An attorney representing Joseph Crudo, the conceierge/security guard at the Seaboard Building who was beaten by a group of young people in Westlake Park in July, filed a tort claim against the city last week, alleging the city and mayor’s office were negligent in protecting the public from known dangers.
Patrick Reddy filed the claim on behalf of Crudo on Friday, seeking $450,000 in damages. The tort claim is a prerequisite to the filing of a lawsuit against a government entity. The city has 60 days to respond to the claim before Reddy can file a civil suit.
Reddy said Tuesday that his client, along with other business owners and residents working and living near Westlake Park, met with police to talk about escalating violence in the park about 2½ weeks before Crudo, 26, was attacked on July 18.
“They were seeing things getting worse and worse” and so requested a meeting with police officials from West Precinct, Reddy said. “The police responded that their hands were tied. … There was a meeting with the police prior to this incident and nothing was done.”
Reddy said the criminal element that hangs out around Westlake Park seem to know when police shift changes occur and “it’s kind of free rein” during those times.
A 13-year-old boy was charged with first-degree robbery last week in connection with the attack on Crudo, as well as theft and fourth-degree assault for a separate incident involving a skateboarder. Crudo suffered a broken arm and nose, a concussion and a knee injury in the attack.
A Seattle police spokesman referred questions to the Seattle City Attorney’s Office. Kimberly Mills, a spokeswoman for City Attorney Pete Holmes, said her office does not comment on pending litigation.