City crews clear cabin built by unhoused man inside Seattle park

Seattle city officials confirm crews went into Dr. Jose Rizal Park in the Beacon Hill neighborhood on Wednesday to remove a makeshift cabin and sprawling homeless encampment that was built over the past few months.

According to Lori Baxter with Mayor Bruce Harrell's office, "The City’s Unified Care Team was onsite at Jose Rizal Park today to clean an encampment area following SPD engagement at the site."


Concern grows as homeless man who dug up Seattle park with excavator now has cabin built

The man who is facing criminal charges for digging up the hillside inside Dr. Joze Rizal Park with an excavator back in October is now building a cabin.

As FOX 13 has previously reported, Steven Irwin claimed he had permission to build the cabin in the middle of the park, despite being arrested for previously taking an excavator from a nearby construction site to build in October. 

We Heart Seattle and other advocacy groups said they've been working with Irwin to get him resources, but he's previously declined all help.

Among the items removed at the site were construction equipment, a washing machine, a treadmill, beer kegs and more.

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"This man had four kegs of beer. He had at least three propane tanks," said park steward Craig Thompson. "He had reportedly 40 gallons of gasoline on site. He had a generator. He had a television set. He had a washing machine. There was a great threat of fire at this location. There’s no other way to describe it."

Seattle Parks and Recreation recently spent $15,000 to repair the area previously dug up by Irwin with the excavator.

"We're just happy this is over," said park steward Genevieve Courtney. "We put so much time and effort into getting him the help he needed but he was unwilling to take it. In the end, he just had to be removed."

A spokesperson with the Seattle Police Department confirmed with FOX 13 that Irwin was arrested Wednesday morning. He is currently facing charges of property destruction and possession of burglary tools and is awaiting trial. He is currently being held at the King County Jail.