‘Why did you shoot him?’ Morgan Junction murder-trial jury hears defendant Lovett ‘Cid’ Chambers answer that question, and more

April 1, 2014 at 6:28 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“The defense calls Lovett Chambers.”

After those words from attorney Ben Goldsmith, the highest-stakes witness of the 3-month-old murder trial – the defendant himself – crossed the courtroom Monday afternoon to testify.

The day’s other major witness was his wife Sara Chambers, who was on the stand all morning and at the start of the afternoon. But she wasn’t there when he fired the fatal shots at Travis Hood on January 21, 2012, so all she could provide was context and aftermath.

Goldsmith asked outright and immediately: “Why did you shoot him?”

“To save my life,” Chambers replied.

After that zero-to-sixty opening, Goldsmith backtracked to lead Chambers through the background of his Seattle life. He met his wife at Pike Place Market (where, she testified earlier, she has sold jewelry for more than 30 years). Shortly thereafter, he started his own construction company, and was licensed in Washington and Oregon. But while en route to a bid opening for an Oregon project, he said, he was hit by a truck, breaking his back, leading to two surgeries. He decided to switch businesses and went back to school for computer-related degrees from local colleges.

They moved to West Seattle from Leschi in 1993, after buying their house (built in the 1940s, Sara Chambers had testified earlier). Chambers explained that one of its attractions was that it “sits on a one-block street, not much traffic.”

Asked about the day of the shooting, his home office is where his story began. He had been on a conference call that went so well, he was “elated” afterward: “I was happy because I got this contract … that was going to go on for possibly a couple years so we’d be ensured income.” He called his wife to tell her.

Click to read the rest of ‘Why did you shoot him?’ Morgan Junction murder-trial jury hears defendant Lovett ‘Cid’ Chambers answer that question, and more…

Morgan Junction murder trial update: Defendant Lovett Chambers testifies

March 31, 2014 at 12:41 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

12:41 PM: Quick update for those following our coverage of the King County Superior Court trial of Lovett “Cid” Chambers, charged with second-degree murder for the fatal shooting of Travis Hood by Morgan Junction Park in January 2012: Proceedings did indeed resume today, after an extra day off because of ailing attorneys; the last previous session was Wednesday (here’s our report, which includes links to all our previous coverage).

Today, the defendant’s wife Sara Chambers is testifying for the defense, which has concluded its primary questioning of her. She testified that she was at home watching a movie when he came in after the shooting and that he said nothing about it before pouring a glass of wine and sitting down in the living room with her; police showed up within an hour. We’ll have a full report on today’s proceedings late tonight; the defense might rest its case before the week is out. The trial started in early January, with six weeks of motion hearings before the jury was seated to hear testimony starting February 19th; WSB is the only news organization in court to cover it.

2:16 PM: Now the defendant is on the stand. He acknowledges he fired the fatal shots the night of January 21, 2012, and says he did it “to save my life.”

TUESDAY MORNING NOTE: Monday’s full report is here.

How to get your stolen stuff back? West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network hears from SPD specialist

March 30, 2014 at 9:31 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news, West Seattle police | 2 Comments

If burglars/thieves get away with something that belongs to you, how do you get it back, and what can you do in advance to increase the chances your property can/will be recovered? An expert on that topic spoke to the West Seattle Block Watch Captains’ Network this week – Detective Everett Edwards from the Seattle Police Special Investigations Section’s Pawn/Property Recovery Unit. He works with pawn shops, used-goods stores, and metal recyclers, seeking to recover stolen items.

Some basics you should know:

Click to read the rest of How to get your stolen stuff back? West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network hears from SPD specialist…

West Seattle Crime Watch: Have you seen this van?

March 29, 2014 at 9:46 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | Comments Off

If you spot the van stolen from Danielle‘s home, please call 911:

My husband’s work van was stolen from in front of our house (in the 9400 block of 8th Ave SW; map) this morning sometime between 3AM-545AM. It is a 2013 Full Size White Ford E150 with a ladder rack on top. Logo on the side in black/red/blue font reads “Comfort Systems USA.” Underneath in smaller print it says “Merit Mechanical”. Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated. A report has been filed with the police department as well. The is the second time one of these vans has been taken from our home.

Morgan Junction murder trial: How the shortened week ended

March 28, 2014 at 2:03 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | Comments Off

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

After an abbreviated Wednesday session in which the ailing defense team “powered through” the proceedings, as Judge Theresa B. Doyle put it, she granted their request to put the Morgan Junction murder trial into recess Thursday for an extra day off, so it resumes on Monday.

The defense is likely to rest its case next week after calling witnesses including defendant Lovett “Cid” Chambers‘s wife Sara Chambers.

Wednesday’s testimony started with vocabulary and ended with testing

The former Rocksport bartender who says she clashed with shooting victim Travis Hood over his use of the N-word was back on the stand as the day began.

Click to read the rest of Morgan Junction murder trial: How the shortened week ended…

West Seattle restaurant owner Eduardo Morales-Cardenas pleads guilty to two stolen-property charges

March 26, 2014 at 6:32 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 35 Comments

Almost five months after being charged with trafficking in stolen liquor, Puerto Vallarta Restaurant owner Eduardo Morales-Cardenas has pleaded guilty to two charges. We have been checking the online files weekly and found out today that he appeared before Judge Monica Benton yesterday afternoon to enter the pleas: Guilty to one count of first-degree trafficking in stolen property, guilty to one count of attempted trafficking in stolen property. In the documentation, he acknowledges buying what he said he knew was alcohol stolen from Safeway and QFC; he was arrested last September, but charges weren’t filed until November. Morales-Cardenas is scheduled for sentencing on April 11th before Judge Carol Schapira; the prosecution, which says they found no prior criminal history for him, is recommending a sentence of 364 days in work release/electronic home detention.

Checking on the status of the others who were charged at the same time, accused of stealing and selling liquor in the same case, here’s what court documents show: One co-defendant, Eric Olson, also pleaded guilty yesterday and will be sentenced at the same April 11th hearing; a 43-month sentence will be recommended. Another, Amber Vincent, pleaded guilty last month to organized retail theft and trafficking in stolen property, and was sentenced to three months of work release; Shaye Glenn-Nitschke also pleaded guilty last month, to one charge, and was released from jail because he’d served more time than he had been sentenced to. A fourth defendant, Michael Jensen, is scheduled for a plea hearing next week.

West Seattle Crime Watch: 2 local phone stores burglarized

March 26, 2014 at 4:49 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 9 Comments

Two West Seattle stores focused mostly on phone sales are taking stock today after overnight burglaries. We heard this morning about the AT&T store in Morgan Junction getting hit, and before we could publish a story, we found out that Sound Advice, the Verizon dealer in The Junction, had an overnight break-in too. So far, it appears that store suffered the most extensive losses – virtually cleaned out, manager Mike Ellis told us when we stopped in a little while ago, even the monitor in the window that played promotional videos. They are open, but it’ll take them a day or so to recover on inventory; they are still taking stock. As for the AT&T store, Seattle Police spokesperson Det. Mark Jamieson told us it too was taking stock after initially reporting a window was broken and about half a dozen phones taken from a display. Jana tweeted this photo after passing by early this morning:

Owly Images

No word so far if the two break-ins are believed to have been the work of the same burglars; in both cases, as you can see in the photos, they smashed glass doors to get in.

Morgan Junction murder-trial defense continues with five witnesses in one day, from SPD to DNA

March 26, 2014 at 4:00 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | Comments Off

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

gavel.jpgBetween the start and finish of proceedings on Tuesday, five witnesses had spent time testifying for the defense at the murder trial of Lovett “Cid” Chambers – one of his friends, one of his relatives, a bartender, a DNA analyst, and a police officer.

Tuesday began with cross-examination resuming for the defendant’s older sister Betty Wynne. Prosecutor Mari Isaacson first offered something of an apology for the concluding moments on Monday, when Wynne seemed distressed and confused by the questioning.

“I didn’t mean to upset you,” she offered.

Wynne, for her part, again contended she hadn’t opened up to the prosecution during an earlier phone interview “because I didn’t know you and I don’t usually talk about family things over the phone, and I really didn’t know who I was talking to …”

Regardless, Isaacson had to press on, so she did, somewhat gently, while Wynne replied somewhat more testily than the day before.

Click to read the rest of Morgan Junction murder-trial defense continues with five witnesses in one day, from SPD to DNA…

Crime Watch: Sketch aimed at catching Roxbury rapist

March 25, 2014 at 8:24 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

That’s a sketch just released by King County Sheriff’s Office detectives, in their search for the man who beat and raped a woman earlier this month along SW Roxbury. We reported the attack the day it happened, March 7th; here is the latest from detectives:

On Friday, March 7th, just after midnight the victim was walking eastbound on the south side of Roxbury near 24th Ave. She was approached by a black male who asked her for a cigarette. The victim gave the man a cigarette when he suddenly dragged her to a nearby lot where he punched her repeatedly then sexually assaulted her.

After the assault the man fled, taking the victim’s purse with him. The purse was never located and may have been discarded nearby or possibly given to an associate of the suspect. The purse is very distinctive:

The attacker was described as a younger black male, early 20′s, about 5’9″, medium build, wearing a dark-colored hoodie and jeans. The suspect may have injuries to his hands due to the violent assault on the victim.

If you have information about this man or the missing purse, please call the King County Sheriff’s Office at 206-296-3311 (24 hours). You can also be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 and remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

Morgan Junction murder-trial update: Cross-examinations dominate the day

March 25, 2014 at 2:48 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | Comments Off

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

gavel.jpgMorgan Junction murder-trial defendant Lovett Chambers, known to friends as “Cid,” has another nickname that emerged in court Monday: “Cookie.”

The second witness for the defense, the 69-year-old defendant’s 73-year-old sister Betty Wynne, said that’s how she has always known him, since their grandmother dubbed him that for a purported love of sweets.

Her testimony – which will continue Tuesday, in what became an awkward cross-examination today – followed the conclusion of the appearance of the first defense witness, forensic psychologist Dr. Mark Cunningham. He had testified that his time examining the defendant, talking to others, and doing extra research led him to believe Chambers had post-traumatic stress disorder from what he saw and what happened to him during his years in juvenile facilities, jail, and prisons, and that it affected his perception of the encounter that preceded the shooting for which he is on trial.

Prosecutor Margaret Nave was cross-examining Dr. Cunningham as last week’s sessions before King County Superior Court Judge Theresa B. Doyle wrapped up, and that’s where she picked up Monday.

Click to read the rest of Morgan Junction murder-trial update: Cross-examinations dominate the day…

Shooting followup: White Center suspect held on $1 million bail; victim and friends were headed ‘to Alki’

March 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | In Crime, West Seattle news, White Center | 14 Comments

Bail is set at $1 million for the 18-year-old SeaTac man arrested Friday in connection with the Wednesday night shooting that killed 17-year-old Ruben Castillo of Burien. Probable-cause documents made available today, following his Saturday bail hearing, reveal more details about the incident:

Click to read the rest of Shooting followup: White Center suspect held on $1 million bail; victim and friends were headed ‘to Alki’…

Second full day of defense testimony tomorrow in Morgan Junction murder trial

March 23, 2014 at 6:52 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

gavel.jpgTomorrow is scheduled to be the second full day of defense-witness testimony in the Morgan Junction murder trial.

The defense’s first full day, on Thursday, delved into 69-year-old defendant Lovett “Cid” Chambers‘s life, before, during, and after the incident for which he is charged with second-degree murder.

Forensic psychologist Dr. Mark Cunningham was on the stand all day and will be there again when proceedings resume tomorrow morning before King County Superior Court Judge Theresa B. Doyle.

After the conclusion of direct questioning by defense attorney Ben Goldsmith, prosecutor Margaret Nave was cross-examining him about his practice and his pricing by day’s end on Thursday.

Cunningham’s report on interviews with Chambers and others, enhanced by other research, was intended as context for the defense contention that Chambers acted in self-defense, through the prism of post-traumatic stress disorder, when he shot 35-year-old Travis Hood by Morgan Junction Park the night of January 21, 2012. Cunningham drew a portrait of a man who, despite having been out of prison for decades, was constantly on edge for the possibility that dangerous elements from his former life would find him in his new one.

Click to read the rest of Second full day of defense testimony tomorrow in Morgan Junction murder trial…

West Seattle Crime Watch: Stolen car; hit-run suspect drops shoes

March 22, 2014 at 10:19 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

Two West Seattle Crime Watch reader reports tonight:

STOLEN CAR: From Danny and Laine:

On the morning of March 22nd in between 2:00 to 7:30 am, on the 3000 block of Bataan St SW [map], our car (1994 red Honda Civic hatchback license 727-WPG) was stolen from in front of our home. The car is in pretty good shape with a noticeable dent on the door on the passenger side as well as a scratch on the front right bumper with purple paint residue from a prior accident. Also there is a black bike rack with sticker that says “got oars?”, and a Bastyr University Sticker (faded white and red in color) on the back bottom left window.

Please call 911 if you see their car.

RECOGNIZE THESE SHOES? From Curtis:

Someone smashed into my car this morning at 20th & SW Barton [map] this morning in a stolen Acura… then dropped these shoes after running away across Delridge.

My neighbor saw a slim hooded figure run off to the east across Delridge who dropped those shoes.

Any clues? Police report’s on file for that one too.

P.S. If you’re interested in how police deal with stolen property, don’t miss the West Seattle Block Watch Captains’ Network’s next meeting, 6:30 pm Tuesday (March 25th) at the precinct – full details here.

Crime Watch: Suspect arrested in White Center shooting death

March 21, 2014 at 10:49 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news, White Center | 12 Comments

As reported on partner site White Center Now, a suspect is in custody in connection with the Wednesday night shooting death of a 17-year-old Burien boy at 15th/Roxbury. We’ll continue updating the story there as we find out more, but did want to let you know here too, since the incident stirred some discussion.

Morgan Junction murder trial: Prosecution rests, defense begins

March 20, 2014 at 8:55 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | 8 Comments

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

gavel.jpgWhen the Morgan Junction murder trial resumes this morning, it will be the first full day of testimony in defense of 69-year-old Lovett “Cid” Chambers, who doesn’t deny shooting and killing 35-year-old Travis Hood on January 21, 2012, but says it was self-defense.

Defense lawyers began presenting their case after the prosecution rested on Wednesday, four weeks after jurors were seated and started hearing the case. It was the first day of proceedings this week, after court was called off Monday and Tuesday due to illnesses.

The first defense witness, expected to spend most if not all of today back on the stand, is forensic psychologist Dr. Mark Cunningham, who evaluated Chambers and concluded his actions were affected by post-traumatic stress disorder.

But first, Wednesday began with Seattle Police Homicide Detective Tim DeVore, the final prosecution witness, finishing his time on the stand:

Click to read the rest of Morgan Junction murder trial: Prosecution rests, defense begins…

From White Center Now: Roxbury closed for shooting investigation

March 20, 2014 at 12:26 am | In Crime, West Seattle news, White Center | 46 Comments

That King County Sheriff’s Office sergeant is one of several KCSO investigators walking Roxbury between 14th and 15th, looking for evidence in a shooting. All we know so far is that one person was shot and is at the hospital. When we get new information, we’ll be updating the story on our partner site White Center Now. (Early-morning note: The victim died overnight, KCSO confirms.)

Have you seen a purse like this? Followup in 26th/Roxbury attack

March 19, 2014 at 11:31 am | In Crime, West Seattle news, White Center | 2 Comments

That’s a photo of a purse like the one stolen in the 26th/Roxbury attack reported here March 7th – mentioned later by a commenter. We asked the King County Sheriff’s Office for followup information this week, and the photo above came in with this response in the form of a news release from King County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Sgt. Cindi West:

King County Sheriff’s detectives are trying to locate a purse that was stolen from a woman who was attacked and sexually assaulted near White Center earlier this month.

On Friday, March 7th just after midnight the victim was walking eastbound on the south side of Roxbury near 24th Ave. She was approached by a black male who asked her for a cigarette. The victim gave the suspect a cigarette when the suspect suddenly dragged her to a nearby lot where he punched her repeatedly then sexually assaulted her.

After the assault the (attacker) fled, taking the victim’s purse with him. The purse was never located and may have been discarded nearby or possibly given to an associate of the suspect. The suspect was described as a younger black male, early 20’s, about 5’9”, medium build, wearing a dark colored hoodie and jeans. The suspect may have injuries to his hands due to the violent assault on the victim.

If you have information about this assault or the missing purse please call the King County Sheriff’s Office at 206-296-3311 (24 hours).

You can also be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 and remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477)

2 more registered sex offenders move to West Seattle, SPD reports

March 19, 2014 at 10:49 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | 34 Comments

Just in from Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Mark Solomon, one of his periodic e-mails with word of Level 3 sex offenders moving into West Seattle. We have added links to the pages on the sex-offender-info website where you’ll find these men’s photos and other additional information:

In an effort to keep you informed, and in our constant attempts to reduce future victimization, we want to let you know about level 3 sex offenders that have moved into Southwest Precinct neighborhoods in recent weeks.

· Richard Blick, a 61 year-old White male, is a level 3 registered sex offender who has recently moved to the 5600 block of 42nd Avenue Southwest. Mr. Blick is currently under Department of Corrections supervision. [More info, photo here]

· Muche Whidby, a 63 year-old African American male, is a level 3 sex offender who has recently moved to the 6000 block of Lanham Place Southwest. Mr. Whidby is no longer under Department of Corrections supervision. [More info, photo here]

Detective Fields from the Seattle Police Department’s Sex Offender Detail is assigned to check on these offenders and verify their information.

To learn more about these offenders and to see their photos, please visit the King County Sheriff’s Office Sex Offender website and search by their names. You will also find personal safety tips and resources on this site. icrimewatch.net/index.php?AgencyID=54473&disc

If you have further questions about these offenders, contact Michelle McRae of the Seattle Police Sex Offender Detail at 206-684-5581 or e-mail at michelle.mcrae@seattle.gov.

To register to receive an email alert whenever a published offender registers within one mile of your desired addresses, go to (this) link.

After the jump (if you’re seeing this from the WSB home page), Solomon’s e-mail continues with information explaining “Level 3″ and how best to protect children:

Click to read the rest of 2 more registered sex offenders move to West Seattle, SPD reports…

West Seattle Crime Watch: 16th/Holden response; stolen car to look for; plus, Bellevue SWAT

March 18, 2014 at 7:58 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news, West Seattle police | 15 Comments

We’re at the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting right now – look for the wrapup later. Two things to report right now:

WONDERED WHAT WAS UP AT 16TH/HOLDEN TONIGHT? Big police response there around 6 pm – couldn’t find out anything at the time, but we asked Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith here at the WSCPC meeting. He says it was an operation involving Bellevue Police and a suspect who lives in West Seattle – and when they made a request for assistance from SPD, it was misinterpreted as a “help the officer” call, which means “everybody rush there, an officer’s in trouble.” So there was a big but not-needed response for a bit. We’ll be checking with Bellevue PD tomorrow to see if they can tell us more about what they’re doing over here – we do recall a case or two in the past.

(added, 10:56 pm) BELLEVUE POLICE IN HIGHLAND PARK AGAIN: We won’t be able to find out until tomorrow if this was related, but not far from 16th/Holden, the Bellevue SWAT team served a warrant tonight:

One of the people who tipped us e-mailed about seeing that van go by around 9:30: “They stopped between the 7200/7400 block of 16th Ave SW (west side) … lights on … SWAT team in motion. We heard, “police search warrant, open up” (several times). 10 minutes later we still heard those same police requests (have to assume backup was also on the west side of this house).” Might just be a coincidence, but this is the same general vicinity where Bellevue Police made an ID-theft bust last year.

(back to original report) STOLEN CAR: Ashley reports, “My car was stolen from my driveway last night between midnight and 6 am. 6300 block of 42nd Ave SW. It is a white Hyundai Tucson. Michigan plates. 1FRN69. I already reported it to police, but I thought other people might be able to help as well.” Call 911 if you see it.

Guilty pleas in Arbor Heights/Fauntleroy/Beacon Hill robberies

March 18, 2014 at 3:30 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

Though the Morgan Junction murder trial was called off for the day, we stayed at the courthouse for a plea hearing in another West Seattle case. Indeed, the three men charged in the Arbor Heights and Fauntleroy street robberies last August 21st have just appeared before King County Superior Court Judge Carol Schapira to plead guilty as charged: 22-year-old Hassan I. Abdirizak, 19-year-old Abdulkamir A. Ahmed, and 22-year-old Najib A. Aden. Each was charged with two counts of first-degree robbery and one count of attempted first-degree robbery – for a Beacon Hill incident the same night as well as the two in West Seattle.

None are West Seattle residents. Aden has been out of jail since November, while Abdirizak and Ahmed have remained in custody. Months ago, there was talk they might face charges in robberies elsewhere in the city, but as part of the plea bargain, no additional charges were or will be filed, and each pleaded guilty to the three original charges. Prosecutors will recommend what equals a 68-month (just over five and a half years) sentence – the top end of the “standard” range for 1st-degree robbery – for each one when they are sentenced, followed by 18 months’ community custody (probation). The sentencing hearing is scheduled for 1 pm April 18th.

No court in Morgan Junction murder trial again today

March 18, 2014 at 10:44 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | Comments Off

gavel.jpgMonday, the judge was out sick; today, a prosecutor is – so, no court again today in the Morgan Junction murder trial. Whenever it resumes, the prosecution’s final expected witness, Seattle Police Homicide Unit Detective Tim DeVore, will be back on the stand. 69-year-old Lovett “Cid” Chambers is on trial in the January 2012 shooting death of 35-year-old Travis Hood. If you’re catching up on our coverage, our report on Thursday’s proceedings (the most recent day of testimony) includes links to all previous stories.

New photo of Michael S. Stanley, out-of-jail sex offender

March 17, 2014 at 6:26 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

He’s now registered with an address on Queen Anne, but just in case he turns up in West Seattle again, here’s the newest photo of Michael S. Stanley. He’s the registered sex offender/convicted rapist who got out of jail one week ago after serving time for harassment related to an incident in Admiral, not long after he caused an international stir by returning to the U.S. after removing a monitoring device in Canada.

Of course, he’s far from the only registered sex offender out there. If you want to check to see who’s registered as living near you, here’s the website to use. (If you ever need to find it again, note that it’s on the resource list at the very bottom of the WSB Crime Watch page, too.)

Morgan Junction murder trial: No court today, judge out sick

March 17, 2014 at 9:18 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | Comments Off

gavel.jpgNo court today in what we’ve been calling the Morgan Junction murder trial – we arrived downtown only to learn that King County Superior Court Judge Theresa B. Doyle is out sick today, so that postpones the resumption of the trial until 9 am tomorrow (Tuesday). This is the fourth week that jurors have been hearing the case of Lovett “Cid” Chambers, charged with second-degree murder in the January 2012 shooting death of Travis Hood alongside Morgan Junction Park. WSB is the only news organization in court covering the trial start to finish; if you’re interested in catching up on our coverage, our report on Thursday’s proceedings (the trial is in recess on Fridays) includes links to all the previous installments.

West Seattle Crime Watch: 2 burglaries; 2 car prowls; WSCPC…

March 16, 2014 at 9:14 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 11 Comments

Four reader reports – two burglaries and two car prowls – in our weekend West Seattle Crime Watch report. Details ahead:

Click to read the rest of West Seattle Crime Watch: 2 burglaries; 2 car prowls; WSCPC……

Prosecution calls final witness as Morgan Junction murder trial ends third full week of testimony

March 15, 2014 at 11:19 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

After 3 1/2 four-day weeks on the case, the jury in the Morgan Junction murder trial is hearing from what’s expected to be the prosecution’s final witness.

Seattle Police Homicide Unit Detective Tim DeVore has been seated at the prosecution’s table for most of the trial, until now. On Thursday afternoon, he got up and crossed the courtroom to sit in the chair that constitutes “the witness stand.” Monday morning, he will be there again.

But first, Thursday began with more discussion of blood-alcohol levels, followed by an analyst’s report on defendant Lovett “Cid” Chambers‘s gun and ammunition – how it was tested and what she believed it showed.

Click to read the rest of Prosecution calls final witness as Morgan Junction murder trial ends third full week of testimony…

Morgan Junction murder-trial update: Intoxication calculations

March 13, 2014 at 6:53 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | 9 Comments

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Afternoon testimony at the Morgan Junction murder trial on Wednesday centered on a sort of riddle: If you say you had X drinks during the time frame Y to Z, how did that equal a .20 blood-alcohol level five hours after the last reported drink?

That was part of a day of testimony in the murder trial of Lovett “Cid” Chambers that carried none of the drama of preceding days, which had featured segments of the video showing his “confrontational” – as even police acknowledged – questioning by Seattle Police Homicide Unit detectives. Wednesday, though, included no video, just testimony related to specific points of evidence and how it was processed and/or analyzed.

The day began with the cross-examination of SPD CSI Detective Kim Biggs. Her direct testimony had ended last Thursday, but King County Superior Court Judge Theresa Doyle allowed the defense to postpone cross-examination until they had had a chance to deal with the fact the prosecution had asked her to take another look at Chambers’ BMW, which has been in police storage since hours after the January 21, 2012, shooting.

Click to read the rest of Morgan Junction murder-trial update: Intoxication calculations…

West Seattle Crime Watch: Business burglary; package thief on video

March 12, 2014 at 9:34 am | In Crime, West Seattle news | 21 Comments

Two reports in West Seattle Crime Watch this morning. Brad from West Seattle Cyclery (WSB sponsor) is hoping someone in the area has video showing the burglar(s) who broke into his shop early Tuesday:

we had a burglary early Tuesday morning. Approx 2:50am.

Mostly we had damage to the window, shattered but still intact, and the door glass broken out. We have had two attempts prior. The police were notified of both attempts and reports were filed.

After the two previous attempts we changed our security procedures at night. The changes helped reduce the inventory loss to just two 24″ kids bikes with a value of around $700. Glass replacement will be significantly higher.

There are a few more things we will be doing at night to continue reducing our potential exposure but the reality is we will never be able to reduce it to zero.

If any of our Junction neighbors had outside video from the time of the break-in, 2:40-3:20 am, please let me know (brad@westseattlecyclery.com). One of the bikes stolen was bright orange (SCOTT 24″ Voltage with disc brakes) so it should be pretty visible with color video.

Speaking of video, Heather shares this clip showing a package thief in action:

Just wanted to report the theft of a package from our porch on 37th Ave SW between Henderson and Trenton. It happened on the 15th of February in the wee hours of the morning. … The thief looks like a white female between 15 and 25 years of age, brunette hair. We’ve reported it to SPD and I’m happy to report everyone I spoke with was professional and courteous. They said absolutely share the info with WSB and said for crimes like these the community is often in a better position than police to locate suspects.

We didn’t lose anything of value and the merchant replaced it with no hassle. It’s more the idea of it. SPD confirmed that it’s important to report these types of things, even when the value is small.

Any idea who the thief is? Let police know.

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