Update: Woman found dead in the water off Beach Drive

March 12, 2012 at 8:18 am | In Beach Drive murder, West Seattle news, West Seattle police | 40 Comments

(Scroll down for updates, including video interview with new information from police)

ORIGINAL 8:18 AM REPORT: A body has just been recovered from the water off the 3700 block of Beach Drive – near Cormorant Cove Park and Harbor West Apartments (the complex that juts out on pilings) – is under investigation right now. No word on identity or how the person died. We have a crew at the scene finding out more.

(Photos by WSB’s Patrick Sand unless otherwise credited)
8:24 AM UPDATE: We’re told the body was found about 100 yards offshore, but don’t know yet who spotted it or how. Adding a photo of some of the emergency response at the scene. Police have put up yellow tape to cordon off the area where the body was placed, until the Medical Examiner arrives.

(This photo courtesy area resident who didn’t want to be identified)
9:14 AM UPDATE: Seattle Police have shared a bit more information via SPD Blotter:

On 3/12/12, at approximately 7:30 a.m., officers responded with Seattle Fire Department to the 3800 block of Beach Dr SW., to a report of a body floating in the water approximately 100 feet off shore.

The victim is a white female, 30-50 years-old. The cause of death is unknown at this time. Homicide Detectives have responded to the scene out of an abundance of caution. This is all the information available at the time. Additional updates may be added as more information becomes available.

10 AM UPDATE: Just talked to SPD spokesperson Det. Renée Witt at the scene in a video interview we will upload here when our crew’s back in house. She says they’re considering the death “suspicious,” until and unless proven otherwise, so the area remains sealed off while detectives investigate. (added) Here’s the video; she also told us the woman hadn’t been in the water for long:

40 Comments

  1. Is this why there was a helicopter hovering over the North end of West Seattle this morning?

    Comment by SeaCC — 8:53 am March 12, 2012 #

  2. The chopper coincided with the report, SeaCC, but I don’t know for sure whether it was law enforcement (Guardian One) or TV (choppers certainly might have gone to “body in water” report). – TR

    Comment by WSB — 9:04 am March 12, 2012 #

  3. Wow, I was wondering what the police response was from this morning. I live right next door and I saw them roping off part of the park on my way to work this morning. Please keep us updated!

    Comment by L — 10:27 am March 12, 2012 #

  4. So sad. I feel for the victim and her friends and family.

    Comment by Lo siento — 10:51 am March 12, 2012 #

  5. Very sad.

    Comment by g — 12:46 pm March 12, 2012 #

  6. A colleague of mine was just discharged on Friday after having emotional issues and has disappeared since. She lives in West Seattle too. I truly hope the body is not hers.

    Comment by Dan — 1:00 pm March 12, 2012 #

  7. So so sad.

    Comment by WTF — 5:17 pm March 12, 2012 #

  8. Condolences to all.

    Comment by Been There — 5:54 pm March 12, 2012 #

  9. I just learned that this was a friend and colleague. My thoughts and prayers are with her and her grieving family. We will miss her very much.

    Comment by DMS — 6:47 pm March 12, 2012 #

  10. Im sorry for your loss DMS.I hope this was a bad accident and not something suspicious.

    Comment by Alki Resident — 7:33 pm March 12, 2012 #

  11. Sorry for her loss.

    Comment by lm — 7:36 pm March 12, 2012 #

  12. Talked to someone who saw the body close up. Definitely WASN’T a bad accident, and definitely WAS a homicide.

    Comment by Almost there... — 8:00 pm March 12, 2012 #

  13. So sad. Any update on possible cause of death?

    Comment by Kae — 9:54 pm March 12, 2012 #

  14. No. I was unable to obtain any additional information tonight but will be checking first thing in the morning to see if they have made a ruling. The Medical Examiner’s daily “media release” for today at 3 pm was way too soon for them to have officially released ID and cause of death publicly, even if it has been determined … TR

    Comment by WSB — 9:57 pm March 12, 2012 #

  15. She was a coworker and will be sorely missed. We are all devastated by this tradegy. Her husband and daughter are in our prayers.

    Comment by Barbara Austin — 9:22 am March 13, 2012 #

  16. So sorry to hear this. My prayers are with the family and friends of this woman.

    Comment by D — 9:47 am March 13, 2012 #

  17. I’m so sorry for all of the loss that will be felt by family, friends, neighbors, and the community. Please keep us updated on what happened.

    Comment by Treefairies — 11:46 am March 13, 2012 #

  18. I asked SPD (the media team) again first thing this morning – no new information yet. At this point, I will publish a separate story whenever there *is* new info … TR

    Comment by WSB — 12:10 pm March 13, 2012 #

  19. Any news yet as to what happened?

    Comment by Barbara Austin — 3:32 pm March 13, 2012 #

  20. I just checked with SPD again. “Still just a death investigation,” according to Det. Jeff Kappel in media relations. The Medical Examiner’s daily media release is not out yet. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 3:37 pm March 13, 2012 #

  21. Well… I see my comment was removed. I guess stating information about the manner of death, non-descriptly, is against WSB’s policy. Someday I’ll figure the censorship out. Always makes me wonder how many other comments are removed before people even see them, just because someone didn’t like them. I do like how the site uses cookies to make it appear to the original poster that their comment is still there, when in reality it isn’t. As always WSB, feel free to email and explain. I’ve always used my email address…

    Comment by Almost there... — 3:43 pm March 13, 2012 #

  22. Yes, we don’t publish speculation or hearsay on cause of death without any information being officially released so that we know for sure if it’s right or wrong. Nor identification, among other things. You can call it censorship if you want, but we have a lot of rules and are unapologetic about them. We reserve the right to delete or not publish ANY comment. It’s responsible site ownership, as opposed to site owners who choose “anything goes” policies, or worse claim to have rules and don’t apply them – TR

    Comment by WSB — 4:15 pm March 13, 2012 #

  23. Any updates? You guys have had the most info so far. Thank you for all the updates and working on this story. :(

    Comment by PhotoBug714 — 4:18 pm March 13, 2012 #

  24. Thank you for keeping it real. It’s hard enough to accept without being mislead about what happened. Please keep us informed.

    Comment by Barbara Austin — 4:54 pm March 13, 2012 #

  25. @Almost there:
    “I do like how the site uses cookies to make it appear to the original poster that their comment is still there, when in reality it isn’t.”

    I find it hard to believe anyone would employ that kind of misdirection, certainly not a neighborhood site like WSB. What is more likely is that you were looking at a cached version of the page that was stored in your browser, which is normal browser behavior. You can force a reload from the server by pressing CTRL-F5 (on a PC). The refresh button doesn’t necessarily reload a web page from the server.

    Comment by JAH — 10:19 pm March 13, 2012 #

  26. Any update on the investigation? Will updates even be posted here?

    Comment by BjA — 10:14 am March 14, 2012 #

  27. Yes, I will be reporting as soon as there is ANY information to report. I checked with police yet again today. It is a death investigation. The Medical Examiner has not yet publicly identified the victim. The M/E usually releases a daily list of investigated cases and names to the media around 3 pm … they did not release a list at all yesterday. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 11:02 am March 14, 2012 #

  28. Thank you for the update. Unfortunately this is an extended family member and I’m anxious to hear how investigations are going. Thanks again, much appreciated.

    Comment by BjA — 11:14 am March 14, 2012 #

  29. No, JAH, it’s not a cache issue. The comments appear to be remain stored on WSB’s site, in the correct posting order, even if they not approved for public view – not in your local browser’s cache.
    .
    If you make a new comment on a “fresh” browser, using the same email address as a previous comment you posted, the site will “unlock” and show you any comments you have posted using that email address, approved or not. WSB’s cookies (which remember your name and email address in the comment block) are very persistent – if you don’t manually delete them, they stick around, and every time you visit WSB from that computer, ALL your comments will appear – deleted or not – and you’ll never know if they were; they aren’t flagged or anything, they just show up like a regular comment. Manually delete the WSB cookies or use a different computer, and the “deleted” ones disappear. Use the same email again on any computer, and they are back in view.
    .
    This isn’t the first time I’ve had a comment moderated. Couldn’t figure out why I could see them on one computer, but not another, until I did some experimenting and realized they had been removed from public view, not truly “deleted”. Maybe it’s not intentional, but it definitely works that way. Probably intended to prevent unintentional multiple postings of the same comment.

    Comment by Almost there... — 2:03 pm March 14, 2012 #

  30. I am not a techie. However, your comment was never live. The moderation queue held it. Still there as far as I know. Whatever you’re seeing, it’s nothing sinister, it’s however this six-year-old WordPress design came out of the box in 2005. We don’t even track behavior through our site, don’t have tracking code on ads, don’t require logging in for comments, this is all about as simple as you can get. I believe that if you don’t want to be cookied by any website, you can configure your browser that way, but I’m not 100 percent sure. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 2:12 pm March 14, 2012 #

  31. No updates today?

    Comment by BjA — 6:19 pm March 14, 2012 #

  32. Just heard about this and found out it is a friend. What is the timeline for releasing more info? We are so very sad as she was a dedicated, caring and loving mom.

    Comment by NMB — 7:55 pm March 14, 2012 #

  33. Is there any new info?

    Comment by curious — 9:24 am March 15, 2012 #

  34. I am amazed that no where except here has anything been said about this death! I also know the family and they have known for 3 days. What’s the hold up on info? My love and heart felt pain for all!

    Comment by AMS — 10:19 am March 15, 2012 #

  35. AMS, there was one other news organization out there that morning, a TV station. I don’t know if they ever ran anything more than a short web blurb. I have been in the news business for more than 30 years and from our standpoint it is frustrating because if it was not a case of “foul play,” neighbors in the area would be relieved to hear, and if it was, we would like to be able to report where the investigation stands … TR

    Comment by WSB — 10:28 am March 15, 2012 #

  36. Thank you for such a quick reponse. I am not alone to agree with you on the frustration of just knowing someething. I appreciate WSB for making this an important matter! I did see on a local TV channel statement on line like you metionoed but only one time and no follow-up.

    Comment by AMS — 10:43 am March 15, 2012 #

  37. Just found an update on Seattle PD Blotter on Google. It has some information on there. And it’s suppose to be on the news tonight. http://spdblotter.seattle.gov/2012/03/15/seattle-police-ask-for-public-assistance-in-homicide/

    Comment by Barbara Austin — 3:20 pm March 15, 2012 #

  38. Barbara, see the story at the top of our site, published literally seconds after SPD Blotter’s update went live. We had inquired with police again this morning but they did not release any new information until this afternoon.
    .
    http://westseattleblog.com/?p=103285
    .
    TR

    Comment by WSB — 3:29 pm March 15, 2012 #

  39. Does anyone know, did the victim used to live in West Seattle when she was younger? Her name is unusual, and I went to grade school with a “Gregette.”

    Comment by Diana — 2:54 pm March 16, 2012 #

  40. I believe she did.

    Comment by Barbara Austin — 9:18 am March 26, 2012 #

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