Mother Whose Son Died In Seattle’s ‘CHOP’ Sues For Wrongful Death

(Photo by JASON REDMOND/AFP via Getty Images)

Michael Ginsberg Congressional Correspondent
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The mother of a Seattle man who was shot and killed inside the city’s Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) in June 2020 filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the city on Thursday.

Donnitta Sinclair’s son Lorenzo Anderson died on June 21 after paramedics failed to reach him in a timely manner, the lawsuit, first obtained by Q13 Fox, alleges. Anderson’s father, Horace Lorenzo Anderson Sr., filed a $3 billion wrongful death suit against Seattle, King County, and the state of Washington in July 2020.

Seattle activists established CHOP, also known as the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ), around the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct after police evacuated in response to riots. The activists claimed that CHOP was a “no cop zone,” leading to “violence, vandalism, open drug use, and a collection of other crimes,” according to Sinclair’s lawsuit. (RELATED: Activist Who Helped Create ‘Police No Go Zone’ Complains When Their Food Is Stolen)

After Anderson was shot, early in the morning of June 21, the Seattle Police Department and Seattle Fire Department waited about 20 minutes before entering CHOP, due to “miscommunication between the two agencies,” Sinclair’s lawsuit alleges. The lawsuit also claims that “CHOP participants were begging City personnel to enter and help Anderson,” even as the Seattle “Police Chief and other city agents made public statements claiming CHOP participants prevented fire and police from rescuing Anderson.”

“Explain to me why they didn’t go in there and help my son,” Sinclair asked Q13 Fox Seattle.

Residents and business owners inside CHOP sued the city in June, alleging that Seattle “actively endorse[d], enable[d], and participate[d] in the occupation of CHOP.” That suit points to comments from public officials like Mayor Jenny Durkan, who made public statements in support of CHOP occupiers.

Durkan’s “tweets, interviews, and other statements have made it clear that the City … views the occupation of Capitol Hill as something akin to a perpetual block party,” that suit claims.