- Police confirm shooting occurred early Saturday inside the ‘autonomous zone’
- People reported gunshots near barricaded entrance at around 2.20am
- Protesters transported two gunshot victims to nearby Harborview hospital
- One victim, a 19-year-old male, was dead on arrival at the hospital
- Witnesses say the shooter was a man in a black SUV carrying a rifle
One man is dead and another is wounded after a shooting in Seattle’s ‘Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone,’ also known as CHAZ or CHOP.
The shooting occurred at around 2.20am on Saturday near a barricaded entrance to the protest camp, as the anti-police occupation entered its second week in downtown Seattle.
Police said in a statement that a 19-year-old male victim had died, and another of an unknown age had life-threatening injuries and was in unknown condition.
The shooter or shooters fled the area and are still at large, and police said they had no description of the suspect for the public at this time.
Police are seen responding after a shooting in the CHAZ early on Saturday. Cops say they were met by a large hostile group as they tried to collect evidence+4
CHAZ residents are seen gathering in Cal Anderson Park following the shooting
The shooting occurred near the intersection of 10th Street and Pine, where barricades block the street and near a large protest encampment.
Seattle Police said they encountered ‘a violent crowd that prevented officers safe access to the victims’ as they responded to the shooting.
The CHOP has declared itself to be a cop-free zone and protesters deny police access to the area.
‘Homicide detectives responded and are conducting a thorough investigation, despite the challenges presented by the circumstances,’ Seattle police said in a statement.
A 911 caller told police a man got out of a black SUV carrying a rifle before gunfire erupted, according to East Precinct radio updates reported by Capitol Hill Seattle.
Barricades erected by the city several days ago divide up the CHOP zone on Friday
The two shooting victims were transported by protesters in the camp to nearby Harborview Medical Center, where one male was pronounced dead.
Footage broadcast by livestreamer Joey Wieser from the camp in the wake of the shooting also showed organizers making an announcement of the man’s death to other protesters.
The second victim was reported to have gunshot wounds to the arm and chest. That person’s condition is currently unknown.
Police have publicly confirmed that a shooting occurred, but so far have not offered additional details. There has been no word of an arrest in the case.
Organizers who addressed the protest camp after the shooting claimed that the shooter was white and the dead victim was black.
People dressed in black line the perimeter at Cal Anderson Park to allow black demonstrators only on the field to celebrate Juneteenth in the CHOP zone on Friday in Seattle
The shooting marks the second major gun violence incident at the CHAZ, which is also known to some as CHOP.
Nikolas Fernandez was charged with one count of first degree assault after police say he drove into a crowd of protesters at 11th and Pine and shot a man attempting to disarm him on June 8.
Protesters have been occupying a six-block area around the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct since the facility was abandoned by cops last week after days of clashes with protesters.
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan has allowed the occupation to persist, insisting at one point that it could be a ‘summer of love’ in Seattle.