SPD uses chronic nuisance law to crack down on warehouse

Print
Email
|

by Elisa Hahn

Bio | Email | Follow: @ElisaHahnK5

KING5.com

Posted on April 6, 2011 at 10:37 PM

Updated Wednesday, Apr 6 at 11:09 PM

Neighbors say it's the loud, pounding music at all hours of the night that has them singing a sour tune. It's also the crime, the drugs, and the tresspassing surrounding the event that makes the all age parties at the Citadel unbearable.

"These kids, when they come in, they have no respect for other people's property," says one local church pastor.

"That's the scene and the culture of a rave party, and that's what makes it extremely dangerous," says Captain Mike Nolan, of SPD's south precinct.

This week, Seattle Police chief Mike Diaz declared the Citadel a chronic nuisance, under an ordinace passed last year, to force the owner of the south Seattle warehouse to clean up its act.

"You hate to see an empty property," says city attorney Pete Holmes."But you can comply with the law, or they can face these consequences."

Tonight the old Citadel sign was torn down. The once-weekly raves are now restricted to four times a year.

"I think they're giving into public pressure, and I don't really think it's founded," says property owner Steve Rauf. He feels like he's being blamed for crimes that occur off his property.

He hopes to eventually develop the property into apartments, like he's already done across the street. In the meantime, he has to find a way to keep it afloat.

One idea is to open a multi-cultural public market. Mateo Monda, who is leasing the space to open the market this week, says change is coming.

"We're going to have fresh produce from all over the world," says Monda. "You name it, you're going to find it here.

City leaders say this is an example of how the new law can help clean up the city. Neighbors are withholding judgment for now. They want to see how it all plays out.

 

Print
Email
|