(Updated Wednesday morning with new information from Seattle Police)
(Photos by Christopher Boffoli for WSB, added 11:07 pm)
10:16 PM: Breaking right now – what appear to be SWAT officers making arrests in the 41st/Edmunds vicinity (map) on the south side of The Junction. Christopher Boffoli is there for WSB and says what he’s been told so far is that it’s a narcotics operation. The intersection’s blocked off, so steer clear TFN. More to come.
10:39 PM: Christopher says police at the scene confirm narcotics/SWAT officers involved, and that two people have been arrested. A car is being towed away. The intersection has just reopened.
11:30 PM: No additional details – and there may not be any before morning, if then (we’ll be checking the jail register, among other places to harvest info) – but also of note, both Christopher and WSB contributor Katie Meyer report that from observation in The Junction and from radio traffic, this was the result of a planned stakeout, with support units standing by for blocks around until the operation was over. (Christopher adds that Gang Unit detectives were seen participating, too.)
WEDNESDAY MORNING UPDATE: New details from Seattle Police spokesperson Det. Mark Jamieson: He says this was part of a “pretty extensive ongoing undercover narcotics operation – involving Gang Unit, Southwest Anti-Crime Team, and members of the FBI Safe Streets Task Force.” Over the past month or so, he says, “they had been buying on several occasions from a pretty prolific drug trafficker and gangster … and yesterday they decided to do the ‘order up take down’.” They had just “concluded a transaction and moved in to make the arrest.” The suspect they were seeking is a 40-year-old with a felony criminal history; Det. Jamieson didn’t have information on what kind of drugs he allegedly was dealing, but says he was armed with a “stolen handgun” so he’s been booked into King County Jail on weapons charges as well as drug charges.
We just checked – he’s still in as of 8:30 this morning. (A quick check of his court record reveals a long list of cases, including a Court of Appeals case in he appealed his convictions for “multiple counts of driving while license suspended and attempting to elude a pursuing police vehicle,” challenging the terminology “immediately” rather than challenging the violations themselves. He lost.) Det. Jamieson says a 48-year-old woman was in the car with him, but she was released after being questioned at the Southwest Precinct.