What We Know About Detentions at Sea-Tac As a Result of Trump's Travel Ban:
Six people were detained at Sea-Tac last night and four were “sent back to their place of departure,” the Seattle Times reports.
The other two have been released, according to the ACLU of Washington and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, which represented them.
According to a statement from the two groups, one of the released detainees is an engineer from Sudan who now lives in the United Arab Emirates and was in the United States for an engineering conference. The other is a Yemeni citizen born in Saudi Arabia and visiting family in the U.S., according to the groups. They are not naming the two people or making them available for interviews.
“While in the custody of [Customs and Border Protection at Sea-Tac], they were able to watch coverage of the protests at the airport,” the ACLU of Washington and NWIRP said in a statement, “and they both expressed gratitude for those expressions of solidarity.”
Congresswomen Suzan DelBene and Pramila Jayapal, who were at the airport last night, signed briefs as part of an effort to get a temporary restraining order issued by a federal court on behalf of the two individuals. In a statement, Jayapal said that after the restraining order was issued—by U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Zilly of Seattle, an appointee of President Ronald Reagan—a plane at SeaTac was held up so the two people could be taken into CBP custody instead of deported.
We have won a temporary victory. 2 individuals are still here in Seattle, not deported, thanks to stays issued by judges in WA and New York. pic.twitter.com/xNgRhgkKkG
— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (@RepJayapal) January 29, 2017
“One person was unfortunately deported before any of us could get to him,” Jayapal wrote. “At least one person was processed and released, possibly two. Any other individuals who land at SeaTac should be covered by the stay of deportation, though it would mean they would be held. We are working hard to get all of the information on who is being held, for how long, and where.”
Washington Lieutenant Governor Cyrus Habib is accepting personal stories and questions about the travel ban on his website here.
What We Know About Arrests of Protesters at Sea-Tac After Trump's Travel Ban:
Police arrested “between 30 and 35 people,” according to airport spokesperson Brian DeRoy. One was charged with assault and the others with disorderly conduct, DeRoy said.
Seattle Times photographer Lindsey Wasson was documenting arrests into the early hours of the morning.
By 11:30 pm, police were beginning arrests. At about 1:45 am Wasson tweeted that about 30 remaining protesters had been ordered to disperse, and by 2:30 am, some had been pepper sprayed and arrested.
#Seatac #MuslimBanprotest pushed back to p. garage thru skybridge after police ordered to disperse, then arrested/pepper sprayed. pic.twitter.com/edHkKTiecq
— Lindsey Wasson (@lindseywasson) January 29, 2017
Many protesters feeling effects of pepper spray @ end. Crowd has essentially dispersed. #seatac #MuslimBanprotest https://t.co/Eo2cO701YP pic.twitter.com/OZe2z3H7VJ
— Lindsey Wasson (@lindseywasson) January 29, 2017
(Wasson, by the way, is a casualty of the Times’ ongoing layoffs. Friday is her last day. Here is her personal website.)
In a statement early this morning, the Port of Seattle said: “Unfortunately, protestors are blocking security checkpoints and exits to impede travelers and shut the airport down according to their own announcements. Despite repeated efforts to urge protestors to disperse, police officers have been forced to make a number of arrests to maintain safe operations for passengers and employees.”
Now, various reports about police treatment of protesters are circulating on social media and some lawmakers are looking for more details and answers:
Where's Governor and County Exercise while protesters being sprayed
— Gerry Pollet (@RepGerryPollet) January 29, 2017
What We Know About Why Light Rail Temporarily Stopped Dropping Passengers at Sea-Tac During the Protest:
Lots of Seattleites, including Charles, are demanding answers after light rail trains stopped serving the airport for about a half hour as people poured into last night’s protest.
Sound Transit says the closure was requested by Port of Seattle Police and that trains began running again after Sound Transit CEO Peter Rogoff determined there was “no indication of anything other than a peaceful protest.”
Port of Seattle spokesperson Kathy Roeder told The Stranger the port asked for the closure because of “concern that additional public safety teams should be in place if we were to host a significant crowd inside the airport.” She said additional offers from other local jurisdictions arrived “much later” and the 30-minute closure “only allowed for additional planning time.” She didn’t know of any other time the port had requested Sound Transit stop service.
“We did not take this action lightly,” the port said in a statement. “However, we should have done a better job communicating and coordinating with the leadership at Sound Transit. In the future that decision would be done differently.”
King County Executive Dow Constantine said on Twitter last night that local transit leaders will meet Monday to “develop a clear protocol” for these situations in the future.
“Light rail should run when and where people need it, and request to stop should go up to senior level,” Constantine wrote.