After 23 years with the Seattle Police Department, Lieutenant Jessica Taylor retired on August 1, delivering a scathing critique of the city’s leadership and law enforcement tactics.
Bypassing the standard Exit Form, Taylor penned a 15-page “unfiltered, raw, and unapologetic” resignation letter to Chief Adrian Diaz, revealing her reasons for departure. In a subsequent interview with the Jason Rantz Show on KTTH, Taylor publicly divulged her letter due to concern it might be suppressed by the department.
In her letter, Taylor lamented the current state of Seattle, placing blame on several parties: “The toxic mix of the Seattle City Council’s absurdity, the spinelessness of the Mayor, the leniency of the prosecutor’s office, and your failed leadership has accelerated this city’s downhill slide straight to rock bottom.”
She criticized the Seattle City Council for their decisions that she believes lack “common sense and basic logic.” Taylor wrote, “Their absurd policies have turned Seattle into a playground for anarchists and criminals.” Taylor also took aim at Mayor Bruce Harrell, accusing him of prioritizing “political correctness over the safety and well-being of its people.”
Taylor’s disillusionment with Seattle’s leadership was evident when she mentioned the city’s portrayal in the media. “It’s no wonder Seattle has become a laughingstock of the nation and the globe,” she stated, adding that the city that once boasted progressiveness has devolved into “a hotbed for crime and anarchy.”
Her job wasn’t without personal challenges. Taylor suffers from trigeminal neuralgia, which causes her significant pain. Moreover, the Seattle PD has seen almost 600 officers leave, exacerbating understaffing issues. Taylor wrote, “SPD is dangerously understaffed, and the officers and their families are suffering. The hours are ruthlessly long, and due to the staffing crisis (created by you, the mayor, and the council), these unsafe conditions are entirely unacceptable. Completely. They have also been working for years without a contract—Also unacceptable.”
Despite her criticisms, Taylor’s dedication to Seattle is undeniable. She volunteered with the homeless and the Special Olympics, and received the Patriot Award from the National Guard for supporting soldiers. She joined the force to aid her community and praised her colleagues as “exceptional, exceptional people.”
Post-resignation, Taylor relocated to Tri Cities and took a non-law enforcement job. Still, her concern for Seattle remains. She advised residents, “The officers on the street are the backbone of this department. And they’ll do everything that they can and fight tooth and nail to make sure that the public is taken care of.”
In response to Taylor’s comments, the Seattle Police Department, via a spokesperson, declined to comment on specific criticisms but highlighted ongoing efforts. They said, “We want our officers to feel valued and respected for their hard work every single day. We are committed to highlighting that work on a routine basis.”
To read the full resignation letter, click here.