Tag Archives: Watchdragon

Fmr. OPA Dir. Subverted Agency’s Own Rules, City Ordinance by Withholding Information

City Refuses to Answer Essential Questions About Publicly Funded Investigation

by Carolyn Bick

The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.


The Emerald has obtained multiple documents that show that former Office of Police Accountability (OPA) Dir. Andrew Myerberg appears to have withheld key information from the Office of Inspector General — the OPA’s accountability partner agency tasked with certifying OPA investigations — by submitting a case for certification and later adding information to the case report. In doing so, and in drawing conclusions from said information, Myerberg appears to have subverted not only the OPA’s own rules and procedures but also the City’s 2017 Accountability Ordinance. 

Continue reading Fmr. OPA Dir. Subverted Agency’s Own Rules, City Ordinance by Withholding Information

Reader Questions, Comments Ahead of Tonight’s OPA Dir. Candidate Forum

by Carolyn Bick


The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.

Despite the City bumping up the date for its public OPA director candidate forum several weeks from June 23 to today, June 8, at 6:30 p.m. with little notice to the public ahead of time, the Emerald received over the past several weeks — and yesterday, submitted — a host of questions and comments from readers in response to a public call for reader input a couple of months ago.

Continue reading Reader Questions, Comments Ahead of Tonight’s OPA Dir. Candidate Forum

BREAKING: Claims in Fmr. SPD Chief Best Video Discredited by OEM the Day Before

SPD Publicly Released Video Without Clarification

by Carolyn Bick


The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.

In the late morning of June 11, 2020, shortly before 11 a.m., the Seattle Police Department (SPD) released a video of its now-former Chief Carmen Best relaying a message to officers, following the internal and public fallout of the Seattle police’s decision to abandon the East Precinct.

In that video, Best claimed that SPD had received reports of armed people patrolling the area, and that these same armed people “may be demanding payment from business owners in exchange for some of that protection. We’ve also heard that they may be demanding to see identification for people who live in the area. This is not legal.”

But about 17 hours earlier, at 6:10 p.m. on June 10, 2020, Best — along with several other high-ranking City officials, including a host of core mayoral staffers, as well as SPD Assistant Chief Thomas Mahaffey and now-interim Chief Adrian Diaz — received an updated ground intelligence report email from then-acting Dir. of the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) Laurel Nelson. The report specifically stated that the above claims about extortion and identification demands were untrue, per an OEM staffer’s site visit to investigate the claims.

Continue reading BREAKING: Claims in Fmr. SPD Chief Best Video Discredited by OEM the Day Before

BREAKING: Texts Show Fmr. SPD Chief Best Involved in Plan to Abandon East Precinct

by Carolyn Bick


The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.

During interviews with the Office of Police Accountability (OPA) in 2021, after her retirement, former Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best told investigators she was not involved in plans to abandon the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct on June 8, 2020. But text messages obtained by the Emerald tell another story.

According to texts between Best and Assistant Police Chief Lesley Cordner, it appears that Best was in contact with former Mayor Jenny Durkan about the Seattle Police Department (SPD) removing items from the East Precinct and that she was aware, on the morning of June 8, 2020, of a plan to remove firearms, ammunition, and evidence from the building by 5 p.m. that day. (Note: The Emerald has redacted phone numbers that appeared in the above-linked text log transcript.)

This is not what Best told OPA investigators, according to the OPA’s Case Closed Summary (CCS) on the matter, and not the story she continued to tell media almost a year after the incident.

Continue reading BREAKING: Texts Show Fmr. SPD Chief Best Involved in Plan to Abandon East Precinct

BREAKING: Leaked SCAO Memo — Amicus Status for HRC ‘Neither Fruitful Nor Efficient’

“I have never felt so backed into a corner as I have in the past 24 hours.”

—Erika Chen, Seattle Human Rights Commissioner

by Carolyn Bick

The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.


The Emerald has obtained the unredacted email the Seattle City Attorney’s Office (SCAO) sent to the Seattle Human Rights Commission (SHRC) in which the SCAO told the SHRC that it could not seek amicus status with the federal court overseeing the Consent Decree. The Emerald originally reported on this email in this breaking story. It has also obtained two new recent memos from the SCAO addressed to the SHRC.

Continue reading BREAKING: Leaked SCAO Memo — Amicus Status for HRC ‘Neither Fruitful Nor Efficient’

BREAKING: SCAO Tells Human Rights Commission Not to Seek Amicus Status

by Carolyn Bick

The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.


The Emerald has today received confirmation that the Seattle City Attorney’s Office (SCAO) told the Seattle Human Rights Commission (SHRC) not to seek amicus curiae status shortly after the commission’s vote to do so at its public meeting on April 7, 2022. It is immediately unclear exactly who in the SCAO told the commission this and why.

Continue reading BREAKING: SCAO Tells Human Rights Commission Not to Seek Amicus Status

OPA Interviews Suggest Former OPA Dir. Retroactively OK’d Out-of-Policy Force Tactic

by Carolyn Bick

The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.

Content Warning: This article contains images of acts of violence.


In late September 2021, the Emerald published an article detailing serious discrepancies and what appears to have been a false narrative about the events of the 2020 Labor Day protest in front of the Seattle Police Officers Guild (SPOG). 

This false narrative, detailed in the Office of Police Accountability’s (OPA) Director’s Certification Memo (DCM), was based on interviews with some Seattle Police Department (SPD) officers who had been at the protest, as well as other supplemental documentation, such as body worn video (BWV).

Continue reading OPA Interviews Suggest Former OPA Dir. Retroactively OK’d Out-of-Policy Force Tactic

SPOG Officers ‘Were Ready to Entertain Ourselves’: 2020 Labor Day Protest

by Carolyn Bick


The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.

In late September 2021, the Emerald published an article detailing serious discrepancies and what appears to have been a false narrative about the events of the 2020 Labor Day protest in front of the Seattle Police Officers Guild (SPOG). 

This false narrative, detailed in the Office of Police Accountability’s (OPA) Director’s Certification Memo (DCM) for the case — 2020OPA-0583 — was based on interviews with some Seattle Police Department (SPD) officers who were at the protest, as well as other supplemental documentation such as body worn video (BWV).

Continue reading SPOG Officers ‘Were Ready to Entertain Ourselves’: 2020 Labor Day Protest

City Hires Outside Agency to Investigate Former OPA Dir., SPD After OIG Bows Out

by Carolyn Bick

The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.


In February of last year, lawyer Sarah Lippek lodged a complaint against former Office of Police Accountability (OPA) Dir. Andrew Myerberg with the Office of Inspector General (OIG). The complaint regarded Myerberg publicly releasing a client’s medical information in a Case Closed Summary (CCS). Lippek’s client is the young woman whom an officer hit directly in the chest with a blast ball. The young woman subsequently went into cardiac arrest multiple times on her way to the hospital.

Continue reading City Hires Outside Agency to Investigate Former OPA Dir., SPD After OIG Bows Out

Federal Monitor Claims FBI Aware of Alleged SPD Sexual Violence

by Carolyn Bick


The Emerald’s Watchdragon reporting seeks to increase accountability within our city’s institutions through in-depth investigative journalism.

More than two months ago, lawyer Sarah Lippek approached federal monitor Dr. Antonio Oftelie on LinkedIn about alleged sexual abuse of vulnerable people — including homeless youth, sex workers, unhoused individuals, and drug users — by Seattle Police Department (SPD) officers. 

But instead of giving the information Lippek would eventually send him to the Department of Justice (DOJ) or the federal court, as she asked, Oftelie gave Lippek’s contact information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). 

Continue reading Federal Monitor Claims FBI Aware of Alleged SPD Sexual Violence