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Election Day break-in was not random, police assert

Motive unclear as state Democratic HQ hit

SEATTLE – A preliminary police report suggests an Election Day burglary at the headquarters of the state Democratic Party might be something other than a routine break-in.

The majority of items taken belonged to important campaign workers, and the burglar attempted to make it look like a random crime, the report stated.

Police are still investigating and won’t speculate on why the office was targeted.

“Unless we know who the suspects are, it’s kind of hard to figure out a motive,” spokesman Mark Jamieson said Thursday. “I wouldn’t read too much into the initial report taken by the patrol officers at the scene. The real work is done by the follow-up units.”

Jamieson said burglary detectives don’t see anything suspicious, besides the initial break-in.

Workers arriving about 5:30 a.m. Nov. 6 found the front door smashed.

Police secured the building and found offices ransacked. In addition to the Democratic Party, the building held offices for Jay Inslee’s campaign for governor and Organizing for America, the campaign to re-elect President Barack Obama.

A window had been broken to get into a director’s office and confidential files were rifled through and moved.

Other offices that were hit included the media coordinator and fundraising section.

A trash can was dumped and used to haul away the stolen property.

The majority of items taken belonged to people who “were of major importance to the campaigns,” the report states.

Several computers and alcoholic beverages were left untouched, according to the report.

“The suspects were there to collect specific items but attempted to make it look like a random burglary,” according to the report.

The police description of the incident with names blacked out was obtained by the Associated Press through a public records request.

The state Democratic Party is waiting for police to finish their work, said spokesman Benton Strong.

“It’s premature to make any guesses what or why it happened,” he said Wednesday. “We know offices were broken into and a lot of things were stolen.

“I have no idea if there’s more to it,” he said.

Inslee spokeswoman Jaime Smith said her laptop was among the stolen items, but she wouldn’t speculate on a motive.