Updated with a statement from the SPD
Yesterday, The Stranger published allegations by a current Q13 employee that "Q13 management complied with the spoken requests of their friends at SPD" not to air the footage of a Seattle detective stomping on an innocent Latino man's head (and threatening to "beat the fucking Mexican piss out of" him). According to the Q13 employee, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of getting fired, Q13 management did this "in order to preserve the exclusive nature of their long-term working relationship" with SPD. The Q13 employee added: "The police officers who work closely with the Q13 staff specifically asked their contacts in Q13 management not to air or share the footage in any way. Management complied and refused to do anything with the footage." (That quote didn't make it into yesterday's story.)
Today, the Office of Professional Accountability (OPA), a division of the Seattle Police Department that examines claims of misconduct, began an investigation of those allegations—that officers pressured employees of Q13 television to suppress the footage—confirms SPD spokesman Jeff Kappel.
There are already two investigations underway (one originally conducted by the OPA that is now being investigated as a criminal matter, and one conducted by the FBI) into the police officers' actions as captured in the footage. But this is the first investigation into the suppression of the footage itself.
A statement from the city is expected later this afternoon formally announcing the investigation, Kappel says.
More about the allegations against Q13 from a former employee and the videographer who shot the footage are here.
UPDATE: The SPD released this statement at 5:42 p.m.:
Since first learning of the widely publicized April 17th incident the Office of Professional Accountability has been concerned about the Seattle Police Department’s inability to get immediate access to the video from that evening.
On May 19th the Office of Professional Accountability was made aware of information published by a local media outlet earlier in the day alleging that unidentified Seattle Police Department members tried to exert influence over another media outlet, specifically discouraging that media outlet from disseminating the April 17th video.
The Office of Professional Accountability has initiated an investigation pursuant to the most recent allegations that were published on May 19th. This investigation is separate from the original April 17th investigation.