Chief Diaz Says South Seattle Rave Site Is a “Chronic Nuisance Property”

Earlier this week, Seattle Police Department Chief John Diaz sent a letter to the owners of a South Seattle venue, The Citadel, citing the property as a “chronic nuisance property.

In the letter, the department told property owner–Steve Rauf, a major developer in the Othello area where the Citadel is located–that the city could abate the property on Martin Luther King Jr Way S and S Othello, or fine Rauf up to $25,000 if he fails to respond to the department’s letter.

As we mentioned this morning, in recent weeks, neighbors have complained to the city about the raves and the crime ravers supposedly bring to the neighborhood.

While police investigated a stabbing outside the Citadel in late march, and made a large drug bust in Snohomish County as the result of a sting at the raves last month, crime statistics for November and December (the latest months available from SPD) in South Precinct’s Sam 2 sector–where the Citadel is located–indicate crime has actually dropped in the area since 2009.

In November 2009, police records indicate there were 8 reported robberies and 22 assaults in Sam sector. Police say there were 8 robberies and 24 assaults in December 2009.

In November 2010 (when the Citadel hosted its first rave), there were 2 robberies and 19 reported assaults. In December 2010, police records indicate there were 7 robberies and 14 assaults.

We’re working to get more details on SPD’s action against The Citadel and will update shortly.