On Saturday evening, a reader sent me material on two violent attacks a week apart by intruders in the home of immigration reform (of the patriotic variety) activist Shawna Forde and her husband.
On the evening of December 22, a lone intruder broke into the Fordesâ€™ home, where Mr. Forde was home alone, and shot him three times in the chest. The shooter â€?was described as white,â€? but the police composite sketch suggests that he is Hispanic, categories which are not racially exclusive, but which politically have taken on separate lives.
Exactly one week later, three males broke into the Forde home, where Mrs. Forde was home alone. One beat her with a blunt object, one or more sliced her up, and at least one raped her. She reports that one male was white, another spoke Spanish, and that they â€?used a felt pen to scrawl the number 13 on her kitchen floor. She said her freelance crime investigations could have brought trouble her way, and suggested the â€?13â€™ may be a reference to Hispanic street gangs, including the ultra violent Mara Salvatrucha [MS-13],â€? which is active in Everett.
As reported by Everettâ€™s Herald newspaper, the Everett Police Department has insinuated that all is not right with the Fordesâ€™ stories (or that the crimes have a non-political motivation), maintaining that there was no sign of forced entry in the December 22 shooting case, and following the December 29 attack on Shawna Forde, â€?acknowledg[ing] they aren't quite sure what to make of the violent events recently reported at the home in the 2200 block of RockeÂfeller Avenue.â€?
The Herald noted that during Shawna Fordeâ€™s unsuccessful 2007 run for an Everett City Council seat, she â€?pleaded guilty to stealing chocolate milk from an Everett grocery store.
â€?Forde at the time said the whole thing was a misunderstanding, but pleaded guilty to put the matter behind her.â€?
In her campaign, Forde â€?promise[d] to make certain that police aren't blocked from checking on the immigration status of suspects.â€?
At the same time, one has to consider the sources. The police are hostile towards Forde, due to her campaign promise to end their sanctuary practices, and the Herald is a pro-illegal immigrant newspaper, which sought to provoke reader hostility towards Forde, by playing the SPLCâ€™s â€?Nazi cardâ€? against her, in the story on the attack on her.
Forde's border activities have drawn attention from the Montgomery, Ala.-based Southern Poverty Law Center, which has tracked hate groups for decades. The organization profiled Forde in Spring 2008 as one of 20 people it characterized as exploiting any medium to deliver a "message of raging intolerance" on immigration issues.Iâ€™ll try to get statements from the police and from Shawna Forde, but I am starting to get a Rashomony feeling about this story. All that is clear at this point, is that things have gotten very interesting in Everett, Washington, and they are bound to get even more interesting.