Seattle official who backed convicted pedophile for board seat on homelessness council REFUSES to resign

“We agree that the behavior by the current Board Co-Chair in shouting down the board member who identified that the nominee is a registered sex offender was unacceptable, and we immediately asked the Co-Chair to resign."

Ari Hoffman Seattle WA
A Seattle area official is refusing to resign after a video went viral showing her shouting down a disabled veteran who opposed a convicted pedophile's nomination to the board of a taxpayer-funded homeless agency.

In an email to the King County Regional Homelessness Authority staff and board, chief program officer Peter Lynn stated he was formally requesting the Continuum of Care's co-chair Shanéé Colston to resign after she “shouted down committee member Kristina Sawyckyj for identifying that one of the prospective AC nominees was a registered sex offender, which is public information. Ms. Sawyckyj was also shouted down by Chair Colston when she spoke of her experience of being inappropriately touched by the nominee.”

In response to the incident going viral, the agency posted a statement on social media that read, “KCRHA shares the concerns of our community about the nomination of a registered sex offender for the Continuum of Care Board, and does not support that nomination.”

The statement added, “We agree that the behavior by the current Board Co-Chair in shouting down the board member who identified that the nominee is a registered sex offender was unacceptable, and we immediately asked the Co-Chair to resign. The KCRHA is continuing actions to ensure safety for the board, staff, and members of the public.”

However, a spokesperson for the agency told KOMO News that Colston is refusing to resign.

On May 3, Colston was co-chairing the Zoom meeting to discuss nominations to fill an open spot on the board. After a fellow board member spoke in opposition to the nomination of registered sex offender Thomas Whitaker, Colston erupted, defended Whitaker, and berated the member who opposed him.

According to court records obtained by The Post Millennial, Whitaker AKA Raven Crowfoot was convicted in 2010 of harboring a 13-year-old runaway whom he had a sexual relationship with.

In 2012 Whitaker was charged with raping a 15-year-old girl and eventually pled guilty to the felony sex crime of communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.

In 2018, Seattle police found Whitaker living in a tent with a 17-year-old girl.

According to the agency’s website, Whitaker is a “lived expert” as a result of having been homeless and was nominated to serve on the emergency food and shelter board to represent the LGBTQIA2s, American Indian/Alaska Native, Indigenous, the chronically homeless, and the domestic violence community.

Board member Kristina Sawyckyj, a former Marine who is wheelchair-bound after being raped in the service, objected to the appointment of Whitaker saying, “He is a sex offender, a repeat sex offender, and I have had [a] bad experience with him,” adding that the nominee had touched her inappropriately in the past.

Colston, a peer counselor and "diversion coach" for the Department of Emergency Services (DESC), screamed at Sawyckyj, “We don’t do that here,” adding it was against board rules to “out” someone who was convicted of a sex crime.

Colston continued by yelling, “He’s here because sex offenders are another population that is vulnerable that don’t have housing,” and then threatened to put anyone who discussed it further on mute and remove them from the meeting. 

Colston, who posts anti-police and BLM rhetoric on her Twitter account, continued berating the disabled veteran and declared, “This is about equity, and everyone, everyone deserves housing. I don’t care if they’re a sex offender! I don’t care if they’re black! I don’t care if they’re indigenous. I don’t care if they’re a criminal! I don’t care if they’re coming out of jail, prison. Everyone deserves housing.”

Despite the objection, Whitaker's nomination was approved by the board but in a statement to the Ari Hoffman Show on Talk Radio 570 KVI, the KCRHA said, "Nominations are made by the CoC membership. However, these nominees have not been confirmed. The full CoC membership had planned to vote on the nominees at a meeting on May 5, but that meeting was canceled due to concerns about the conduct of the Co-Chair, and she has been asked to resign."

KCRHA did not respond when asked what the qualifications were for nominees or board members.

Shortly after the video went viral, the CEO of the KCRHA Marc Dones resigned from his $247,000 a-year position citing “burnout” in the wake of multiple other incidents which called into question his effectiveness and competency as well as his staff having been earning 6 figure salaries and spending massive amounts of money while accomplishing very little as other bills to service providers went unpaid.


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