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Bellevue police found rocks, sticks along planned route before Saturday protest

Bellevue officers found sticks and rocks along the route for a planned protest on Saturday. However, the protest remained peaceful.

BELLEVUE, Wash. — Bellevue police found rocks, sticks and propane tanks along a planned protest route one day before Bellevue Mayor Lynne Robinson declared a civil emergency due to protests from “multiple, opposing groups” in the downtown area. 

The order was lifted Saturday at 11 p.m.

The mayor can declare civil emergency if there is a riot or unlawful assembly that threatens people or property or the threat of one occurring.

Overall the Saturday protests remained peaceful, and Bellevue Police Chief Steve Mylett called it "a win for all involved."

Protesters demonstrated for about four hours chanting "Black lives matter," as well as profanity about police. Another protester tagged the ground with spray paint, according to police.

Bellevue police made one arrest for driving with a suspended license.

No injuries or property damage were reported.

The day before the protest, Bellevue police said they found sticks, rocks and propane tanks along the protest route.

Credit: Bellevue police
Bellevue police released photos of rocks, sticks and propane tanks that officers found along the planned protest route on Oct. 23, 2020.

The emergency order banned weapons used with the intent to harm people or property in the downtown area. The ban covered items such as rocks, bottles, pipes and incendiary devices. It did not include firearms.

Bellevue City Attorney Kathy Gerla said excluding firearms from the weapons ban was due to a state restriction that preempts local governments from regulating the possession of firearms more stringently than the state does. However, the state does allow cities to prohibit the discharge of firearms under certain circumstances.

The city also requested assistance from law enforcement in neighboring jurisdictions to “maintain safety and order.”

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