CHOP protesters staying put at Seattle police precinct

Despite pressure from city officials and rampant rumors on social media, protesters at the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest, or CHOP, have not ended their occupation outside the East Precinct.

In fact, two days after the mayor said it was time for the protesters to move on, they moved in even more, inching tents closer to the police building. The mayor's announcement came after a number of shootings near the occupied zone over the past several days.

While some have opted to leave the occupation, the remaining protesters are clumping together. Occupiers are still camping around Cal Anderson Park and others have brought even more tents to the sidewalk outside the precinct.

"We're here to stay," CHOP volunteer Katie N. said, squashing rumors they're ceding the space back to the city. "What would we do if the city tried to come back in? I don't know, I'm not sure. I'm here to stay and a lot of people are here to stay."

A spokesman for Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said city leadership and community organizers continue to talk with demonstrators on the ground to encourage them to peacefully leave the area at night.

One of those community organizers is Andre Taylor of Not This Time. He was at CHOP on Wednesday speaking with occupiers. He said the environment is no longer safe and people need to move on.

As the occupation's footprint shrinks, some say it has the chance to grow in concept.

"You talking about one CHOP in this area? You can spread the message all over the world, but you don't see that vision yet," Taylor said of the protesters standing their ground. "That's not the vision because they want to agitate."

Slowly, more organizers are setting their sights beyond the barricades.

"People are going to come just like they did before, so just because we pack up and go to a new location, it doesn't mean we're defeated, it doesn't mean we lost," CHOP organizer Malcolm H. said. "This is a battle that is long and we must take our time and slow steps so that way we're not losing our breaths."

Malcolm is one of many voices in CHOP. As of Wednesday night, he said he and other occupiers were staying put.