Update: Guardian One helicopter over West Seattle: #1, training; #2, search for escapee

March 5, 2013 at 10:59 am | In Helicopter, West Seattle news | 18 Comments

10:59 AM: Thanks to everyone who’s reported a helicopter over Harbor Avenue – we’re still working to figure out what it’s up to; King County Sheriff’s Office says Guardian One is on a search miles away.

11:13 AM UPDATE: Mystery solved. Seattle Police Det. Renée Witt tells WSB that SPD was “conducting a training exercise with Harbor Patrol and Guardian One.”

11:21 AM UPDATE: Now we hear the aforementioned search has brought the helicopter to the Arbor Heights vicinity. More on that as we get it.

11:28 AM UPDATE: According to KCSO’s Sgt. Cindi West, the search is related to an escape reported in regional media last week – a handcuffed man wanted on theft warrants, who escaped February 25th while being taken to Harborview Medical Center post-arrest because he was believed to have ingested drugs.

11:39 AM UPDATE: Multiple KCSO units (including SeaTac and Burien Police, both of which are part of the Sheriff’s Office) on the ground in and beyond the Shorewood Market vicinity. Traffic is still getting through.

11:59 AM: We’re going to break this story out in a minute since the search is ongoing and we have photos and video to add. NEW ONGOING STORY – GO HERE.


  1. Thanks. We were wondering, and now will be a bit cautious.

    Comment by Mike — 11:01 am March 5, 2013 #

  2. It’s none of the media copters. And it’s fairly small in size/density, if you will. It’s been making repeated long loops, but at the north end it turns consistenly back southward once it reaches the end of Harbor Island.

    Comment by islewrite — 11:04 am March 5, 2013 #

  3. It’s gone now but was Guardian One I think. Definitely a KCSO bird and looks just like this picture: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4095/4914196911_c9bdd9f065.jpg

    Comment by Watcher — 11:09 am March 5, 2013 #

  4. It didn’t have any logos. And it wasn’t as loud as Guardian One, which has a distinctive low “thump.” This one appeared to be lighter and of a turquoise hue. Sure seemed to mimic a search pattern though.

    Comment by islewrite — 11:16 am March 5, 2013 #

  5. They’ll all be down in Shorewood in a few minutes. Police have the block that the Shorewood grocery is on surrounded. King five copter just arrived!

    Comment by Dick — 11:17 am March 5, 2013 #

  6. It did have logos and was exactly like the copter in the link that Watcher posted.

    Comment by New2Alki, rethinking... — 11:18 am March 5, 2013 #

  7. Yes, we have updated. First sighting was training. Second sighting was a search. Will continue to update.

    Comment by WSB — 11:23 am March 5, 2013 #

  8. Helicopter still circling . . .

    Comment by HC — 11:32 am March 5, 2013 #

  9. WSB – what are you hearing/seeing?

    Comment by HC — 11:42 am March 5, 2013 #

  10. I just spoke with a KC Sheriff’s deputy who confirmed a search in the block to the northwest of the Shorewood grocery, south of the Roxbury Safeway.

    Comment by Byron — 11:44 am March 5, 2013 #

  11. Have just added to the story. We’re just about to talk to KCSO’s PIO, who is here but took some finding since the law enforcement presence is spread out.

    Comment by WSB — 11:44 am March 5, 2013 #

  12. Thank you

    Comment by HC — 11:51 am March 5, 2013 #

  13. helicopter circling over AH School area

    Comment by AH MOM — 11:55 am March 5, 2013 #

  14. Thanks for keeping us posted. My husband went through by Shorewood grocery at 26th and they were not letting traffic through about 10 minutes ago.

    Comment by Jan Van Court — 11:58 am March 5, 2013 #

  15. Can hear them in the Shorewood on the Sound neighborhood and have been for some time… (Near Shorewood Elementary.) Thanks for keeping us updated! WS Blog is the first place we go to when we hear helicopters or other similar things!

    Comment by JK in Shorewood — 12:02 pm March 5, 2013 #

  16. I usually hate to do this but I’ve broken the search out into a different story because this one was muddied up with the earlier unrelated helicopter sighting – please move over to http://westseattleblog.com/?p=143619

    Comment by WSB — 12:04 pm March 5, 2013 #

  17. Are any of the schools in shelter in place? haven’t heard a word from them…

    Comment by school safety — 12:04 pm March 5, 2013 #

  18. ah school in lockdown

    Comment by oz — 1:29 pm March 5, 2013 #

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