(Photo of suspect Carolyn Piksa, added 3:47 pm – call 911 if seen)
ORIGINAL REPORT, 2:51 PM: Community centers in West Seattle are currently under lockdown because of a situation in the North End – a woman is being sought after a shooting at a Parks facility in North Seattle. Parks spokesperson Joelle Hammerstad confirms that all community centers in the city are under lockdown except for the ones closest to the shooting scene, which have been closed/evacuated. While waiting to hear back from her, we went over to our nearest center – Southwest Teen Life Center – and it indeed has a sign on the door confirming the lockdown (photo added 2:57 pm).
More info as we get it.
ADDED 3:02 PM: SPD tweets that the North Seattle shooting might be “a case of workplace violence.” The suspect they are looking for after the shooting – which sent a 70-year-old man to the hospital – is described as a white woman, 46 years old, wearing a blue stocking cap and beige or army-green jacket, might be driving a dark-colored SUV.
3:06 PM: Per the scanner, plate for the suspect’s vehicle is B03450D, believed to be a blue 2007 Chevy Colorado pickup or similar vehicle, and the suspect is a Burien woman.
3:25 PM: No additional information but police have circulated a name on the scanner. Cross-referencing that name with the city employee directory, it checks to someone who works for Parks in the North End. Waiting to see if they will distribute her photo.
3:33 PM: Per the scanner, the suspect has worked in the past at Hiawatha and High Point Community Centers. She is identified as Carolyn “Zoom” Piksa. The victim is identified as Bill Keller, executive director of the Associated Recreation Council, which runs programs at many centers. (Photo added at right from our coverage of Keller’s participation in a 2011 news conference announcing community-center changes.) He is reported to be in critical but stable condition.
3:50 PM: Photo of Piksa now added above. Commenters have shared e-mail they received from the school district saying that all Parks facilities are closed now and that children who would normally be taken to a Parks facility for after-school programs will instead be at their “schools of origin” awaiting pickup:
On Friday, March 8, the Seattle Mayor’s office closed all community centers, pools and Seattle parks facilities in response to an incident of violence in the north end.
Students citywide who were expected to be transported to a Seattle parks facility for after-school activities and were not already dropped off will be returned to their schools of origin to await pick up.
Office of Public Affairs
Seattle Public Schools
4:04 PM UPDATE: Tiffani from Hiawatha Community Center says that if you have kids there, please come pick them up ASAP, since the facilities are being closed for the rest of the day/night, and programs canceled, including Madison basketball.
4:16 PM UPDATE: Per scanner, the suspect’s vehicle has been found in Burien. She is not in custody so far. Also, we have added a photo of shooting victim Keller to this story, from the 2011 event at High Point CC announcing community-center budget changes.
4:25 PM UPDATE: New message from Seattle Public Schools:
Due to the City of Seattle’s closure of all community centers citywide, Seattle Public Schools is returning all students who were on buses bound for after-school programs to their schools of origin. In some cases, students were delivered to community centers before the closure announcement was made. In that case, the community centers are calling parents and asking them to pick up their students. Students returned to their school will remain at school with adult supervision until their parents can arrange for pick up.
Again, all activities are CANCELED at city-run centers for the rest of the day/night, not just afterschool events.
4:50 PM: The suspect’s in custody, police say. (Added – here’s video from KING5.com)
5:27 PM: The mayor, SPD, and Parks plan a briefing at 6 pm, and we’re told it will be streamed – we’ll add a video window here as soon as we find the code. (added – just click the “play” button around 6 pm)
(Substituted late Friday – archived video of briefing)
The victim was last reported to be in critical but stable condition.
6:06 PM: The briefing has begun – hit “play” on the video window to see it live.
6:29 PM: The briefing is over. We’ll substitute archived video above when it’s available. Toplines:
-Victim now in serious but stable condition, an improvement from earlier report
-No word on the suspect’s potential motive
-Police tracked her through her cell phone
-She was arrested peacefully – they called for her to come out of her home in Burien, and she did, unarmed
-They are still looking for the weapon she used
-After shooting Keller, she threatened someone else and brandished a gun
-Mayor and police stressed that this was a “citywide emergency” because Piksa potentially had access to many Parks facilities (it was reported on the scanner and elsewhere that she had keys)
-The shooting happened at 1:52 pm; the arrest at 4:49 pm
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