West Seattle Crime Watch update: Tire-slashing rampage overnight; reward fund set up to find out who did it

July 5, 2014 at 12:18 pm | In Crime, Seaview, West Seattle news | 50 Comments

12:18 PM: We don’t have an official count – and probably won’t be able to get one before Monday – but multiple people have reported multiple tire-slashings along 48th SW in the Seaview area overnight. Heading over just now for a look, we found the vehicle above – a neighbor, figuring out what to do about his own tire-slashed vehicle, said the SUV’s owner was off making arrangements; Doug had sent a photo earlier of that same SUV before the vandalized tires were removed, and said he saw four others plus a police officer talking to someone. This was near 48th/Juneau; a commenter reported being hit near 48th/Findlay. Even if some have already reported it, the more individual reports in the system, the better, so if it happened to you, please do file a report – you can even do it online.

3:01 PM UPDATE: We’ve heard estimates of more than 30 cars vandalized in this incident. Some neighbors are starting up a fund with a reward for information leading to the person(s) who did it. Several neighbors also have responded to our request for additional photos – this one just in, with the tipster noting, “Our poor neighbor’s car – all 4 tires”:

Chris sent several pictures, including his own Mustang and, below right, a vehicle you can’t help but notice any time you drive that stretch of 48th, which is a minor arterial:

4:17 PM UPDATE: And more:

Here’s the e-mail set up for reward-fund contributions and tips on who did it:

paybackforpunks@gmail.com

The neighbor who set it up says, “Anonymity will be respected. If we get a link to or screenshots of someone tweeting about the deed, I think that will be sufficient evidence. I’m hoping the punks posted some bragging-rights pics of their handiwork.” Note that police have taken reports, so you can contact them too.

ADDED: There’s now a GoFundMe account for reward-fund donations – find it here.

P.S. A reminder from police – if you live ANYWHERE in this area and have a security/surveillance camera, please check it if you haven’t already – it might have recorded a clue, if not an actual crime, but some cameras don’t store images for long.

50 Comments

  1. We live on Findlay, and our car was hit. Our neighbor got all four tires slashed. From what I’ve heard from our neighbors and the police officer, I think there were at least 30 cars. One neighbor offered a $100 reward for information on who did (posted on the user forum). We’ll pitch in another $200 to bring it up to $300.

    Comment by SeaviewV2 — 12:42 pm July 5, 2014 #

  2. Thanks, SV2, sorry to hear about it. I didn’t see the forum post until after I had written this but if there are photos, additional information, contact for the reward fund, etc., that anyone can send, editor@westseattleblog.com and I will add to this. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 12:47 pm July 5, 2014 #

  3. Awesome–I have many pics. Will send photos. I spoke with someone who said another person had driven taking video(?)–perhaps I heard incorrectly. If so, that might be handy for police documentation. Thanks, WSB.

    Comment by kittyno — 12:51 pm July 5, 2014 #

  4. That is just messed up. I really hope they catch the person(s) who did it

    Comment by Eric — 2:10 pm July 5, 2014 #

  5. We’re on 48th and our car had two tires slashed and our guest from out of town had one of their tires slashed as well. Costs the two of us well over $500 and most of the day dealing with the repairs. So sad this happened to our neighborhood.

    Comment by snowball — 3:19 pm July 5, 2014 #

  6. anyone have cameras pointed at the street? I hope they catch these idiots.

    Comment by Simpson Strongeville — 3:23 pm July 5, 2014 #

  7. Last night people were out just to fight,hurt and damage. As we stood at the lookout point end of California Ave. a car drove by and deliberately set off fireworks aiming at the parked cars. This pissed me off and others but we couldn’t do anything about it. Our vehicle was blocks away. Coming home,fireworks were completely nonstop unit maybe 2am. I fell asleep so don’t know but it was so late. Then reading all of the stuff from the blog. It just makes me shake my head. Im betting a lot of these thugs aren’t from around here and travel here to do what they did. In closing,I hope karma gets these bad guys sooner than later. Slashing tires etc was so uncalled for. You have no idea the expenses this has caused,the sense of security lost and the willingness not to leave home to enjoy and celebrate the fourth after this. As of this week,Im installing cameras on our premises before we get hit someday by thugs that should’ve been aborted.

    Comment by alki resident — 3:32 pm July 5, 2014 #

  8. hey, for what it’s worth to any tire slash victim out there, I live on 48th and happen to have 7-8 tires on rims in my back yard, left by the former owner of my place; anyone needing at least a temporary fix til monday is welcome to see if any of my tires might fit your vehicle — I am getting rid of the tires anyway — the tires look usable overall — let me know by way of reply or comment on the blog — regards

    Comment by Pat — 3:32 pm July 5, 2014 #

  9. Irritating. It’s amazing how little many people care for the well being and belongings of others. Happy 4th of July, where a small group of people run around causing havoc for the rest of us that abide by the laws.

    Comment by Mike — 3:59 pm July 5, 2014 #

  10. 2 vehicles that had tires slashed have out of state plates; 1 from Idaho and 1 from Oregon. They are in Seattle visiting and this happens to them. I have apologized to 1 on behalf of all the great people in Seattle. I hope they will continue to visit Seattle in the future.

    Comment by ChrisD — 4:01 pm July 5, 2014 #

  11. Wish someone had a drop cam pointed out their front window!
    $99 + cost for dvd video yearly. At least we’d have an idea who did it!

    Comment by Chris — 4:27 pm July 5, 2014 #

  12. My wife had the last minute suggestion last night around 9pm to put our cars in our backyard – we have a driveway into the fenced backyard from the alley. Probably the best move we could have done yesterday. So obnoxious. It’s awful what ignorant and idiotic people have done to this most awesome of holidays.

    Comment by Chris — 4:29 pm July 5, 2014 #

  13. A couple things:

    –Huge RAVE to Neighbor Bob (the Plumber) who was driving around with equipment to help anyone with a flat. That’s a quality individual. I love that when #### hits the fan this neighborhood is full of people ready to set things right.

    –If you’d like to contribute to reward funds, post here or let me know via the tips email. Doesn’t have to be big. Don’t even worry about it if funds are tight. Tires are so expensive as is.

    The Reward and Tips Email is:

    Paybackforpunks@gmail.com

    Comment by kittyno — 4:29 pm July 5, 2014 #

  14. I’m putting up a camera in our alley and over our front door. I live just a couple blocks away and can’t believe this keeps happening to West Seattle. (I’ve read of 1/2 dozen tire slashing incidents in the last year in WS. Never see anything about an arrest or the police catching anyone though.) I’ve seen quotes and costs of $500.00 on this post, but in looking at the photos with towing costs, was this not a Felony incident that caused at least $25,000 in damage plus towing to our neighbors?
    I’d also recommend people calling their insurance companies. I bet they paid out here and might want to get a little detective action going since the police just don’t seem to be able to do much in WS.

    Comment by Eric — 4:32 pm July 5, 2014 #

  15. For me slashed tires would mean no way of getting to many of my jobs, and no way to get the money to buy new tires. Nice assumption that just anyone can afford that kind of unexpected expense. completely lame

    Comment by sophista-tiki — 4:34 pm July 5, 2014 #

  16. That really sucks, I drive along that road every morning on the way to work and every evening on the way back. I recognize the VW and Chris’s black Mustang, which stands out because its always so well cared for/polished.
    .
    Amazing how much damage these people were able to inflict, hope they are found.

    Comment by Jason — 5:09 pm July 5, 2014 #

  17. So, so sorry to read this. We lived at 50th and Dawson (Seaview) from1990 – 1999, and we once had the windows broken out of our car, parked in front of our house. Nothing stolen, just destruction. It’s been a problem, and I’m not sure it’s really people from out of the area.

    Comment by MMB — 5:30 pm July 5, 2014 #

  18. Thanks so much to Pat (no relation) and Bob the plumber for your generous offers to your neighbors whose tires were slashed. You’re what makes WS such a great place to live, even when we have unfortunate incidents like this.

    Comment by Pat T. — 5:39 pm July 5, 2014 #

  19. I will throw in $100 towards reward,,,this is very sad for our hard working community.

    Comment by WsBoB — 6:31 pm July 5, 2014 #

  20. Whether the people who did this are local or not, they do not care at all about the expense, inconvenience or loss of income their acts caused. They only care about their momentary whims. Reading some of the comments from the fireworks post last night, I guess it could be argued that they were just celebrating their freedom in one of the illegal ways that they decided was acceptable on July 4th.

    Comment by Alphonse — 7:13 pm July 5, 2014 #

  21. Well the flat tires (in particular), and litter here on Alki disgust me. We had 2 officers on foot patrolling Alki last night, and they were fantastic. Sadly, when they left about 10pm, hordes of groups of young adults descended on Alki and turned it into a free-for-all block party with fire crackers, booze, screaming and loud music from their cars. Summer can be so “fun” down here.

    Comment by ScubaFrog — 7:30 pm July 5, 2014 #

  22. Somebody must have been very motivated. Slashing a tire is hard work. I tried to cut up some (junk) tires once to use in a project. Started out as a good idea but I finally gave up– too difficult.

    I had a friend in that area who suffered some Independence Day vandalism. Somebody placed a large firecracker under the windshield wiper of his expensive car. Blasted the windshield into a thousand pieces.

    Comment by bolo — 8:01 pm July 5, 2014 #

  23. You guys… They were just celebrating their freedom …

    Comment by Me — 8:11 pm July 5, 2014 #

  24. The Comment by “Me:” I hope you are being ironic or something like that; I hope they catch these pukes. And charge the person(s) with felonies, because destruction of just 750 of someone’s property is a class C felony — and it does not take much these days to cause that much damage to a car — only two tires with some models. Freedom also means that your right to swing your arm ends where the next person’s nose begins. Collectvely the damage, if about 30 cars, is tens of thousands in damage to tires alone. Yeah, freedom.

    Comment by Pat — 9:34 pm July 5, 2014 #

  25. So a couple things…I have 3 245/75R/16 from a Chevy suburban in my garage on the stock rim, that are pretty bald BUT can tie u over until u can afford more….
    Also my daughter has 4 tires from her 2006 ford escape…. Just comment and we can hook up!!!
    I’m on 48th between Alaska & Oregon and I smoke cigs outside on the porch, saw a group of people coming north on 48th @3:30-3:45 am running like hell…maybe they actually made up to junction as they turned right on Alaska…there are traffic cams & business cameras??? Just a thought!

    Comment by Cãrlãinthebãrrã — 9:41 pm July 5, 2014 #

  26. I have 2 Bridgestone Potenza 225/45R17 and 2 Potenza 255/40R17 Runflats that are in good shape if anyone vandalized can use them.

    Comment by Rusty — 10:09 pm July 5, 2014 #

  27. We have 1 Toyo Les Schwab brand size 205 55R 15 if anyone can use that. Tread appears good.

    Comment by Laura — 10:19 pm July 5, 2014 #

  28. We had 2 tires on our own car slashed plus 1 tire on my father’s car that we were borrowing slashed. These were both AWD vehicles so all the tires needed replacing. All in all $1500. Plus, my father’s car was parked in our driveway so whomever slashed that tire was trespassing on our property and vandalizing at the same time. The neighborhood really came together though. Was nice to see everyone helping each other out. That is the true spirit of our community, not these punks’ behavior.

    Comment by Mark — 10:28 pm July 5, 2014 #

  29. KIRO7 tv news just did a big long story on this; and showed wsblog page of this story

    Comment by Diane — 11:04 pm July 5, 2014 #

  30. Do you think this is the same group caught on video prowling cars a few weeks ago?

    Comment by Raincity — 6:55 am July 6, 2014 #

  31. Hi, Folks. At reader Jason’s suggestion I set up a gofundme acct on behalf of the people who want a private reward to help nail the punks.

    If you’ve pledged to assist with the reward and have not yet had a chance, please go to:
    http://www.gofundme.com/b2t7e8

    Current amt shows as 400, though there are a few individuals who have pledged an additional 300, so the real total is 700. That all happened in under 24hrs. People are amazing.

    I’m soliciting feedback on the cap amt and deadline. (I’ve never done this before, so feedback would be appreciated and I want to make sure we’re not undermining any SPD efforts or that potential tipsters are holding back in hopes of a crazy big reward. The sooner we get info, the better I think.) If someone has used gofundme and knows how to make it a group page vs individual page I’d love to know.) And add more car photos etc. Right now it looks like it’s an individual’s pg rather than group effort. Feel free to link to the page on Facebook etc.

    You can contact me via the rewards email:
    paybackforpunks@gmail.com

    Thanks to KIRO for the coverage!

    Comment by kittyno — 8:42 am July 6, 2014 #

  32. Truth be told, after I installed a camera system on my house from Costco and got a 110lb Doberman, crime on my street has come to a halt. I highly recommend camera systems on your houses, a great deterrent. If you would like more information on the type of system, please let me know and I would be more than happy to share. Best investment.

    Comment by Wally — 12:25 pm July 6, 2014 #

  33. Kittyno – thanks so much for setting up the page. Just made my donation. My friend was here visiting from Oregon and her tires and mine were slashed. Hopefully with the KIRO coverage, it’ll get the word out and someone will provide some information. I think if they do get caught, all of us should all try to make it to the court appearances so that the judge can see how many people were impacted and they hopefully get more than just a slap on the wrist.

    Comment by snowball — 2:40 pm July 6, 2014 #

  34. Jesus, what’s happening to my hometown!!??? I’m thankful to have new neighbors (thanks guys) to keep an eye on my house and elderly mother in West Seattle, but West Seattle is making Van Nuys look like a church picnic in comparison. One thing I notice immediately when I come back to Seattle is the general air of permissiveness with kids and young adults. Maybe that’s contributing to this problem, dunno. But I can’t stress enough how eye-opening it is from my perspective to see the changes in Seattle, even within a span of 6 months.

    Comment by G — 4:27 pm July 6, 2014 #

  35. G, your ongoing “Los Angeles has so much less crime than West Seattle” theme is not accurate and since you bring up a specific neighborhood, that enables a snapshot of the stats:
    .
    June 24-30, Van Nuys, per LA Times crime-mapping of violent crimes and most-serious property crimes, the most recent complete week that the map has: 2 assaults, 2 robberies, 4 burglaries, 5 auto thefts, 5 car prowls (“theft from vehicle” per LAT), http://maps.latimes.com/neighborhoods/neighborhood/van-nuys/crime/
    .
    June 24-30, West Seattle, per SPD crime map (use the left sidebar to configure for that time period plus the specific crimes that LAT tracked http://web6.seattle.gov/mnm/policereports.aspx ): 1 robbery, 3 assaults, 4 burglaries, 7 auto thefts, 2 car prowls.
    .
    The two make a good comparison because population is similar – both around 100,000 people.
    .
    It’s all too much, of course, in both places. I wish we had a crime-free world. But the repeated suggestions that somehow things have gone to hell here in comparison to your preferred city are not accurate. If you care, stay here and fight for it, like the people on 48th SW who are fighting back in this story, like the people who care enough to come to the Crime Prevention Council meetings and Block Watch Captains Network meetings and talk directly to police about what they’re seeing in their neighborhoods (and those who network quietly in their neighborhoods, with or without police in other ways), beyond the 911 calls when something happens, and many other examples we’ve showcased here in addition to the basic crime reports.
    .
    Thanks – TR

    Comment by WSB — 4:51 pm July 6, 2014 #

  36. Thank you, TR.

    .

    Mike

    Comment by miws — 5:05 pm July 6, 2014 #

  37. I second Mike’s appreciation of TR’s thoughtful and researched response.

    One thing I’ve been doing to knit my neighborhood more closely together is have an annual potluck in August. This year will be our 8th annual. It’s a lot of fun and a perfect way to stay connected to everyone, and meet new neighbors.

    We’ve started to include a speaker at these gatherings. This year we’re going to focus on emergency preparedness.

    An added benefit — A few years ago we quickly pulled together an active Block Watch after several nearby homes were broken into. It came together easily because we already felt connected, in part because of the annual summer party.

    Comment by wssz — 11:14 pm July 6, 2014 #

  38. Oh no, the purple VW is my 7 yr-old’s favorite vehicle (we live a few blocks away and often walk by with our dogs). I’m so sorry this happened to our neighbors.

    Comment by Brontosaurus — 11:54 pm July 6, 2014 #

  39. Dummy cameras (admittedly with illuminated LEDs)placed pointing @ my driveway, sidewalk and entryway decreased our criminal activity here in the RV to near zero – from a thriving theft ring upstairs down to a few visitors a week :) I do have an active camera, but it gets completely ignored…

    Comment by Mike 0 — 7:40 am July 7, 2014 #

  40. Does anyone know of a reasonably priced tow service? I had the passenger rear tire on an AWD Jag slashed and how it sits against the curb, I can’t jack it up to get the full size spare put on. The local companies I’ve called have all been around $125 estimates for a flat bed truck. Don’t really want to pay that much since it’s only got to go about a mile down to Les Schwab, and I’ve got to replace all 4 tires since it’s AWD. I’d like to personally thank these punks if someone can ever grab them by the collar…

    Comment by Steve — 1:56 pm July 7, 2014 #

  41. Steve – check with your car insurance – mine includes roadside service and they covered the entire cost of towing – my car required a flatbed too because it has two tires slashed. Good luck!

    Comment by snowball — 2:42 pm July 7, 2014 #

  42. I like using GT Towing.

    Comment by Laura — 2:49 pm July 7, 2014 #

  43. We took the roadside service off, towing also, since we are getting ready to sell it. I’m stuck footing the bill, and since we’re selling, trying to keep costs down as much as possible. Thanks for the thoughts.

    Comment by Steve — 2:54 pm July 7, 2014 #

  44. sadly, even if they were caught on camera, it isn’t likely the police would do anything. We had car prowlers a couple of weeks ago and I caught them on three different cameras. I filed the online police report and told them that I had caught them on 3 different surveillance cameras…. I didn’t get so much as a call back. I even saw the punks a couple of days later near Hiawatha. It would be nice if the police cared about property crime…..

    Comment by patrick — 5:05 pm July 7, 2014 #

  45. TR,

    IMO, the crime stats are a toss-up, and for me that is a big problem, particularly given that Van Nuys is surrounded by another 1.7 million people in the valley, who certainly don’t necessarily stay in their neighborhoods to commit crimes. By the way, I use LA only because I’m here a lot and it is a convenient measuring stick – and happen, incidentally to share some other commonalities.

    But rather than a (friendly) war of stats, let me just say that I feel West Seattle is slipping away, not intentionally and not always dramatically, but little by little, like an old friend. I have my own theories, but they belong on a forum. Thanks.

    Comment by G — 5:51 pm July 7, 2014 #

  46. GT towing guy would only say, “well, we usually like to start with $100 when we leave the yard with a flatbed…”

    Comment by Steve — 6:00 pm July 7, 2014 #

  47. Sorry Steve about that GT response. I don’t recall getting any response like that when my car was rear ended and the bottom was dragging on the ground and I needed a flatbed. Given the circumstances in West Seattle on the 4th I personally think a little more compassion for the plight of people would be nice.

    Comment by Laura — 6:23 pm July 7, 2014 #

  48. No worries Laura. I’ve tried all the local towing companies. You’d think they’d appreciate the locals, but no. Even Les Schwab. I’ve done countless cars through them for years, and they are always good to folks that drive in with flats, but they tell me it’s a $75 service drive for the 1 mile even though I told them I have to buy 4 new tires. Only those of us here feel the pain I guess.

    Comment by Steve — 7:28 pm July 7, 2014 #

  49. My car was stolen from 9th and Trenton Sunday at 2:30 am. My twins car seats and stroller were in the car plus 400 in cash. Its a 92 Honda accord dark blue. Any Ingo would be great

    Comment by raquel — 7:57 pm July 7, 2014 #

  50. I’m on 49th and Juneau. .. got hit. Must have had down Atlas to beach

    Comment by brandon — 8:22 pm July 7, 2014 #

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