Video: See Guardian One’s aerial view of auto-theft suspect on the run in West Seattle

February 1, 2014 at 11:03 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | 27 Comments

Following up on our as-it-happened coverage from last night – the King County Sheriff’s Office Air Support Unit has published video with the Guardian One helicopter’s infrared view of last night’s stolen-SUV incident southwest of The Junction. The audio is exactly what could be heard on the scanner as this all moved toward the 4800 block of 47th SW, including the stolen Chevrolet Tahoe crashing through a fence and its driver running. We’re checking to see if we can find out more about him. Thanks to commenter Lola for spotting the video and sharing word of it in the 140+-comment thread following last night’s coverage. Again, as police confirmed to us on the scene last night and reiterated in today’s SPD Blotter summary, they were alerted to the stolen vehicle by a LoJack signal – here’s the explanation of how that works.

P.S. We’re still checking into the record of the 32-year-old man booked into jail for investigation of burglary and auto theft. It’s long. Will add details as we pull them out.

2:56 PM UPDATE: Most of his record – 38 cases in the Washington State court-system files – is from outside King County (mostly Pierce County) so the documents are not so easy to come by. The most recent King County Superior Court cases is from 2008, when charges were filed in a 2005 Bellevue “trafficking in stolen property” case. A pickup truck stolen in Bellevue was found – but minus UW Huskies football season tickets that had been in the truck. The tickets were sold to someone via Craigslist, and that’s how detectives tracked down this man – who already by that point had a record including assault, theft, drugs, and forgery – and a female accomplice.

Meantime, back on 47th SW, as noted in comments, neighbors banded together today and did some cleanup, including putting temporary fencing up around a pool that the stolen pickup almost crashed into:

After we visited the neighborhood and took that photo, we heard from neighbor Jeff, who said he found evidence of the gunshot that many neighbors heard last night – he sent this photo:

Jeff said, “I’m the neighbor whose yard he ran through and this is my gate this morning. I could dig the bullet out of the post with a little patience.” We’ll continue to follow up on this case.

27 Comments

  1. That was fascinating. Thanks, WSB (and Lola)!

    And I’ll add to the pile of thanks from last night – everybody in WS knows if there’s something happening, this blog is place to find out what the deal is.

    Comment by JunctionRes — 11:16 am February 1, 2014 #

  2. Wow. That was pretty amazing to watch.

    Comment by heather — 11:22 am February 1, 2014 #

  3. I have lived on this block since 1994. We only started to have trouble on this block when the granddaughter moved in. Since then the police have been out multiple times….parties, drugs, heroin overdose….. So sad to see one neighbor bring down the whole block. The owner (who now lives in a nursing home) used to be a block watch co-captain. I’m sure she would be horrified to know whats going on in her house.
    Very cool video. Thanks for posting.

    Comment by Oscar — 11:44 am February 1, 2014 #

  4. Great WS blog is where I come when I want to know what is happening all over WS. Thanks to the neighbors who posted about what was going on. I was texting with my friend who lives nearby where this was happening but she went inside after she heard the gun. I told her to be safe since we did not know what was going down at the time.

    Comment by Lola — 11:46 am February 1, 2014 #

  5. Oscar, that is what my friend was telling me last nite. How sad that this has to happen. Hopefully they can get these people out of the house so the neighborhood can go back to some sort of normalcy.

    Comment by Lola — 11:58 am February 1, 2014 #

  6. Thanks Lola, and WSB!

    .

    Mike

    Comment by miws — 12:25 pm February 1, 2014 #

  7. These videos are just fascinating! Thanks for the info. And neighbors, hope your block gets back to better times!

    http://westseattleblog.com/2010/08/west-seattle-night-out-report-3-neighborhood-portraits/

    Comment by BW — 12:43 pm February 1, 2014 #

  8. Who installs Lojack in our area? I want that!

    Comment by Gina — 12:59 pm February 1, 2014 #

  9. Funny thing BW, Betty mentioned in the picture is the owner that no longer lives in the house.

    Comment by Jeff — 1:20 pm February 1, 2014 #

  10. Gina I’m going to buy Lojack for my beloved classic car. We have one of the highest car theft rates in the whole USA. That’s a great idea btw, Lojack (I’m not paid to endorse Lojack). I think if you go to their website, they’ll facilitate purchase/installation.

    Auto theft is out of control in Seattle – perhaps it’s time to petition our Mayor and interim chief to deploy Bait Cars, and special auto-theft units.

    Oscar it’s interesting to read what you wrote, as in my neighborhood the same thing happened when a nice woman’s son inherited her home – and turned said home into a den of gang members (he’s since been incarcerated).

    Comment by ScubaFrog — 1:20 pm February 1, 2014 #

  11. I’d like to say some things to you “concerned neighbors.” You don’t in any way personally know this family. You know what you’ve seen and heard. One person whom, might I add, does not live here; does not reflect the family that resides here. I grew up with the former owner of the house’s great granddaughter. This family is one of the most generous and loving families I’ve ever met and for all of you to judge them based on something someone else has done is simply repulsive. Feel free to say what you’d like about this family. It does not reflect them; it reflects upon you and peoples relentless need to tear people down.

    Comment by Mya — 3:25 pm February 1, 2014 #

  12. Wow, great reporting both WSB and neighborhood folks. Excellent to watch the video and listen to the work of SPD. I can’t believe this suspect has a record with THIRTY-EIGHT incidents. Hello? What ever happened to the three strikes laws? Perhaps these incidents are small and petty, but when you think about the drain of resources this one person puts on our entire society in regards to law enforcement, the court system, jails, and not to mention innocent victims of burglary, and God knows what elseā€¦ I’m sick and tired of people like this continuing to get out and affect other peoples’ lives. Lock his ass up and flush the key once and for all.

    Comment by Kravitz — 3:42 pm February 1, 2014 #

  13. Three strikes are for major felonies – and what I’ve seen so far doesn’t include those. It’s the kind of scenario that in just a few years of covering crime at this level, I’ve seen again and again … repeat offenders who are in and out because they never do what it takes to really get locked up for a long time. And they’re not just here in West Seattle. Sitting in court yesterday waiting for the “sentencing calendar” to get to the drunk driver we wrote about last night, I watched two other sentencings for young men who sounded to be in similar straits … drug users who committed property crimes to get money for their habit, over and over.
    .
    Also just a word before I drop back out to work on some other stuff … Please do not get into further personal details here about the folks on the periphery. If any neighborhood thinks it has a potential nuisance house, you can work with the Community Police Team and/or the precinct liaison for the city attorney’s office – maybe you are already; if not, the process/options are described in this newsletter from the SPD Crime Prevention Coordinator that we uploaded and published in a past Crime Watch story:
    .
    http://westseattleblog.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Seattle-Police-Email-Newsletter120.pdf
    .
    Precinct liaison Melissa Chin is also usually at the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting – third Tuesday of the month, always previewed multiple times here. – Tracy

    Comment by WSB — 3:55 pm February 1, 2014 #

  14. Dear Mya, I have read every comment on this story and think a majority of the comments from neighbors about this family have been reserved and come from a place of concern. I have dear friends that live close to this location and have for 10+ years. I was up until the wee hours of the morning worried for their safety and checking in to make sure the suspect was captured. Yes, it is unfortunate that guilt by association comes into play when one person does something so demonstrative and criminal but at the same time put yourself in their shoes as you are asking of the “concerned neighbors”. Often people say things out of fear and frustration. Good for you to remind this community that the behavior of one should not bring judgement on the entire family. This is a time to be thankful that no one was seriously hurt, including the family you express so much admiration for.

    Comment by WS Mom — 4:36 pm February 1, 2014 #

  15. THIRTY-EIGHT cases??!! This person has caused grief for all the people he’s committed crimes against, and he deserves nothing except to be have his freedom taken away. What a waste of oxygen.

    Comment by AE — 5:17 pm February 1, 2014 #

  16. That’s right Mya,

    The concerned neighbors know what they seen and heard and what they seen and heard has obviously concerned these neighbors and I don’t think they should feel guilty or apologize for being concerned about their neighborhood. And it also doesn’t sound like this is an isolated event from this particular house.

    Having one of these problem houses in my neighborhood, I can completely understand and empathize with how the neighbors feel. It sucks to try and do right, buy a house, pay my mortgage and live in a decent neighborhood only to have one house be a problem within the neighborhood. A house that also BTW, the people got, not by their hard work and dedication to save up and buy, but were able to move into because a family member left the house to them. Are the neighbors supposed to feel bad because they don’t like the negative effect that one house within their neighborhood is causing? It’s like victim blaming IMO.

    Trying to shame these neighbors simply because they want a safe neighborhood is ridiculous and no where did I read anyone trying to “tear down” people, but expressed their concerns and why they are concerned

    Comment by Eric — 5:41 pm February 1, 2014 #

  17. Good on the KCSO for getting this video published so quickly. Good PR for them, and informative for everyone in the neighborhood who heard them at work last night. Thanks WSB!

    Comment by MJ — 9:21 pm February 1, 2014 #

  18. Thanks once again WSB, I knew you would have all the info last night. It was concerning being only a couple blocks away, but your updates and those of other neighbors was so helpful!

    Comment by Mary — 9:24 pm February 1, 2014 #

  19. Thanks for the thanks … this is one of the site’s main missions. We don’t know it all but even in this age of media fragmentation, it can be a place to bring people together and try to get to the heart of what’s going on. It’s why even in our social-media channels, we point people here (starting with the basic “something’s going on, we don’t know much yet, but we’ll update”) so all the info and comments can come together in one ongoing webpage of coverage, rather than scattered fragmented updates … helpful not only while it’s unfolding but also for referring back to the archives. Community-enhanced coverage like this was the big reason for our national “community collaboration” award in 2010 … and I’m glad it’s still happening and helpful – TR

    Comment by WSB — 9:40 pm February 1, 2014 #

  20. Thank you WS mom for realizing that the actions of one do not refelect the family itself. And to Eric, I was not blaming the neighbors on their opinion. I was simply trying to defend the family I’ve come to call my own. We did not ask the man arrested to come to the home and cause this disturbance for the neighbors. I just cant sit here and read about things you all are saying and not defend their honor. Im sorry you took that as me shaming the neighbors for that was not my intention.

    Comment by Mya — 10:26 pm February 1, 2014 #

  21. Really Mya?

    Because it seems to me that you tried to take the neighbors’ concerns and throw it back in their face making them being the villains for being concerned by trying to question (make a statement) their character about their so called “relentless need to tear people down.”

    I saw nothing prior to your reply that suggested anyone attempting to tear anyone down, but simply state that problems began to arise when the granddaughter moved into the house. And it certainly doesn’t sound like last night was an isolated incident.

    Comment by Eric — 9:51 am February 2, 2014 #

  22. In regard to the technology shown and the disciples behavior flawlessly executed in this video, this is quite remarkable. My hat is off you the individuals who day in a nd day out, are looking out and keeping the rest of us safe.
    As for my neighbors… in this beautiful city, where its’ people stand up for each other, look past indifference, show understanding in times of adversity and above all, hand on to the fading notion that, WE, as a hole and individuals, still believe and want to bring the good out in others. Especially the one’s closest.

    When was the last time you said hello to the granddaughter or her vibrant

    Comment by jacqueline — 8:31 pm February 2, 2014 #

  23. (Eithher one of) children?
    Yes, my previous post was full of grammatical error… because I could not BELIEVE the grotesque GOSSIP that is being spread … I’m slightly embarrassed that my community still holds, essentially, what sounds like a Salem Witch trial… or a Mississippi Lynching.
    Shame on you. You who think you are “good people”.

    Comment by jacqueline — 8:40 pm February 2, 2014 #

  24. One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty councils.
    “The thing to do is to supply light and not heat. At any rate, if it is heat, it ought to be white heat and not sputter, because sputtering heat is apt to spread the fire. There ought, if there is any heat at all, to be that warmth of the heart which makes every man thrust aside his own personal feeling and his own personal interest and take thought of the welfare and benefit of others.” Woodrow Wilson– Jan. 26, 1916

    Comment by jacqueline — 9:23 pm February 2, 2014 #

  25. Have to agree with Eric – I’ve seen too many “inherited” houses that slowly fall apart – if one doesn’t have to work for something, one is less likely to value it.

    Comment by WestofJunction — 6:30 am February 3, 2014 #

  26. 38 cause numbers/cases, NOT 38 prosecutions. Using WA state case search does not differentiate between felony, NCFs, Traffic tickets, Or Family Law cases. It simply a list of all cases he has ever been named in. I’m sure it makes you all feel better to think he is some drug addict, lifetime criminal who deserves to spend his life in prison – instead of having to wrap your heads around the fact he is a good person who has made poor decisions. Of the 38 he was probably only actually prosecuted for less than a quarter of them. What I find to be unsettling is the amount of drama created and resources used, and manpower exhauted to find a 10 year old Tahoe when there are murders, domestic violence assaults, gangs, and child molestation cases going cold… it must have been a cops wife’s car. Because 1 is stolen every 15 minutes – and no helicopter for them. Also – no one seems to be exploring the fact that an officer “accidentally” fired his gun. The suspect was unarmed – And I guess shooting someone in the back while running unarmed is good police work & ethics.

    Comment by hisbird — 10:02 pm February 3, 2014 #

  27. No, hisbird, he is not a good person. At 32 years of age, he has proved it. So tired of people urging us to feel sorry for the “poor victim of drugs”. People who use illegal drugs, whether as addicts or recreationally, contribute to crime, instability and poverty in their own communities and the communities the drugs come from. Think of all the $ many countries have to spend to maintain some order fighting drug cartels – money that does not go for education, infrastructure, etc. Think of all the people who live in the areas these addicts prey – lost packages, stolen cars, homes broken into- think of how that reduces their quality of life and peace of mind. Druggies are the ultimate in selfishness.

    Comment by WestofJunction — 5:58 am February 4, 2014 #

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