Seattle/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on February 26, 2024
Seattle Man's Park Dwelling Defies Legal Battles, Shifts from Excavator Rampage to 'Cabin in the Woods'Source: City of Seattle Official Website

In a controversial twist to an already unusual story, Steven Irwin, the homeless man previously charged with property destruction for using an excavator at Seattle's Dr. Jose Rizal Park, has evidently constructed a cabin at the very site he once dug up. Irwin’s new dwelling includes amenities such as multiple generators, fireplaces, propane heaters, a washing machine, and remarkably, even a treadmill.

Previously, Seattle Parks and Recreation coughed up $15,000 to remedy the embattled hillside that Irwin had commandeered with heavy machinery, according to information obtained by News 4 San Antonio. Irwin insists he has permission to build on the land, and has even given KOMO News an exclusive tour of his sprawling encampment.

Despite facing criminal charges for his previous excavator escapade, Irwin spoke to FOX 13, revealing his fatigue from being displaced repeatedly. "I’ve now moved five times," said Steve Irwin. "I’m tired, you know? Once I get close to building something, something happens." Irwin continued to express a clear intent to persist with his residential project within the park.

The reaction to Irwin's construction has been mixed. While some see no harm in his endeavors, environmental advocates are raising grave concerns. "This is trespassing. This is vandalism. This is destroying a public trail that’s intended for all to use," Andrea Suarez of the group We Heart Seattle declared, according to the same FOX 13 report. Suarez’s group has even tried to intervene, offering Irwin alternative forms of assistance such as sneakers, work, and housing, but he remains resolute in his pursuit of what he describes as a ‘cabin in the woods.’

The incident last October that led to Irwin's arrest by Seattle police came after locals dialed 911 over his operation of an excavator in the park. Though he was taken into custody, following his release, Irwin resumed his efforts on the hillside, which, he claims, now involves carving out a ‘mine’ in search of gold, an assertion mentioned in both WPDE and News 4 San Antonio's coverage. Irwin's story continues to develop, with the city's response to this latest chapter yet to unfold.