FOLLOWUP: New details of last night’s robbery arrests

Late last night, we reported on a search and arrests following a street robbery in The Junction. Tonight, new details from SPD:

Officers arrested three people after they robbed a woman and a convenience store in West Seattle Thursday evening.

Officer Jesse Cahill was on patrol near California Avenue SW and SW Alaska Street at 11 p.m. when he saw a disturbance near a bus stop. He drove his patrol car closer and saw that three men were struggling with a woman over a purse.

One of the suspects threw the woman to the ground and the group fled as Officer Cahill approached. The officer checked on the 22-year-old victim who sustained scratches on her hands, as additional officers responded to search for the suspects.

Officers found one of the suspects, a 15-year-old male, at a nearby bus stop still holding the victim’s purse. The officers placed the boy into custody and the purse was returned to the victim.

A K-9 officer tracked the other two suspects, an 18-year-old male suspect, and another 15-year-old male, to the 4400 block of 44 Avenue SW, where they were taken into custody.

The officers investigating this robbery noticed that the three suspects’ descriptions matched a robbery from earlier in the evening. The three suspects entered a convenience store in the 4800 block of Erskine Way Southwest at 6:30 p.m. and began removing items from the shelves. The clerk remained behind the counter as one of the suspects implied he had a gun, allowing the trio to escape.

Officers booked the 18-year-old into King County Jail and the two 15-year-olds into the King County Youth Services Center for investigation of robbery.

39 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: New details of last night's robbery arrests"

  • chas redmond November 24, 2017 (6:40 pm)

    This seems even worse than the initial report. Is it possible that what happened is three homeless youths doing whatever they can to get by? Thank goodness the victim was unharmed. 

    • Jon November 24, 2017 (7:00 pm)

      What do you mean, “doing what they can to get by”? Robbing someone is acceptable if someone is down enough on their luck?

      Plenty of people in unfortunate situations make it by selling papers or by simply asking for food and money. It’s not easy – and they don’t live in luxury – but they make do. Nobody should sympathize with those who prey on innocent people, regardless of their unfortunate situation.

      • Jethro Marx November 24, 2017 (7:14 pm)

        No one thinks street robbery is ok if the perpetrator is homeless or any otherwise situated; let’s stop pretending that’s what comments like Chas’ imply. Also your summation of what those who are homeless do to get by is stupid. Some people who are homeless work in all the same low-paying jobs as anyone else who is blessed with a home.

    • WSB November 24, 2017 (7:02 pm)

      I won’t be able to get court documents until Monday. But to your question, the person on the jail register who I believe to be the adult suspect is in the District Court system for a traffic citation last month, and the document lists a residential address on the north side of The Junction.

    • Wut November 26, 2017 (3:13 pm)

      Knocking a woman to the ground to steal her purse and robbing a convenience store- is doing what they can to get by?! Great perspective.  these boys are certainly more determined to get by than most 15-18 year olds! 

    • Neighbor December 9, 2017 (11:31 pm)

      Robbing someone to get by? I certainly hope you are in no way trying to justify these thieves actions. Even a 15 year old knows robbery (by assaulting someone no less) is not acceptable. 

  • Jon November 24, 2017 (6:55 pm)

    There was a gang of teens in the Junction who were physically fighting amongst each other around 6:30PM, outside of Starbucks. I called it in, but I don’t think SPD got there in time to apprehend any of them. I wonder if any involved with those other crimes were from the same group? Ages and behavior seems to match.

    To the victim (if you’re reading this): sorry to have that happen to you. My recommendation would be to invest in a decent self-defense flashlight (at the very least), such as an Olight, Klarus, Surefire, or similar products (some are even USB rechargeable), and to have it readily available to your hands so as to blind attackers and to use as a blunt object in the event of a struggle. I know how terrifying it can be in such a situation and I hope that you’ll take the appropriate steps to never become a victim again.

    As a quick aside: many women will buy a can of ‘pepper spray’, only to have it sit at the bottom of their purse. If you’re going to carry anything like that, always have it within reach or concealed in your hands (in your coat pocket, for example) and train in using it.

    To anyone else ever in similar situations: be loud and repeatedly scream for help if you’re being attacked. Some of your neighbors are light sleepers and actively monitor strange activity to report to the SPD, or will come to your aid.

    Take whatever steps you need to protect yourself. Stay safe.

    • Allie November 24, 2017 (8:52 pm)

      Thanks for your advice about the self defense flashlights. It’s such a good idea. I just read a really good article about them and I’m totally going to get some for my family.

      • Jon November 26, 2017 (1:25 am)

        I’m glad my advice helped anyone. :)

        Don’t cheap out on flashlights — they can save your life in more than one way. Expect to spend about $70-100+ per decent light; brands used as weapon-mounted lights tend to hold up better to shock (drops, et cetera) and will likely last you over a decade if you take care of them. Just be sure that you get one with what’s called a “crenulated bezel” or a “striking bezel”. It’s a blunt “sawtooth” patterned crown above the lense designed for blunt-force trauma (the idea is that you drag it against someone’s forehead or scalp to cause bleeding and additional blindness). You might also want to get one with what’s referred to as a “cigar grip ring” — which allows you to get a better striking grip on the light for defensive purposes.

        Here’s a decent and affordable USB rechargeable model. I don’t have this model, but have used their military / law-enforcement models in the past and found them to be reliable. They’re nice in that the battery can be recharged inside of the light.

        Olight makes great products as well. The 18650 rechargeable battery must be removed and charged.

        Elzetta lights are indestructible and 100% American-made. The downside is that the batteries aren’t rechargeable and that they recommend not using rechargeables from other brands. But they can be custom-ordered and I’ve seen them dropped from helicopters and still function as new, so…

        Beyond that, if you’re comfortable applying for your CPL and willing to put in the training, don’t be afraid to practice your 2A rights. Just be responsible. Stay safe and good luck.

        • Swede. November 26, 2017 (8:51 am)

          Good advice Jon! I second a flashlight since they are useful in many other ways also. 

    • cbof November 29, 2017 (2:47 pm)

      The flashlight is a good idea, and you give sound advice. I have one like what you’re talking about.

      I think here, also, it would be compassionate to make sure that the victim, if reading this, knows that it is not her fault for getting attacked. 

      It is still the attacker’s fault that they committed the attack, not the victim’s fault for not being prepared to defend themselves. I know it can be really emotionally taxing to reconcile the right to feel safe with the knowledge that there are dangers to be prepared for. I also know that it can help a lot to just know that  it was not your fault.

  • they November 24, 2017 (7:11 pm)

    Not sure if this victim could be labeled as unharmed. Fill the streets with desperate people and they might do desperate things…   

  • WSRes November 24, 2017 (7:42 pm)

    When seconds count, public safety response is just minutes away. Even the best response times are after the event has occurred. As one reply above discussed you need to be prepared to protect yourself. Choose a method and get properly trained. 

  • Mark November 24, 2017 (7:44 pm)

    This is sad, the youths need to be taught a lesson so they will not do this again.  They are old enough to know right from wrong and need to be put on clean up detail for two weeks each.

  • Natinstl November 24, 2017 (8:26 pm)

    I sure hope they get way more punishment than clean up detail.

  • justme November 24, 2017 (8:28 pm)

    There are many reports locally through the junction association of shop thefts involving 3 young males very recently. I wonder if this is the same three.

    • WSB November 24, 2017 (8:43 pm)

      We had been working on a story about that, interrupted in info-gathering by the holiday, but I wondered the same thing – we will be asking on Monday. Those were primarily tip-jar thefts as I understand it.

  • Gene November 24, 2017 (9:55 pm)

    Second the more than clean-up detail consequence.

  • DefendYourself November 25, 2017 (12:02 am)

    Enforce your constitutional rights.  Conceal carry site for Washington state.  http://www.dol.wa.gov/business/firearms/faconcealreq.html is the starting point.

    Take personal initiative to protect yourselves.  Crazy lady with a knife stabbing people California Ave. Shootings Alki and other places, robberies EVERYWHERE.  

    • Jon November 26, 2017 (1:47 am)

      Seconded. Although, the flimsy paper card they give you is a total joke. :)

      We all have our reasons and close-call stories to “justify” our decisions, but the truth is — you don’t need a reason to justify your right to live.

      To anyone who decides to go this route: please also enroll in a firearms training course if you are new to shooting. The NRA (I know someone is going to get upset just at those three letters) is a great resource for finding safety and training courses in your area. These classes are designed to teach people everything about handling and safety (which you will find out is a big part of the gun-owning community). They also offer more advanced courses which teach you the fundamentals of carrying and drawing from a holster.

      And if you want a TL;DR recommendation on a purchase: I would recommend an M&P Shield 2.0 in 9mm or a GLOCK 43 for most hand sizes (especially for women with small hands).

      • Jack November 26, 2017 (10:57 am)

        No, we don’t need everyone walking around with a concealed gun. Jeez, where do you think you live anyway?  It’s West Seattle for god’s sakes.

        How about taking the money you would have us all spend on handguns and let’s use that money to create a solution for this based on law enforcement?

        • JF November 26, 2017 (4:08 pm)

          Actually, if criminals knew that every law abiding citizen was armed, there would probably be a huge decline in personal attacks. I know I wouldn’t be creeping up on anyone with plans to beat them and take their stuff if I knew they were trained and carrying a weapon. Would you?

          I carry the exact weapon that this guy suggested for women. Its a great gun. And I definitely feel better knowing I have it if I should need it,  rather than wish I had it when I didnt.

          • Jon November 28, 2017 (1:42 am)

            I’m not sure what goes through the mind of every bozo and jabroni out there; but when they’re brazen enough to perform home invasions when it’s likely people are home, you do question their sanity.

            Good for you, by the way. I hope you’ve practiced and found out an ammunition type, holster, and carry method which works for your situation. And that’s exactly the right mindset — you hope you’ll never need it, but it’s there if you ever do.

            Stay safe.

        • mtnfreak November 26, 2017 (6:05 pm)

           I second Jon’s recommendation that if you decide to carry concealed – whatever your reasons – please make sure you get the best instruction you can. I can strongly recommend West Coast Armory for their gun safety classes, including their concealed carry. They have an impressive shop, indoor range, classroom spaces, and only 15 minutes away from my house in West Seattle.

          Jack, your assertion is respectable, but as long as any meaningful reform in our gun laws is blocked (I’m not going to argue who or how, but it is happening), I respect anyone’s decision to apply for a CPL and carry concealed. 

      • Jethro Marx November 27, 2017 (12:48 pm)

        People can be a bit funny about guns, and while you have the right to bear arms, the sad fact remains: that gun you carry is more likely to exert its force on a family member than some dude snatching your purse. At any rate, let’s all just agree to stop buying guns from Glock; they jam rather easily, they have no active safety, and they look like toys.

         As for crime, boy, I don’t know; will any measure eliminate or equitably punish it? Probably not, and having a society where we gleefully envision shooting criminals or dragging crenulations across their foreheads to inflict maximum damage is not one I aspire to.

        • Jon November 28, 2017 (2:38 am)

          Yes, people can indeed be quite funny about guns. For example, they might bring up the “you’re more likely to…” argument, which is based almost entirely on purposeful male suicides (where a large portion of the “gun violence” stats are dug up from).

          Also, to use your own turn of phrase: your summation on GLOCK is stupid. :)

          They’re perfectly serviceable tools and have over thirty-years of recorded reliability in some of the harshest conditions (which is why many government agencies have contracts with GLOCK). Can’t say I’ve ever had one jam on me and I’m not even a “fanboy” of the brand or their hilarious slogan; I just seem to shoot them well. But to your criticism: any neglected machined tool can fail if not properly cared for or when pushed beyond their intended tolerances.

          Your comment on safety features is not accurate (which adds to the overall Gun Scare / Panic). Like most striker-fired semi-autos, they have a trigger safety (the “dingus” as it’s colloquially known), as well as a drop safety (many other firearms also have magazine disconnect safeties — which I totally disagree with for defensive reasons). Ergo, a fully-loaded GLOCK won’t discharge unless the trigger is fully manipulated from the center.

          Most negligent discharges occur when firearms are not safety-checked and cleared prior to a cleaning. I own both DA/SA and striker-fired styles of firearms (both with “manual safeties” and with just the trigger safety mechanisms); so long as you maintain trigger discipline and cover the trigger guard (in a holster, for example), nothing is ever going to magically happen, despite not being able to “thumb the hammer”, et cetera. The added benefit to striker-fired is that they’re remarkably easier to get your first round on-target and are easier to operate under stress (especially for female shooters who are typically smaller-framed than your average male). They’re also much more affordable. But hey — I know people who still prefer showpiece revolvers from 150 years ago. :)

          On your final point: many people who choose the familiarize themselves with defensive techniques and tools probably have their own reasons and prior experiences leading them to that decision and responsibility. And they don’t owe you any explanations beyond what they choose to share with you. But if you truly believe that anyone is “gleefully” looking forward to the day where they’re in a horrific, life-threatening situation – simply to test out of their defensive tools like some sort of Batman – you may need to reevaluate your own cynicism towards your fellow neighbors.

          Stay safe, regardless.

  • Huck November 25, 2017 (8:06 am)

    I have no sympathy for these kids. I hope they learn their lesson the hard way. 

  • Wendell November 25, 2017 (8:47 am)

    Waiting for a getaway bus? In Seattle? No wonder the 15 year old was caught.

  • Mike November 25, 2017 (9:23 am)

    When attacked, you have full right to defend yourself.  Scream, make a scene, beat the living crap out of the attackers, etc.  For the victim, please press charges against all those involved, lawyer up and crush the offenders in court.

  • Joel November 25, 2017 (9:55 am)

    This ain’t their first rodeo….any parents claiming these criminals they raised?  Hopefully these are their only kids.

  • Al November 25, 2017 (10:42 am)

    You can find great hand held flash lights at bartells. There very bright and made of steal.  If you scream and you should yell ” firer” that gets attention.  I teach women’s self defense classes. I’m certified!  Sorry this happen to you.I’m glad spd was there

    • Jon November 26, 2017 (1:49 am)

      I would question relying upon any of the cheapo lights at Bartells. You should look into Olight, Klarus, Surefire, et cetera for your self-defense courses (and emphasize crenulated bezels).

  • B.W. November 25, 2017 (10:44 am)

    Awe those poor “teens”. Good thing nothing will happen except a night in jail. Our justice system in Seattle is terrible. Remember for those that voted for Pete Holmes, you wanted this. 

    • WSB November 25, 2017 (11:41 am)

      These suspects are not going through the CITY system, which is what Pete Holmes is in charge of. They are accused of robbery, which is a felony crime, prosecuted by the *King County* Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, on behalf of the state of Washington, and the city has nothing to do with it. The 18-year-old suspect is still in jail, according to the register, after two nights. There is no way for me to check on the juvenile suspects as that facility’s roster is not online, but I’ll be following up with prosecutors on Monday. – TR

  • justme November 25, 2017 (6:10 pm)

    Thanks Tracy!

  • Cheetahfast Dad November 29, 2017 (12:12 pm)

    Has the 18 year old been charged yet?

    • WSB November 29, 2017 (12:17 pm)

      No, and there likely is not a rush on charges as his bail was set at $5,000 over the weekend and he was released on bond.

    • WSB December 1, 2017 (3:30 pm)

      Update: Now he has been charged. I will be writing a separate story on that a bit later.

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