Two West Seattle Crime Watch notes this morning:
STOLEN BICYCLE: From JC:
My 12-year-old son’s bike was stolen from the Seattle Public Library on 35th and Henderson. The bike is a Silver Fuji Absolute. It has an aftermarket rack on the back and a new gel seat. The bike was stolen May 28th before 4:30 pm. We are offering a $100 reward.
This has been reported to police via the online system, but the incident # isn’t available yet; you can reach JC at 206-261-2410.
OVERNIGHT HELICOPTER: Guardian One was in West Seattle briefly around 1:15 am; the crew tweeted later that they were helping SPD with a car-prowling incident “off Delridge Way,” no block specified.
Two notes in West Seattle Crime Watch this afternoon:
(WSB photo from Wednesday afternoon)
SCOOTER-THEFT FOLLOWUP: We know more this afternoon about the Morgan Junction arrest we reported Wednesday after police recovered a stolen scooter. Just published by SPD Blotter‘s Jonah Spangenthal-Lee:
Just 30 hours after walking out of the King County Jail – where he’d spent the last 11 days for a probation violation – a 49-year-old man crossed paths with the law once again Wednesday, when officers spotted him riding a stolen motor scooter through West Seattle.
Officers first noticed the man around 5:15 PM when they saw him pushing a black motor scooter down the sidewalk near 42nd Ave SW and SW Morgan.
Police checked the plate on the scooter and learned it was stolen, just as the man hopped on it and began driving away.
Officers pulled him over and found that not only was the scooter stolen, but its license plate had also been pilfered from another vehicle. Police impounded the scooter and booked the man into the King County Jail for investigation of auto theft.
NORTH ADMIRAL INCIDENTS: Thanks to Sherry for a reader report on two recent incidents in North Admiral – on Wednesday, “Attempted break-in between 7 am and 8 am through a rear patio door on 45th street. House was alarmed and went off when the door was open. Must have scared intruder off. Last week: Attempted break-in through a side patio door on Atlantic St. Homeowner was home so intruder left immediately but left the patio door open.”
(Something to report for Crime Watch? Police first – then, when you can, email@example.com. If it’s breaking news, text or call 206-293-6302. Thanks!)
Thanks for the tips about a heavy police presence in Morgan Junction.
When we arrived, we discovered it was actually related to two incidents – both involving stolen vehicles. One, a car stolen from Federal Way, was found in the southeast end of the West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) parking lot, off 42nd SW south of SW Morgan; police told us they were investigating the possibility it had been linked to mail-theft incidents.
Not even half a block south on 42nd, a stolen motor scooter was found, and one person was taken into custody. Both discoveries came from tips, we were told.
(UPDATED WEDNESDAY MORNING with police report details)
8:15 PM: If you’re noticing Seattle Police heading toward/into Lincoln Park, here’s what’s happening, according to what we’ve heard via scanner so far: Someone called 911 to report a man tried to grab her in the park. The description made public so far is a “Hispanic male, about 18 … white T-shirt, blue gym shorts.” (added) Also: “Thin, about 5’6″, no facial hair.” If you saw anything or have any information, call 911.
8:59 PM: A parkgoer says in comments that the victim told her it happened “on the trail going up from the beach near the pool.”
ADDED 9:34 AM WEDNESDAY: Just obtained from SPD, the narrative from the report, with the victim’s name redacted by SPD (replaced by us with “she” or “her” or “the victim”):
At 2017 hours I responded to a report of an assault with a sexual motive at … Lincoln Park. (The victim) had called 911 to report that an unknown male had grabbed her “butt” while she was walking through the park.
I made contact with (her) on the western side of the park which runs along the Puget Sound. The park has two levels. The lower western side of the park runs along the Puget Sound; the higher eastern side of the park is accessible through several sets of trails and staircases along the interior of the park.
(She) said that she comes to the park every other day to exercise. Tonight,(she) entered the park near the southernmost parking lot. She began running and walking along the trails on the higher, eastern side of the park. (She) said that she had been alternating between running and walking along the trail near the ridge that separates the lower half of the park from the upper.
While (she) was walking along the trail an unknown male approached her from behind and grabbed her “butt” with his right hand. (She) said that she had never seen the male before today. She described the male as approximately 18 years old, Hispanic or possibly Pacific Islander. She said that he was wearing a white t-shirt and dark gym shorts. (She) said the suspect was thin, around 5’6″ in height. He did not have any facial hair that she could recall.
After the suspect grabbed her butt, (she) recoiled away from him. (She) said the suspect then apologized, saying something like, “Sorry, I’ve only got a month to live, I just had to do that”. (She) felt that the suspect did not understand what he did was wrong. She said that the suspect did not leave the area when she asked him what he was doing. After (she) told the suspect that she was going to call the police, he reiterated his apology.
(She) then tried to get a passerby to lend her a cell phone. She stopped a couple who was walking through the area and asked to borrow their phone to call 911. The couple refused and told (her) that she should just leave the area, and that she should not travel alone. (She) said that during this time the suspect left the area but she did not see which direction he went. (She) then walked down the hill into the lower section of the park. She was able to find someone who let her use her cell phone to call 911.
(She) was not certain but said that she might have seen the suspect in the park before he assaulted her. (The victim) believed that he might have been sitting on a bench along the path. (She) believed that he may have been following her through the park but she was not certain.
Multiple units responded to the park and searched the area in vehicles and on foot. King County Metro was notified with a description of the suspect but no one was located. Because (she) did not see the suspect enter or exit the park, his mode of transportation was not known. I provided (her) with an SPD business card with my name, serial number, and this incident number. I asked her to contact the department if she recalled any other details about the incident. I also provided (her) with a victim’s brochure and talked with her about counseling services available.
Two West Seattle Crime Watch reports to share today:
NORTH ADMIRAL PROWLER: From Sarah:
Just wanted to get the word out that sometime overnight (Saturday night into Sunday morning) someone entered our backyard through our alley gate and looked through our garden shed. They also tried to get into the garage. Nothing was taken, but it’s a little unnerving that someone was checking it out. They had removed our floodlight from the outside of the garage (probably fearing it would come on when they went in). They left lots of footprints in the soft dirt in our back yard. We live in the 2100 block of 47th Ave. SW.
On the SPD incident-report map, the only other burglary/attempted-burglary report in West Seattle so far in the past 24 hours was in the 5100 block
RECOGNIZE THIS SHOPLIFTER? A man was caught on video stealing at The Beer Junction and they asked if we’d share photos. He spent six minutes in the store on Thursday, May 14th, asking about a 750-milliliter bottle of Rogue Farms Savior, and eventually was caught on camera stuffing it in his pocket
(We don’t publish photos of not-charged suspects in circumstances like this unless photos/video show them clearly committing the crime; we’ve seen the store surveillance camera video of that actually happening, in this case, but are not publishing it because most of the frame shows people who weren’t involved.) Another image caught his face:
While that’s not a massive amount of shoplifting, TBJ proprietor Morgan Herzog notes, “We are hoping there’s someone out there that recognizes this individual. Shoplifting is costly for all of us, especially small business owners like ourselves. West Seattle is a wonderful place to live and work, and except in a very rare case like this, we are super lucky to have great customers who love beer as much as we do!” If you have any idea who the thief is, please contact Seattle Police and refer to incident number 15-164144.
A thief stole Cynthia‘s scooter overnight:
2009 Genuine Buddy Scooter (orange) with trunk box stolen last night/this morning on the 8100 block of 13th, between Elmgrove and Thistle. [map] License Plate is 4B9633. Police report has been filed under incident number: 2015-169636
If you see it, call 911 and refer to that case number.
SIDE NOTE: We just checked the incident-response map and so far that’s the only vehicle theft reported in this area today.
(UPDATED WEDNESDAY MORNING with additional description information)
I hate to have to report to you that a “Flasher” came by the school today at around 12:30. They did not make themselves known in the usual area, which is the play toy section of the playground. He appeared in a white car on 41st and jumped out of the car at the gates that open on the driveway into the school. The gates were closed, as they always are. He then jumped back into the car and drove away. One girl saw the activity and her parents were notified. The police were notified and showed up within minutes.
The most-recent “flasher” reports near a local school in our archives were by Chief Sealth IHS in February and in January. The last one we have on record near Holy Rosary was last September; the vehicle in that one was described as a silver minivan. We’re checking with police to see if they have any more information about what was reported today.
2:18 PM: Just talked to Det. Patrick Michaud in SPD media relations – they don’t have any additional information so far.
8:51 PM: We asked Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis about this during tonight’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting. Nothing new, he said – one challenge was elapsed time between the incident and the time it was reported, so police will renew efforts to help schools teach about fast reporting and detailed descriptions.
ADDED 11:30 AM WEDNESDAY: As per the comment discussion, we have checked back with police yet again to see if any description information is available. Now that the written report is in, here’s what they have: “White male w/ long brown hair wearing a hat. A white 4-door car.”
Following up on the two Alki street robberies early Saturday and early Sunday, we now have the full narratives from the police reports. The one clear thing both have in common: They happened at/near Whale Tail Park, 59th/Lander, in the early-morning hours.
In West Seattle Crime Watch tonight:
BASEBALL GEAR STOLEN: Pauline hopes you’ll be on the lookout for what car prowler(s) took in Westwood:
Today 2 baseball bags were stolen out of The back of my SUV in the 8100 block of 32nd at Thistle: A large rolling baseball bag with black and orange youth catcher’s gear, a Rawlings catcher’s mitt and a Rawlings baseball glove; a black and orange catcher’s helmet and a black batter’s helmet and an Easton S 500 baseball bat, and a baseball backpack with a blue batters helmet in it.
This has been reported to police.
MULTIPLE CARS DAMAGED IN HIT-AND-RUN: Last night in the 2800 block of SW Morgan in High Point, at least four cars were damaged by a hit-and-run driver. Sasha shared photos of some of the damage:
No injuries were reported. Scanner traffic later in the evening indicated that police were investigating a possible suspect found elsewhere in High Point, asleep in a car and reportedly under the influence, but we haven’t yet been able to confirm whether that resulted in an arrest.
WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL TOMORROW: Tuesday night, 7 pm at the Southwest Precinct, come find out about the latest crime trends and stats in West Seattle and South Park, bring your neighborhood concerns/questions directly to local police leadership, and learn about gangs from a panel of former gang members. The precinct is off Webster just west of Delridge.
West Seattle Crime Watch: 2nd Alki street robbery; Fairmount Park-area car prowl; possible stolen propertyMay 17, 2015 at 9:30 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 7 Comments
SECOND ALKI STREET ROBBERY: Someone was held up at gunpoint in the 2700 block of Alki SW after 4 am today, according to both this SPD auto-tweet and what we’ve since found out was heard on police radio at the time. We won’t be able to get the report until tomorrow, so we have no other details, but that would be the second street robbery of the weekend in the Alki area, after this one early Saturday.
CAR PROWL: Via the WSB Forums, Greg reports a car prowl early today near 42nd/Brandon, west of Fairmount Park, with a GPS and binoculars taken.
STOLEN? OR LOST? Amy found this case near 9th/Elmgrove in Highland Park:
She suspects it was stolen and dumped. Know anyone who’s missing something like this, whether by theft or some other means?
Another bicycle stolen in the Admiral area, and this time the thieves took the rack, too:
My daughter’s bike was U-locked to the bike rack at 41st and Admiral (Friday) night. As of (Saturday) morning, rack and bike were gone: The bike is a silver-grey Cannondale CAAD 8 with blue tape on the handlebars. The theft has been reported to the police.
On Bike To Work Day, someone stole a bicycle from a West Seattleite who says she bikes to work often. Jane sent the photo and report:
My bike was stolen from in front of the Admiral Way Bartell Drugs on Friday, May 15. The cable lock was cut. It is a grey Raleigh (picture attached) with a rack attachment, very new. I would very much appreciate contact if seen, as I bike to work nearly every day.
As with other stolen vehicles – if you see it, please contact police.
P.S. Tuesday is the next West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, 7 pm at Southwest Precinct (Delridge/Webster). Local crime trends and neighborhood concerns will be a centerpiece of the meeting, as always, but guests are booked too – former gang members who “will present their gang experiences and what it took for them to leave the gangs.”
12:54 AM: Police are searching right now for a man who is reported to have held someone up at gunpoint in the Alki area. We don’t have many details, but it happened about half an hour ago, according to information broadcast over police frequencies, and the robber was reported to have last been seen in the Whale Tail Park area; police also are searching near Schmitz Park. The only description mentioned so far is “light complexion black man, early to mid-20s, 6 feet tall, thin build, striped shirt.” No information about the victim(s) and whether they were hurt – no medic calls in the Alki area, though.
12:13 PM: The only additional information we have about this so far is that it was reported in the 1100 block of Alki SW, according to an SPD auto-tweet. Unless it appears on SPD Blotter or unless we happen to find a sergeant in the field who can tell us more, we won’t be able to get additional details until Monday.
ORIGINAL REPORT, 12:15 PM: New on SPD Blotter: A 52-year-old man arrested in North Delridge “after he menacingly harassed two women on the street, and tried to bite an officer as she took him into custody.” It all started in the 4000 block of 26th and ended in the 2600 block of SW Yancy, police say. Here’s the full story.
ADDED 12:24 PM: Picking up where the SPDB story left off – we’ve just looked up the suspect on the jail register. He remains behind bars; while his initial bail from last night’s booking shows on the register at $2,000, an online court docket shows that an increase to $50,000 was granted at his bail hearing this morning.
ADDED 12:40 PM: We’ve just learned more about the suspect and are identifying him as he is a registered sex offender – because of a rape conviction – Randy Gene Stark. In 2010, he made regional news for attempted child luring. He’s registered with a downtown address. (Photo from King County sex offender lookup website)
2 West Seattle Crime Watch notes – an incident this evening plus an SPD stats/trends update:
GATEWOOD BURGLARY: A neighbor texted us (206-293-6302 any time) about that big police response near 41st/Elmgrove in Gatewood [map] around 6 pm. When we went over to check, police told us they were checking out a burglar alarm but hadn’t yet found evidence of a break-in; no one was home. Later, though, it was confirmed as a burglary, according to neighbors and to SPD’s automated Tweets by Beat. That was the first confirmed West Seattle burglary, per TBB, since one reported at noon yesterday in the 8400 block of 12th SW.
STATS/TRENDS: Today’s edition of the every-two-weeks SeaStat SPD-wide briefing includes a page of year-to-year and week-to-week stats for the Southwest Precinct, which includes West Seattle and South Park – scroll through this slide deck to the very last page. Year-to-year – January 1st through May 9th this year, compared to the same period last year – every category except aggravated domestic-violence assault is up. (Though there’s no breakdown per precinct sectors, we know that the breakdown in one category – no 2014 homicides in West Seattle and none so far this year; the one 2015 homicide listed for the SW Precinct was in SP.) In the week-by-week stats for the past month, all categories are trending downward (or holding at zero) except for larceny, which was up from 12 in the third week to 13 in the fourth week.
The 23-year-old man arrested after an employee of the Westwood Village McDonald’s was stabbed early Sunday is now charged.
We’ve obtained the documents detailing the second-degree-assault charge filed by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office this afternoon against Daniel Jacob Stevens. The charging papers say he went into the restaurant and – after ordering and receiving two McGriddles – “inexplicably” started shouting insults at the victim. While being escorted out just before 4:30 am Sunday, according to prosecutors and police, Stevens shoved the victim, who punched him. During the clash, he then is reported to have “punched the victim, pulled out a knife, and pounced on top of the victim,” subsequently “punch(ing) him six times in the face and head, and then head-butt(ing) him twice” before trying to stab him in the side, “with the victim suffering a small puncture wound.”
The police report says a customer was able to disarm Stevens, who left the area but was found by King County Sheriff’s Deputies in White Center about 40 minutes later; police say he claimed he used his knife in self-defense. Court documents say Stevens, an Arbor Heights resident, has no felony criminal history, though the King County Jail register says he spent two days there earlier this month in connection with a reckless-driving case; he remains jailed in lieu of $150,000 bail while awaiting arraignment in two weeks.
Seattle Police and King County Deputies arrested a man Sunday who fled following a 4 AM stabbing … An employee of a restaurant in the 2500 block of SW Barton St. was attacked and stabbed twice, once in the chest and once in the head, before the 23-year-old suspect fled on foot.
A Seattle K-9 officer tracked the suspect toward an area in unincorporated King County and called King County Deputies for assistance. Deputy Cueva found the suspect at 25 Ave. SW and SW 100th St. where he was taken into custody without incident.
The employee suffered non-life threatening injuries and was treated and released at the scene. Officers located a four-inch folding blade knife at the scene. Officers have booked the suspect into King County Jail for investigation of Assault.
A Belvidere resident was hit by a “sophisticated identity theft” that she describes as resulting from “an easily overlooked risk,” and wrote this to warn you about it:
Sometime around the end of April, someone hacked into my wireless router and stole my name, address, WDL#, and SS#. I’ve since discovered that wireless routers have two passwords – one for the wireless signal (which I had locked down), but also one for the router admin itself. The router comes from the factory with a standard login/password, and no instructions for changing it. This is something I overlooked, and this is how the thief got in.
I was first alerted to the theft when I received an email receipt from a store in University Village for a large purchase I didn’t make, on a card I haven’t used in years. I called the store, and they fortunately remembered the woman who made the purchase, and were able to provide a description – a white woman, age 30-35, with long blond hair (not a description of me). She had a WDL ID with her photo and my name and address.
I of course immediately checked my credit reports and set up fraud alerts, and discovered that over a dozen inquiries had been made with my name, and several new cards opened.
It turns out the thief also had a plan to collect the new credit cards and statements. The thief put a vacation hold on my mail at the post office on California & Oregon (using her fake ID), saying she would be back May 15 to pick up the mail. Sure enough, when I figured this out & got my mail restarted, there were the new credit cards and statements.
With further investigation, I discovered that my identity had been used in Puyallup and Everett to open store credit accounts, and that the thief was using a prepaid cell phone purchased in Everett. I also received an alert that my complete information (plus passport # & medical ID #) was for sale on a black-market website.
I’ve filed reports with both the police and postal service investigators.
Just want to emphasize this was a complex and local theft – to get into my router, the thief had to physically be close to my house. Then of course they visited the WS post office, and shopped at nearby shopping centers. Everyone, please check your wireless router admin login and secure it! If you find your information has been compromised, do report it to the police and let them know you’re aware of my case so they can put it all together. I was told the police cannot investigate this kind of fraud without more evidence, more thefts, or a higher amount of actual monetary loss.
Here’s what the Federal Trade Commission says about how to protect yourself from what happened to “Belvidere Resident.”
Three West Seattle Crime Watch notes this morning:
BIG POLICE RESPONSE EARLY THIS MORNING: Several people asked about a big police response westbound on Admiral just after 6:30 am. According to Tweets by Beat (the feed you’ll find on the WSB Crime Watch page), it was a response to a report of an “in progress (or) just occurred) burglary” in the 2600 block of 50th SW. We have a message out to SPD to find out if the burglary was verified and, if so, if anyone was arrested. (Added 10:12 am, SPD spokesperson Det. Drew Fowler tells us a man found two intruders inside his home; they fled toward Schmitz Park, search with K-9 ensued but no arrests so far – description: Hispanic males, late teens, one in a black T-shirt and gray sweatpants, other in a black coat, gray sweatpants, with a black backpack.)
FOLLOWUP ON ITTO’S TABLES/CHAIRS: At the end of reporter Randall Hauk‘s story about the future Junction restaurant Itto’s, you might remember the postscript about the theft of tables and chairs from outside the space at California/Genesee. Randall tells us Itto’s proprietor Khalid Agour subsequently spotted the stolen stuff online and with the help of police, they were recovered and a suspect was arrested; the restaurateur wanted to express big thanks to the Southwest Precinct Anti-Crime Team.
CAR PROWL: It’s been a quiet week so far for reader reports but here’s one from last weekend:
My 2013 VW Passat was broken into, at 17th and Henderson, between the hours of 12 am – 8 am, Saturday May 2nd. They broke into the car, made a mess, left a cigarette butt, and a nugget of weed, took nothing but my car registration and my work ID / Key card. They left the change I had in the car, as well as all my kid stuff in the trunk. It seems like the burglars spent time hanging out in my car, but got away with personal information.
One note tonight, from a Gatewood resident who’s wondering if the same hit-run driver had any other victims:
Unfortunately, our neighbor’s car got hit quite badly about 7:40 pm this evening by someone driving out of control down Rose near 39th. It was a gray SUV. We have of course called the police and our neighbor found the car at 44th and Portland without the driver. The reason I am writing is we heard a loud boom about 5 minutes prior to the hit and run. Please share with the police if your car was stolen or if your car was also hit in the Gatewood area.
Another scam warning from a West Seattle resident. Cheryl says, “I got scammed today,” and continues:
I was told that I had a warrant for my arrest for failing to appear to two summons to be on Jury Duty.
After a horrific afternoon, and paying money to these crooks through a PayPal cash account, I then met a neighbor downtown who was able to think better than I and said that she was sure that I had been scammed.
One of the points that they made is that I was to meet with one of the Superior Court Judges who would release the warrant and not make me pay money as, actually, they don’t ask folks over 75 to serve. So, at this point, I began to think about this situation, and I went on the King County Superior Court Judges site and lo & behold, there was a section, ‘Senior Fraud.’ It was Alert #1. I totally fell for this scam; it was at the point where “Officer Randall McKenzie” told me that he could not guarantee that a deputy would not come to take me to jail over the weekend. THAT got me and I rushed off to get the money through the PayPal cash card.
There were several hints that I was not dealing with “real” officers, but the threat of jail made me lose focus. Although I had gotten a name and badge number, it was all bogus.
So I am encouraging you to copy and send this note out to your Elderly friends and relatives — wherever they live – because this sort of fraud is ubiquitous. There is also a Seattle City Light scam going around, folks phoning Elders, telling them that their SCL bill has not be paid and that they need to pay it right now.
That one targets businesses too, as mentioned here earlier this week (and SCL has its own page about scams).
In today’s West Seattle Crime Watch roundup:
RETURN OF THE ‘CITY LIGHT’ SCAM: Overnight, we published Barb‘s report of “the grandparent scam” targeting a relative. Now, we have word the “City Light scam” is out there again. Dave Montoure at West 5 in The Junction e-mailed to say, “They’re at it again. Just called West 5 and said they were sending out a truck to cut power because of unpaid bills. … If your readers would like to call and say hello, they left the number 866-978-6981.” We’ve reported on this scam before – and City Light even has its own scam-alert page now.
WESTWOOD ARREST EXPLAINED: SPD Blotter has published the saga of an arrest that got some attention early Wednesday evening. At the time, a few people texted us about police activity at Roxhill Park; we went over, circled the park, saw nothing, figured it was one of those short-lived calls. Turns out it had started over at the Westwood Village McDonald’s; officers spotted a stolen car, boxed it in, then wound up chasing – on foot – the occupant, who shed his shirt and shoes along the way. As SPD’s Jonah Spangenthal-Lee tells the story, they caught him and recovered not only the car but also the gun which, as a convicted felon, the suspect shouldn’t have had.
CAR PROWLS: Today’s reports start with this from Misha:
We live near Ercolini Park. We had a club on our car, but they jimmied the passenger door and rifled through the glove compartment. Nothing appears to have been taken — we still have our CDs and car seats–and we did file a police report online.
From Susan, in the same area:
Someone went through our car last night. Stole some prescription sunglasses and went through all the junk in the glove box.
And in Sunrise Heights, a car-prowl attempt is part of what an apartment resident near 35th/Holden warned neighbors about in this note subsequently shared with us too:
I witnessed an older model Red Chevy Blazer with two occupants (male driver and female passenger) circling around the Chevron and also witnessed the male driver trying to break into a car parked on the north side of the Chevron.
After a failed attempt by the male driver to gain access to the car, the Blazer backed up and drove very slowly NB through the alley ( headlights off ) I suspect casing the area, this alley has many garages and fences that face the alley along with access to homes’ backyards.
They proceeded through the alley, stopping approx. 100 feet from Webster at which time … it appeared that the driver got out and was looking around. I called 911 and gave the best possible description of said vehicle and was told an area check would be conducted and then came back inside my apt.
Keep an eye out for this vehicle if you see it and one VERY distinctive note about this vehicle…..It has a VERY LOUD engine ( low rumble/idle ).
This isn’t a new type of scam but every so often it hits someone who falls for it. Barb says her mom knew it didn’t sound right and she just e-mailed us to share her story, to make sure you and your elders are aware of it:
Some guy who claimed to be a grandson just called my mom claiming he was in a car wreck, got a broken nose, had stitches in his leg, and was arrested on DUI charges in Vegas. He told her not to tell anyone, but he needed money to get out of jail.
My mom asked why he was in Las Vegas; he said he had been at a wedding. Thank God, my mom said this doesn’t sound like you, and asked, what is your mother’s name? The guy said his nose was broken in 2 places and that’s why he sounded different. The guy wanted her to call his lawyer (whose name is supposedly Harvey Gardner) and have $9800 to be sent to bail him out.
She said she didn’t have that kind of money. He told her to go to the bank and get it. He told her to “call the lawyer” in Las Vegas so he could get out of jail and gave her the phone number (514-015-5782) and maybe she could pay by credit card. When she asked again what his mother’s name was, he said, “I love you, grandma,” and said he had to get off the phone.
My mom called me, very upset, and wanted to know what she should do. Luckily I was able to reach my nephew (who the guy pretended to be). He was in Spokane, not Las Vegas, and he was not in any car accident. I’m grateful and proud my mom questioned the guy. I’m fairly sure they used information from Facebook targeting an elderly woman, hoping for an easy mark.
I called the Seattle Police but they said that since she didn’t give them any money, there was actually no crime.
This was a very scary call to receive. I want to spread word to stop these scammers. I just hope to prevent people from sending these types of people any money. I’m glad I had talked to my mom about various scams people use to get money and (had told her to) never give out any credit card information to anyone who calls her.
This scam is so common that even the FBI’s website has a warning about it, saying reports date back up to seven years; one version goes back even further, according to Snopes.com. (And here’s a story from the East Coast about a scammer who got caught.)
Reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch today:
CAR PROWL: From Mike:
Just wanted to inform you that sometime last night someone smashed the windows on my car and another one on the block. They were parked on Admiral, in the 5900 block (by Alki). Anyway, the thieves only stole a black Atama backpack. I’m guessing that they ditched it once they realized all that was in it was papers. Anyhow, if anyone sees it (long shot, I know), I’d appreciate a heads up.
ANOTHER CAR PROWL: This one surfaced in comments on Tuesday’s roundup – an early-morning break-in in which the thief/thieves “took a Vintage analog keyboard called an ARP Odyssey 2800 and a large blue suitcase.”
(added 5:13 pm) AND ANOTHER CAR PROWL: Just in from Shimi in Gatewood:
Just wanted to let you know my van got broken into last night and equipment was stolen from it as well as extension cords from right outside my house on 38th Ave SW (the Myrtle st. dead end).I have filed a report with the SPD.If anyone sees randomly a Honda EU6500i up for sale please alert me as this was the main thing stolen.
GUNFIRE? Scattered reports early this morning from people who thought they heard gunfire – we received one text from 23rd/Brandon at 1:40 am, two from North Admiral around 6 am. We checked around both times, and then went through the SPD Tweets by Beat log again this afternoon, but no confirmations of gunfire – which just means, no shell casings and/or property damage found (and definitely no victims – they would turn up on the SFD 911 log). Sometimes many hours elapse, though, so if anyone does find shell casings or damage (bullet holes in cars, fences, etc.), please do notify police.
P.S. As we told texters, if you think you hear gunfire, DO call 911 – the more reports they get, the more they are able to try to zero in on where it (gunfire or not) happened.
Two notes in West Seattle Crime Watch:
STREET ROBBERY: A man was robbed this morning in The Triangle around 4:15 am. We’ve been trying all day to get some details, after seeing the robbery designation on Tweets By Beat, and finally just got information from police who are here at the Block Watch Captains’ Network meeting we’re covering. According to Lt. Ron Smith, two people described only as a black male and white female approached the victim in the 4600 block of 36th SW, asked for a ride to Renton, and then grabbed him, took his wallet and 60 dollars, tossed the wallet on the ground and took off. The report also says they considered stealing his car but it was manual transmission, so they apparently gave up on that idea. Police searched the area, with a K-9, but didn’t find the robbers.
CAR PROWL: A car-prowl victim in West Seattle early this morning is hoping somebody might spot what was stolen from her car:
Someone broke my passenger side window and stole an over-sized brown suede tote bag (I believe it was from Eddie Bauer). They took nothing of financial value, except my well-worn tote bag.
Nothing in that bag would have been of value to anyone else, she said, but it contained client files that were important for her business – if you’ve seen the bag, please let police know.
West Seattle Crime Watch reader reports to share:
LUNA PARK TRUCK THEFT: Bob discovered this morning that someone had taken his white Chevy Blazer from what’s supposed to be a secure garage at City View Apartments in the Luna Park area. License plate 105YGD – call 911 if you see it.
STOLEN PLATES: From Andi:
This morning I discovered someone had swapped my back license plate on my car with someone else’s. I have reported them as stolen, so if anyone sees plates ASU6665 call the police. The ones they put on the car were ANK8876, and the officer said he recognized them from a call this morning. I live on Trenton & Delridge [map] if anyone saw anything.
This happens more often than you might think, so it’s always worth a quick glance at your plates every time you go out to your vehicle, if it’s parked outside.
POSSIBLE STOLEN BICYCLES: Two posts in the WSB Forums regarding bicycles -
**Vintage Puch bicycle found in a Westwood/Roxhill-area backyard
**Redline bicycle frame spotted in Admiral in unusual circumstances
HIGHLAND PARK MAIL THEFT: In the 9400 block of 10th SW (map), Fran A spotted several mailboxes open this morning, with mail littered on the street, including an envelope that was supposed to contain her husband’s new driver’s license.
(Aerial/infrared video of last 7 minutes of the search, ending with arrest)
12:56 AM: Thanks for the texts – a search that’s under way seems to be spanning both Seattle Police and King County Sheriff’s Office jurisdictions, with locations including the 26th/Roxbury vicinity. Working to find out what/who they’re looking for.
1:05 AM: Per scanner, deputies have taken a suspect into custody; at some point this included pursuit of a vehicle that the suspect ditched.
1:23 AM: Guardian One has explained via Twitter what it was about:
Assisted white center cars on search for pursuit suspect with felony warrant. Located suspect with FLIR and led K9 in. Suspect in custody.
— KCSOAirsupport (@KCSOAirsupport) April 26, 2015
3:51 AM: Just added atop the story, Guardian One’s video of the last 7 minutes of the search, as they spotted the suspect hiding in the 9600 block of 24th SW and talked the ground officers (including a K-9 team) in.
P.S. Guardian One’s pilot is the guest at next Tuesday’s meeting of the West Seattle Block Watch Captains’ Network – bring your questions – 6:30 pm at the SPD Southwest Precinct (Delridge/Webster).
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