT PAGE!

On July 30, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer ran a front-page news article about City Attorney Mark Sidran, "the point man for a civilized city," by Elaine Porterfield. According to the P-I, Sidran is a complicated individual who is lauded as a good guy and a brilliant lawyer by his supporters, and criticized as a bad guy by his critics. His critics have even referred to him as a Nazi even though he is a Jew, and they once crushed an effigy of him with a portable toilet. Both his supporters and detractors agree that Mr. Sidran has thick skin and is resolutely committed to a trendy philosophy involving civil behavior -- or else. On a personal note, the man who one day may become the next King County Prosecutor was born the son of a Seattle pharmacist. Young Sidran went East to Harvard University, where he studied law before returning to his beloved birth-city to pursue a career of picking on the less fortunate in order to cunningly devise a more civil society. And he's been fighting ever since. -- Ben Jacklet


SIDRAN MAKES FRONT PAGE!

On July 30, The Seattle Times ran a front-page news article about City Attorney Mark Sidran, "Seattle's 'law and order guy,'" by Martin McOmber. According to the Times, Sidran is a complicated individual who is lauded as a good guy and a brilliant lawyer by his supporters, and criticized as a bad guy by his critics. His critics have even referred to Sidran as a Nazi even though he is a Jew, and they once crushed an effigy of him with a portable toilet. Both his supporters and detractors agree that Mr. Sidran has thick skin and is resolutely committed to a trendy philosophy involving good manners -- or else. On a personal note, the man who one day may become the next King County Prosecutor was born the son of a Seattle pharmacist. Young Sidran went east to Harvard University, where he studied law before returning to his beloved birth-city to pursue a career of picking on the less fortunate in order to cunningly devise a more civil society. And he's been fighting ever since. -- Jack Benlet


CRASHING CARS AND ALLEGEDLY KICKING ASS

The latest batch of claims and lawsuits filed against the Seattle Police Department are in, and they aren't likely to raise trust levels anytime soon. The 45 complaints, filed between March 20 and July 2, include:

· 14 instances of cop cars colliding with, rear-ending, or side-swiping civilian vehicles;

· 11 complaints about cops impounding private vehicles, seven of which were later sold through auction by towing companies and the city before the owner could get them back;

· Four cases of wrongful arrest;

· Three instances of missing property following an arrest, including shoes, compact discs, and $70 cash;

· Two cases of damaged property;

· One complaint of overly tight handcuffs that damaged the suspect's circulation;

· One vague claim of "harassment";

· Another vague claim of improper search and seizure;

· A wacky complaint -- "Parking Citation violated his rights";

· and three cases of excessive force.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the list of complaints, which was reluctantly provided to self-appointed SPD watchdog John Hoffman by SPD legal advisor Leo Poort, is the wording of the excessive force complaints. While 42 of the 45 complaints matter-of-factly state the complaints ("SPD sold vehicle after impound," "injured on bus after SPD vehicle stopped abruptly in front of bus," "parked car hit by SPD vehicle"), all three of the complaints about officers beating the shit out of people in custody are reported as allegations ("feels he was assaulted by SPD," "says he was assaulted by SPD," "claims he was physically abused while being transported"). [Italics mine.]

Yet again, it sounds like the department would rather dismiss the hard charges than investigate them. -- Ben Jacklet

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