Twenty-year-old Alaskan sentenced for East Precinct fire: A federal judge sentenced Desmond David-Pitts, 20, to 20 months in prison for conspiracy to commit arson. David-Pitts set a fire outside the Seattle Police Department's East Precinct last August. Authorities identified David-Pitts by the pink camouflage pants he wore that night.
Carmen Best spills: Former SPD Chief Carmen Best kinda revealed who made the decision to abandon the East Precinct last summer, the decision that precipitated the formation of the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, and then the Capitol Hill Organized Protest. Best told the podcast "Reducing Crime" that her command staff chose to leave the precinct after Mayor Jenny Durkan made the call to remove the barricades at 11th and Pine, the intersection that saw all the action that June. Best maintained that she advised against evacuating the precinct and that she warned city officials that they should do something about CHOP, but no one listened.
She really threw Durkan under the bus here:
"It wasn’t our first choice to do as a command staff, I’m just going to be honest here, we did not want to open up those streets,” Best said. “But the mayor’s office and others were like, ‘Look there’s a skirmish line there, and that’s a point of contention.’”
So much for that lunar eclipse and super blood moon: Seattle's rainy weather returned just in time for it to cover up Wednesday's astrological events. If you're looking to see the total lunar eclipse and super blood moon, you probably should leave Seattle. Forecasters expect rain to linger around the majority of the week. Man, Steven Soderbergh should have picked this week to film his movie.
Hey W WA! Your order of rain is here! Hope you like it because we will be having leftovers for much of the week.
A front will move through today, lingering showers Tuesday. Brief break Wednesday. Front on Thursday and lingering showers Friday. #wawx pic.twitter.com/Fzc62uDsHJ
— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) May 24, 2021
Spanish man's body found inside dinosaur statue: Life is fleeting. One day, you're just vibing, the next you're stuck, headfirst inside a papier-mache stegosaurus statue. This was the fate of a 39-year-old Spanish man in the town of Santa Coloma de Gramenet. A father and son noticed something inside the stego statue. It was the man. Officials believe he dropped his phone inside the statue and got stuck trying to retrieve it by entering the statue's leg headfirst. "It seems he was there for a couple of days," one official said.
New lemurs just dropped: The Woodland Park Zoo needs your help naming one red ruffed lemur baby. Since lemurs are native to Madagascar, all the names the zoo selected for the public to choose between are Malagasy. The names are: Lanitra (law-NEE-truh): Sky, Masoandro (mas-oh-AND-roh): Sun, Orana (oh-RAW-nuh): Rain, and Ravina (ruh-VEE-nuh): Leaf. Vote here.
Amtrak bounces back: Amtrak announced that it's adding back more Seattle train routes as life—and tourism—returns to normal. During COVID-19, Amtrak cut long-distance routes such as the Empire Builder (Seattle to Chicago) and Coast Starlight (Seattle to Los Angeles) down to three times a week. Now, they'll be back to daily routes. Additionally, Amtrak is adding a second daily Seattle to Eugene train and a third Seattle to Portland daily trip.
COVID-19 testing has really gone to the dogs: Dogs can detect COVID-19 infections just by sniffing. Dogs in a London study identified COVID-19 in under one second.
Bear sightings abound in Redmond.
Simone Biles made history last night: Biles, 24, performed a vault at the U.S. Classic last night that no other gymnast has ever successfully attempted during competition. She landed a Yurchenko double pike nearly flawlessly. Yet, the judges gave her a 6.6—a similar score to the normal vaults Biles performed. She felt jilted by the scoring. Part of the reasoning from the judges is that it's too dangerous of a move and they don't want other people to hurt themselves over a big-point maneuver. Biles believes that they don't want her to run away with the competition by doing moves no one else can. She said she'll keep doing the move, though. Because she can do the move.
.@Simone_Biles successfully completed a Yurchenko double pike in vault at last night's #USClassic.
She is the first woman in HISTORY to perform the move in competition. @OnHerTurf pic.twitter.com/j07ZweTA0f
— #TokyoOlympics (@NBCOlympics) May 23, 2021
"Illinois police face lawsuit over drug testing a toddler's ashes": Dartavius Barnes is suing Springfield Police for "desecrating" his daughter's ashes in a 2020 traffic stop, the BBC reports. Police arrested Barnes for speeding and disobeying traffic signs. While searching his car, police found the urn containing his daughter's ashes. They said it tested positive for meth or ecstasy. Barnes's suit says police spilled some of the ashes while they did the test.
"State-sponsored piracy": On Sunday, Belarus forced a Lithuania-bound Ryanair passenger jet to land. President Alexander Lukashenko personally gave the order for the Belarus military to scramble its fighter jets in order to make the plane land. Once it landed, police arrested dissident journalist Roman Protasevich. Ryanair's CEO said that the order was "state-sponsored piracy."
Patty Hayes is retiring: Public Health - Seattle & King County Directory Patty Hayes is leaving her post. The Seattle City Council honored her with a proclamation.
Today we celebrate Director Hayes for the 30+ years of dedication to Public Health and Nursing, especially the seven years as the Director of @KCPubHealth & leading us through the historic crisis we’ve faced in combating the unfolding impact of COVID-19. pic.twitter.com/m6UTxa0nOm
— Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (@CMTMosqueda) May 24, 2021
The Seattle City Council passed rent protections for small businesses and non-profits: Legislation sponsored by Lisa Herbold and co-sponsored by Andrew Lewis and Tammy Morales makes it clear that landlords cannot consider rent payment from a small business tenant late if the tenant and the landlord have worked out a payment plan. The legislation also states that the landlord cannot use the payment plan payments as a reason to break the lease with the tenant.
Morales announced in council briefing this morning that the city had finally awarded funding to the Clean Hands Collective for the street sink program. The CHC will receive $60,000 and the Nonprofit Makers will receive $40,000. Morales says the hope is that each organization will receive more funding down the road. The council originally allocated $100,00 for the CHC.
LAX starts using facial recognition technology: Scanning passengers' faces to allow them to board a plane? What could go wrong? While LAX just unveiled this new dystopic technology, Sea-Tac airport notoriously banned the biometric technology back in 2019.
The mayor of #LosAngeles breezes through a new gate in a new terminal at #LAX, with the help of facial recognition technology. This is expected to speed up the boarding process. @KNX1070 pic.twitter.com/OeiuhFbpTn
— Jon Baird (@KNXBaird) May 24, 2021
Spare us: Kevin Spacey will return to the silver screen in a role as a sex crime detective in an Italian indie. Spacey's absence was due to sexual assault accusations. Two of his alleged victims said they were 14 and 16 at the time of the assaults.