Happening nearby: Police investigating after local African American teens say they were threatened

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Edmonds police are investigating an incident involving two African American teenagers that occurred on the evening of Feb. 4 outside of Harvey’s Lounge, located in the 21100 block of Highway 99.

The teens’ mother, Darnesha Weary of Edmonds, said her 18-year-old son and 14-year-old daughter were working on a school photography project — which involved taking photos of Highway 99 near Harvey’s— when they were threatened by a person from Harvey’s who had a baseball bat and used the “n-word.”

“He was yelling at them and saying they didn’t want any n—— in here,” Weary said. “When they got home, my daughter was in tears and my son had his head down, didn’t talk. My husband went outside to see if anyone was there and I called 911.

Edmonds police spokesman Sgt. Josh McClure said that the department is looking at the Weary family concerns “thoroughly” — including reviewing surveillance footage from Harvey’s — to determine if a crime has occurred. “Our patrol officers worked overnight on this before a detective was assigned first thing this morning and began following up,” McClure said.

Police are receiving “full cooperation” from the owner of Harvey’s, he added.

A phone call to Harvey’s for comment was unsuccessful; the person who answered hung up.

As the investigation continues, Weary admits her family is badly shaken by the incident. “My daughter couldn’t sleep. She kept asking, ‘How could they do that to us? I didn’t do anything wrong.’ My kids volunteer. They do well in school. My daughter said, ‘All they saw is my brother is black. I’m black.’”

Weary said that she and her husband have no answers other than “that it is the way of the world.” She added that her husband has cautioned his son. “He said, ‘You are 6-foot-5 and a black male. You have to be aware.’”

The family has received support on Facebook and from the schools. “That helps,” Darnesha Weary said. “We appreciate it.”

McClure noted in a statement that the incident has received “strong reaction on social media,” and asked for patience as the investigation progresses. “We encourage everyone to be respectful of the process, let the facts come to light and to refrain from inflammatory comments,” he said. ” The Edmonds Police Department thanks you for ongoing community concern and willingness to support this important process.”

— By Connie McDougall

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