The WSBeat: The case of the door-to-door dent ‘fixer’ & 9 more summaries

By Megan Sheppard
On the WSBeat, for West Seattle Blog

This edition of The WSBeat contains summaries written from reports on cases handled recently by Southwest Precinct officers – generally cases that (usually) have NOT already appeared here in breaking-news coverage or West Seattle Crime Watch reports, and many are not crimes, but might at least answer a lingering question such as “what WERE all those police doing on my block?” Or on the bridge, or the beach, or …

*In Arbor Heights, a man knocked on the front door of a residence on July 28th and offered to fix dents on some cars parked in the driveway. The man, who called himself “George,” seemed believable, since he had a truck that contained the types of tools used in a body shop. The residents agreed to pay George $300 for the work, which turned out to be phony. (A resin that was supposed to harden later melted instead.) After he departed, the victims discovered $200 worth of CDs missing from one of the vehicles. George had arrived with his wife and child, who stayed in their vehicle: A white, early 2000s pickup with a standard sized bed and no extra cab. George was described as a Hispanic man in his twenties, about 5’6”, thin build, dark hair and small mustache.

*Last Friday night (July 31st), a 29-year-old Alki resident was transported to Harborview after causing a series of crashes on the eastbound West Seattle Bridge, ending with him finally veering across all lanes and slumping over unconscious on the steering wheel. As medics pulled him out for treatment, a small plastic bag fell off his lap that tested positive for powdered methamphetamine. Blood samples were drawn from the suspect at Harborview. He remained unconscious throughout transport. He was left in the custody of the staff at Harborview.

*Last Wednesday afternoon (July 29th), officers spotted a known felon driving a car in the Morgan Junction area. He was taken into custody on an outstanding no-bail warrant for unlawful firearms possession and drug possession. In addition, the man was wanted on a $20,000 4th-degree assault warrant from Pierce County. He was booked into King County Jail.

Six more summaries ahead:

*On July 27th, a man came to the desk at the SW Precinct and wanted to report the loss of his wallet and an envelope containing $4100. He told the officer they had been on the seat of his truck. And that no, as it happens, he didn’t usually lock his truck.

*Friday, after they confronted a group of people smoking drugs on the street in the 6900 block of Delridge, two women were threatened by one of the group — a woman who said she had friends who would “deal with their a-s.”

*An Edgewood resident with a history of mental-health issues and meth use was taken into custody by Pierce County Deputies on the 23rd after he arrived (after a two year absence) at his parents’ West Seattle home, armed with a .45-caliber handgun. While fingering the gun, he threatened his parents, his brothers, and threatened to shoot up the Federal Building downtown. In between the threats, he ranted about conspiracy theories, said his computer had been bugged, and said that he hears voices that tell him to kill himself. He has been known to have 25 firearms (including military assault rifles) at his home, and seven handguns had already been confiscated by the Milton Police Department. The 42-year-old was booked into King County Jail for investigation of threats and domestic violence.

*A 47-year-old was interviewed and transported to Harborview for a mental evaluation on the 31st after she was seen walking in the vicinity of 47th and Othello, throwing rocks (some the size of baseballs) at people and residents, pulling up plants and repeatedly walking into the middle of a major arterial without regard for traffic. Spitting and screaming, she told the officers that she *knew* they were agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Marvel comics superheroes).

*On the afternoon of Friday the 31st — a 90-degree da y– an officer was dispatched to the 6700 block of 25th SW to check on a “woman in crisis.” He found a car stuck in a ditch, with a woman in her fifties and a small dog inside. The woman explained that she was homeless and had been stuck for several days, and that she and her dog had had no water. She stepped out of the car and it was apparent that she had soiled her pants numerous times. She had no cell phone and a dead battery, was sweating, and had a difficult time conversing with the officer. Concerned for her well-being, the officer had her (and the dog) transported to the hospital for evaluation.

*A resident in the 4000 block of California Ave. SW called 911 after spotting a “dark-haired” prowler peering through her window late Saturday (August 1st). The officers who responded saw nothing suspicious but did find two large raccoons hanging out on the woman’s side of the building.

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EDITOR’S NOTES: Remember, the CRISIS CLINIC hotline is a resource for those in crisis, including thoughts or acts of self-harm, or trying to find help for someone in crisis: 206.461.3222 … Previous WSBeat roundups are archived here. We also publish crime reports when we get tips or otherwise hear about noteworthy incidents – they don’t all turn up on the scanner, so please don’t be shy about letting us know when you see/hear something happening = call or text 206-293-6302.

18 Replies to "The WSBeat: The case of the door-to-door dent 'fixer' & 9 more summaries"

  • Rick August 4, 2015 (2:49 pm)

    The bodywork scam has been around awhile. They got me as a 16 year old in 1973. Dad let me learn the hard but(effective)way.

    • WSB August 4, 2015 (3:20 pm)

      Yes, most scams seem to be ageless, and yet people keep falling for them … here’s hoping this might keep one person somewhere from becoming the next victim, if nothing else!

  • ChefJoe August 4, 2015 (2:53 pm)

    If you’re going to call it the “West Seattle Freeway” then we hope the bridge gets cleared with that level of priority.

    • WSB August 4, 2015 (3:23 pm)

      Fixed. Didn’t catch while copy-editing (in the car, though NOT on the bridge) …

  • Bonnie August 4, 2015 (3:19 pm)

    My friend got taken by the bodywork scam a few years ago. Her husband was approached outside a grocery store here in West Seattle.

  • Sue August 4, 2015 (3:22 pm)

    I had a dent-fixer guy stop me as I was getting out of my car in front of my apartment building. He was not in a business truck, but in an SUV with a woman in the passenger seat, and called out to me that he could fix my dents and tried to give me a card. It’s a 14 year old car; I could care less about dents the car came with. He was very insistent as I walked away. I was half expecting him to do more damage to my car after I was gone, but he didn’t come back again.

  • Jeanie August 4, 2015 (3:46 pm)

    Raccoon Peeping Toms!

  • Matt B August 4, 2015 (3:48 pm)

    Ya gotta keep an eye on those raccoons. They do wear bandit masks and all.

  • ChefJoe August 4, 2015 (3:49 pm)

    I thought it was the SPD who wrote “WS Freeway” initially…. my comment was extremely mis-directed if not the case.

    • WSB August 4, 2015 (3:56 pm)

      Megan researches and writes the WS Beat from SPD reports, sends it to me and I look at it (editing as needed, generally not much!) before getting it into our publishing system and live on the site. If it’s a direct quote from a police report, it would be in quotation marks – if not, it’s a summary. The reports she views are not all available online so I can’t check to see if police actually did or did not call it the WS Freeway … which as you know it is no longer officially named; but transportation tweeters were still using the old name as of a few months ago, though I think they’ve finally veered away ! – TR

  • Casey August 4, 2015 (4:05 pm)

    The other day I heard noises on the deck, and looked through the blinds to see a beady-eyed mask wearing bandit staring at me. He was after the bag of birdseed.

    Also, a couple of years ago, my mom was taken in by the door-to-door body work crew. They even drove her to the ATM so she could pay them in cash, and made mincemeat of the repair. Mother and I had a serious talk about not hiring unsolicited/unlicensed workers.

  • Kathy Ghenie August 4, 2015 (4:21 pm)

    Hi, We lived in West Seattle from 1968 through 1970, on 49th S.W. Found your blog and thought it was interesting. Loved living there.

  • KatherineL August 4, 2015 (5:00 pm)

    I wonder what the hospital did with the heat-stressed dog.

  • JoB August 4, 2015 (5:01 pm)

    a man resembling george’s description has been trolling Westwood Mall with his kids in the car looking to fix dents

  • Bonnie August 4, 2015 (5:08 pm)

    If I remember correctly the West Seattle Bridge was called the West Seattle Freeway when it was first built but they changed the name because people were worried that drivers would drive too fast thinking of it as a freeway.

  • Friend O'Dinghus August 4, 2015 (6:04 pm)

    Welcome Kathy to ‘tha blog’ as I call it. I suggest visiting often as there are periodically some stunningly gorgeous photos to enjoy.
    Of course, the local West Seattle reporting is outstanding too, and more professional than a lot of larger, mainstream media outlets….looking at you Fox 24 hour news.
    Come back and visit us all sometime.Cheers!

  • Mike August 4, 2015 (6:19 pm)

    I think SPD would be better off dressing as Marvel and DC comic characters, they’d fit in here dressing like that.

  • trickycoolj August 4, 2015 (6:58 pm)

    I got approached by a dent scammer at the Renton Landing not long ago too. I hemmed and hawed and “don’t carry cash” and the guy wanted to drive me to the ATM around the corner and just wanted to get a birthday present for his kid he had all the tools with him etc etc. just wanted to do work on the side so his boss at the shop wouldn’t take such a big cut. Yeah no. Found out from a coworker it’s an old scam. My car before was a Saturn with plastic dent-less doors so I had never been targeted before!

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