West Seattle Crime Watch: ‘Walking on Logs’ sculpture stolen

June 21, 2014 at 10:52 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 36 Comments

When Nancy Driver and the Walking on Logs Landscape Restoration Group got out to the famous bridge-side sculptures for cleanup work this morning, they made a startling discovery – one of the sculptures is missing, apparently stolen, nothing left behind but its foot, the rest of the sculpture cleanly sawed off:

Nancy reported it to police, and is hoping someone saw something – perhaps a resident in one of the nearby homes on the other side of the fence, along the spur of Fauntleroy. She and the other volunteers who maintain the area hope to get the city to keep the area clearer for line-of-sight reasons too. But in the meantime, the question is – who stole one of the dancing-children sculptures by Phillip Levine that have been at the site for 18 years? Here’s a WSB file photo by Christopher Boffoli:

Call 911 if you think you’ve seen it.

36 Comments

  1. That is tragic! I love those sculptures! They are loved by many in our community.

    Comment by Tanya — 11:00 pm June 21, 2014 #

  2. Wow how brazen! Is that was metal theft is coming to now? Sawing down statues??

    Comment by trickycoolj — 11:08 pm June 21, 2014 #

  3. Are they metal? If so did someone think they could sell it for scrap?

    Comment by Creighton — 11:27 pm June 21, 2014 #

  4. Wow… Nothing is sacred to druggies. I hope it gets back in one piece after the thief is caught.
    .
    Can’t say I wish the same for the thief.

    Comment by Eric1 — 11:37 pm June 21, 2014 #

  5. now that really sucks…seems like nothing is sacred anymore :(

    Comment by JanS — 11:48 pm June 21, 2014 #

  6. We should ask the guy who stole the totem pole if he has it.

    Comment by Kg — 12:36 am June 22, 2014 #

  7. My guess is that the DPD issued developers a permit for a 39 unit, 3 parking stall apodment and they’re just clearing the site.

    Comment by DTK — 12:42 am June 22, 2014 #

  8. I am sad that metal scrappers would steal a statue to support their drug habits.The scrap value is about $1.80 per pound for the brass or bronze that it was made of and about 8 cents a pound for the steal core support.
    I also wish the city would properly maintain that large overgrown area all around the statues.
    The West Seattle chamber of commerce should be embarrassed of the poor first impression that drivers have as they go west bound entering West Seattle

    Comment by Les — 6:26 am June 22, 2014 #

  9. How sad. What kind of metal were they made of?

    Comment by sc — 6:26 am June 22, 2014 #

  10. I’m hoping it’s just a high school senior prank and that the statue is returned by somebody’s mom when she finds it in her garage or something.

    Comment by Chris W — 6:36 am June 22, 2014 #

  11. There’s copper in them thar bronze…
    Is this out of view of the traffic cams?

    Comment by Jennifer — 7:16 am June 22, 2014 #

  12. What type of metal was it made from? I’d assume it’s melted and gone by now but hopefully not. Start calling all the metal recycling facilities near by, starting with the one that sculpture looked at.

    Comment by Mike — 7:32 am June 22, 2014 #

  13. I wonder if any of those homes along the Fauntleroy spur have security cameras?

    .

    Always seems like a bit of a longshot, that if so, they would be perfectly directed to catch something in a peripheral area they are not intended to capture, but it IS possible.

    .

    Mike

    Comment by miws — 7:35 am June 22, 2014 #

  14. The area wasn’t being taken care of very well. Tall grass and trash everywhere so maybe they thought no one would have even noticed. Too bad since it symbolizes the entrance to our great neighborhood of west seattle.

    Comment by Cj. — 8:48 am June 22, 2014 #

  15. Friday (June 20th) at about 10pm there was a large Utility presence working up there. We noted that the overhead lights on the bridge were out about where the road turns to the south and it looked like there was a power outage in the neighborhood there too. At the time I thought they might have been working on the sculpture, but when I saw the neighborhood power outage I dismissed any sculpture work. They had the lanes coned off, lane closed signs, and other equipment.

    Comment by Eddie — 9:01 am June 22, 2014 #

  16. Hi WSB, I am confused by the time line since your post shows Saturday evening. Did the work crew show up Saturday morning for clean up and the crime happened some time Friday night or early Saturday morning?

    Comment by astrogirl30 — 9:03 am June 22, 2014 #

  17. Now that entire hillside and entrance in general to West Seattle in even more of an embarrassment.

    Comment by NW — 9:08 am June 22, 2014 #

  18. Astro – There was a preplanned volunteer cleanup Saturday morning. Nancy Driver, who heads the group – which REALLY needs help, by the way, and has had numerous volunteers bail on them, but that’s a story we’ll tell another day – noticed the statue was gone. Could have happened the night before. Could have happened a week before, could have happened two weeks before – if anyone remembers seeing that statue, way back in the brush, any time recently, that will help narrow it down. We talked with her earlier in the day but hadn’t published the story earlier because we were trying to find a better picture of the missing statue; finally I just had to go with it, knowing we’ll have followups, hopefully including a better picture.
    .
    Eddie – I drove by during that and mentioned it to Nancy, wondering if maybe the statue was taken off or knocked off. I noticed the crew, however, was working along the road, not way up the slope where the statue was – and she said the same thing. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 9:11 am June 22, 2014 #

  19. I noticed it missing on Thurs mid-morning, alhough didn’t realize at the time. I glanced while driving by and thought something was missing. Meant to check here and forgot until now. Hope that helps with timeline.

    Comment by ka — 9:13 am June 22, 2014 #

  20. Maybe it was that dude that stole the Totem Pole. He probably took it to refurbish it.

    Comment by Dale — 9:15 am June 22, 2014 #

  21. WTF?
    And you don’t want street cams?

    Comment by WTF — 11:10 am June 22, 2014 #

  22. Thanks for the reply WSB….

    I definitely noticed the utility trucks as pointed out by another post.

    I’ve always wondered who was responsible for clean up. I would be interested in volunteering… please post a story soon with contact info.

    Comment by astrogirl30 — 11:31 am June 22, 2014 #

  23. if it was stolen for the metal in it, maybe, just maybe we need to look into the dishonest metal recyclers, too. Someone showing up with pipes, etc., maybe wouldn’t be questioned, but they should all question someone showing up with a statue. A shame that a recycler wouldn’t do that and report it …sigh…recycler just as guilty as the thief !

    Comment by JanS — 11:39 am June 22, 2014 #

  24. Real nice :( got to love the characters our communities are creating by making them not responsible and for not teaching the kids the right way to act when we have the chance to.

    Stealing a statue of a kid that represents the communities commitment to the future and peace is a crime that should be punished with a hand being cut off. The fact that sawing a metal statue would have taken 1. a lot of time to plan but 2. Even more time to saw off
    really shows how blatantly arrogant these criminals are towards society.

    They know they will not be punished and if they are punished the treatment is so light they get a mini vacation from their otherwise government subsidized lifestyle. They might even get a Facebook mug shot that goes viral.

    (On a side note the women that commented on that mug shot should be ashamed for the fact that you glorified criminal activity that includes violence towards women, rape, child indecency’s and other types of criminal action against society onto a pedestal. thank you for the women that liked that mug shot way to go!
    Woman’s liberation and power at its finest !!! Out of your selfish vanity you created horror for others.
    Once again beckoning the idea of where are the role models in our society when women are validating criminals that are hurting other people and raping other women.)

    Now Back to the statue….

    The education system in Seattle is failing because FREE everything to kids spoils the core of the child to the point that have no respect for others or for work ethic.
    It is not the teachers or admin. fault !
    The kids need to learn to take responsibility for their own actions by actually going through the process themselves.
    The parents also need to model the right way to act and to do the right thing for the greater good of the team.

    Yet, Few high schoolers in Seattle proper graduate with skills needed for a team win. The others are pretending to be hood (which is a joke if you have actual lived in bad neighbor hood where you act the way you look versus looking the way you want to act.) or are wanna be reality tv stars.
    Instead of doing home work and learning to develop their potentials they facebook and tweet gossip as fact.
    Our new generations of youth have been surfing the web since they were 3 but few actually learn the tactile and visceral world around them to connect to it In a healthy way, The students that do achieve leave the neighborhoods in Seattle in search of the Eastside dream.
    Lastly
    It is really a shame the same kids that expoit the free life that is always at their reach are the characters that grow up to steal and destroy the hard work of others and society.

    I’m Not saying there is Something wrong with helping each other out but when one side is working and the other isn’t than clearly there is a hustle going on.
    In closing these what seem to be senseless crimes more importantly reflect the status of current events and humanity as whole.

    It is time to;
    Step up and protect our communities from the trash and decay that is destroying the great communities that hard working folks built.

    We have generations of youth and adults that hate America living outside and inside the US.
    It’s time to kick them down and out and to step up for the real America that we all built, through our shared blood, sweat and tears.

    Those that can’t join to protect America and humanity from these senseless crimes in our communities or the threat of foriegn invaders should be dealt with in a way that protects us We the people first.

    Leave the statues be and make your own money instead of stealing it like a coward.

    America and the other parts of the world that value peace over violence and tyranny;

    it is time to come together,
    work together,
    stand up together,
    and fight as 1

    for our beautiful Counties, nations, our shared world and humanity and for our beloved Mother Nature!

    1 love

    Comment by c — 11:57 am June 22, 2014 #

  25. Eh, it’s a familiar and wonderful sculpture, but meth heads or pranksters saw it, and now it’s gone. We ignore poverty and drug use long enough, ignore that metal buyers are basically unregulated scumbags who will melt your grandmother for a buck, and stuff gets stolen. Think drugs are no big deal? Think people wouldn’t steal “beloved” metal for cash? Think scrap metal buyers are ethical? Too bad. Maybe now we’ll open our eyes. If any art is all that “beloved,” then why was it just plopped on the side of the road, with no cameras trained on it, where anyone could just go and steal it? No fences, no cameras, nothing. Yeah, I hope the thieves get caught and get sentenced to probation or a $100 fine or whatever the going rate for this kind of petty crime is, but people, get real. Blame yourself if you valued this artwork. YOU should have protected it better if it mattered all that much.

    Comment by Gable Eston — 12:33 pm June 22, 2014 #

  26. @WTF: Good plan! Let’s put cameras EVERYWHERE a crime might ever take place! Or, maybe we change laws (in this case) to make metal recycling more difficult? And get more cops on patrol both in and out of their vehicles? The idea that watching all of us, all of the time with cameras (to prevent crime!) is so 1984 as to make my skin crawl. And for the record, cameras are proving to be a poor deterrent for crime, anyway. Just ask the banks and mini-marts, not to mention the home porch versions. Maybe useful after-the-fact, at best.

    Comment by No, No, No. — 1:27 pm June 22, 2014 #

  27. Few facts and lots of assumptions here from people allowing outrage to overcome good sense. It was taken to be recycled? Metal recyclers are all crooks? Fences prevent crime? More cameras prevent crime/grievously affect personal privacy when stationed on public thoroughfares? Really?

    Comment by TA — 3:41 pm June 22, 2014 #

  28. Yes TA, it’s a multi million dollar issue. The city of Seattle already put one guy in jail recently for stealing high grade copper wire under the Sound Transit light rail. He’ll be in prison for a few years…like over a decade due to the value of it. Grant County is, so far, the only area that I know of in the state to take real action against the metal recyclers that are not questioning the obviously stolen metal being melted down by them http://www.co.grant.wa.us/sheriff/Links/Metal-Theft.htm

    http://blogs.seattletimes.com/today/2014/05/man-convicted-of-stealing-4-3-miles-of-copper-wire-from-sound-transit/

    and

    http://www.kirotv.com/news/news/thieves-posting-cherokee-indians-steal-40000-pound/nXZGC/

    Comment by Mike — 5:28 pm June 22, 2014 #

  29. “Metal recyclers are all crooks?”

    Some will be, just as there are totally dishonest pawn brokers among the decent ones and in both cases usually an industry trade group fighting any serious regulation of just *where* their metal or items sold come from.

    Take a look sometimes at various legislative efforts to identify who is selling scrap metal, the fight against it by the recycling industry has been pretty intense.

    One does not wonder, since those selling stuff they can’t account for are less likely to haggle over being low-balled on the prices they get paid and taking down some ID info might discourage such customers.

    It only takes one bad employee or boss to suborn an entire operation. One person to turn a blind eye as something is tossed into the smelter after being weighed.

    And there are likely intermediaries: Fences who will take something, no questions asked, for a few dollars and dispose of it themselves through their own channels at a profit.

    Comment by Jim P. — 5:52 pm June 22, 2014 #

  30. Cameras are great for WATCHING your stuff getting stolen. Not for preventing it or rarely recovering it. Nice pacifiers to help you FEEL good… and helping the security hardware industry. Are you listening Drone fans? $15 Grey Hoodie Sweatshirt1: $1500 Security Cam 0

    If metal theft is a problem, make so they can’t monetize their dumb stunts. Clamp down on Metal Recyclers.

    Governments are like crack addicts; they see 9-11 Security grants and they feel they have to buy, buy, buy to keep up with the joneses.

    Comment by 222blades — 6:04 pm June 22, 2014 #

  31. It would seem that cutting at the ankle would preclude moving it to a private collection, but that is the quick way to do it. If it’s destination was for recycle, the perp will be back for more.

    Comment by dsa — 6:40 pm June 22, 2014 #

  32. The log itself looks pretty chewed up. Has it always been that way, or did they try to cut it there first?

    Comment by AG — 8:46 am June 23, 2014 #

  33. How was it anchored to the log base? It looks like they tried to pry it off first. Have the other statues connections been reinforced?

    Comment by sc — 9:29 am June 23, 2014 #

  34. The problem is our broken court system bottom line. They are the ones that allow this to keep getting worse as the idiots doing this stuff are allowed to do as they wish with little or no worries about any prosecution for these types of crimes and many others in this state. Any building in W/S that has sat empty for a prolonged time has most likely been stripped of all wire and recyclables. Good example is the property where the Whole foods project is going in, old gas station mini mart, funeral home, Huling properties they have all been stripped of most anything that they can get their hands on over the last six months. Until this court system starts doing something these types of crimes will continue to get worse as more and more come here and just move from area to area like little cockroaches destroying peoples property. If anyone thinks cameras will stop this type of activity wake up, people doing crimes like this could care less.

    Comment by wetone — 10:59 am June 23, 2014 #

  35. the recycler problem in seattle is getting very bad ,alley-crawlers will pick up anything that is not bolted or welded down. the buyers do not ask and the scrappers don’t tell. the police do not have time to stop every scrapper on the road,only the ones with un-safe loads of scrap.an obvious stolen load of material like clean copper wire or clean copper pipe don’t ring bells?? the buyers will say they aren’t cops and will snap the load up without question. seattle used a pawn-shop detail to stop petty theft,put a cop in every scrapyard, then prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.no lets make a deal courthouse deals hard time only ..find a scrap dealer without a cop, confiscate everything he has. that will stop any unliscensed scrap buyers..try it it will work…

    Comment by Robert — 6:30 am June 24, 2014 #

  36. I’m w/ Chris W. – Still hoping it was an end-of-school
    prank and the “boy” will B found safe & sound. Nancy

    Comment by Nancy Nye — 9:39 am June 26, 2014 #

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