Man arrested for alleged threats to kill Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan
In this Sept. 2, 2020, file photo Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan addresses a news conference about changes being made in the police department in Seattle. Durkan says she won't run for re-election following a term beset by the pandemic and policing protests. Durkan made the announcement Monday, Dec. 7, 2020, in a video message to supporters, saying she wanted to focus on recovering from the pandemic and other challenges. Durkan, a longtime lawyer and former U.S. attorney in Seattle, is in her first term in office (Photo by Elaine Thompson).

SEATTLE — An Auburn man has been arrested for allegedly leaving a harassing voicemail for Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, police said.

According to Seattle police, the 43-year-old left a voicemail on Durkan’s office phone on Tuesday morning, threatening to kill her.

Officers were able to trace the call to the man’s home in Auburn. He was arrested at his home in the 4800 block of South 292nd Street and booked into King County jail for investigation of telephone harassment.

“The Seattle Police Department will fully investigate any threat made against any public official and will work with prosecutors to ensure they are held responsible,” police said.

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The death threat against Durkan comes roughly two months after a Seattle Fire Department firefighter was charged for sending threatening, disturbing emails to Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant from a colleague’s city email address.

A moderate Democrat who faced criticism from the right and left this summer over her handling of policing protests and the city’s so-called “autonomous zone,” Durkan said she will not run for reelection back in December 2020.

Durkan, 62, a Seattle native, longtime lawyer and former U.S. attorney, is Seattle’s first female mayor in 89 years. She was elected in 2017, after Mayor Ed Murray resigned amid allegations of child sex abuse. Her decision leaves an open field for this year’s mayoral election.

“We know stopping the spread of the virus, protecting jobs and focusing on the economic recovery — especially for downtown — is going to take everything we’ve got,” Durkan said in a video message. “I could spend the next year campaigning to keep this job or focus all my energy on doing the job. There was only one right choice for our city: doing the job.”

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