Seattle’s awful August shows the city continues to backslide on crime




A good August is when nothing happens. But this one has been more like the devil’s month, as some call it in South America.

During a time that, one hoped, was going to mark some summer recovery from the social dislocations of the pandemic, Seattle is instead continuing to slide backward — dangerously so in the areas of street crime and drugs.

Seattle has seen 11 homicides this month — making this the deadliest single month in the city as far back as the police’s crime dashboard has records (to 2008). The previous high for any month was nine homicides, and for any August before this one, six.

How that 11th killing came about sums up Seattle’s August. Police were up on Aurora Avenue late Monday night for a domestic violence call, when the alleged perpetrator began shooting at them. Right when that stopped, officers heard shots coming from a new direction.

“While taking him into custody, they heard multiple gun shots coming from the north,” police Chief Adrian Diaz said Tuesday.

A few blocks away, also on Aurora, near North 145th, two men had been gunned down in the street in a completely unrelated shooting. One died there.