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WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Stolen white Ford Edge

Another stolen vehicle you might be able to help find – Adam reports his fiancée’s car was stolen this morning in the Westwood area:

The car is a 2010 White Ford Edge. On the back right there is an obvious spot where there used to be a Detroit ‘D’ magnet. There is also another Michigan sticker on the back window. The front windshield is cracked.

Unfortunately we do not have the license plate number. We moved from Michigan not too long ago and do not have the new Washington plates memorized or written down.

They have filed a police report. If you think you see it, call 911.

FOLLOWUP: 2 Neighborhood Street Fund projects going out to bid

Almost a year and a half after they were chosen for funding, two Neighborhood Street Fund projects proposed by West Seattleites are going out to bid. A notice in today’s Daily Journal of Commerce announces that the city is seeking bids on a package of five NSF projects meant to improve walking and biking safety, two of which are in West Seattle – the Chief Sealth Walkway Improvements and the Harbor Ave. SW/SW Spokane St. Intersection Improvements Project. The notice says bids will be opened March 7th; we’ll be checking with SDOT on the anticipated construction schedule.

Crime drop, bog progress, park future @ Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Some promising news emerged on multiple fronts at this month’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting.

CRIME DROP: WWRHAH was briefed by Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith. The area covered by this community group, he said, has had 56 incidents in tracked categories compared to 119 a year earlier. That includes one fewer robbery, one more aggravated assault, 7 crimes against persons compared to 5 – but property crime is down dramatically – one more burglary, one more commercial burglary (3 compared to 2), but larceny (much of it shoplifting) is down dramatically, about a fourth of what it was. Also: 15 car prowls compared to 17, 8 car thefts compared to 13. 49 property crimes in all – less than half it was at this point last year. Police continue working harder to get repeat offenders kept in jail – including for example making sure the “(law enforcement) objects to release” box is checked on reports.

The subject of the arrest of officer-assault suspect Jorge Cruz-Benitez two nights earlier came up; he was allegedly first spotted doing graffiti vandalism in the area (Delridge/Henderson). Lt. Smith echoed what we noted in a previous discussion, that not all tagging is gang-related. (This meeting was on Tuesday night; one night later, on Wednesday night, Cruz-Benitez was released from jail, according to the KC Jail Register.)

(Southwestern side of Roxhill Bog – WSB photo from 2014)

ROXHILL PARK AND BOG: WWRHAH has been pushing forever to get the bog water-flow fixed –
here’s an extensive report we published in 2014 – and is making progress. Your involvement can accelerate things. First:

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UPDATE: SFD response at Westwood Village, electrical problem cited

January 15, 2018 4:57 pm
|    Comments Off on UPDATE: SFD response at Westwood Village, electrical problem cited
 |   Utilities | West Seattle news | Westwood

4:57 PM: A texter told us about a “smell of smoke” at Westwood Village Barnes and Noble just as SFD was dispatching four units that way. They’ve arrived and so far have NOT found a fire but are checking it out as an electrical problem, so they’re calling for City Light (whose map shows some power trouble in the area).

5:16 PM: SFD cited a “widespread” electrical problem, which we’re also hearing about from some in the area, so we’re headed to WWV shortly to check.

5:43 PM: Just spun around WWV. B&N was the only store clearly dark & closed.

YOUR COMMUNITY: Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights CC won’t meet tonight but invites you to 2 special events

January 2, 2018 1:47 pm
|    Comments Off on YOUR COMMUNITY: Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights CC won’t meet tonight but invites you to 2 special events
 |   Arbor Heights | Transportation | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks | Westwood | WS culture/arts

The Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition usually meets on first Tuesdays – but not tonight, given the proximity to the holidays. However, WWRHAH is helping coordinate these two special upcoming community discussions that you’re encouraged to be part of. First – imagine more events in Roxhill Park!

learntodance(2016 WSB photo from ‘Blood Wedding’ performance in the park)

On Tuesday, January 9, from 6:30 to 7:30 at Southwest Library, we’ll join Parks Commons and Arts in Parks Coordinator Randy Wigner to discuss ways Roxhill Park could be a good location for this program. The goal of the Parks Commons Program is to develop community capacity and civic engagement in event production, and the program is assigned to parks that experience long-term public safety issues and where those issues would be improved by increased community use of these parks. We’ll discuss park needs and if the program is a good fit.

Next – looking ahead to the RapidRide H Line, but not about the buses or routing:

On Thursday, January 18, community members and kids are invited to join artists from Oakland’s WowHaus studio for a discovery walk to help inform art projects coming to our neighborhood as part of the redevelopment of the 120 into the Metro Rapid Ride H line. Around 2:30 pm, we’ll meet at Roxhill Elementary under the main entry awning, then walk over to the 26th and Roxbury stop and hop on the 120 bus to the stop at Trenton and Delridge (so bring your bus fare). Members of the public can also meet at between 3:30 and 4 at the corner of Delridge and Henderson (where the largest concrete triangle is located in the right-of-way), and join the walk from there. What ideas do you have? Join us and share! Learn more about our selected artists here.

WEST SEATTLE CHRISTMAS SNOW: Do you know who helped this family?

Hannah hopes someone does, so she can thank him for helping them Christmas Eve in Westwood:

We were involved in a car accident and this kind man gave us hand warmers and a warm blanket for our baby. We would love to send this man dinner to thank him for what he did for our family.

We were coming down SW Barton St and about 23rd and there were two cars in the middle of the road. In order to avoid hitting them, and we were sliding down the street we hit a pole. Baby was in the car and we are all okay. But I am hoping to thank the kind neighbor who gave us hand warmers and gave our baby a big red blanket to keep him warm. Everything was so crazy so we didn’t get a chance to thank him and I would love to bring him dinner or something. I know I probably won’t find him but it’s worth a shot.

He was wearing a light-up Seahawks Santa hat, a Seahawks jersey and had a beard. I’m assuming he lives near Barton and 23rd. if anyone hears about someone helping a family in a crash, please let me know!

BIZNOTE: Westwood Village Carter’s store closing in January

If you’re looking for babies/children’s clothing at big discounts, a closing sale is on at the Westwood Village Carter’s store, which tells us it’s closing January 8th or when it’s out of inventory, whichever comes first. The impending shutdown isn’t entirely a surprise – back in October, when we reported on two businesses opening at WWV, a commenter noted that it appeared the Carter’s store space was for lease. We weren’t able to confirm closing plans at the time, and it fell off our followup list, but today, after Jon forwarded us an e-mail newsletter containing the one-line alert “Your Carter’s at Westwood Village is closing soon!”, we renewed our efforts and got the confirmation. Management says they have already stopped receiving new items, so it’s a clearance sale of what’s on hand. The store opened in April 2014. No word yet on what’s next for the space, which has been offered either alone or as a potential combination with the two empty spaces north of it.

TONIGHT’S LIGHTS: 30th SW in Westwood

(WSB photo)

Tonight’s featured Christmas lights are in Westwood, on the east side of 30th SW, south of Barton – one recent night we noted multiple festive displays on 30th between there and SW Roxbury, and made a note to go back for a photo when we could. This particular house is notable for multiple trees of lights in the yard – hard for the photo to do justice; we had to angle the camera a bit to get everything in. Thanks again to everyone who’s been suggesting displays (editor@westseattleblog.com); more tomorrow, and if you haven’t seen the big displays yet, you can find them any time in the WSB West Seattle Holiday Guide.

HOLIDAY GIVING: Special shopping spree in West Seattle

A double-take this morning for some Westwood Village Target shoppers, as the store entrance filled with uniformed police around 9 am. No need to worry, they explained – Southwest Precinct police were there for one of the company’s annual Shop With a Cop events.

~20 West Seattle and South Park students were chosen for the program, with the help of local nonprofits, who also had volunteers there to help.

Target donated gift cards and there was one prerequisite – along with choosing items, kids were asked to include a present for a family member or friend.

FOLLOWUP: Westwood Village drive-up/ride-up mailbox removed

For the first several days after the Westwood Village Post Office‘s drive-up/ride-up mailbox was taped off a week-plus ago, with a warning that it was “broken,” we went by daily in hopes of seeing it open again. We didn’t check the past few days, and then Mark sent a note this afternoon reporting that it’s been removed. This could mean a long time before repair or replacement – damage two years ago took four months to fix. Meantime, the in-lobby mail slot at Westwood is open around the clock, and if you need a drive-up/ride-up box, there’s one in The Junction (4412 California SW).

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Stolen black Element; car break-in during school concert

Two reader reports received this past hour, both of which include items big and small you might be able to help find:

STOLEN ELEMENT: The photo and report are from Kanti:

Stolen 2004 Black Honda Element WA AWN9996 from our home at 30th and Henderson. Vehicle has rocket box that carried supplies to Standing Rock, homemade Bernie 2016 sticker for WA delegate to the DNC in Philly and many many other heroic events. May we find her soon and continue our journey in sacred activism.

SPD incident number: 17-458428.

(DECEMBER 17 UPDATE: The Element’s been found, with one arrest. Waiting to hear where.)

CAR BREAK-IN DURING SCHOOL CONCERT: From Jennifer:

Tonight while we were attending our son’s 6th grade band concert at the Chief Sealth auditorium, someone broke the back window of our car and stole several items inside. Most notable are a blue & white striped 150 ft arborist rope in a blue canvas bag, a battery-powered lantern, and two brand new pairs of Nike cleats we purchased today to give our son for Christmas. I’m hoping maybe these things will be discarded by the thieves and end up somewhere else in West Seattle – especially the cleats. They are size 5 and 5.5, one indoor pair (black/white) and one outdoor (gray/pink). This happened between 6 8:30 pm on the side of the school and we have reported it to Seattle Police. If anyone finds the items, I’d be happy to come pick them up!

We’ll add the incident # when we get it.

READER REPORT: Westwood Village mailbox out of service

In the continuing saga of West Seattle’s drive-up/ride-up mailboxes … Carey sent the photo tonight with word that the Westwood Village Post Office‘s outdoor mailbox is out of service. So you’ll either need to walk your mail into the lobby, or use the box outside the West Seattle Junction Post Office (4412 California SW).

Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition toplines, from SPD to HALA

Quick toplines from this past Tuesday night’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting at Southwest Library:

CRIME TRENDS: Southwest Precinct Operations Lt. Ron Smith said a major problem in the area – shoplifting at Westwood Village – is down significantly, after months of emphasis patrols. (More on that in our upcoming Southwest District Council report.) SPD’s work at Westwood will soon be enhanced by an observation station.

SAFETY: WWRHAH member Earl Lee reported that the long-awaited lighting of the bus stop across Barton from WW Village is up and working:

(WSB photo, added Thursday night)

HALA UPZONING APPEAL: As reported previously, WWRHAH is participating in the citywide coalition that is appealing the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed upzoning in the city’s HALA Mandatory Housing Affordability plan. The coalition is now awaiting hearing dates, planning to go door to door to talk with neighbors, and raising money for legal help.

NO GENERAL MEETING IN JANUARY, BUT … Since the first Tuesday is the day after New Year’s, no general WWRHAH meeting until February. But watch wwrhah.org for TBA details of a January 9th meeting about Roxhill Park.

Chronic crime/safety problems? Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition gets resource rundown

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Outside of 911 calls when there’s trouble – what resources can police offer you to address chronic crime/safety problems?

A primer of sorts was presented at Tuesday night’s Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition meeting, led by co-chair Kim Barnes.

The discussion started with Joe Everett, who is the (relatively) new City Attorney’s Office liaison to the Southwest Precinct. He explained that the position is meant to “address chronic problems as they are emerging … before they turn into really big incidents.”

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WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Little red wagon stolen from porch

That’s Riky‘s daughter. Riky sent the photo with this Crime Watch report:

I know a wagon isn’t the same as a car or something more significant but my daughter’s Radio Flyer Wagon was stolen from our porch yesterday and I’m so upset over it. She loves it and we use it constantly. Any tips on its location are greatly appreciated.

(As we replied, yes, a wagon IS significant!) This happened near 28th SW and SW Roxbury, and a police report has been filed; meantime, if you see a wagon like this abandoned somewhere in that area, let us know.

CHANGE OF HEART: SDOT decides to restore Chief Sealth Walkway Improvement Project to full-size original plan

Never mind waiting for a developer to maybe have to be responsible for a walkway along 25th SW – the city has decided to build it after all:

We just got word from SDOT that the community-requested Chief Sealth Walkway Improvement Project is back to the original plan, along 25th SW as well as 26th SW, three months after the announcement the project would be halved.

In August, we announced that we’d be removing from our plans the paving of the walkway on 25th Ave SW between SW Trenton and SW Cloverdale streets. After further evaluation and feedback from the community, we’re happy to report that plans to pave the 25th Ave SW walkway are back on. The walkway on 26th Ave SW will also be improved, as has been the case throughout design. We’ll be finalizing the design soon and expect construction to start in mid-2018. Please see the project website to view the updated project design.

This announcement comes just a few hours before this month’s meeting of the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition, which had been pushing back against the city’s decision to cut the project. Since the city’s announcement the project would be cut, the unimproved 25th SW walkway has been the scene of incidents involving students, including this one last month.

TUESDAY: Neighborhood safety @ Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition

November 6, 2017 5:48 pm
|    Comments Off on TUESDAY: Neighborhood safety @ Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition
 |   Arbor Heights | West Seattle news | Westwood

Live, work, study, shop in Westwood, Roxhill, and/or Arbor Heights? Be one of the neighbors making things happen via the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition, which gathers Tuesday night, 6:15 pm at Southwest Library. Neighborhood safety is a big topic for tomorrow night, with guest speakers Community Police Team Officer John O’Neil and Southwest Precinct city-attorney liaison Joe Everett, who will talk with you about “empowering the community and leveraging city resources to deal with chronic neighborhood issues” such as abandoned houses (with or without squatters) and problem houses. Also from SPD, Operations Lt. Ron Smith will have the area’s newest crime trends/stats. And lots of “quick discussion items” (see them all in our calendar listing – and bring your own!). Just go to the upstairs meeting room at the library, which is at 9010 35th SW.

Why transit-stop improvements alongside Roxhill Park are only half done

(WSB photo)

The days are getting shorter, and lighting matters more than ever – especially at transit stops. But the very-long-awaited lighting improvements for the area along the north side of Roxhill Park aren’t in place yet, even though the other part of the project – an upgraded sidewalk – is complete. Community advocate Amanda Kay, who fought for the improvements as a founder and co-chair of the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition, asked Metro why. The explanation arrived this week: The four “pedestrian-scale” lights that were to be installed were damaged during shipping. So they’re now awaiting replacements. They’re hoping to have the lights in place before the end of the month, along the stretch between the layover area and the passenger waiting area.

BIZNOTE: Westwood Village QFC throws party for $2.8 million remodel

(WSB photos)

Staffers from the Westwood Village QFC and executives from parent corporation Kroger cut a ribbon this morning to celebrate the completion of its $2.8 million remodel. The party also included gifts for the day’s first customers, and cake:

Kroger also presented $1,000 checks to two area nonprofits: WestSide Baby and White Center Food Bank, whose Mercy Budiansky and Angela Beard accepted the gifts:

Among the remodeling work: All-new fixtures, some exterior refreshes, as well as changes to the meat/dairy sections.

BIZNOTE: Westwood Village QFC ‘grand reopening’ Wednesday

Got word today from QFC that it’s planning an event Wednesday morning to celebrate the completion of its $2.8 million Westwood Village remodeling project. At 8 am, they will hand out gift bags to the first 200 customers, with “a coupon for a ‘free breakfast’ (a dozen eggs, package of bacon, muffins, and carton of orange juice) as well as a QFC gift card. The gift cards will be for $5, with one for $300 mixed in.” The celebration also will feature free cake and coffee, with a ribboncutting at 8:30 am.

Last year, the goats … next weekend, you!

October 14, 2017 8:57 pm
|    Comments Off on Last year, the goats … next weekend, you!
 |   How to help | West Seattle news | Westwood

One year ago, goats took on the 22nd SW/SW Henderson slope – “before” photo above, “after” photo below:

Next Saturday (October 21st), volunteers of all ages – with community-service credit available for students – are invited to a followup cleanup. The photos and announcement are from Sara Dominguez:

REMEMBER THE GOATS?

Last year, through a neighborhood grant from the city, about 50 goats from Vashon came over to clear out blackberry and ivy from an overgrown area by the stairs at 22nd and SW Henderson St. Then community members worked to clear out the trash, lay down geotextile, and spread mulch to deter future overgrowth and negative activity that seems to increase with it. It is time to finish the laying of the textile on part two and mulching with donated mulch from the city.

WE NEED YOU (and your toes protected in sturdy shoes and hands protected by gloves if possible) to help lay the textile and spread the mulch. We’re hoping to get most of it done in one day and have a tool trailer with shovels and wheel barrows for the day. Please come on by from 10-4 to make it happen.

A certified Seattle Public School Teacher will be on hand to help students earn their community service hours and sign forms if they are in need of fulfilling their 60 hours. Come one, Come all.

When: Saturday, October 21st, 2017 10 am-4 pm

Location: Stairs leading up from 22nd and Henderson

Clothing required: Closed toed shoes, heavy pants (jeans better than leggings), raincoat/pants for the weather, and gloves would be helpful

For students – “six possible service Hours to be earned (and followup dates if you would like to continue with the project and earn more.” Contact srframe1@seattleschools.org for more info.

Last year’s goat-enhanced cleanup was a followup to the Westwood/Roxhill Find It, Fix It Walk (WSB coverage here) two months earlier.

VIDEO: Underground peat fire closes part of Roxhill Park

(WSB photos added)

FIRST REPORT, 2:28 PM: A “brush fire” call that’s been open since late morning in the Roxhill Park area is actually an underground peat fire, according to Seattle Parks, which says it’s under control but has claimed a few trees. Parks also says part of the park will be closed TFN because of the fire. We’ll be heading over to find out more. The peat bog in the park was restored years ago but has gone dry because of a variety of problems that the Westwood-Roxhill-Arbor Heights Community Coalition has long been trying to get the city to address. More to come.

3:04 PM UPDATE: We are at the park now. SFD and Parks are working together to dig into the peat to try to get to a not-burned area so they can cut off the fire. They have had to tear out some trees to get to it.

(And yes, that’s a TV helicopter.) What looks like smoke in our photos, we are told, is ash. Peat fires can burn for days, weeks, even months, so SFD is hoping this hasn’t extended too far. It’s at the southeast corner of the park.

3:56 PM UPDATE: Back at HQ now, and adding more images.

Since the fire isn’t out, SFD can’t say for sure how it started, but Deputy Chief Gene Zimmerman told us firefighters have been out a few times in recent days to extinguish “small warming fires” in that area of the park. We will check back in early evening but right now, this is NOT affecting the play area on the west side of the park, except that an SFD line is running to the fire area from a hydrant on 29th SW on the southwest side of the park. (added) This view of digging to fight the fire …

…is reminiscent of a view from the Seattle Municipal Archives, dated 1961, of peat being dug up in the area during road work (we’ve published this photo before):

FRIDAY NOTE: SFD closed out the call late Thursday night. We haven’t received a response yet to our question for them, whether the fire’s considered extinguished, but we went over at 5:30 pm for a look:

All that remains is a big muddy area, with chain-link fence around it. The paths to the east and to the north (toward the bus stop) are taped off, but nothing else in the park is affected. We’ll be checking with Seattle Parks, and again with SFD, next week.

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Students encounter exposer, per letter sent to families

For the second time this week, the principals of Chief Sealth International High School and Denny International Middle School have sent families a letter about an incident involving students walking near the campuses. Thanks to Denny principal Jeff Clark and several Sealth parents for forwarding it minutes ago:

Dear Denny/Sealth families:

It has been an exciting start to school, and with our scholars’ growing independence – particularly when they are out in the community – there may be situations that challenge their personal safety.

We want to take this opportunity to let you know that we are working with scholars to ensure they maximize their personal safety and their comfort with reporting potentially unsafe behavior. We also want to highlight an incident where students saw an inappropriate and disturbing behavior, and correctly reported it to school staff.

Today, two 11th-grade scholars were returning to Chief Sealth from Westwood Village. They were near the intersection of Cloverdale and 26th Avenue SW when they noticed an adult male exposing himself. The students immediately reported the situation to staff. Administration took immediate action and the Seattle Police Department were notified. We are very proud of how our students responded to this situation and want to encourage all our scholars to report appropriately.

At school, we continue to differentiate “reporting” from “tattle-telling.” Reporting is a responsibility when someone is hurt, in danger or in an unsafe situation. We are providing a link to some additional information that might be helpful during these discussions: http://www.seattle.gov/police/community-policing/youth-safety-tips

Please be assured that the safety and security of our students is a top priority at both Sealth International School and Denny International School. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

The letter was signed by Clark and by Sealth principal Aida Fraser-Hammer.

26th SW is the path along which the city still plans walkway improvements, while 25th SW – where students reported being approached inappropriately back on Monday – is the area where they’ve been canceled pending a future development.

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