A Seattle boxing gym has closed its doors after receiving death threats in response to their defiance of the state’s recent shutdown orders.

Brandon Sweeney, the owner of Seattle’s Rowdy Box, told KOMO News on Monday that the governor’s newest restrictions would shut down his newly-opened business for good.

Governor Jay Inslee announced a 4-week shutdown last Sunday that, among many other restrictions, has closed all indoor fitness operations and limited their outdoor capacity to five people until December 14th in an attempt to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

“Damned if you do, damned if you don’t,” Sweeney said on Monday. “If they want to come in here and sue me or fine me (well) we are out of money already. What are they going to take?”

“We look towards and lean on the science and data behind the pandemic,” Rowdy Box posted to Instagram shortly thereafter, “which has proven that gyms and fitness studios are not the cause of the spread of this nasty virus.”

On Thursday, however, Rowdy Box reversed course and closed its doors.

Sweeney told KOMO News that he and his family began to receive death threats. In response, he has closed the gym’s doors.

“Effective until early December,” the gym announced on Instagram, “our studio will be closed.”

Sweeney also said that he would be leaving the area for a time while things calm down.

This was not Sweeney’s first time standing up to Washington State’s COVID-19 restrictions.

In August, Sweeney’s wife, Sami, started an online petition asking Inslee to re-consider restrictions he enacted on August 3rd.

Inslee began requiring that fitness studios give 17 feet of space between clients. Small business owners argued that these restrictions were unrealistic and burdensome for small businesses who don’t have as much space as larger chains.

“We’re gonna be down to two people per class and we can’t operate,” said Sami, owner of Pure Barre in Bellevue, “we’d have to close down with just two people per class.”

The petition has gained over 17,000 signatures.

In response to the newest state mandates given last Sunday, Pure Barre announced they would be closing down.

Caitlin Bassett

Caitlin Bassett

Caitlin Bassett graduated from Liberty University in 2017 with her Bachelor's in Politics and Policy. She grew up in the great Pacific Northwest and temporarily resides in northern California. She also writes as "the Evergreen Conservative" at www.theevergreenconservative.wordpress.com.

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7 comments

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    • Intimidation, whom ever made those death threats was not an ordinary person. The threats were made by someone who was paid by the state to make those threats. That phone # can be traced.

  • How dare they take away the faith of the American voters. We don’t pay their salaries to be thieves and crooks. Where’s their conscience and how do they sleep at night. People might be disappointed if their person doesn’t win but American’s can handle it if its honest and fair. Thank you and all who are fighting for integrity. You have quite a battle so I say God Bless you all.

  • . . . there is a Gym out New York way where patrons of the Gym, and “other biz owners” showed up to defend the Gym from an overweight (Calorically Challenged) Sheriff AND some health inspector??? “you are not wanted here . . . ”

    I sense we are beginning to see that “push back” is fair play . . . ((( remembering it is NOT the person, the “push back” is against the POLICY . . . )))