Update, 3 p.m.: Bellevue College spokesman David Sandler said in a statement that just two of the suspects are current Bellevue College students. One of the other suspects was enrolled during winter quarter but has not re-enrolled for spring, Sandler said.
"Contrary to the statements in the police report, we have determined that the actions in question were not connected in any way with any assignment for a Bellevue College class. As its policy, the college does not encourage, nor does it require, breaking the law to fulfill any course requirement," Sandler's statement continued.
Original post: Five individuals were arrested just after midnight Sunday on suspicion of trespassing at the former Group Health hospital site in the Overlake area.
The suspects, all between the ages of 20 and 22, told police they are students at Bellevue College and were filming a documentary as part of a class project, according to spokesman Jim Bove.
Officers were called to the scene by a private alarm company, Bove said. Bellevue Police assisted in the arrests, and a Kirkland K9 unit helped track a suspect who was hiding inside the building.
Police are investigating whether the incident is connected to a burglary that took place at the same location at approximately 3 a.m. Saturday, Bove said. In that case, surveillance cameras captured four individuals inside the hospital building, but no one was located inside.
The property, located in the 2700 block of 152nd Ave. NE, contains a vacant Group Health hospital that closed in 2008. The Redmond City Council recently approved a , and a group of residents that includes former Mayor Rosemarie Ives and members of Sustainable Redmond has since in King County Superior Court.
Bove said there was no indication that this weekend's break-ins were tied to the site's redevelopment plans. It is not uncommon for police to find young people or transients trespassing at the site, he said, adding two high-school students were arrested there approximately two months ago.
The building is locked, but Bove said the suspects that were arrested Sunday somehow managed to "manipulate the doors" and gain entry.
“It’s just like an abandoned house," Bove said. "It attracts attention (and) mischief.”
Patch has reached out to Bellevue College for comment and will update this post if we hear back.
From the Redmond Police Department:
Friday, March 30
8:43 a.m., 8300 block of 167th Ave. NE: Redmond Police responded to a reported car prowl at a local apartment complex.
12:14 p.m., 9600 block of 156th Place NE: Redmond Police took a report of threats.
3:44 p.m., 4300 block of 156th Ave. NE: Police responded to a report of a license plate theft.
4:06 p.m., 15700 block of Bear Creek Parkway: Redmond Police investigated the theft of a purse.
7:18 p.m., 11600 block of 172nd Ave. NE: Redmond Police investigated a death.
11:11 p.m., Cleveland Street and 161st Avenue NE: Redmond Police stopped a vehicle for a traffic infraction in the downtown area. The driver was arrested a short time later on suspicion of driving under the influence.
Saturday, March 31
2:14 a.m., 13900 block of Redmond Way: Redmond Police arrested a 26-year-old Kirkland man on suspicion of a driver's license violation following a DUI check.
2:54 a.m., 2700 block of 152nd Ave. NE: Redmond Police responded to a burglary in progress at the vacant Group Health Hospital building. Security personnel monitoring video surveillance cameras reported seeing four individuals inside the building. A building search was conducted using a police K9. No subjects were located inside.
8:34 a.m., 7900 block of 170th Ave. NE: Two Redmond residents reported that their vehicles had been prowled in the underground garage at the Bon Terra Apartments overnight. A local transient was located in the stairwell near the incident.
9:05 a.m., 7900 block of 170th Ave. NE: Two Redmond residents reported that their vehicles had been prowled in the underground garage at the Bon Terra Apartments overnight. A local transient was located in the stairwell near the incident.
10:33 a.m., 15800 block of NE 110th St.: Redmond Police took a report of threats that were made over the phone.
11:43 a.m., 17200 block of NE 104th St.: Redmond Police responded to a threats complaint.
11:55 a.m., 12100 block of 166th Place NE: Redmond Police took a report of fraud from a local resident.
3:31 p.m., 9200 block of 156th Place NE: Redmond Police investigated a report of a residential burglary.
Sunday, April 1
12:12 a.m., 2700 block of 152nd Ave. NE: Redmond Police arrested five subjects on suspicion of criminal trespassing at the old Group Health Hospital.
5:34 p.m., 16000 block of NE 85th St.: Police responded to a report of malicious mischief.
11:40 p.m., 8800 block of 161st Ave. NE: Two juveniles were charged with shoplifting from a local grocery store.