West Seattle Crime Watch: Burglars seen – and how to stop them

Four West Seattle Crime Watch notes today – burglars spotted by a neighbor, a possible case of casing, a stolen car that’s been found, and the latest Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention advice (focused on burglary trends and prevention). Read on:

First: Wendy witnessed a burglary in North Admiral on Friday:

I took my garbage out into the alley behind my home and witnessed a burglary of my neighbor’s garage up the alley. I phone police and they arrived within two minutes. I saw a small black car with three or four young men in it taking things out of my neighbor’s garage. When they saw me, they jumped back into the car and sped backwards down the alley away from me, almost taking out a fence in the process. They sped eastward onto Atlantic from the alley behind homes on 45th Street. There were three to four young (20s) men; one tall Caucasian and one Eastern Indian were the two I saw. I’m sure there were one or two others. The car was possibly a Toyota with a large dented in back fender. The car sped past me once and waived so I’d think they were neighbors….Then they circled around back into the alley and that’s when I saw them taking things out of the garage.
One yelled “I got it”! and that’s when they fled.

The Police were here within two minutes and we found and alerted the neighbors who were robbed….just as they were arriving home.

Lock up your things….This was in broad daylight ….

Dave reported this last night:

My wife was home with our two kids this evening when someone aggressively started knocking on the front door and ringing the doorbell @ 7pm. The person knocked so hard the actually knocked the door ajar, so my wife ran to the door, slammed it, and locked the deadbolt. She didn’t get a good look, but said the guy was an African-American male of slender build with a blue windbreaker and blue hat. When the door slammed, he stammered a “hello?” and then promptly ran off.

We are on the 9000 block of 34th Avenue SW – folks should watch for this guy. I arrived home @ 7:10 pm and haven’t been able to find him lurking around our block.

And if you are a regular Crime Watch reader, you might recall Christian reporting his 1996 green Subaru Legacy Outback stolen a week ago. He e-mailed to say it was found; it turned up on Capitol Hill.

Now, information that could help protect you from a burglary, from Mark Solomon, who is crime-prevention coordinator for the Southwest Precinct. It’s the latest newsletter. It’s not working for us as a cut-and-paste to republish here, though we usually can do that from a PDF, so please download the document to read all the information. And you might consider coming to the next West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting on Tuesday (March 20), 7 pm at the SW Precinct (Delridge and Webster), both to bring your neighborhood concerns and to listen to updates on crime trends and notable cases (we feel fairly certain we can guarantee they’ll have something to say about the Beach Drive murder case).

18 Replies to "West Seattle Crime Watch: Burglars seen - and how to stop them"

  • resident3 March 17, 2012 (4:51 pm)

    Oh a car like that drove past me a few days ago and the driver gave me a wave. I remember wondering why they gave such a friendly wave because i know almost all my neighbors and didnt recognize them. Interesting tactic.

  • FedUp March 17, 2012 (4:58 pm)

    The description of these thieves match the ones who kicked in my back door! Lucky that my dog chased them off .These teens are from High Point and Green Bridge(white center) public housing. I seen one of the kids after the break in attempt while I was driving past the log cabin/community center in WC. I folowed him for a while then lost him. Tall,thin,puffy hair with a baseball cap and black northface wind breaker. He is of somalian descent. Please neighbors, look out for each other and don’t let anyone tell you your nosey, your neighborhood is YOUR business too!

  • chuck and Sally's Van Man March 17, 2012 (5:02 pm)

    What I find interesting is that they were rummaging around the garbage LOOKING for something they expected to find. How well do you know your neighbors? Seems like a pretty good way to do a drug drop, IMHO. Andy yes, wildly speculative and unjust. But they were looking through an easy to access garbage can, not a garage… Who knows? Still glad the neighbor did the right thing.

  • Aman March 17, 2012 (5:15 pm)

    I’m amazed at the number of unlocked sheds, and garages without garage doors along the alleyways in West Seattle. These structures are “thief magnets.” Particularly in these difficult economic times.

  • coffee March 17, 2012 (5:39 pm)

    I still see on a regular basis main floor windows open and no signs of anyone home. Also remember even if you are home and working in your yard basement etc you are open of a quick run in grab and go. Keep your doors locked.

  • xyz March 17, 2012 (5:45 pm)


    Around the same timeline (8800 block of 31st SW) I had someone with a similar description (but more short and stocky build) knock at my door asking if I subscribed to the Seattle Times. He had a blue windbreaker and blue hat with Seattle Times logos, his ID badge was tucked inside his jacket and I could only see the top portion and not the photo. He wanted to give me a free trial, I said I wasn’t interested and he left. A few moments later I went outside and saw this person and another man walking up near 32nd and Henderson. I thought they were legitimate, but you never know. Your wife did the right thing.

  • Jwws March 17, 2012 (6:10 pm)

    Chuck and Sally,

    Read report again, neighbor was taking out her garbage and saw perps in neighbor’s garage
    Potato, potatoe kinda thing ;-)

  • Isk March 17, 2012 (6:14 pm)

    I know anything can happen… But how soon or later are thieves likely to return after they burglarized a home?

    My home was broken into a few months ago, and I immediately did some security upgrades. Just curious if there are any stats on this sort of thing.

  • highlandpark March 17, 2012 (6:42 pm)

    SO glad Christian’s car was found! Subarus forever.

  • chuck and Sally's Van Man March 17, 2012 (6:45 pm)

    *Blush* Gotta put down the green beer. Thx Jwws… Oh, and xyz, I also recently had a ST seller come by around 8 p.m. selling the Times. He was polite enough, but in this era door-to-door selling just seems so off base. I contacted with Tracy and she confirmed that all reports of the ST selling door-to-door have been legit. Still dislike ANYONE coming to my door uninvited…

  • Dave March 17, 2012 (8:46 pm)

    Xyz and Van Man–thanks for posting. This makes a lot if sense, as we discontinued the ST about a year ago. I’m sure we’re on a re-activation target list.

    Still, there’s zero chance a door-to-door guy is going to get me back in the fold. Shady.

  • me March 18, 2012 (1:46 am)

    “I’m amazed at the number of unlocked sheds, and garages without garage doors along the alleyways in West Seattle”

    Reading comments like this just make my eyes bleed. The only thing we should be focused on locking up is the people that think they can rewrite the rules of living in a civil society

  • WSMama3 March 18, 2012 (8:39 am)

    “Isk” – yes there are stats on “crime victim revictimization”. Cops call them “red zones” or “hot zones” (like a 7-11 will be robbed more than once). The National Center for Victims of Crime in DC might have more info, but your best bet is to deter (and it sounds like security updates and vigilance are the best options). Homes are sometimes robbed more than once if they follow the insurance pattern (theft-claim-payment-repurchase) since they know you will replace the things stolen it’s a sure fire way to get a new item in a home they know the pattern / entry point too.
    I’ve not done crime victim work in a long time – so I am sure there are new stats since it was just being talked about 5 years ago.

  • Aman March 18, 2012 (9:57 am)

    To “me”…….

    “unlocked sheds, and garages without garage doors along the alleyways in West Seattle; These structures are “thief magnets.”

    It’s a shame we need doors on our garages & sheds and locks on them, but we do. Unsecured personal property is irresponsible. These folks are inviting trouble for themselves and for their neighborhood. It’s called amonst thieves beings an “easy mark.”

  • Marianne March 18, 2012 (12:22 pm)

    Isk- a friend was recently burgled twice in five days. Now has security cameras.

  • me March 18, 2012 (1:12 pm)

    To “me”…….

    “unlocked sheds, and garages without garage doors along the alleyways in West Seattle; These structures are “thief magnets.”

    I understand the “thief magnet” concept and respect your opinion. I think if we look at them as “rat traps” and start to send a new message to the mostly repeat ofenders we might get our neighborhoods back. The key is when you catch one for the second time our current throw back policy is falling short….

  • Aman March 18, 2012 (3:04 pm)

    To “me:”
    No arguments regarding your POV.

    The courts are lenient with sentencing and don’t have the resources available to prosecute / incarcerate the criminals. The police don’t have the resources to respond quickly to every burglary. In the absence of both, prevention is the best alternative. Neighbors need to “pull-together.”

    Each neighbor needs to take responsibility and make their property/neighborhood as unfriendly to criminals as possible. Waiting for “the system” to do it for us is NOT working very well.

  • McCoy April 2, 2012 (6:47 pm)

    We were robbed last week- the week before that someone was aggresively knocking on the door. My son called for mom to open the door and the person left before she got there. Close to where the other gentleman posted about aggressive knocking. This happened broad daylight on a Sunday. We have new security now-our dog did not chase them off. BE AWARE- put valuables away.

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