Crime Watch roundup (and more): Car stolen, car found, package-theft redux, plus 2 suspicious-person sightings

December 14, 2012 at 1:27 am | In Crime, Safety, West Seattle news | 16 Comments

One car stolen (and another left in its place), one stolen car found, two package-theft suspects arrested, and two “suspicious person” sightings – all in tonight’s roundup. First, the stolen-car report, from Amy:

My car was stolen from in front of our house at the corner of 34th Ave SW and Willow St. The theft took place some time between Tuesday evening December 11 and Wednesday morning. The theft took place while we were home, and the thieves left a different stolen Saab in its place. We reported both cars to the police. If anyone has seen a gray SAAB 900T 3-door hatchback, license plate 574 SCO, please contact the police department.

… by calling 911, as advised on the SPD @getyourcarback Twitter account, where this has already been tweeted.

The previous stolen car reported here, by the way, has been found, not far from where it was taken. Tuesday morning, we published Nicole‘s account of her stolen Saturn; this morning, she wrote a comment with word it had been found blocks away.

And one more Crime Watch note – from the Shorewood neighborhood; King County Sheriff’s Deputies intercepted two suspected package thieves on Thursday morning – the details are on our partner site White Center Now.

We also have two reports of suspicious-seeming people – possibly no crimes involved, but those who reported the sightings wanted to make sure you know:

Annushka wonders if anyone else has seen this man:

I am wondering if anyone has reported a suspicious person who drives a black Acura taking pictures of houses. I saw someone doing this (Thursday) at a neighbor’s house. It was at 11 am, the same time the mailman is in our neighborhood. Since there have been several package thefts and home break-ins in WS, I took a photo of the guy with my cell phone. He was wearing a badge and carried a clipboard. He tried to enter the gate of this home, but didn’t seem able to open the door. Instead, he stood in front of the house taking pictures.

I reported this to the neighbor tonight, showed him the pictures, and gave him the license plate number. He was concerned, thanked me, and said that there is no reason for anyone to be taking photos of his house today (ie. no contracting work, for example). I called the police to file a report just a few minutes ago, but discovered my neighbor had not yet filed a report — if I file a report tonight, a police officer would have to come to my house. Since no crime was committed, the woman on the 911 line recommended that I alert my neighbors & keep the photos in case he is seen again or someone is robbed.

(Sorry, she didn’t mention her neighborhood – we have a followup question out.) Finally, an anonymous note:

I’m in Highland Park. Just want to give a heads up that two guys came knocking on my door (early evening). I didn’t open it, I just asked ‘who is it’ through the door. From what I could see through the peep hole – One tall short-haired blond guy (twenties or thirties) wearing all black said “Missionaries”. I said through the door, “No thanks”. And he said “Why not?” I yelled back “Not interested!”. I watched them leave my yard and go to the next house. Why are they coming on a weeknight???? I thought maybe they were casing the house. It kind of rattled me. How can you tell if two guys are coming to ‘save you’ or coming to case your house? Neither invited. Anyway I just thought I might send this to the blog in case anyone else experienced them. – Neighbor

16 Comments

  1. Sounds like ” no trespassing and no solicitor ” signs should be our up and coming purchases. I don’t believe most of these people who come to our door anymore.

    Comment by Alki Resident — 5:20 am December 14, 2012 #

  2. I had two missionaries show up the other day. I believe they were who they said they were. Dressed in all black with nametags on. I’m in High Point.

    Comment by Maude — 5:31 am December 14, 2012 #

  3. I saw someone taking pictures of our house about two weeks ago, but he was in an older civic. When he saw me looking at him out the window he drove down the block and parked. I thought be might be doing appraisal work- checking out comps??

    Comment by Emmyjane — 8:00 am December 14, 2012 #

  4. Emmyjane, could you describe who you saw? I hope there is a legitimate reason, but I am feeling cautious. If a business takes photos, they should leave a card or flier with their contact number and description of services.

    Comment by evergreen — 10:02 am December 14, 2012 #

  5. I’m in High Point and have had visits in the past from people who appeared to be missionaries or Jehovahs Witnesses possibly? They appeared to be pretty harmless and would leave quickly if you told them no thanks.

    Comment by East Coast Cynic — 10:04 am December 14, 2012 #

  6. Really people? I don’t think every person that comes up to your door to solicit is a suspicious person. I’ve had suspicious people in my yard (Highland PK) looking in the windows when I wasn’t home and was told this by a neighbor. I KNOW they were casing the place.

    Comment by sb in ws — 11:30 am December 14, 2012 #

  7. maybe the guy is an assessor. my next neighbors next door had a guy taking pictures. I went out to ask him and he said that he was a property assessor – refinancing.

    Comment by face less — 12:35 pm December 14, 2012 #

  8. Or, a State Property Tax Assesor. I had one peeking in my window. I asked what was up. Had his badge, and looked official. But regular car, regular clothes. They look at building quality, whatever adds (or detracts) value to your house. it’s their job. Still kinda freaked me out though. I guess these days we automatically someone is up to no good. At least I do, unfortunately.

    Comment by steve — 1:13 pm December 14, 2012 #

  9. An assessor, yeah, that seems reasonable.

    Comment by Evergreen — 1:34 pm December 14, 2012 #

  10. Mormon missionary’s do go door to door. They are always dressed in suits with black name tags.

    Comment by Steph — 1:36 pm December 14, 2012 #

  11. I saw a woman taking pictures of the neighbors house one time. Think she was from bank and pic was proof of delivery of a notice. And I have also seen assesors on my street that fit the description.

    Comment by QQhombre — 2:29 pm December 14, 2012 #

  12. I was checking some neighborhood blogs for someone needing housing and noticed that maple leaf had very similar crime issues and concerns that incidents are increasing . http://www.mapleleaflife.com/tag/crime/
    I mention this only as sometimes folks have worried that West Seattle is going downhill but it is a citywide issue.
    And must mention that West Seattle Blog is the best of all I surveyed. Great layout, lots of news and more lively discussions among neighbors.

    Comment by fiona enzo — 8:36 pm December 14, 2012 #

  13. I live in Highland Park and witnessed a white male and female in a navy blue mid
    ’90′s Honda Civic attempting to take two boxes off the SE corner of 13th and Thistle.Just after passing the contents of a empty Amazon box only 50 ft ahead of where I spotted them chasing them out of the neighborhood.I don’t have a mobile and am not in for calling the pigs.And yes there are young gentlemen representing the ladder day saints knocking on doors during the week.As far as the picture takers I know that if a mortgage is in default they hire private photographers to go out and snap some flicks.I chased one of these guys as well for about a mile finally pulling over confused to my pursuit but provided sufficient paperwork validating his claim.

    Comment by justice — 2:55 am December 15, 2012 #

  14. Some folks have mentioned black shirts and pants — Mormon missionary uniform is a white shirt and black pants. And i would not expect them to show up in the dark (5 pm in winter) — i think they would be more considerate than that. This reminds me of the criminal pretending to represent NARAL house-to-house.
    Justice, i appreciate your willingness to intervene but the police are the ones who can charge the people and get them off the street, particularly if they have warrants for past assaults. Please be careful for your own safety.

    Comment by fiona enzo — 7:47 am December 15, 2012 #

  15. A couple of guys were making their house-to-house rounds tonight up on Pigeon Point in the dark. When I asked them which church they were with, they said they were with the LDS church on 44th & Andover. When I pointed out the No Soliciting sign, they told me that soliciting was defined as trying to sell something with a value over $5. I explained to them that we didn’t appreciate coming to our doors at night. Especially with yesterday’s tragic happenings in Connecticut-many people are on edge. They shook their heads, but I don’t believe the message was received. Bottom line: coming to the door of a stranger to sell anything (including a belief system) after dark is not acceptable. I am surprised their church encourages the practice.

    Comment by Ová — 9:24 pm December 15, 2012 #

  16. I also had my car stolen from the front of my house at Myrtle and 32nd on Wednesday night. I would be grateful if people could keep an eye out for a 1999 green Subaru Legacy wagon. It has a “FORWARD” bumper sticker on the back bumper, is missing a hubcap on each side, and is in really good shape. Thanks!

    Comment by Sara — 4:47 pm December 17, 2012 #

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