Discovery Institute Research Fellow Christopher Rufo told Fox News host Tucker Carlson Wednesday that Seattle plans to close its county jail and that this will result in “a huge increase in crime.”
“The effects are actually quite simple. When you have 50% fewer officers, when you have 60% fewer jail cells, you’re going to have a huge increase in crime,” Rufo told “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “For everything but the most serious offenses — murder, rape, armed robbery — people are going to be booked and immediately released back on the streets.”
“So you’ve destroyed any deterrent for criminal activity and what happens when you create a void of lawlessness, that will be filled very soon with violence, with disorder and with mayhem.” (RELATED: Trump: Seattle Only Shut Down CHOP Because ‘We Were Going In’)
He explained that the county jail currently incarcerates 60% of Seattle criminals sentenced to serve time in a penitentiary and is part of the city’s plan to defund the police by cutting the Seattle police force’s budget by 50%.
“So it’s really a multi-front war to destroy law enforcement, to destroy the justice system. They’re going to reduce the police force, they’re going to shut down the largest jail and my sources are telling me the municipal court is next.”
He explained that Seattle is also eliminating all detention for youths under 18. “So it’s going to be mayhem.” (RELATED: Seattle Councilmember Says She Can’t Figure Out ‘Why Looting Bothers People’ When ‘People Are Dying Every Day’)
Rufo noted that his “sources within the criminal justice system are saying correctional officers are preparing for mass layoffs. It’s total chaos,” adding that the drive to defund not only their police but the entire criminal justice system “is something that happened very quickly.” He said that very recently municipal leaders were seriously considering expanding the police force.
“But after of the kind of hard core anarchist and socialist movements started demonstrating in the streets, they’ve started showing up at the doorsteps of the political leadership. They’re running scared.”
Seattle police arrested 23 people on July 1 after Mayor Jenny Durkan ordered the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” (CHAZ), shut down. Police said they made the arrests because some people were not leaving the area after Durkan issued an emergency executive order that called the gathering an unlawful assembly. Durkan had described the activity in the police-free sector “more like a block party” than “an armed takeover” just weeks before.
“They can’t go fast enough to follow the lead of the anarchist and socialist groups that are rioting. What we are seeing is a complete collapse of leadership,” Rufo said.