Seattle mayor says police will return to abandoned station in protest zone

Seattle Mayor Jenny DurkanJenny DurkanWashington state officials warn providers offering VIP vaccine access Seattle mayor announces she won't run for reelection At a time of crisis, America's mayors are ready to partner with President-elect Biden MORE (D) said Monday that the city's police department will be returning to the abandoned East Precinct “peacefully and in the near future” following a grim weekend in the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest during which three people were shot.

Durkan said that protests in the area would still be allowed, but authorities would try to scale back evening activities. She said that the returning police officers wouldn't force protesters to leave the area, but would instead ask them to voluntarily leave the area.

“It’s time for people to go home, it is time for us to restore ... Capitol Hill so it can be a vibrant part of the community,” Durkan said, The Seattle Times reported. “The impacts on the businesses and residents and the community are now too much.”

Seattle Police initially left the area about two weeks ago as protesters demanded changes to the city's policing tactics and the rooting out of systemic racism following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody on May 25.

Two men were shot late Friday night in the area, one of them fatally. On Sunday night, a 17-year-old boy was shot in the arm, though he was treated and later released from a Seattle area hospital.