Seattle Crime Explodes During Coronavirus

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May 11

Lewis & Laws

Seattle Crime Explodes During Coronavirus

by Lewis & Laws

Seattle Crime Explodes During Coronavirus

The Coronavirus pandemic fully hit the United States in March 2020. To date, thousands of Americans have lost their lives due to the COVID-19 virus. As a result, cities and states issued stay-at-home orders to help slow the spread of the deadly virus. Businesses shuttered their doors and ordered their employees to work from home. Once bustling city streets are now empty, providing criminals with easier targets and increased opportunities to commit crimes.

In Washington, a stay-at-home order was officially issued on March 23. King County also prohibited most misdemeanor jail bookings during this time. Since then, burglary cases have exploded in Seattle — most notably, the west precinct. As of April 3, burglary cases were up 87 percent in the west precinct in comparison to the previous 28 days. Overall, burglaries in Seattle increased by 21 percent during this time, putting enforcement officers and residents on edge.

Why Has Crime Escalated?

There are many reasons why commercial crime in the Seattle-area has increased in the last month. However, law enforcement believes these three reasons may be mostly to blame:

  1. Empty Streets — Normally busy business districts are empty, which makes them easy targets for burglaries. Further complicating matters is that no potential witnesses are around to call 911.
  2. Understaffing — Law enforcement is understaffed during this time. Even before COVID-19, staffing numbers were low in Seattle. Because of the pandemic, the shortage is even more amplified. Reduced law enforcement numbers, coupled with empty businesses and streets, has contributed to the increase in crime.
  3. Free Pass From Jail — In addition to empty businesses and streets, offenders are getting a free pass from jail during this lockdown. This means that even when they are caught, many offenders are let back out onto the streets.

Fortunately, not all crime has escalated. It is estimated that residential crime is down across the city. In the southwest of Seattle, including West Seattle, residential crime had decreased 19 percent during the Coronavirus pandemic. More people staying at home and neighborhoods being occupied 24/7 with families and kids provides fewer opportunities for break-ins and burglaries in condos, apartment complexes, and homes.

What To Do If You Are Arrested?

If you are arrested during the Coronavirus pandemic, it is important to understand the seriousness of your charges. Even if you are not held in jail, you may still face consequences and penalties for your actions. The laws are changing at this time. It is uncertain how your arrest will affect your future. That is why it is crucial to take the following steps after you are arrested.

  1. Remember you have a right to remain silent
  2. Do not speak to police
  3. Ask to speak to an attorney
  4. Take your charges seriously
  5. Educate yourself on your charges and on what will be expected of you

Your future depends on fighting these charges aggressively. Even during the Coronavirus, some courts are still in session. Most criminal courts are taking emergency cases and hearings. That is why it is important to speak to an experienced Seattle criminal defense attorney quickly. Your attorney can help you proceed through this uncertain time.

Let Us Help You

If you find yourself facing criminal charges, you need someone on your side from the very start. The experienced lawyers at Lewis & Laws, PLLC, have successfully defended clients in Seattle, Bellevue, and Kirkland. Contact us today at 206.209.0608 or fill out our online contact form. We can work with you to help you protect your future, and we will defend you aggressively. We believe that everyone is innocent until proven guilty. Let us build your defense against serious criminal charges.

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