West Seattle Crime Watch: ‘Open letter,’ stolen car, 2 more reports

The latest West Seattle Crime Watch reports from the WSB inbox include an “open letter” from a theft victim to the thieves, whom she believes were at an unauthorized party at her house, asking that two items with keepsake value be returned; plus, a stolen car to watch for, and more:

First, the “open letter,” from Justine:

On Saturday February 19th, my daughter, who attends West Seattle High School, used our home to host a party without permission. For this I apologize to the parents of teens who may have attended for my daughter’s irresponsibility. On our end, this party resulted in a great deal of property damage to our home and a number of items stolen. While we have filed a police report, I am far less interested in pressing charges than having my property returned. I would ask that parents please keep an eye out for an HP EliteBook 8530p laptop computer and also a new black 1 tb external USB hard drive. These two items hold many family photos including those of my son’s high school graduation, my last Christmas with my grandmother before she passed away and also photos from the first two and a half years of our youngest daughter’s life. We do not have any other copies of these memories. I am willing to offer a reward for the return of the laptop and/or the external hard drive no questions asked. It would mean the world to us to have these memories back.

If you have any information, Justine would like to hear from you directly at justiney70@gmail.com.

From Julia:

Writing to report that my silver 97 Subaru Legacy station wagon was stolen some time last night from 16th/Cloverdale SW. License plate is 503-VXL. The front windshield is cracked on the passenger side. It has a black Thule rack/box on top with a West 5 sticker and a yellow/red sticker in Japanese. Waiting for the police to come take my report but I would appreciate it if you could post this when appropriate to ask neighborhood folks to keep an eye out.

We also have a burglary report, from Sally:

Our house (in the 5200 block of) 36th Av SW was broken into between 7-5 yesterday. They kicked in the back door and stole TVs, laptop, and jewelry.

And a car break-in reported by Nancy – third time the same van has been hit, she says:

First incident in October reported to police (broken back window); Second incident January 11th reported to police (attempted theft of vehicle-damaged badly-and theft of $4,000 in tools & parts). Third incident (Monday) morning, February 21st reported to police (break-in of vehicle.) Vehicle was in WELL-LIT parking space, fully visible on Admiral Way.

This last time they were stopped by the car alarm we installed between incident #2 and #3. Key points: This time I SAW them. They were driving an older long-style white panel van (no side windows) no writing on it. The man ran when the alarm went off and we yelled out the window at him. He looked young (under 30) was short, slight built, quite thin, wearing green or dark cotton hoodie (hood up) and baggy cream-colored cotton pants.

Just as important to ME: When I reported this to 911, I tried, as hard as I possibly could, to get the answering person let me tell him that a police officer had JUST driven down Admiral Way. IF he had allowed me to talk, they could have contacted the police officer right then, and he might have caught the thief. But, he would NOT let me do that. He kept saying, “I have to fill this form in in a certain way.” My constant attempt to interrupt him, saying, “But, this is important..” fell on deaf ears.

We don’t know if it would have helped in Nancy’s situation, but do be sure to read the report we published last night after the West Seattle Blockwatch Captains Network’s briefing on how 911 works.

9 Replies to "West Seattle Crime Watch: 'Open letter,' stolen car, 2 more reports"

  • RJB February 23, 2011 (4:19 pm)

    Nancy….that has to be frustrating!! A form is more important than listening to the victim. I know the SPD is super busy and it is probably frustrating for them also but…we are all in this together.

  • MB February 23, 2011 (4:22 pm)

    I have a friend who is a 911 operator, so I understand the difficulty of the job…but man, have I had some TERRIBLE conversations when calling 911. I can totally sympathize with Nancy :( If only they had listened to you.

  • Alki Bee February 23, 2011 (4:59 pm)

    I once called 911 to report a non-responsive man lying in the alley next to Starbucks on Alki. The operator asked me the address. I gave him the cross streets, but he insisted he needed a street address. I ran to Starbucks and read the operator the number written the door. He said there was no such address. After he said he couldn’t do anything if he didn’t have an address, I screamed that if the man died because he couldn’t figure out where the Starbucks on Alki is, I would make sure he was held responsible. Emergency vehicles arrived about 10 minutes later and took the man away in an ambulance.

  • Paul February 23, 2011 (5:23 pm)

    I don’t call 911 as much to report suspicious activity because of the snotty attitudes and irrelevent questions I get from the operators

  • KCH February 23, 2011 (6:34 pm)

    This is why remote backups are essential. I am sorry for your losses, especially the photos.

  • (required) February 23, 2011 (7:56 pm)

    Justine, I hope you get your stuff back. Sorry for the trouble you’re having now. Hopefully your daughter will pull positive from all this.

  • redblack February 23, 2011 (9:37 pm)

    justine: screw that! press charges.
    the days of letting kids be kids has moved into an era that enables criminal behavior. my old man would have whipped my butt if he found i stole from others when i was in high school. that threat alone – whether he would have executed it or not – taught me to respect others’ belongings.
    (we could go into the psychology of fear versus actually learning the difference between right and wrong; but i think the fact that i would never consider doing what the kids in your house did speaks for itself.)
    the way i see it, if kids raise the stakes for juvenile shenanigans to criminality, maybe a night in lockup will help the lesson sink in.
    maybe parents should take away their kids’ ethernet cards and smart phones. or are they afraid of violent and criminal repercussions from their own kids?

  • marco February 24, 2011 (11:45 am)

    Justine, I hope you get your pictures back! I have small kids, but that’s one scary situation for parents…

    Can I recommend DropBox.com (free for 2GB) or SmugMug.com (a very reliable Photo website) to back up your pictures online in the future?

    Good luck, Marco

    PS: If you use my referal link for DropBox, we both get +250MB http://db.tt/uJ4mGPj

  • monroe1200 February 25, 2011 (1:21 pm)

    We called 911 once to report 2 men beating up another man in the Morgan Junction and the dispatcher asked us if the person getting beat up wanted to file charges or not. She was telling us that if he didn’t want to press charges that they weren’t going to send an officer. SPD hates coming to West Seattle when called, they have proven this too many times!

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