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Police Notified of Superheroes Patrolling Seattle Streets

Police Notified of Superheroes Patrolling Seattle Streets

A man who identifies himself as Phoenix Jones the Guardian of Seattle, part of the Rain City Superhero Movement, poses with an unidentified Seattle police officer. Department officials alerted officers to the self-described superhero, who said his new cos

Seattle Post Intelligencer

November 19, 2010

SEATTLE – Vigilante justice has come to Seattle, and the caped crusaders drive a Kia.

Seattle police say a group of self-described superheroes have been patrolling the streets at night trying to save people from crime. They call themselves the Rain City Superhero Movement and say they’re part of a nationwide movement of real-life crime fighters.

The national website — cited in a police bulletin sent to Seattle officers Wednesday — states “a Real Life Superhero is whoever chooses to embody the values presented in super heroic comic books, not only by donning a mask/costume, but also performing good deeds for the communitarian place whom he inhabits.”

Police say the “costume-wearing complainants” are lucky they haven’t been hurt.

In one instance, police say a caped crusader dressed in black was nearly shot when he came running out of a dark park. In another case, a witness on Capitol Hill saw the crusaders wearing ski masks in a car parked at a Shell station and thought they were going to rob the place.

Police got the license plate and found those masked characters drove a Kia Fate registered to one of the character’s godmothers, department staff said. She told police her godson goes around doing good deeds.

Costume includes ballistic cup

Investigators identified nine people dressed in costume going around Seattle after dark. A police source said the characters go by Thorn, Buster Doe, Green Reaper, Gemini, No Name, Catastrophe, Thunder 88, Penelope and Phoenix Jones the Guardian of Seattle.

But don’t listen to Captain Ozone or Knight Owl, police were told. They’re apparently not part of the group.

Officers have learned the true identity of Phoenix — a 22-year-old man whose costume includes a black cape, black fedora, blue tights, white belt and mask. Police say he’s often driven by a young woman not in costume.

Officers say she usually doesn’t get out of the car, instead letting the “superhero” do his thing.

Phoenix was interviewed by detectives this month and came to police headquarters dressed in most of his costume, police said.

“(Phoenix) apologized for not being in full costume, as it was being repaired after (he) was stabbed while trying to intervene with a drug dealer and a citizen,” the police bulletin stated, according to a police source.

The man was not seriously wounded during the incident under Interstate 5, and police say he may not have actually been wounded.

Now, police were told Phoenix wears body armor, a ballistic vest, arm and leg trauma plates — and a ballistic cup. Police were apparently told that bulletproof vest helped stop a bullet during an incident in Tacoma a year ago.

Others are expected to be at police headquarters this week for identification.

“I don’t condone people walking around on the street with masks,” said the man who called himself Phoenix Jones. “Everyone on my team either has a military background or a mixed martial arts background, and we’re well aware of what its costs to do what we do.”

Jones said he would talk in greater detail after a television news story was broadcast this weekend by our news partner, KOMO/4.

Keeping in superhero fashion, he didn’t leave a return number.

Police say another incident with the self-proclaimed superheroes came about 3 a.m. November 4 at Sixth Avenue and South King Street in the International District.

Police responded to a harassment complaint and found Phoenix the Guardian of Seattle dressed in a “black colored Batman costume and a black ski mask,” department spokesman Jeff Kappel said.

He was standing with four other men and one woman, all in costume with their faces covered by ski masks and bandanas. They were dealing a man making threatening statements and swinging a golf club.

Police took the golf club as evidence. The “costume-wearing complainants” refused to press charges because they didn’t want to identify themselves to officers, Kappel said. So the suspect walked.

Dangers of vigilante justice

“There’s nothing wrong with citizens getting involved with the criminal justice process — as long as they follow it all the way through,” Kappel said, adding they want people to call 911 and be good witnesses, even if a case goes to court.

Police say they don’t want people who aren’t sworn officers putting themselves in danger.

They point to an unrelated case earlier this year in Maple Leaf. A man in his late 40s was working on his rental property near Northeast 77th Street and 16th Avenue Northeast when he saw men prowling his vehicle.

The man fought the prowlers and was winning, but one was able to inflict two knife wounds 3-inches deep. Large amounts of blood covered his clothes when medics arrived, and police say the man nearly died.

In another Northgate case from 2008, a man shot a car prowler who was trying to steal his stereo. The prowler died and the suspect was charged with manslaughter. He’s out now, but was sentenced to nine months in prison.

A member of the Rain City Superhero Movement told police they carry Tasers, nightsticks, pepper spray, but no firearms.

Police say they hope the self-proclaimed superheroes are realistic and act as good witnesses instead of putting themselves in danger. The bulletin said a KOMO/4 news crew plans to follow the caped crusaders Friday night.

According to the national superhero website, the characters don’t have to engage in violent fights to be a crime fighter, but should embody the values presented in super heroic comic books.

“Inspiration plays a major role in this, of course,” character Entomo wrote on the page. "You can inspire people to believe in a symbol.

“You can inspire people to believe they can CREATE themselves a symbol and embody it - and it’s not a lie.”

  • Dscn5871_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    I wonder if there are any good costumes left? I always feel more powerful in tights.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago

    Its only a matter of time before several things or more get detained on an emergency detention order, one of them gets killed by a turd, one of them gets killed by a cop, or one of them gets arrested and charged with obstruction, tampering, assault, aggrevated assault, or murder.
    Its obvious that their minds are in a whole nother place

  • Juggernaut___max50


    almost 4 years ago


    That's great!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago

    I would push for an obstruction charge somehow. This is ricidulous, I am veyr surprised one of these "superheros" havent been hurt or killed yet. But then again, it is only a matter of time.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


    Very interesting.

  • Police_link_badge_max50


    almost 4 years ago



  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


    What's reality for these people!

  • American_flag_eagle_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    I'll say it again, Just when I thought I have heard and seen everything......

  • Ba_old_glory_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    Ok kiddies it's time for your naps. Let the grownups take care of the police work.

  • Vpsomourningband_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    I wonder how long it took for this mixed bag of nuts to come together... sheesh.

  • Mandy_and_me_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    I am truly suprised one of these guys or girls hasn't been seriously hurt yet. Either by a true criminal or a cop that mistook them for someone else

  • Marc_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    That kinda thing makes for good TV or movies. reality, it's a really bad idea. Leave the crimefighting thing to the pro's.

  • Img_0103_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    I'll tell you this much, if I saw several men in a parked car all wearing black ski masks and dark clothing, instincts would kick in at that point, as I draw my weapon and call for back-up.

  • Christmas_picture_1_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    Taking neighborhood watch programs to a whole new level.

  • Tigerstripe_002_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    Ok really wearing all black, and ski-masks is going to get one of them shot.
    Body armor is good, but its not invulnerability like in some game.
    Observing, Recording, Reporting, and appearing in court is great.
    But getting involved in a street fight or gang brawl is steeewped.

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