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There are 'real challenges' to reopening East Precinct, Seattle police chief says

The East Precinct in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood was closed after the city pulled officers out due to ongoing protests and confrontations with police.

SEATTLE — Five days after protesters forced the City of Seattle to pull it's police officers from the East Precinct in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, Police Chief Carmen Best says she is working on a plan to get her officers back in the building. 

On an appearance on KING 5 Mornings on Friday, Chief Best said it makes her sad to see public sentiment turning on police. Best previously said it was not her decision to abandon the East Precinct.

RELATED: Seattle police report 911 response times have tripled since closure of East Precinct in Capitol Hill

Protesters are still currently occupying several city blocks in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. There are currently no plans to remove them.

Best says there are "real challenges" to getting the precinct back up and running. That includes talking with designated protesters who can be speak on behalf of demonstrators. As of now, Best says the protesters are "kind of a leaderless group."

RELATED: Seattle mayor and police chief give updates on protests and Capitol Hill

The best approach to getting back into the precinct, she says, is to take it "methodically" to ensure it is done safely.

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