Yakima Mayor Calls 911 on “Right Wing Signature Gatherers”
Yakima Mayor Janice Deccio is being questioned as to why she called 911 on what she calls "right wing signature gatherers" on September 3 hoping police would respond to the West Valley Walmart store. Listen to the the 9-1-1 call below.
DURING THE CALL DECCIO IDENTIFIES HERSELF AS THE YAKIMA MAYOR
In the call, obtained by KIT News through a public records request Deccio says she had received a call from a constituent that "there are far-right wing petitioners at the West Yakima Walmart." In the call Deccio says she also sent a message to Yakima Police Chief Matthew Murray about the signature gatherers.
OFFICERS DID NOT RESPOND TO THE STORE FOR GOOD REASON
Signature gathering is a protected right under the constitution. State law allows signature gathering on private property like Walmart as long as they don't interfere with the business or customers. Deccio and Deputy Mayor Sonya Lund both were told they needed a court order to remove the "right wing signature gatherers." Former Democratic congressional candidate Doug White also called police on the same day calling them "ultra right wing signature gatherers that needed to be removed from the Walmart property."
THE MAYOR ALSO SENT AN EMAIL TO POLICE CHIEF MATTHEW MURRAY
The email sent to Chief Mathew Murray from the Mayor on the day she called police, September 3.
Good Morning Chief Murray,
I just received a call from a constituent that there are far-right wing petitioners at the West Yakima Walmart. Apparently Walmart has asked them to leave and called the police to have them removed. The police came but told Walmart they can’t make them leave. If the property owners want them to vacate the premises, why can’t the police usher them off the property? They aren’t on public property. Can you let me know if this can be addressed? Thanks.
Mayor Deccio was not available for comment Friday. We'll continue to try and reach her this week.
TIM EYMAN IS EXPECTED TO MAKE A VISIT TO YAKIMA THIS WEEK
Anti-tax activist Tim Eyman says that, in light of Mayor Deccio's 9-1-1 call, he will be helping to collect signatures at the West Valley Walmart on Tuesday, from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. He says he will also attend the Yakima City Council meeting tomorrow night (Tuesday) hoping to confront the mayor about why she called police on signature gatherers.