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Seattle loses almost 20% of police force amid year of nationwide protests: ‘We’re not allowed to intercede’

19 May 2021

CBS NEWS — The Seattle Police Department is struggling under the backlash of recent police reforms. The state of Washington has just enacted a dozen police reform laws, following nearly a year of protests over police brutality.

According to one social justice group, more than $840 million were cut from U.S. police budgets in 2020.

This has caused a shortage of police in Seattle. The police chief tells CBS News that 260 officers, which is almost 20 percent of the force, have left in the past year and a half.

Officer Clayton Powell has served nearly 27 years on the streets of Seattle. He said it was his goal to stay on the force for 30 years, but even though he is three years away from that goal, he’s retiring early.

“The support that we had in my generation of policing is no longer there,” Powell told CBS News’ Carter Evans. […]

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