West Seattle, Washington
Police are in the 4500 block of Beach Drive SW, at Emma Schmitz Overlook, across from Me-Kwa-Mooks Park, investigating a death. So far, they say, evidence indicates the man whose body was found in a car – reported by a passing jogger – died by suicide. The official determination will be up to the King County Medical Examiner, which has a unit on the way to the scene.
As always with stories mentioning suicide, we want to remind you that if you or someone you know is contemplating self-harm, you can call the Crisis Clinic hotline at any time, 206-461-3222.
When we published Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Burbridge‘s August newsletter last weekend, it included news that she would soon have free cable locks for firearm safety. Now, she tells us, they’re here:
Cable locks are now available!!! Just wanted to provide a quick update on the free firearm cable locks I discussed in my latest monthly newsletter. Late last week I received a generous donation of quite a few, and will receive my shipment of hundreds more in the next few weeks.
If you are interested in a free firearm cable lock- please email me directly at Jennifer.Burbridge@seattle.gov, and/or come visit my table at Delridge Day/SW Precinct Annual Picnic this Saturday, August 12th, from 11 am- 3 pm at the Delridge Community Center (4501 Delridge Way SW)! I would like to limit each household to two cable locks, but if you would like more than two – please email me and we can discuss this on a case-by-case basis.
As always, let me know if you have any questions or concerns, or would like to request my presence at a future meeting!
The newest monthly newsletter from Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Burbridge focuses on firearm safety, and includes an offer of a free cable lock. Read it all below (or in PDF, here):
The locks are expected to be available by mid-month – SPD has some on order, and Jennifer says a private donation will make more available. Again, contact her directly if you are interested – firstname.lastname@example.org – that’s also how to reach her if you:
*Have questions, concerns, and/or want to request her presence at a future meeting.
*Request a presentation on firearm safety and violence prevention
You also can meet her at the Delridge Day festival, one week from today, 11 am-3 pm at Delridge Community Center park (4501 Delridge Way SW). Delridge Day will again this year include the SW Precinct’s annual “Picnic at the Precinct.”
If you noticed a sizable police response in the Admiral area this past hour, here’s what we’ve found out. WSB’s Christopher Boffoli reports that, in the 2600 block of 45th SW, “SPD at the scene told me that this began as a court-ordered warrant service. The subject was initially cooperative with officers but on the way to the car he apparently changed his mind and started a scuffle. One officer was treated at the scene for some scrapes and cuts. No serious injuries with either the subject or the officers.”
9:08 PM: A Seattle Police officer has been taken to the hospital to be checked out after a collision on southbound Harbor/Avalon/Spokane by the West Seattle Bridge. Police say the officer was headed southbound when the other driver, who was not seriously hurt, hit the patrol car. More when we get it. (Thanks to the person who texted to let us know about this.)
9:22 PM: According to a sergeant at the scene, the officer was not on an emergency call when this happened; he was driving at a regular speed. He was headed southbound, we’re told, while the other vehicle was northbound and starting to turn westbound. Our crew says towing crews have just arrived, and traffic has been getting through the intersection.
9:16 AM MONDAY: SPD tells us the officer was evaluated but not admitted; his injuries were minor.
Three West Seattle Crime Watch reports, starting with a robbery arrest far from the crime scene:
ROBBERY SUSPECT TRACKED TO FEDERAL WAY: Published on SPD Blotter tonight:
Just after 2 p.m. this afternoon, Southwest Precinct police officers responded to a report of an armed robbery at a bus stop near Delridge Way and Kenyon Street. The teenage victim reported to officers that a teenage suspect brandishing a handgun approached him, stole his iPhone and ran away.
Police called for a K9 officer in the hopes of tracking the armed suspect nearby. Those efforts did not prove fruitful. Fortunately for police, the suspect also left an electronic trail.
Using the phone’s location software, Officer Ernie DeBella followed the e-trail to Burien and then later to Federal Way. Officer DeBella successfully tracked the phone to an occupied silver minivan and called for back-up. With assistance from King County Sheriff’s Office and Federal Way Police Department, officers stopped the minivan. All four passengers got out and ran, but didn’t get far, and were detained by police.
The victim called his iPhone and officers could hear it ringing inside the mini-van on cue. Officers could also see a handgun in the minivan’s interior.
Three of the four occupants were interviewed and released from the scene. The fourth occupant, determined to be the robbery suspect, remained with officers. While they were questioning the suspect, a recent crime victim approached officers and reported that he recognized the teenage suspect as the person who had robbed him the day before. Federal Way Police will continue to investigate that robbery separately.
Officers impounded the minivan pending receipt of a search warrant. Officers transported the suspect back to Seattle and booked him into the Youth Service Center.
Also tonight, two reader reports, both related to mail/package theft:
PACKAGE THIEF: From Brittany in High Point, with frame grabs from security video:
A package was stolen off my front porch in West Seattle at 12:29 pm today.
If you see this navy blue car (possibly a Ford Focus 4-door sedan) or this person anywhere, please let me know.
This has already been filed with the Seattle Police Department.
If you have any info, the SPD incident number is 17-274738.
AFTERMATH OF PACKAGE THEFT: From Ray, also in High Point:
Boxes from two blocks away made it to 34th and Graham. Happened between 12-1 on 7/27.
Looks like they choose a driveway to turn into and dump the boxes.
10:48 PM: Thanks for the tips about police back on Alki, searching around 61st/62nd/Admiral and vicinity. We just talked to a sergeant who tells us they are looking for an assault suspect who has at least one warrant out for his arrest. Photo at right.
The suspect is 25, 5’6″, khaki shorts and a hoodie. Call 911 if you see him. The victim was not seriously hurt.
PS – This is not related to last night’s search (as we reported earlier, four people were taken into custody).
11:28 PM: No new info so far (but we’ll still be monitoring for a while, and will follow up tomorrow too).
In West Seattle Crime Watch today:
16TH SW GUNFIRE: We heard a scanner mention of possible gunfire reported around 2 am, but nothing further, including a location. So we followed up today and learned from police that one 9mm shell casing was found in the 5200 block of 16th SW. Witnesses reported two cars stopped in the street, southbound. No victim(s) reported.
ALKI STOLEN-CAR SUSPECTS: Last night we reported on an extensive search that started when a stolen car was spotted at 61st and Alki. We learned today that the car was stolen from Federal Way; after police caught up with it, five people fled, and a foot pursuit began, followed by a search that included K-9 Zeff (SPD Blotter explains that part of the story – photo at right). As mentioned by a commenter, one juvenile was found first; then, police confirm, three other teens were taken into custody overnight. They were to be questioned by the Major Crimes Task Force.
HANDCUFFED ESCAPEE: On Saturday night, we reported on a police search centered near 26th SW and SW Brandon, involving a handcuffed man who got away from an ambulance crew. We’ve confirmed that he has been found – while riding in a car on 35th SW – and already had a warrant out for his arrest in a drug case.
9:56 PM: You might be hearing the sirens, and/or seeing the police vehicles – there’s a search on in Alki, with K-9 joining in. The 2700 block of 61st SW is where it’s reported to have begun, with suspects possibly heading east and south. We don’t know exactly what sparked the search, nor do we have suspect descriptions, but what’s been mentioned via radio so far includes a possible stolen car and discovery of ammunition. More as we get it.
10:19 PM: One person tells us via Twitter that the suspects fled after a suspected stolen vehicle was stopped on 61st just south of Alki, which would match the address we had heard.
11:24 PM: While as noted in comments one person is reported to have been taken into custody in the area, we don’t know yet whether the person is connected to this, but will be checking in the morning, by which time a report should be available. The search has scaled back somewhat and some police have been released to go to other West Seattle calls that had been on hold.
ORIGINAL SATURDAY NIGHT REPORT: Thanks for the texts about a police search in North Delridge. Officers including a K-9 team are in the Delridge/Brandon/26th SW area. We talked with one officer who is part of “containment” – keeping watch on the periphery of the search area – he told us they are looking for someone who was arrested (for what, he didn’t know) and being treated by an ambulance crew and somehow got away. The only descriptive info he had was 6’1″ African American male – wearing handcuffs.
MONDAY UPDATE: We’re told the suspect is back in custody. Working to find out more.
We’re counting down to this year’s Night Out with the help of Southwest Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Burbridge. She reminds us that we’re now exactly two weeks away from the national celebration of neighborhood safety and solidarity – Tuesday, August 1st:
As of today, the Southwest Precinct has 154 registered events!
Here is the Seattle Police Department website about National Night Out Against Crime. On this website, there’s online registration and downloadable materials – including an invitation in 11 languages and a Night Out event map!
Registration is open until 5 pm on Monday, July 31st!
Registering gets you the right to close off your non-arterial residential street. It also potentially puts you on the radar for some of the Night Out visits that local police and fire personnel will be making.
P.S. And if you’re having a party and wouldn’t mind us possibly stopping by to take a photo for WSB coverage, please e-mail email@example.com with the location and who to ask for – thanks!
If you are or have been a Block Watch captain in the Southwest Precinct area – West Seattle and South Park – you might have received e-mail from the precinct’s new Crime Prevention Coordinator, Jennifer Burbridge. Or not – which is why she asked if we would circulate this request too. From her e-mail, sent to 350 people who might or might not still be BW captains:
Part of my work in the SW Precinct includes helping to start new Block Watches and assisting existing Block Watches in whatever way that I can.
When I took over the position, a list of Block Watch Captains for the SW Precinct area was passed down to me … My intention for this email is to verify (which blocks still have) an active Block Watch and to determine who the current Block Watch Captain is. If you are not the current Block Watch Captain but have the current Captain’s email address, could you forward this email to him/her? That would be greatly appreciated.
If you feel comfortable doing so, please respond to this email with the following information:
-First name of Block Watch Captain (please no Last Names for privacy purposes)
-Email address of Block Watch Captain
-Block or area your Block Watch covers (For example: 2300 Block of Webster- from Delridge to 24th Ave SW)
-Approximate number of homes/residences in your Block Watch
I hope to create a list of Block Watch Captains for the SW Precinct for a few purposes. First and foremost, to distribute information to the communities in an organized and efficient way. Secondly, I hope to have a running list so that when community members inquire about whether their area has a formal Block Watch- I can refer the Block Captain to the curious neighbor.
Please let me know in your response if you would like your information to be passed along to the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network. This community-based network provides many resources to Block Watch Captains in the SW Precinct. They offer monthly informational meetings, and have an online community where you can connect with other Block Watch Captains and benefit from their experience.
If this applies to you and you haven’t heard directly from Burbridge, her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
P.S. Speaking of neighborhood-based crime prevention/deterrence, we’re now less than three weeks from Night Out – the big annual night of neighborhood block parties – on August 1st. You don’t have to have a Block Watch to have a block party, but if you want to close your (non-arterial) street, you do have to register – here’s how.
As promised, we followed up today on Saturday’s bizarre and frightening Avalon Way incident involving a naked man running in the roadway, bolting into a business, and smashing windows on an occupied Metro bus before police got him under control.
We had few details that day – most of the story was told by commenters – but we obtained the police report narrative today and have transcribed much of it. It begins:
At 11:52 (am) … numerous callers reported a naked male in the vicinity of SW Avalon Way/SW Andover Street acting erratically and armed with a hammer. Dispatch advised the following: “On Avalon, just north of intersection, naked male hitting vehicles and lying in the middle of the road. The subject was described as a white male, late twenties to forties, 5’8” to 6’, thin, bald, facial hair, and completely naked.
Three officers were sent, two who are described as having had Crisis Intervention Training, one described as from the SW Precinct Bicycle Squad. They were in the small bus that transports the bicycle squad, “which lacks emergency equipment or in-car video,” the report notes, continuing:
Prior to officers arriving, dispatch updated that the subject was unintelligibly yelling, striking vehicles with a hammer, appeared high, jumped onto a pickup truck, stopping traffic, lying in the street, dancing, broke a bus window, went into a pet-care business, and covered in blood, chasing people with a hammer.
Several people have asked about the police response near 34th SW and SW Elmgrove. Officers have safely resolved a situation involving a possibly armed person who was reported to be threatening self-harm. The person will be evaluated by medics, and the streets will be reopening, according to radio exchanges; we have just confirmed with SPD that no one was injured.
7:39 PM: Seattle Police were looking this past hour for the driver of the blue Prius involved in that crash at SW Walker and 47th SW [map], reports WSB’s Christopher Boffoli. The only description they had at the time was “white, male, about 5-10,” he says. No injuries reported.
9:46 PM: A little more info from Christopher: “Witnesses at the scene told me that the driver of the Prius got out after the crash and stuck around for a minute or two and then bolted. A neighbor who heard the crash followed him towards the south on 47th for a bit and then lost him. Another neighbor spotted the driver trying to hide in her backyard and then when he was discovered he continued on. Multiple SPD units searched the area but were unable to find him.” If you have any information for police, you can refer to incident # 2017-248257.
Three reader reports:
POLICE RESPONSE IN LUNA PARK BUSINESS DISTRICT: Multiple reports about a naked man behaving bizarrely in the Luna Park business district – one person said he was jumping on cars, another said he was running around in the veterinary-clinic area. Police eventually got him under control outside the clinic, as shown in one photo sent to us (we can’t publish it without blurring, which we can’t do right now). We don’t know yet what happened from there; SFD was called for an “aid response” (low-level medical) but the call has closed. (Added 2:36 pm – photo sent by KD; see comments on damage done to vehicles including a bus)
SUSPICIOUS PERSON SOUTH OF THE JUNCTION: From a resident:
I just had a run-in at my apartment building around 1130. As I was leaving my apartment buildings’s back door a woman tried to push her way in, claiming her cousin lived here. She couldn’t remember her cousins last name or apartment and the first name she gave was not the name of anyone living in our small building. She said her phone was dead and couldn’t remember her cousin’s number. I let my neighbors and landlord know but she may still be around the neighborhood trying this at another building. She was African American, youngish (maybe 30s?) and dressed well. She was carrying an overnight bag and a cosmetic bag. Her hair was long and pulled back.
DUMPED STROLLER: Ray sent this photo of a stroller ditched between North Admiral and Alki – stolen, maybe?
If it’s yours, let us know and we’ll get you the location information.
Got a text (thank you!) about yellow “crime scene” tape and police activity at the 61st/Admiral site where 12 rowhouse units are scheduled to replace three duplexes. We hadn’t heard anything, so we went over to check, and found out that it’s training, as police and/or fire sometimes get permission to do in and around soon-to-be-demolished buildings. We’re told they’ll be there another hour or so.
Just published on SPD Blotter, word that three people were arrested last night after a street robbery was reported near 18th SW and SW Barton:
On Thursday night, just before 10:00 pm, officers responded to that area after a 58-year-old man called 911 to report he had just been robbed of his bicycle at gunpoint by three suspects. The suspects then fled and the victim was able to call police.
Officers responded and set up containment. A K-9 team responded and tracked to a nearby vacant house in the 9200 block of Delridge, where the victim’s bicycle was found abandoned in the tall grass. Officers heard voices inside the house and three individuals came out. The three individuals matched the suspect description provided by the victim. The victim was able to positively identify the suspects, all male, ages 17, 18, and 22. They were arrested without incident.
Officers checked the vacant house for additional suspects. During a check of the house, officers discovered an open window in a back bedroom. Thinking that was a little odd, the officer looked out the window and, using his flashlight, located a firearm in the tall grass. The gun was recovered with a fully loaded magazine. The victim confirmed that was the gun the suspects used in the robbery.
The 17-year-old suspect was later booked into the Youth Services Center, while the older suspects were booked into the King County Jail.
Juvenile detention rosters aren’t available online, but we’ve verified via the King County Jail register that the 18- and 22-year-old suspects are still in custody. Neither appears to have a felony record.
12:01 AM: Police are investigating multiple reports of possible gunshots – or fireworks – in North Delridge. We’ve heard from someone near Delridge/Genesee; via the scanner, dispatchers have told police about calls from areas including the Delridge Library and a few blocks northeast of there. Officers can’t confirm gunfire without finding casings and/or property damage and/or a victim – no word of any of that so far. But they reiterate that they want to hear from anyone who even thinks they heard gunfire, just in case, so if you do, call 911.
SIDE NOTE: The nights ahead are likely to be noisier. Though fireworks are illegal in Seattle, they are still legal in unincorporated King County, which includes White Center, and sales start in those areas at noon tomorrow, though they can’t be set off there legally until the 4th of July.
2:09 AM: We’re now hearing reports of suspected gunshots heard in South Delridge; might be related to an incident in White Center that King County Sheriff’s Office deputies are dealing with near 14th SW/SW 102nd (in which they are reported to have multiple suspects in custody).
Lots of questions about the police and fire response for an “assault with weapons” call in the 4500 block of 48th SW, near Ercolini Park. We have just talked to responders at the scene, and they tell us a person died by suicide inside a home.
As we always mention in coverage of suicide: If you or someone you know is contemplating self-harm, the Crisis Clinic‘s 24-hour hotline is 206-461-3222.
We heard it – and others saw it: A dozen-plus Seattle Police units (per three readers’ counts) pursuing a car southbound on West Marginal Way just after 2 pm on Saturday afternoon. And today we know why. We also know it started outside West Seattle, thanks to this video from Patrick O’Connor:
He sent that to us on Sunday, explaining that it was recorded on 1st Avenue South in Pioneer Square, but we suspected it was the same incident, given the ~2 pm time frame and proximity to West Seattle. At the time of the pursuit, we heard the sirens from Puget Ridge, where we were covering the Seattle Chinese Garden Kite Festival. We opened a scanner app just in time to hear that whatever it was, was ending, with the pursued vehicle apparently having crossed the city-county line.
We couldn’t find out anything more over the weekend, so today we followed up with SPD’s media-relations team. Det. Mark Jamieson tells WSB, “This was a pursuit of a stolen car involved in several robberies from different jurisdictions. The pursuit was called off as it went across the county line.” He also sent the narrative, which has these additional details:
The officer who wrote the report was on patrol with his partner at Rainier and Graham (map) when they saw a silver Nissan Sentra pull into a gas station. The officers noted that the car resembled one to which they had been alerted the day before, with information from Bellevue Police saying the car was stolen and linked to thefts and robberies in Bellevue and Kirkland. They started to follow the car and then sought authorization for a pursuit, which the report says was eventually ordered terminated by a sergeant.
The officer writing the report noted that he felt a pursuit was warranted because, “Based on recent crime statistics, there has been an increase in robberies (strong-armed and armed) and other violent crimes in the Seattle area. Based on my training, experience, and research of the recent calls, I know that robbery suspects are commonly armed or threaten to use weapons during the commission of these crimes. Knowing that this vehicle was stolen and used in prior robberies and thefts, I felt that if these suspects were not immediately apprehended, they would be a greater danger to the public than if we had let them drive away.” The officer also wrote that further research suggested the same vehicle was linked to four Seattle incidents too.
On Tuesday night, the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network meets at the Southwest Precinct for the final time before summer break. The 6:30 pm meeting is another chance to hear about crime trends and bring up community concerns with local police. And this month’s special guest, as just announced by WSBWCN co-leaders Karen Berge and Deborah Greer, will talk about the impending return of SPD’s Community Service Officer program:
City Council set aside funding to re-implement the Community Service Officer program in 2018. Our guest speaker will be Angela Socci from the Finance and Planning Section of the Seattle Police Department. She’ll talk about the plans for reinventing the CSO program. They are in the early stages of the program development process, so we have an opportunity to offer feedback. How would you like to see the new program take shape?
You don’t have to be a Block Watch captain – or even a Block Watch member – to be there; all are welcome. The precinct is at 2300 SW Webster (east of Home Depot) and the meeting room is right off the public parking area by the entrance.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Crime trends, community Q & A, and a briefing you might call “Gangs 101” were all part of last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting at the Southwest Precinct.
CRIME TRENDS: Capt. Pierre Davis opened the meeting with the latest, saying the precinct is “putting out as many resources” as it can, since “things get a little bit more boisterous” in the summer around here. That includes pulling SWAT officers for extra patrols, the precinct’s Anti-Crime Team, and the full-time bicycle squad, “able to patrol our hot-spot areas.”
One bright spot: Non-residential burglaries are down 2 percent – “we’re arresting a ton of people out there.”
No other stats were mentioned as attendees jumped right to community Q & A: Read More