Multiple Arrests As Everett Police Crack Down On Sidewalk Camping On Smith Avenue

December 13, 2017

Police Blotter


The east side is clear while the west side of Smith Avenue Tuesday afternoon, not so much.


People were advised to get their belongings or they would be picked up by cleaning crews on Wednesday.

Over the past several days Everett Police have made a concerted effort to curb sidewalk campers in the 3600 and 3700 block of Smith Avenue just north of the Everett Gospel Mission.

Last Friday officers warned people to keep the sidewalk clear or they faced arrest.

In response to that, over the next few days people moved many belongings from the east side of Smith Avenue where there is a sidewalk to the west side of the street where there is no sidewalk and just a parking strip.

This led to several complaints from business owners and people driving on Smith Avenue who had to try and avoid people who were now in the street.

Yesterday Everett Police conducted an emphasis to keep people out of the street and made multiple arrests. asked Everett Police to explain the operation and arrests and received the following response via E-Mail from Everett Police Community Information Officer Aaron Snell…

Thank you for your inquiry.

Everett Police continues balancing focused outreach (to those willing to accept services) with effective enforcement strategies. We will continue conducting regular enforcement operations on Smith Ave., and in other parts of the City, where crime and quality of life issues persist.

The actions in the 3600 block of Smith Ave were in response to citizen complaints and observations by officers with the purpose of contacting individuals suspected of committing various crimes. These included violent crimes, drug-related crimes, and ordinance violations (blocking the sidewalk, trespassing, unlawful camping, and/or drug loitering).

Everett Police did not move property to the west side of the street. This action was taken by numerous people in an apparent effort to avoid arrest for blocking the sidewalk. Those that crossed the street (to the no parking zone) were verbally warned to move as they were violating the unlawful camping ordinance. After issuing warnings, officers returned later to enforce the ordinances and found most were complying. Those who made no effort to comply were arrested. As of this morning, the standard COE clean-up removed the remaining debris.

6 arrests were made:
-4 booked for Unlawful Camping
-1 booked for SODA violation
-1 arrestee was rejected by SCJ for medical reasons but still cited and released

Involved officers included the Downtown Bicycle Unit, ACT, COET, and supporting officers. We intend to conduct similar operations in the future – as long as the area continues drawing criminal activity. Everett Police works with existing ordinances and resources to be tough on crime, help those willing to accept services, and earn the respect of our community in making Smith Ave and our City safer for residents to live and businesses to operate peacefully.


A look at the west side this morning prior to clean up.


The east side of Smith Avenue this morning prior to clean up.


Workers fix the fence on the east side.


The clean up crew arrives for their three times a week clean up.


Workers picking up garbage behind the west side fence.


A loader filled two dump trucks this morning.

Here are some photos taken yesterday and today by Click photo to enlarge.

We asked officer Snell what action people in other areas of Everett should take if they had complaints about sidewalks being blocked.

The non-ER number (425-407-3999) would be the best number to call and get the complaint into the system. It might be COET, ACT, Patrol, or Downtown Unit that might respond.


This video still shows Tuesday afternoon around 2:10 PM


About myeverettnews

My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring breaking news and events in Everett, WA. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett. It's written by Leland Dart a former Snohomish County based radio reporter born and raised in Everett.

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