The material below is in an excerpt from private security cam footage taken at the corner of 97th and Aurora Ave North in Seattle on October 20, 2021. Watch the first part of the video paying close attention to the background and you can figure out what’s going on.
The woman – who is evidently a prostitute, based on her clothing and her presence at this location, which is frequented by street prostitutes – is walking down the sidewalk with a man when two other men approach from behind and confront her. She then runs out into the street toward the security camera, but before she can make it across, one of the men on the sidewalk fires a pistol and strikes her, knocking her to the concrete. All three men then run off together.
Police and medics arrived shortly thereafter, thanks to some bystanders who stopped to help, and the woman was rushed to Harborview Hospital, where she was treated and survived.
It’s likely that the woman knows or at least has some information about her attackers. For example, she probably has some identifying information on the man with whom she was strolling casually at the beginning of the scene. However, despite this, according to police sources, she refused to “be a victim” (i.e. provide testimony needed to prosecute) or cooperate with a police investigation, so no charges will be filed even if the police know the identity of her attackers. The woman is known as a “regular” on Aurora Ave N., and this is not the first time she has been assaulted.
It’s common for street prostitutes in Seattle to refuse to cooperate with police investigating assaults on them. There are several reasons for this, but among them are a general unwillingness by street prostitutes to testify against a john or a pimp for fear of retaliation, especially given that the perpetrator is unlikely to do a long jail stint and will be out in no time. Instead of being stigmatized and punished, pimps in Seattle are likely to be rewarded with media recognition and even government contracts, provided that they claim to have left their lives of pimping behind. (For reference, google Raz Simone and Dre Taylor, both ex-pimps who made it big.)
Even when the perpetrator is locked up and out of commission, he might have confederates on the street who will take revenge on the “snitch.” Another reason prostitutes make reluctant victims is that the women might be ashamed to admit – in court, on record, and under oath – that they have been prostituting themselves. Finally, they might be afraid that if they cooperate with police they will be expected to quit prostituting themselves, get off drugs (if they’re using, which many are), and get out of “the life.” Which in some cases might be a very difficult proposition.