Cops Today 11:03 AM

A New Agency Seeks to Hold Washington’s Killer Cops Accountable

Advocates Hope Statewide Oversight Can Succeed Where Local Reforms Have Failed

Charleena Lyles. John T. Williams. Manny Ellis. More than two years after thousands flooded streets across Washington to #SayTheirNames, police accountability advocates are finally seeing the state’s response to their demands for impartial investigations of cops who kill on the job.

Last week, the skeleton crew of employees staffing Washington’s new Office of Independent Investigations (OII) finally moved into their offices. The agency, while off to a slower start than initially projected, represents a first-in-the-nation victory for survivors of police violence. Once the department hires its remaining key staff members and finalizes its operating protocols, it will stand as the only statewide agency in America that investigates cops when they use deadly force, rather than allowing local departments to investigate their own. 

Eventually, the OII will conduct those investigations using entirely civilian teams, ending the practice of police investigating police. The families who have lost loved ones to police violence hope the agency will lead to more killer cops facing criminal charges for that behavior, but some restrictions on the agency’s authority could thwart those hopes.

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More thunder? Yesterday morning, Mommy Nature struck our region with lightning, presumably to give the weather heads something to tweet about. If you missed the lightning (like Jas did, according to Slog PM) then it looks like you won’t get another chance at catching a summer storm today. The Weather Channel forecasts sunny skies and mid-70 degree weather. I’m sure the Seattle Weather Blog will have some calculated response to this good news in order to continue its campaign to make Seattle hate our life-giving sun. SMH

Thunderstorms are not all showmanship: The lil summer storm caused outages for over 10,000 Puget Sound Energy (PSE) customers. As late as 10 pm last night, more than 300 of those customers still did not have power. I checked the outage map this morning, and it looks like PSE got its shit together, because there are no more outages in Seattle or Tacoma.

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Fremont Oktoberfest - Seattle’s Biggest Beer Fest - returns September 16, 17, and 18!

Seattle's Biggest Beer Fest is back! Fremont Oktoberfest returns September 16-18 to the *iconic* Fremont neighborhood, playing host to 100+ Beers, Ciders and Seltzers (in mini-mugs & steins!), Sunday Dogtoberfest, a Giant DJ Tower, Alpine Slide and Stein Hoisting. Buy tickets at FremontOktoberfest.com and use code FOKT22 to earn 2 extra beer tokens.


Yesterday 6:06 PM

For Matt Braunger, Everyday Life is “Horrifying and Exhilarating” Comedy Material

And Further Strange Thoughts from the Northwest-Raised Stand-Up

A masterly storyteller with an expressive face and a voice adept at many impressions, Portland-raised stand-up and actor Matt Braunger is an expert at finding absurdity in mundane situations. Braunger seems like a nice, relatable person, which can be a drawback for a stand-up, but he succeeds through the nuts and bolts of timing, delivery, exceptional descriptive powers, and an unerring knack for extracting the funniest details from random encounters.

Sure, the 48-year-old explores familiar topics like romantic relationships, the male ego, drinking problems, and drug trips gone awry. But some of his best bits have also tackled the authoritarian nature of nine-year-old girls, the Gin Blossoms’ ultimate white-privilege lyrics, locker-room etiquette, bathroom-door knocks, butt surgery, and the unfuckingbelievable hubris of Billy Joel’s “Piano Man.”

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Did you hear that thunder? See that lightning? Okay, TBH I did not, but I know at least one of my colleagues did. And I know for sure a lot of Tacomans did, because around 9,500 Tacoma Public Utilities customers were left without power this morning due to lightning strikes. Nature is metal, etc. According to the NWS Seattle, that'll be the most electrostatic discharges we will have for at least the rest of the day.

As Will mentioned in this morning's Slog AM: Trump pleaded the Fifth to hundreds of questions asked by NY Attorney General Leticia James concerning his shady business dealings in the state. Most national news outlets are focused on the play-by-play of what happened during the interview. The New York Times speculates that James has two options: take Trump to trial, or seek a settlement that will kick him in the financial balls. Wanting any kind of satisfying accountability from this dude seems fruitless.

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City Yesterday 5:05 PM

Guerrilla Gardening Enters Seattle’s War on the Homeless

Welcome to the Age of the Green Deterent

On August 8, KOMO news reporter Joel Moreno posted a story that deserves the kind of examination an entomologist applies on a wasp: “Neighbors create guerrilla garden after Seattle sweeps homeless camp.” What’s stated in the headline is indeed what’s found in the story, which concerns an unauthorized “community greenspace” that’s “on N 96th St, just off Aurora Ave,” and appeared right after a homeless camp was swept by the city. Moreno writes: “Neighbors call it guerrilla gardening and it’s a new approach to keeping encampments cleared from coming back.”

This tactic has a name. It’s called a “green deterrent.” Gardens certainly attract rabbits, but apparently they keep away humans perceived as having no economic value and leaving trash everywhere. This article is, of course, selling the feeling that the city is doing nothing about public safety and so it’s up to the productive side of society to protect itself. The people of North 96th Street are being resourceful in a way that’s distinctly Seattle. They are putting the guerrilla back into guerrilla gardening. This is a tactical move in the war between those who have something and those with absolutely nothing.

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Food & Drink Yesterday 4:23 PM

Quick! Celebrate Iced Coffee Season Before It Ends

My Blood is Now Milk and Caffeine. Join Me.

I spent most of the pandemic—er, so far, since it’s definitely not over!—hiding out on the south end of Whidbey Island, and do you know what they don’t have out in the forests of Island County? Vietnamese coffee, or cà phê sữa đá. Since I’ve been back in the city, I’ve been sucking them down every day, making up for lost time, and seeking out any opportunity to drink delicious iced coffee. Because I can, because it’s available here, and especially because we’ve been suffering inside of this miserable on-again, off-again heat dome. I’m like that meme chick with the hot dogs being poured over her face, except it’s bespoke iced coffee. Pour it fuckin’ on me.

Here’s a handful of favorites from the last month or three. If I’m missing any important ones, please tell me in the comments! These are just a few selections, not a comprehensive list! This town’s drowning in great coffee, as is well documented. Go drink some.

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EverOut Yesterday 10:38 AM

Where to Eat Summer Berries in Seattle Before They're Gone

Food & Drink Specials and U-Picks to Check Out This Season

As sad as it is to say, berry season won't stick around forever. Before you find yourself in the depths of winter and feeling like you'll cry if you have to choke down another root vegetable, take full advantage of the bounty of summer, either by stuffing your face with fruit or filling up a basket at a farm. We're here to help you do just that with a list of local food and drink specials and places offering U-pick. For more ideas, check out our food and drink guide.


FOOD & DRINK SPECIALS

A La Mode Pies
You can always find golden pies bursting with berries at this pie bakery, whose signature pies include Blue Hawaiian (blueberry, pineapple, and coconut), Marionberry Hazelnut, and Raspberry Crumble.
Ballard, Phinney Ridge, West Seattle
Pickup, delivery, dine-in

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The sweet taste of accountability in the morning: Trump's legal troubles didn't end with the FBI's raid of Mar-a-Lago yesterday, as he pled the Fifth during his testimony today in the New York Attorney General's civil suit against his real estate "company." The NY AG claims her investigation has found "significant" evidence of fraud and other financial wrongdoing in how the company valued its assets in applications for loans and in tax filings. 

In other Trump news: The fantasy of the former president losing sway over his cult dissipated in the face of yesterday's primary elections. The Associated Press has the full rundown of his hand-picked goons winning in Wisconsin and elsewhere across the country. As Mudede mentioned in last night's Slog PM, locally, incumbent Republican Jaime Herrera-Beutler was the latest casualty among the 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump last February. 

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Today in the "raid": Former presidential candidate and one of the minds behind the doomed Forward Party, Andrew Yang, thinks the raid was "political." He also thinks it will "strengthen that case for millions of Americans who will see this as unjust persecution." If you want know what the third way is about, now you know. White House claims it knew jack about the raid. “The president was not briefed, was not aware of it, no. No one at the White House was given a heads-up,” said press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre. Lastly, there is not one cap-wearing head in MAGA country that does not feel as if the whole sky has fallen on it. All of them do not know what to do with their hands and mouths. Twitter has identified this frenzy as the MAGAMeltdown.

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News Tue 5:07 PM

Seattle Continues Shoring Up Abortion Protections Post-Roe

The Laws Are Useful, Despite Nonsense from Right-Wing Commenters

In response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, the Seattle City Council unanimously passed two additional layers of local protections for people seeking abortion. Though some right-wing commentators characterized the new protections as a desperate attempt from Seattle activists to stay relevant in the post-Roe outrage, the bill’s sponsors, Councilmembers Tammy Morales and Lisa Herbold, argued that adding the local measures on top of Washington state laws protecting the right to an abortion made sense given the uncertainty of the current moment. 

“We don't know what's going to happen. And I think the point is really to make sure that we are codifying for the City the protections that we want for people who are trying to access care,” Morales said in a phone interview.

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Stranger Suggests Tue 3:28 PM

Bound to Fall in Love

SIFF Is Screening the Wachowskis' Lesbian Masterpiece for Auteur August

This week and into next, the Seattle International Film Festival is honoring the Wachowskis as part of its Auteur August series. The directing duo's sultry first feature and lesbian masterpiece, Bound, will kick things off.

The film starts as any good love story would: A hot, ex-con butch named Corky (Gina Gershon) falls for a hot, seductive femme named Violet (Jennifer Tilly) while working on a repair job in an apartment building.

The first 20 minutes unfurl some of the gayest, most erotic moments I've seen committed to tape: an earring dropped down the sink, a labrys tattoo, hands as instruments of love, twisted bedsheets, passionate moans. This love propels the other 89 minutes of the film, which is an excellently plotted, blood-soaked neo-noir.

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Vaccine access for monkeypox (also known as MPV) continues to be extremely limited, but more doses are on the way, according to Public Health Seattle & King County health chief Dr. Jeff Duchin. 

At a media briefing today, Duchin provided an update on infections, as well as guidance for avoiding the virus. His advice remains largely unchanged from the start of the outbreak. Be vigilant for new rashes, limit intimate skin-to-skin contact, and if you suspect that you’ve been exposed or think that you are showing symptoms, then quarantine immediately and seek medical care right away.

And also: Be patient. Health officials know you want the vaccine, but there’s only so much to go around.

“I know there is tremendous demand for this vaccine globally,” Duchin said. “We are in a bit of a bind.”

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Thank you, West Seattle Department of Licensing employee. 

You helped my kid get his first state ID card early on a Saturday morning. We were excited to get his first official identifying document with the correct gender marker, but we were also nervous that someone would give us a hard time, or at the very least the side eye.

Not only did you grant our request without even a flicker of doubt, but you were so kind to my kid. You even let him ask you many questions about the vision test machine, despite the massive line around the building, and likely a very long day for you. It made me so grateful to live in Washington, and with people like you. 


Do you need to get something off your chest? Submit an I, Anonymous and we'll illustrate it! Send your unsigned rant, love letter, confession, or accusation to ianonymous@thestranger.com. Please remember to change the names of the innocent and the guilty.

Disco lives, and it’s on a bike! The monthly mobile party gathers at Red Square for a mix of rolling and dancing. From there, they’ll head out on a low-impact tour of the surrounding neighborhoods. The route is still TBD, but organizers will post it a few days before the ride.

These are always easy, all-riders-welcome, nobody-left-behind affairs, keeping the speed low and the distance a manageable 8 to 15 miles. Though they can last up to 6 hours, there’s no requirement that you stay for the entire thing or even show up on time.

Bring a costume (optional) and decorate your bike and your helmet however you like. And if the mood strikes you, please do take the disco theme to heart and bring your finest 1970s look. Bright colors, flashing lights, and good vibes only.


Seattle Bike Disco #23 gathers at Red Square at 7 pm and rolls out at 7:30 on Friday, August 12.

Washington State Ferries to receive $38 million from the Federal Highway Administration: The reason? To improve ferry service. According to the Seattle Times, this is the first major money release since Congress passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Washington received the biggest funding allocation for ferries, with the King County Department of Transportation also receiving around $4 million. Hopefully this means fresher tots in the galley.

About that Mar-a-Lago raid...Sources told the New York Times that the FBI search appeared to focus on classified documents Trump brought with him from the White House to his gaudy fortress in Florida. Though this raid doesn't mean that Trump is necessarily guilty, Republican leaders are PISSED. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene called for defunding the FBI (an idea I can support) while House GOP leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy said he'd investigate the Department of Justice if and when his party took over the House. Trumpers even came through to Mar-a-Lago to show their support for the former president, who wasn't in town:

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