FOLLOWUP: Alki Beach closing enforcement patrols to be restored

(WSB photo, Thursday night)

9:46 AM: You’ll recall that last week, the Southwest Precinct‘s commander announced that Seattle Parks would cover the costs of having three officers on overtime be at Alki Thursdays through Saturdays to help enforce the 9:30 pm closing time. After one night – last Thursday – this was suspended, because, Capt. Kevin Grossman said, transferring money between departments would need council approval. We went immediately to City Councilmember Lisa Herbold‘s office to find out what was being done about this; Friday afternoon, her legislative assistant Newell Aldrich told us they were awaiting more information from Parks because the situation was “complicated.” This morning, Aldrich has just updated us: “We heard from the City Budget Office that Parks will contract with off-duty officers hired through Seattle’s Finest to do the closing of Alki Beach and Don Armeni boat ramp at night. Parks has the resources and appropriation authority to pay for this work.” We are inquiring with Parks to find out how soon this will start.

10:14 AM: Seattle’s Finest, as noted in comments, is one of multiple companies through which off-duty officers freelance; here’s a link. Meantime, we just heard back from Parks spokesperson Rachel Schulkin, who says details, such as when this will start, are still being worked out.

48 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: Alki Beach closing enforcement patrols to be restored"

  • Guy August 10, 2020 (9:50 am)

    Seattle’s Finest…eww!!

    • WSB August 10, 2020 (10:12 am)

      Just in case you aren’t aware – and I will add this in an update above – Seattle’s Finest is the name of the company.

      There are a number of such companies – another one, for example, has a contract with WSDOT to provide traffic control at the Fauntleroy ferry dock.

      • Jethro Marx August 10, 2020 (5:02 pm)

        Guy may be nauseated by the unsavory business practices the company has been accused of in the past. Sounds like there will be some new people added to the mix, at any rate. Is this more likely to reduce Coronavirus transmission or appease wealthy beach complainers who want to see some heads knocked together? Will they carry guns? Beating sticks? Maybe they ought to get those bolo wrap devices- those look cool!

        • WSB August 10, 2020 (5:09 pm)

          The entirety of the info we have so far is above. When we know more, we’ll publish another update, as it looks like that’s not going to be today.

  • emy August 10, 2020 (10:02 am)

    YES! Great news! Now let’s get some neighborhood patrols too to quell the civil unrest, car theft, prowling, gang shootings AND fireworks #BackTheBlue #DefendThePolice

    • Jenny August 10, 2020 (11:40 am)

      Quell the civil unrest? What do you mean by that?

    • Whiteout August 10, 2020 (3:33 pm)

      YES Emy!  Let’s  get Big Brother to watch our every move all the time!I’m sorry, you probably meant watch Black people’s moves all the time: we white folks can be trusted to behave, right?

      • Sarah August 10, 2020 (4:06 pm)

        I hope that straw man is good company.

      • Lindsey August 10, 2020 (5:40 pm)

        That’s a nice looking high horse you got there Whiteout.

    • Brooklyn August 10, 2020 (8:27 pm)

      Oops, your misspelled *defund

  • Follow the money August 10, 2020 (10:27 am)

    Love the bureaucracy!  Some comments were wondering how police officers made money.  They are supported by the byzantine layers of departments and contracts.

    • Jethro Marx August 10, 2020 (5:06 pm)

      If you thought we’d need to look up your chosen word in a dictionary to understand you, oughtn’t you have chosen a different one?

      • Follow the Money August 11, 2020 (10:08 am)

        No, Jethro Marx.  I believe in lifelong learning.

  • James August 10, 2020 (10:30 am)

    This is a good start. Hopefully it will cut down on some of the crime and reckless activity but sadly plenty of bad actors will still show up after the police leave.I took some pictures of some new “artwork” along Alki this morning. How does anyone think vandalism like this helps a cause? 

  • rpo August 10, 2020 (10:36 am)

    Does it cost more to hire an officer through a private company (Seattle’s Finest) than it does to simply pay an officer OT for the same work? I am guessing the former would not be OT wages since it is a 2nd job technically.

    • WSB August 10, 2020 (11:30 am)

      Cost is one of the questions I have asked Parks, as it was the first time around (last week they had told me they would be covering up to $27,000).

  • West Seattle Hipster August 10, 2020 (11:32 am)

    Asking for a friend, is hating an individual or group based on their occupation an example of stereotyping?

    • John August 10, 2020 (7:30 pm)

      Yes it is.

      Except in Seattle where it’s considered “enlightened thinking”.😊

    • Lagartija Nick August 11, 2020 (10:45 am)

      You’re on record here in previous comments saying all protesters are rioters and looters, so right back at you.

  • D August 10, 2020 (11:49 am)

    Wondering who private security is held accountable to? They’re off duty law enforcement, not being paid by tax dollars, not here to protect and serve. Do they wear name tags, identifying badge #’s  etc. Do you know if they will be armed? And if so, armed with what kind of weapons?

    We specialize in Uniformed Police Officers (UPO), Off Duty Law Enforcement security, unarmed security, security cameras, and executive protection.

  • anonyme August 10, 2020 (12:46 pm)

    Excellent questions.  What enforcement authority will they have?  Can they issue fines or make arrests?  If not, what freaking good are they?  Sounds like glorified security.  What about the fires?   If all they’re going to do is announce that the beach is closing and nothing else, why bother?  The people who are down there willfully breaking the law, defiling our beaches, and vandalizing the neighborhood are not going to respond to polite suggestions to play nice.

    • D August 11, 2020 (10:45 am)

      What’s more concerning is the potential for private security to commit violence upon people driving loud cars and gathering around beach fires. It’s interesting how quickly residents accept the proposal of hiring armed thugs as the best answer to clear late night beach parties without any concern for accountability and the “let’s go crack some skulls” mentality. You choose to live by a public beach.

  • GDR August 10, 2020 (1:07 pm)

    My friend standing by his bicycle was hit by a drive by paint ball yesterday afternoon. Just part of the weekend stupidity.

  • WILLIAM McTaggart August 10, 2020 (1:14 pm)

    I have no problem with Seattle police working another city entity. The parks department needs help protecting OUR parks. The Don Armeni boat launch charges a few to park a vehicle and trailer, and to use the boat launch. There have been times when because of people who have no intention of using the launch, people have not been able to trailer their boats and leave the park. Those people have paid a fee and should not be stopped because of an inconsiderate few.

  • wetone August 10, 2020 (1:22 pm)

    This is all fine and dandy, but until SPD has go ahead from Durkin to start writing tickets for illegal fires, drinking, noise, and more to ALL who are causing problems nothing will change. I grew up at Alki from the 60’s and the beach has always had issues, but has gotten much worse over the last couple years. In the 70’s 80’s SPD and the Narc’s had their unmarked cars and vans and would hit beach hard first nice weather days and first couple weeks when school got out. Giving tickets to those breaking laws, if you admitted you screwed up and respected the cops most would give you a warning for the 1st time. Smart a$$es got tickets or ride to jail.  This set a standard for those that hung out at beach,  same thing happened at Golden Gardens.  How times have changed in Seattle, now it’s a free for all. Durkin and city government protects law breakers better than those being responsible……….only in Seattle 

  • Vee August 10, 2020 (1:31 pm)

    It would  be nice if people were civil and obeyed laws but with no consequences  they  vandalize  steal cause havoc  with no regard  for  anything or anyone  support police and uphold  law

  • PotKettleBlack August 10, 2020 (1:42 pm)

    It’s amazing how quickly we’ve lost sight of the real problems we face. Our country has a disease. You can call it bigotry, or fascism, or white supremacy. The name isn’t important. What’s important is that it infects every aspect of our society, including (and sometimes especially) our police departments. The best way to fight this disease is to take away its money. Sadly, it’s a long, slow, and painful cure. The last time we fought this disease thousands and thousands of our ancestors sailed to Europe to die. Thousands more rationed food and fuel or worked second jobs in munitions factories. Our government invented an entirely new classification of weapon capable of wiping out whole cities. And here we are, crying about camp fires on a beach and loud cars. We should be embarrassed at how fragile we’ve become, ashamed at how little we are willing to sacrifice, and how quick we are to buckle under the slightest strain and resort to childish complaining.

    • WTF are you talking about? August 10, 2020 (4:12 pm)

      I think you may have posted to the wrong thread. I’m pretty sure we are talking about a bunch of reckless idiots being loud and starting fires where they shouldn’t be. They aren’t protesters, they’re scofflaws. There is a big difference. And asking for the SPD to stop the illegal behavior is not whining as much as it is to ward off another night of shootings. I for one am not willing to sacrifice a nights sleep so someone else can be irresponsible and selfish.

      • PotKettleBlack August 10, 2020 (8:02 pm)

        This is the thread I meant to post in. And your response is a prime example of what I’m talking about. The reason we don’t have police available to patrol the beach is because they, like much of our country,  is infected with a strain of white supremacy. To fight the infection we are taking away what it needs to survive: money.  In the 40s, Londoners slept on top of each other in the subway while their city burned above them. And here you are not willing to give up one night’s worth of your beauty sleep. The problem isn’t loud people on a beach. The problem is government agencies that murder minorities for profit. Once we deal with the worldwide fascist threat we can talk about the little things like camp fires in the sand.

        • Greg Goldstein August 16, 2020 (11:30 pm)

          @PotKettleBLack We are not at war. Our cities are not being bombed. Please learn the difference between larger social issues & blatant antisocial, life threatening behaviour. ( Yes, not abiding by social distancing is going to potentially kill some people these imbeciles infect )You’re simply reciting trendy things you’ve heard from others that have little bearing in the situation at hand.

          No, people do not get to just do what they want. No, we all live in this society and there will always be rules.

           I wonder how a lot of these folks on the beach late at night, doing and selling drugs, blasting their “music” at everyone, lighting fires illegally and making sure no resident for miles can get to sleep would feel if said residents followed them back to where they live and did the same outside their homes? Because we can all do what we want right? While there are larger issues at play, there will always be a need to enforce some rules because as proven by the events on Alki, there is a vast swathe of people too ignorant, too inconsiderate of their fellow man and woman, to give a damn about anyone else but themselves, much to the detriment of everyone else. One day, when you’re older, you’ll appreciate that small issues are just as important to some, as the larger issues are to many, and that both can be tackled at the same time.

          These miscreants on Alki have NOTHING to do with larger social issues. They are there for a good time, at the expense of everyone else. The exact opposite of what values the protests and larger social move towards justice are all about.

    • To “pot kettle black“ August 10, 2020 (5:16 pm)

      I agree with “pot kettle black” 100% Also having lived right on Alki ave for many years we all know after 11pm and especially after 2am when bars close during heat and summer months all the complaints are a given!! Now add the pandemic social isolation and job loss to it…yeah is a bit much at times so ear plugs run a fan in ur bedroom window a little sleepy time tea and let it go! Pick ur battles and radical acceptance is key…this too shall pass. More important things going on today then a lil noice and such. My goodness CALM DOWN!!! Enjoy the car shows and pretty fire works. I actually miss all that. 🙏❤️🥳😜

      • PotKettleBlack August 10, 2020 (8:24 pm)

        Democracy is a beautiful mess when it fights back. People need to realize that the situation on Alki at its very worst is a million times better than living under a regime that murders minorities for profit. At least that’s what history tells us. Francis Scott Key didn’t write a poem complaining about the noise while he watched Fort McHenry burn. Cheers!

      • Anne August 10, 2020 (10:06 pm)

        Enjoy the “car show,” ?? fireworks—oh & shootings too I guess. Wow.

        • PotKettleBlack August 10, 2020 (10:51 pm)

          Anne. I agree that shootings are bad. The next time the fireworks and car show keep you from sleeping I’d suggest you take the time to write to your local and federal representatives and demand stricter gun control laws. Make sure to tell them that you expect your tax dollars to be used to disband the NRA and prosecute their leadership to the highest degree possible.  

  • LongTimeAlkiResident August 10, 2020 (3:50 pm)

    PotKettleBlack  – please publish your address so that those of us who are “crying” can come let you experience what we have had to experience all summer.  I have lived here for over 25 years on Alki and this is the absolute worst it has ever been.  We need a new City Council person who will represent our interests and not the interests of Capital Hill. BLM but the SPD and not social workers are what are needed in WS. As a property owner, who pays an outrageous amount of taxes, the SPD needs to do more here than they are doing.  I am too old to be asked to go out at night and tell those not following the law to stop. That is what I pay for in taxes.   We on Alki need to DEMAND that HERBOLD does her job for US (Alki/WS) not for Capital Hill.

    • PotKettleBlack August 10, 2020 (8:18 pm)

      Wow! You’ve lived here almost as long as me! And in the same neighborhood too! We should hang out. You sound fun! And you’re right, Alki is having a bit of a tantrum right now. So many loud noises. But it’s no where near as important a problem as the bigoted fascism that is infecting our world. That comes first. And fighting bigoted fascism is exactly what I want Herbold to do with my tax dollars as opposed to what our government is doing now.. murdering minorities for profit. That has to stop. Once that’s done you can get your beauty sleep and pretend that the problem only exists “over there.”

  • Peter August 10, 2020 (5:33 pm)

    The police should not get overtime. Like all other salaried workers, they should be required to put in the hours necessary for the job. It’s just another way for them to rob taxpayers. 

    • plop August 10, 2020 (5:45 pm)

      Peter thats insane.  Salaried worked don’t have to be abused and over worked.  Such a privileged thing to say.  Why don’t you tell all the salaried teachers to go back to work and do the job taxpayers are paying them for.

      • Peter August 10, 2020 (6:12 pm)

        I’m the son of two teachers. Teaching is a seven day a week job, they’re paid a whole lot less than cops are paid, and the reward they get for the long hours and low pay is the hatred, abuse, and harassment they receive from conservatives. I have zero sympathy for the police; they need to stop their whining and lying.

        • Anne August 10, 2020 (10:03 pm)

          Oh please – what hogwash. 

        • PotKettleBlack August 10, 2020 (10:57 pm)

          Peter is right. Real education is the enemy of the conservative movement. Has been since the Romans. An illiterate and hungry population is easier to control.

          • Peter S. August 11, 2020 (10:37 am)

            @PKB:  I’m guessing you and I wouldn’t agree on much, but I do agree with you that education is the key to a better life.  More people should try to get one.  Actually,  an illiterate and hungry population is easier to manipulate.  Harder to control.
            As you note, history is full of examples.   

        • Peter S. August 11, 2020 (10:31 am)

          Oh Peter:  I am the son of a teacher and husband of another.   You are right that teaching can be a 7 day a week job at times, until recently drastically underpaid, and subject to abuse.  However, since you must bring politics into the discussion, that abuse is far more likely to come from entitled liberal parents who think their little darling should’ve gotten an ‘A’ for barely showing up for remote class instead of the very generous ‘B” they received.

          • PotKettleBlack August 11, 2020 (1:52 pm)

            “To control” is literally one of the dictionary definitions of “manipulate”, but I think I know what you mean…. 


             verbSave WordTo save this word, you’ll need to log in. Log In ma·​nip·​u·​late | \ mə-ˈni-pyə-ˌlāt  \manipulatedmanipulating

            Definition of manipulate

            transitive verb1to treat or operate with or as if with the hands or by mechanical means especially in a skillful manner manipulate a pencilmanipulate a machine2ato manage or utilize skillfully quantify our data and manipulate it statistically— S. L. Paynebto control or play upon by artful, unfair, or insidious means especially to one’s own advantage being used and manipulated by the knowing men around him— New Republic3to change by artful or unfair means so as to serve one’s purpose DOCTORsuspected that the police reports were manipulated— Evelyn G. Cruickshanks

          • PotKettleBlack August 11, 2020 (3:37 pm)

            And furthermore! (looney tunes reference for ya) I bet you’re wrong. I bet we actually agree on 99.9% of things. I think most of our disagreement would revolve around how to prioritize issues rather than the issues themselves. Is pizza good? Yes. Is pizza with pineapple good? Not my first choice. Is having a government employee enter an innocent citizen’s home and kill them while they watch TV good? I think we’d agree that’s bad. Is stopping that bad thing more important than stopping out of control beach parties? I think we would disagree on which came first. But the bottom line is that I don’t think either of us want a government that murders minorities for profit. Neither of us wants to kill Mexican children in concentration camps. Neither of us wants to “correct” homosexuals by electrocuting them. That’s not “liberal” or “conservative.” That’s just basic human decency.

  • momosmom August 10, 2020 (7:36 pm)

    over-weekend-police-issued-citations-those-violating-covid-orders Now tell me why our City/Police are unable to do as Honolulu?!

  • Patrick August 11, 2020 (1:20 pm)

    Not to get lost in details, but wasn’t the initial plan to have police officers cover this on OT that would be funded by Parks? Now it is Parks hiring through Seattle’s Finest? The outcome doesn’t seem to be quite the same, apart from “police officers” being present? But now they are off-duty on a 2nd job vs. on-duty on OT? I would assume that has implications as to what they are able to do or not do with respect to enforcement? Or am I missing an important detail about how this works?

    • WSB August 11, 2020 (2:19 pm)

      Still awaiting more info from Parks.

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