In spite of all this, believe it or not, I’m feeling a great amount of hope. Video.
With all of the rioting, looting and destruction recently taking place in U.S. cities, I’ve been fearful of a concerted Marxist attempt to overthrow our government (no matter whether Donald Trump is President or someone else).
This is particularly poignant for me because Bellevue, Washington, a fast-growing suburb of Seattle, is part of my old stomping grounds. I’ve spent many, many hours, especially during the Christmas season, shopping in the Bellevue Square Mall where massive looting and damage took place on May 31.
Bellevue Police Chief Steve Mylett said crowds of looters ran past him and other officers, laughing, knowing police were overwhelmed by the sheer numbers. “There could have been 1000 to 2000 people in the mall,” he said, adding that some looters fired bullets inside the mall to break glass, stealing everything that could be carried.
But the police response in Bellevue gives me great hope. In this case, the violence was the result of criminals operating under the cover of the protests and not an attempted government takeover.
Bellevue police have arrested 23 looting suspects wanted for breaking into the mall, including the 26-year-old man accused of coordinating the burglaries.
Yes, it was a coordinated effort.
Many if not most detective movies show wary witnesses refusing to cooperate with cops. But in this case the citizens of Bellevue came through, sending 10,000 video clips to police. In one of those clips, police spotted a familiar tattoo of the man who they believe organized the entire crime.
In the suspect’s home home they found stolen clothes, an AK-47 rifle with a silencer, handguns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition all inside a baby’s crib.
They also found evidence of a drug ring. “We found methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, drug scales baggies and paraphernalia which is consistent with the sale and distribution of narcotics,” Mylett said.
Unraveling connections to other cases from Bellevue to Seattle and beyond
And, Mylett said, the threads of this “incredibly destructive crime” are now unraveling connections to other cases of looting from Bellevue to Seattle and beyond.
“We’re convinced that the same group that did it here did it elsewhere.”
The police chief said he wanted to make it perfectly clear that the widespread violence had nothing to do with the many lawful protests.
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