West Seattle Blog... » WS breaking news http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Thu, 24 Jul 2014 09:34:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 West Seattle traffic alert: Cars collide in Gatewood http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/west-seattle-traffic-alert-cars-collide-in-gatewood/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/west-seattle-traffic-alert-cars-collide-in-gatewood/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 01:11:56 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=280165

6:11 PM: It was a short-lived call on the 911 log and so we didn’t go to check out this crash at California/Portland – but Long B. Nguyen, better known for photos from the sky, was in the area and shared this photo. We don’t have any official word on injuries; the Seattle Fire call closed very quickly and did not include medic units, suggesting if any, they weren’t major.

6:25 PM: California SW is blocked both ways at the scene but tow trucks are there so it might not be long.

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ONGOING COVERAGE: Protest in Morgan Junction as veteran, family evicted by deputies – then go back inside http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/what-youre-hearing-in-morgan-junction-eviction-protest/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/what-youre-hearing-in-morgan-junction-eviction-protest/#comments Fri, 18 Jul 2014 16:26:49 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=279743 (SCROLL DOWN FOR THE LATEST: Evicted couple back inside as of late afternoon)

9:26 AM: Numerous texts are coming in asking about what sounds like a protest somewhere in Morgan Junction. It’s an eviction protest at a Morgan/lower Gatewood home where local activists are hoping to stop sheriff’s deputies from forcing a disabled veteran, his wife, and children to leave. Public records indicate their house had been sold to a developer in April after being foreclosed on. The advocacy group had advised us and other news media of a 10 am protest and 10:30 am news conference today; apparently it has started early, and we’re on the way over. Updates to come.

9:56 AM: Our crew at the scene says deputies are there evicting the family from the house in the 6500 block of 41st SW. An ambulance is there, apparently to transport 63-year-old Byron Barton, but protesters are trying to stop the ambulance from moving – including by lying under it:

We’re adding Instagram video clips (the service limits to :15 but is the fastest way to get video out) as well as photos. The eviction action was postponed from last month, according to citywide-media reports including this one from KING.

10:05 AM: Our crew reports that sheriffs say everyone in the house is out.

Jean Barton made a brief statement that her husband does not want to go to the VA hospital but has nowhere else to go.

Seattle Police have arrived.

10:26 AM: So has City Councilmember Kshama Sawant.

The original announcement received yesterday had said she would participate in the 10:30 am briefing, which the group SAFE (Standing Against Foreclosure and Eviction) has said they still expect to hold.

11:05 AM: No briefing after all – Byron Barton was removed from the ambulance, and it has left, our crew at the scene reports. The family remains out of the house and there’s no word yet where they will go. A commenter asked if any help was needed; Jean Barton says Byron’s clothes are all in the house so that’s the kind of thing they need – she can be reached directly at 206-355-8300. She works, by the way, at Mary’s Place – an agency that helps homeless women. We’ve been looking into court files; the Bartons filed a lawsuit in May alleging various improprieties in the foreclosure process, which documents indicate has been ongoing since at least 2012. Trustee Quality Loan Service is listed as the firm that sold the house to Triangle Property Development LLC in April.

11:44 AM: Family and activists still there, our crew reports, and just gave a briefing, at which Councilmember Sawant spoke as well, but deputies and most of the police (and most of the rest of the media) are gone.

12:35 PM: Adding the briefing video as soon as it’s uploaded. We’ve been continuing to review court documents and other public records related to all this. The property’s owner as of the April foreclosure auction, Triangle Development, filed the “unlawful detainer” (eviction) suit against the Bartons in May, around the same time they filed the suit alleging the foreclosure was illegal. There is no development proposal for the site yet, by the way, but we note that county records show the house is on a double lot – 9,000 square feet and legally two lots, which likely means two homes could be built on it.

3:33 PM: We went by about an hour ago (en route to something else) and nobody was out on the street – two TV vehicles in evidence, though. One commenter says KIRO is reporting the family got back into the house. We asked KCSO spokesperson Sgt. DB Gates if they plan to go back. Not at the moment, she said, and offered more background, since KCSO is the enforcement agency for evictions anywhere in King County. According to Sgt. Gates, since an earlier incident in which a detective declined to serve the eviction papers, they have met with the Bartons multiple times and warned them that what happened today was going to happen – but the Bartons decided to stay anyway. Gates also says that the family is “not destitute,” and that they are getting “almost six figures” from the auction price, even though they did not initiate the auction, because the winning bid was so much more than what was owed on the house.

5:26 PM: We came back to the neighborhood to see what was going on and discovered that the Bartons are indeed back inside, in the basement, where Jean says Byron is chained to a bed:

That’s longtime friend Cheryl with them. Seattle Police are out on the street but won’t say what their plan is – they say a public-information officer is coming to speak to media (two TV crews are here doing live reports).

6 PM: SPD Captain Dave Proudfoot (South Precinct captain) is here to supervise – he says their first priority is checking Byron Barton’s health/medical status. Jean Barton says he’ll be OK at least until later tonight.

6:15 PM: New precinct liaison from the city attorney’s office Matthew York has been here since before we re-arrived. He is talking with a lawyer for the Bartons. Three of the SPD units that were here have left.

6:24 PM: It appears nothing more will happen here tonight, or so the police indicate. Meantime, the home’s new owner has commented on this story, saying she does not intend to tear down the house.

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Update: Police investigate shooting at 16th/Henderson; victim says it was accidental http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/assault-with-weapons-call-at-16thhenderson/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/assault-with-weapons-call-at-16thhenderson/#comments Tue, 15 Jul 2014 00:56:57 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=279406

(Added: WSB photos by Christopher Boffoli)
5:56 PM: The big emergency response – police and fire – is for a shooting at 16th and Henderson. 16th is being closed to traffic for now, between Barton and Henderson, because police are looking for shell casings in the street. One person is reported to have been shot in the foot, per scanner discussion, in which the suspect was described as a medium-complexion black man in his 20s, 150 pounds, 5-8, not a stranger to the victim, (added: dressed in black plus a white shirt/T-shirt), last seen walking northbound.

6:04 PM UPDATE: The victim is described as a 25-year-old man, shot in the right foot.

6:30 PM UPDATE: Per scanner – again, with the caveat that it’s still early in the investigation – the victim is reported to have confirmed what police say a witness told them, that this was self-inflicted/accidental.

6:47 PM: And now from SPD via Twitter – same thing we’d heard via scanner:

7:27 PM: 16th is open both ways.

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West Seattle traffic alert: Crash at 35th/Juneau http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/west-seattle-traffic-alert-crash-at-35thjuneau/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/west-seattle-traffic-alert-crash-at-35thjuneau/#comments Sat, 12 Jul 2014 02:49:43 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=279040

(WSB photo by Patrick Sand, substituted for original cameraphone photo)
At least one person is reported hurt in a multiple-vehicle crash that is blocking one lane each way on 35th at Juneau. Police are just arriving at the scene to help with traffic control. Traffic is getting by in the outside lane each way but that might change; a civilian is waving traffic around while police assess the scene. First fire personnel to arrive reported one person was unconscious. The two vehicles involved are side-by-side facing south.

9:22 PM UPDATE: Went back to check; crash scene is clear.

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Update: Stolen car crashes at Walnut and Hinds, 1 teenager hurt http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/automobile-rescue-response-at-walnut-and-hinds/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/07/automobile-rescue-response-at-walnut-and-hinds/#comments Tue, 08 Jul 2014 23:42:32 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=278681

4:42 PM: In South Admiral, the big fire/police response in the past 15 minutes or so was for an “automobile rescue” call at Walnut and Hinds (map). Turned out not to be as bad as reported, so many of the responding units have been canceled. Our crew is en route to find out more.

5:04 PM UPDATE: Added a photo. We’re told the car was stolen from a lot at/near the YMCA building in The Triangle; it hit a tree. Police say a juvenile from the car was injured and taken to a hospital; others were in the car and took off running.

5:47 PM UPDATE: Added a photo that includes the tree (thanks to Paul for sending).

7:37 PM UPDATE: The photo above this line was sent by Mark, whose tree was hit in the crash. He tells us, “This is the 3rd accident of this type (my other huge cedar got hit by some joyriding kid last year) at this location in 7 years. … The city needs to put in traffic circles here. If I had been home, they would have totaled my car, because that is exactly where I park every night.”

THURSDAY AFTERNOON NOTE: We’ve been trying for a couple days to get more information from police. So far, one important update from the information originally available at the scene – the person who was hurt, and trapped in the car, was a passenger, not the driver. We’re still following up on a few more points before writing an update.

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Car, motorcycle collide in Arbor Heights http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/car-motorcycle-collide-in-arbor-heights/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/car-motorcycle-collide-in-arbor-heights/#comments Thu, 26 Jun 2014 19:42:19 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=277586 One person was taken to the hospital by private ambulance after their motorcycle collided with a car in Arbor Heights. It happened at California/104th; the rider’s injuries are not life-threatening, but there was a major medical response, and that plus an unrelated medic response not far away led to many a siren in AH this past hour. Our crew was told at the scene that the woman and child who were in the car are not hurt.

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Update: Play-area fire at Schmitz Park Elementary School, $50,000 damage http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/fire-callout-at-schmitz-park-elementary-school/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/fire-callout-at-schmitz-park-elementary-school/#comments Thu, 26 Jun 2014 08:24:17 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=277541 (SCROLL DOWN FOR ONGOING UPDATES: Damage estimate, daylight photos, district and PTA comments)

1:24 AM: Seattle Fire is on the way to a possible fire at 5000 SW Spokane, which is the address for Schmitz Park Elementary School. More as we get it.

1:30 AM: Response is being downsized; the fire is apparently on/in play equipment outside, no building/interior involvement. Mostly a bark fire, but “some melted play equipment,” SFD reports. Our crew is still en route.

1:54 AM: Our crew reports it’s some climbing-type equipment at the play area on the west side of the school but it’s significantly damaged. We’ll go back for a daylight look later. No official cause of the fire – the marshal’s on the way.

8:12 AM UPDATE: From Kyle Moore at SFD:

Seattle Fire Investigators have classified an overnight fire at a West Seattle playground as undetermined because there was no obvious source of ignition.

At 1:19 a.m. a call came into dispatchers at the Fire Alarm Center reporting a fire coming from the back of a school located in the 5000 block of SW Spokane Street. The first arriving engine company found flames coming from a playground area. Firefighters quickly knocked down the fire which was confined to the wood chips. The heat and flames also melted and damaged the metal and plastic playground equipment. The damage estimate is $50,000.

We will add daylight photos shortly.

9:13 AM: Just back from the school. Photos of the damage, above and below.

We are following up with Seattle Public Schools for starters. Schmitz Park is West Seattle’s most-populous elementary, with more than 600 students expected this fall. It’s scheduled to move into the new school to be built on the Genesee Hill Elementary site, likely in early 2016.

12:05 PM: District spokesperson Tom Redman tells WSB, “The play equipment was new and installed last summer and funded by the District. Our risk and loss prevention manager will inspect the equipment, after which we’ll determine our next steps.”

2:09 PM: We’ve also heard from the SPES PTA – starting with this detailed comment from outgoing president Jeff Rayner.

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Update: Fire response at Jefferson Square Apartments; no fire http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/fire-response-in-the-junction-2/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/fire-response-in-the-junction-2/#comments Fri, 13 Jun 2014 02:12:21 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=276310

ORIGINAL REPORT, 7:12 PM: Big response for a “fire in building” call at 41st and Edmunds – our crew was nearby and reports that it’s at the Jefferson Square Apartments on the south side of the shopping center. No smoke or flames visible from outside, according to our crew. Per scanner, they’re checking out one specific unit. Avoid Edmunds/42nd/41st. More to come.

7:33 PM UPDATE: No fire found. Units are leaving. Area should be clear soon.

ADDED FRIDAY MORNING: See the comment from Quinn, with an important bottom line.

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West Seattle traffic alert: Crash east of Westwood Village http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/west-seattle-traffic-alert-crash-east-of-westwood-village/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/west-seattle-traffic-alert-crash-east-of-westwood-village/#comments Sun, 08 Jun 2014 05:35:05 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=275864

10:35 PM: Thanks to those who’ve called to let us know that a car crash east of Westwood Village is affecting traffic. The 911 log says it’s at Barton and Barton Place (map) – we’re going to check it out, but in the meantime, avoid the area TFN.

10:55 PM: Our crew says two vehicles are involved, both with serious front-end damage, but police say no one was seriously hurt. They’re awaiting tow crews to get the scene cleared, but traffic is not moving on Barton either way in the meantime.

11:26 PM: Police are still awaiting a city crew to help clean up debris/fluid in the street.

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Car goes sideways east of High Point, no injuries http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/car-goes-sideways-east-of-high-point-no-injuries/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/car-goes-sideways-east-of-high-point-no-injuries/#comments Sat, 07 Jun 2014 07:54:52 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=275791

12:54 AM: Sylvan Way is blocked east of High Point while police investigate a car-on-its-side crash. Just one vehicle, and nobody had to go to the hospital, police told us at the scene; it was originally dispatched as a “heavy rescue,” but that was pulled back quickly.

1:19 AM UPDATE: Westbound Sylvan Way is open again, according to scanner traffic.

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West Seattle traffic alert: Crash at 36th and Avalon http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/west-seattle-traffic-alert-crash-at-36th-and-avalon/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/west-seattle-traffic-alert-crash-at-36th-and-avalon/#comments Fri, 06 Jun 2014 01:16:07 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=275666

The emergency response at 36th/Avalon is reported as a vehicle crash, but it’s a single-unit response so we don’t believe any serious injuries are involved. However, a tipster tells us that “one bridge-bound lane” is blocked, and shares the photo you see above (thank you!).

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West Seattle traffic alert: Taxicab hits building http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/west-seattle-traffic-alert-taxicab-hits-building/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/06/west-seattle-traffic-alert-taxicab-hits-building/#comments Mon, 02 Jun 2014 20:22:46 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=275264

At Glenn/Oregon on the west side of The Junction, a taxicab crashed into the corner of a building, in a collision that also involved a truck that wasn’t seriously damaged and has already left the scene (after talking with police), according to WSB’s Katie Meyer. Traffic is still getting by both ways. No injuries reported.

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West Seattle traffic alert: 2 crashes, including second of the day at 35th/Juneau http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/west-seattle-traffic-alert-2-crashes-including-second-of-the-day-at-35thjuneau/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/west-seattle-traffic-alert-2-crashes-including-second-of-the-day-at-35thjuneau/#comments Fri, 30 May 2014 01:52:18 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=274855

6:52 PM: Two crashes on major roads right now – 35th/Juneau, the second crash in that area today (the first one was in early afternoon), this time reported to be a vehicle having hit a pole, with northbound lanes blocked by the SFD response; Fauntleroy/Cloverdale, near the ferry dock. Add that to what we hear was a very slow evening commute (even after Vice President Biden’s low-key visit ended) southbound from downtown and beyond, and it’s apparently still tough going almost everywhere out there.

7:19 PM: At least two people were taken to the hospital, by private ambulances, from the 35th/Juneau crash. Adding a photo; the red car, at left, hit a utility pole – the silver car, at center, had even more front-end damage, primarily on the passenger side. The southbound lanes remained open, as this was indeed in the northbound lanes, but avoid the area until it’s cleared – we’ll be checking back. (No additional information on Fauntleroy/Cloverdale – the SFD call has closed.)

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Bike rider hurt in Beach Drive hit-run http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/bike-rider-hurt-in-beach-drive-hit-run/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/bike-rider-hurt-in-beach-drive-hit-run/#comments Mon, 26 May 2014 23:32:56 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=274560

Another hit-run crash has left a bicycle rider hurt – not seriously, this time. It happened in the 3700 block of Beach Drive SW; SFD checked out the rider, whose ankle was hurt, and was waiting with him for police to arrive; he told us he didn’t get a good look at the car, which continued northbound on Beach Drive.

SIDE NOTE: Last Thursday night’s hit-run at the east end of the low bridge remains unsolved; the vehicle description made public hours later remains the most information we have about it. A relative of the rider posted a comment today saying he did survive and that they’re grateful for those who helped him at the scene.

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West Seattle Bridge traffic-alert update: Now, 2 more crashes http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/traffic-alert-crashes-on-high-bridge-both-directions/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/05/traffic-alert-crashes-on-high-bridge-both-directions/#comments Mon, 26 May 2014 02:19:52 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=274447 7:19 PM: Avoid the high bridge right now, either direction – as shown on the 911 log, there are crashes both ways, westbound near Admiral, eastbound near Delridge. (Thanks to Anne for the tip!)

7:29 PM UPDATE: We just happened to be coming back from downtown when we got this report, so we’ve passed both scenes. On the eastbound side, the right lane is blocked just past the Delridge onramp; on the westbound side, the right lane is blocked right at Walking on Logs. Traffic is moving OK in both directions.

8:04 PM UPDATE: SFD has cleared both of those scenes – but now there’s a third crash, described as eastbound West Seattle Bridge to northbound I-5. It’s being described on the scanner as “a rollover that landed back on its wheels.” And before we could finish typing this, we’re hearing ANOTHER dispatch for a spinout on the westbound side by Walking On Logs. No injuries.

8:38 PM: Those calls have closed too.

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