CRIME WATCH: Suspect identified in White Center murder of James Little – can you help find him?

Can you help find a suspected killer? The King County Sheriff’s Office has just identified a suspect in the May 7th murder of James Little in White Center, and released his photo:

A Murder 1 warrant has been issued for Billy D. Williams, 30, of Oregon, for the May 7th murder of Seattle resident James Little, 30.

Little was attending a birthday party at a bar in the 9800 block of 16 Ave SW when a group of women got into a fight. The fight ended up outside and the women eventually separated.

Little approached a group of people across the street when Williams, who was in the group, pulled a gun and shot him in the head, killing him.

Detectives have not released a motive for the shooting but said Williams has ties to Albany, Oregon and Seattle. Williams is described as a black man, 30, 5’8”, medium build.

If you have information regarding the whereabouts of Williams you can call 911 or you may remain anonymous and be eligible for a reward of up to $1000 by calling Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).

Alki Elementary’s Tim Hannah: Longtime salmon teacher migrating into retirement

Thanks to Fauntleroy Creek steward Judy Pickens for the top photo and report (and headline!):

Today’s salmon release in Fauntleroy Park was the last for retiring fifth-grade teacher Tim Hannah. He’s spent most of his 28-year career at Alki Elementary and initiated the Salmon in the Schools rearing project there in 1992.

(Photo courtesy Karisa MacLachlan)
Alki’s release was No. 13 for Fauntleroy Watershed Council volunteers, with six more to go. By the end of the month, an estimated 750 students will have enriched the creek with about 2,200 coho fry.

After that, the next seasonal touchpoint for Fauntleroy Creek and its salmon happens this fall, when volunteers watch for spawners.

HIGHLAND PARK FIND IT, FIX IT WALK: Here’s the May 25 route, just announced

One week before the city’s Highland Park Find It, Fix It Walk – first announced, casually, more than three months ago – the starting point, starting time, and route map have just been made public. Click the image above for a full-size PDF of the plan. The walk will start at Highland Park Improvement Club (1116 SW Holden) at 6:30 pm, but you’re invited to HPIC as early as 5:30 pm for refreshments and mingling. The stops planned with community leaders are listed on the map and include some of Highland Park’s key unresolved issues, including traffic at Highland Park Way/Holden, this winter’s major mudslide down the HP Way hill, the unrepaired, arson-damaged restroom at Riverview Playfield, side-street speeding, and more. Meantime, from today’s route announcement, a few notes from the city Department of Neighborhoods:

Participants can use the Find It, Fix It mobile app on the walk. This smartphone app offers mobile users one more way to report selected issues to the City. Make sure to download the app before the walk.

In partnership with Cities of Service, the City will offer up to $3,000 in grants for community-led projects to each 2017 Find It, Fix It Walk neighborhood. The Highland Park Community Project Grant Application is available at until June 8. If you have an idea for a project in Highland Park please apply today!

West Seattle’s previous Find It, Fix It walks were in Roxhill/Westwood last July (WSB coverage here) and in North Delridge in October 2015 (WSB coverage here).

GRATITUDE: Message from bicyclist injured in Delridge crash

Back on Monday, we mentioned a collision on Delridge that sent a bicyclist to the hospital. Today, she e-mailed to ask if we would share this:

I wanted to say thank you to everyone who came to my assistance on Monday.

I am the bicyclist that got hit at Delridge and Willow. It was a very scary situation made much better by the bystanders and first responders that came to my aid. It was incredibly kind of the complete strangers who brought blankets and jackets out to keep the rain off me. And special thanks to one woman who came over to check on me and helped keep me calm. And of course, all the first responders were unbelievably professional and kind. Just wanted everyone to know how much it meant to me.

– Kristen

MYERS WAY HOMELESSNESS: Many questions, some answers, at third ‘community conversation’

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The city and county reps on hand at the third “community conversation” about Myers Way-related homelessness issues almost outnumbered the community members who showed up.

But a smaller turnout than the previous “conversation” did not result in fewer questions; this crowd had plenty. Read More

West Seattle Thursday: Alki Community Council; 4417 42nd SW design review; Glo Dental Studio grand opening; more

(Great Blue Heron, photographed by Mark Wangerin)

Here are highlights of what’s ahead today/tonight, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

DANCE TIME WITH LAUREN PETRIE: 2-4 pm, go dance at the Senior Center of West Seattle in The Junction, with live music by Lauren Petrie! More info in our calendar listing. (4217 SW Oregon)

GLO DENTAL STUDIO GRAND-OPENING CELEBRATION: 4-6 pm, you’re invited to Glo Dental Studio (WSB sponsor) for the grand-opening celebration, starting with a ribbon-cutting, continuing with refreshments, and great specials – details in our calendar listing. (3295 SW Avalon Way)

WEST SEATTLE TIMEBANK: 6-8 pm gathering tonight at White Center Library, with guest speaker Rachel Glass from Hate-Free Delridge. Details in our calendar listing. (1407 SW 107th)

SOUTHWEST DESIGN REVIEW BOARD: One project on the agenda, 6:30 pm tonight at the Senior Center/Sisson Building – the Early Design Guidance review (size/shape/location) for 4417 42nd SW, “a 4-story apartment building containing 58 units and 4 live-work units,” with 29 underground parking spaces. The project is called Junction Landing; it’s one door north of, and proposed by the same local team behind, Junction Flats. See the design packet here; we first mentioned this project back in December. The meeting includes a public-comment period. (4217 SW Oregon)

ALKI COMMUNITY COUNCIL: 7 pm at Alki UCC, the ACC agenda includes a “focus group” conversation with the Southwest Precinct’s new grad-student research analyst to discuss crime/safety issues. (6115 SW Hinds)

LIVE MUSIC AT WHISKY WEST: 7-9 pm, David Johnson performs “melodic arrangements on guitar & piano.” No cover. 21+. (6451 California SW)

BELLYDANCING: The monthly Alauda showcase at The Skylark is tonight, starting at 7:30 pm. No cover. All ages. (3803 Delridge Way SW)

VIDEO: Seattle Mariners’ 20th annual DREAM Team tour stops at Sanislo Elementary

(WSB photos and video by Randall Hauk. Above, Kyle Seager donating books for the Sanislo library)

Exciting end to the school day for students (and staff!) at Sanislo Elementary on Wednesday. Sanislo was one of four schools in the region chosen by the Seattle Mariners for the 20th annual DREAM Team Assemblies. More photos and video ahead: Read More

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Thursday watch; looking ahead

(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

7:02 AM: Good morning! No incidents so far in/from West Seattle.

Looking ahead:

BIKE EVERYWHERE DAY TOMORROW: If you’ll be riding on what used to be Bike to Work Day,
stop at the west end of the low bridge for the special station with West Seattle Bike Connections and friends, 6-9 am – details in our calendar listing.

WEST SEATTLE 5K ON SUNDAY: A reminder that Alki Avenue will close to traffic for a few hours on Sunday morning (May 21st), starting at 8 am, for this year’s West Seattle 5K – the route is from 61st/Alki to Anchor Park, and the closure usually goes a bit beyond on both sides, Don Armeni to 63rd/Alki.

Music star Chris Cornell, former West Seattleite, dies at 52

6:52 AM: Sad news overnight. Music star Chris Cornell has died in Detroit, just 52, after Soundgarden‘s sold-out concert there. His Seattle ties were strong, given his years with that band (and so much more). He lived in West Seattle long ago, as mentioned here in WSB’s early months, when he had a solo hit with the theme from the first James Bond movie starring Daniel Craig. Mr. Cornell also was a philanthropist, forming the Chris and Vicky Cornell Foundation with his wife, “to protect the most vulnerable children.” He is survived by three children of his own. His body was found in his hotel room; the cause of his death is under investigation. (2011 photo, via Wikimedia)

P.S. KEXP is paying tribute all day (90.3 FM/online).

12:02 PM: Authorities in Detroit say Mr. Cornell died by suicide.

There’s help for anyone thinking of self-harm … here in King County, the Crisis Clinic has a 24-hour hotline at 206-461-3222. And here’s what the American Federation for Suicide Prevention says.

11:23 PM: A view of tonight’s biggest tribute:

Another win for West Seattle BMX racer – and kindergartener – Colton Fukano

Last August, we brought you the story of Colton Fukano, who at age 4 – before starting kindergarten – had just won a state BMX championship. This week, we have an update on Colton’s bicycle-racing achievements, again from proud mom Shawnda Fukano:

Race season has started again for 5-year-old Colton Fukano, a kindergartener at Genesee Hill Elemenatary and member of team Sonic BMX. This past weekend he took 1st place at the Fraser Valley National Race in Chilliwack, British Columbia, where he raced against the top intermediate five-year-olds from Western Canada. We want to say thank you to Coach Jamie Stenson and Michael Benson, owner of Sprocketts Recycled Bicycles in Magnolia, for sponsoring the team. If any kids are interested in trying out BMX, check out the North SeaTac BMX track’s summer camps. West Seattle Cyclery in the Alaska Junction can help you get anything you might need to get started!

Colton’s been a BMX rider since he was 3; his backstory is in the August report.

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Tire slashing; found bicycle

Two reader reports:

TIRE SLASHING: From a Sunrise Heights resident: “We had two tires (the road side) slashed on our company van last night. Sitting in front of our house. Feels very personal, but was wondering if their were any other reports in the area — 32nd and Holden.”

FOUND BICYCLE: John sent the photo:

He says, “This bike has been sitting at this spot for at least 3 weeks. I saw it before I left town at the end of April and it’s still leaning against the same telephone pole. It’s at the corner of 59th Ave SW and 60th Ave SW (between SW Charlestown and SW Andover). It’s a blue Sekai bike.”

TASTE OF WEST SEATTLE 2017: Food/drink participants revealed, with days left to buy tickets

(WSB photo from Taste of West Seattle 2016)

With less than one week left to buy tickets for West Seattle’s biggest annual celebration of food and drink, the Taste of West Seattle‘s lineup has been revealed.

Backstory: The Taste of West Seattle benefits West Seattle Helpline, whose work basically comes down to preventing people from becoming homeless, by providing emergency help. It’s happening 6 pm Thursday, May 25th, at The Hall at Fauntleroy, and you have to buy your ticket(s) by next Tuesday (May 23rd). From Helpline:

The Taste of West Seattle is a local, community-based food fair and is the largest event of its kind in West Seattle. This year’s Taste will feature food and drink from 40 different restaurants, breweries, wineries, coffee shops, bakeries, chocolatiers, and more – all from right here in West Seattle! Check out the restaurant lineup below:

BAKED. Custom Cakes
Bakery Nouveau
The Beer Junction
Beveridge Place Pub
The Bridge
Brookdale Admiral Heights/WS
Chaco Canyon Organic Cafe
Coastline Burgers
Copper Coin
Coral Wines
Dream Dinners, West Seattle
Dolcetta Artisan Sweets
Doolie’s Food
Duos Catering
Elliott Bay Brewing Co.
Endolyne Joe’s
Fresh Bistro
Harry’s Chicken Joint
Husky Deli
The Lodge Sports Grille
Locöl Barley and Vine
Metropolitan Market
McCrea Cellars
Mission Cantina
Pecado Bueno
Pecos Pit-West Seattle
Pizzeria 22
Prost! West Seattle
Salty’s on Alki
Schooner EXACT Brewing Co.
Stuffed Cakes
T2 Cellars
Tuxedos and Tennis Shoes-Catering and Events
Viscon Cellars
West Seattle Cellars
The Westy
Zeeks Pizza

All proceeds from the event go directly to the West Seattle Helpline’s emergency assistance and homelessness prevention programs. These services stabilize and support individuals and families in West Seattle who are recovering from a crisis or unexpected hardship.

Buy your tickets online right now – go here
For more information – go here

(Eight of the participating venues – Dream Dinners, Endolyne Joe’s, Metropolitan Market, Pecos Pit, Salty’s on Alki, Viscon Cellars, The Westy, and Zeeks Pizza – are WSB sponsors.)

Landmark-nomination hearing set for Avalon Substation building

(WSB photo from October 2016)

The former Avalon Substation building at 3243 SW Genesee has been proposed for landmark status and will go before the city Landmark Preservation Board in July. Here’s the official public notice of the hearing; here’s the official nomination document submitted to the city, including photos of its interior and exterior. In this case, it’s not necessarily that the 1954-built building is believed to merit that status, but meets criteria requiring considerations while the ex-substation is reviewed for proposed demolition. (We first told you back in October about City Light’s plan to tear it down and clean up mercury contamination.) In case you’re wondering, the landmark nomination does not include the also-owned-by-City Light building next door that houses Pecos Pit (WSB sponsor), which is using the ex-substation’s parking lot. Public comments are welcomed at and before the hearing, which is set for 3:30 pm Wednesday, July 5th, at City Hall downtown.

See the new signage gracing historic Highland Park Improvement Club

Something new for one of our area’s liveliest community facilities! The photos and report are from Dina Lydia Johnson:

The 98-year-old Highland Park Improvement Club, a neighborhood gathering place, finally has permanent signage! This is something we’ve been wanting and needing for many years.

The design was developed by committee: Kay Kirkpatrick (photo above), Dina Johnson (photo below), Julie Schickling, and Nicole Mazza over the past year or more.

The new signage graces the area of the facade where the “eyebrow” fell last year. Meantime, more scenes from the installation, featuring HPIC trustees Blair Johnson and Billy Markham:

Dina adds, “It’s done just in time to be wildly celebrated at the Club’s annual festive wine-tasting fundraiser Highland Park Uncorked, this Saturday, May 20th. Thanks to ALL!” Find out more about Uncorked (with sponsors including WSB) on the HPIC website.

WEST SEATTLE 5K: Donor seeking to sponsor a family

With days to go until this year’s West Seattle 5K (9:20 am Sunday, May 21st, from 61st/Alki to Anchor Park and back), race organizers asked us to let you know about a first-of-its-kind offer::

An anonymous donor has generously offered to pay the entrance fee for a local family in need that wants to run the West Seattle 5K this weekend. If you know a family that would like to participate, but isn’t sure if it is within their means, please e-mail and we’ll sign that family up. The donor does not care how big the family is — they just want to support the community.

The WS5K (with sponsors including WSB) is a benefit for West Seattle High School via its PTSA.

FAUNTLEROY BOULEVARD: SDOT goes public with newest traffic studies, will continue with plan to eliminate ‘right-turn pockets’

As the Fauntleroy Boulevard project gets closer to final design, many who are closely watching the process have asked for details of the newest traffic studies done by/for SDOT – since the project was on hold for a few years, and conditions changed in the meantime, new studies were ordered. The full report has just been linked to the project website, and we’ve uploaded it to Scribd so you can also see it, embedded, above (direct link to city-hosted PDF is here).

In short – SDOT says that the study’s results do NOT change its plan to eliminate the right-turn “pockets” at Avalon and Oregon. Right turns WILL still be allowed – but turns will have to be made from the outside through lane.

Meantime, if you don’t have time to read through the study report (31 pages) right now, here’s how the contractor summarizes its findings on page 28:

The proposed project will construct landscaped center medians, realigned intersections, improved street lighting, protected bike facilities and improved pedestrian facilities with defined sidewalks and new crossings of Fauntleroy Way SW.

DKS has completed a project traffic analysis of the existing, the year of opening, and the future 2044 project condition.  The following summarizes the main findings of analysis:

 The protected bike lanes are proposed to be one‐way on both sides of the corridor and therefore should have minimal impact on the signal operations as a bike signal phase will not be required.
 The year of opening conditions accounts for an 8% growth which includes planned development within the next two years in the area. Signal timing changes at intersections along Fauntleroy Way SW and 35th Avenue SW are required to accommodate this growth. The signal timing adjustments, in conjunction with turn restrictions, provide acceptable LOS D or better operations in the year of opening conditions. Certain intersections experience better operations in future conditions due to optimized signal timing.   

 The proposed additional marked crosswalks across Fauntleroy Way SW at SW Avalon Way and at SW Oregon Street are not recommended as they would require an additional signal phase for an exclusive pedestrian crossing, reducing the efficiency of the intersection operations by introducing additional pedestrian and vehicle delay at the individual intersections and to the corridor.  

 The Fauntleroy Way SW Boulevard project is expected to allow for acceptable corridor operations through the year 2044.  This is due in large part to PSRC’s new 2040 regional travel demand model which projects little vehicle traffic growth along Fauntleroy Way SW, but a 25‐33% growth in transit trips on the SW Alaska Street/35th Avenue SW transit corridor.  Also, by 2040, both pedestrian and bicycle trips in this section of the City are expected to grow at approximately twice the rate of vehicle trips.    

 To ensure a conservative analysis, pedestrian volumes were assumed to double at the intersection of SW Alaska Street/Fauntleroy Way SW Boulevard, while bicycle volumes were assumed to double along the corridor for the year of 2017. Through 2044, pedestrian volumes were assumed to double at every intersection and bicycle volumes were assumed to triple along the corridor.

Meantime, SDOT continues taking comments through the end of this month on whether to break the median at 37th SW – scroll to the middle of the project page to see how to send your thoughts. The city expects to finalize the design this summer and start construction earlier this year.

Previous WSB coverage can be browsed here.

@ West Seattle Crime Prevention Council: All about SPD’s Traffic Unit, plus local crime trends

By Randall Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

Opioid addiction continues to be the root cause behind much of West Seattle’s property crime problems, Captain Pierre Davis explained at last night’s meeting of the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council.

Opening the meeting, the Southwest Precinct commander updated community leaders and interested residents on the West Seattle/South Park police force’s progress on a number of crime-related issues. Later in the meeting, SPD’s citywide Traffic Enforcement Section commander was the special guest.

First, trends and issues: Davis says car prowls are down 22 percent from last year over the first four months of 2017, but that there continues to be a lot of auto thefts occurring in West Seattle neighborhoods (neighborhood-crime statistics are available via the SPD Crime Dashboard). While police continue to track cases and make a significant number of arrests, Davis says that reacting to crimes after the fact will have minimal impact on the issue.

“As the chief says, we will never arrest our way out of problems like this,” said Davis.

The captain reiterated advice about assuring valuables are not left in vehicles to help prevent becoming a victim, especially with the warmer weather of summer months approaching, when Davis says activity tends to rise. Read More

WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST 2017: See the music lineup!

(Thunderpussy’s 2016 KEXP performance)

Less than two months until the peninsula’s biggest party of the year – West Seattle Summer Fest, in the heart of The Junction, this year set for Friday-Sunday, July 14th-16th. And we’ve just received first word of this year’s music lineup – headlined on Night 1 by Thunderpussy (video above), on Night 2 by Brent Amaker and The Rodeo (video below), and wrapped up on Day 3 by The Dusty 45s.

(Brent Amaker and The Rodeo’s 2012 Seattle Channel/ArtZone performance)
Here’s the full lineup:


3:30 – Po Boys
4:30 – Wiscon
5:30 – Dryland
6:30 – Hotels
7:30 – Sassy Black
8:30 – Purple Mane (Prince Tribute)
9:30 – DJ Kurt Bloch
10:00 – Thunderpussy


1130 – School of Rock
12:30 – Wild Wild Mexico
1:30 – Lisa Prank
2:30 – Thee Sgt Major III
3:30 – The Gods Themselves
4:30 – Golden Gardens
5:30 – Genders
6:30 – Sisters
7:30 – CHARMS
8:30 – Porter Ray
9:30 – Vox Mod
10:00 – Brent Amaker & The Rodeo


12:00 – South Sound Tug & Barge
1:00 – Mega Bog
2:00 – Swedish Finnish
3:00 – Carrie Akre & Danny Newcomb from Goodness
4:00 – Dusty 45’s

These are all the main-stage acts on the north end of the festival zone, between SW Oregon and SW Genesee. Summer Fest info continues to be rolled out on the official website – go here – so set your calendar for July 14-16! (WSB is a Summer Fest sponsor again this year.)

6 options for your West Seattle Wednesday!

(Thanks to John Bartell for the Tuesday night sunshine photo from Brace Point)

We’ve arrived at midweek and the weekend’s in view. But first – six highlights for your Wednesday, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

BABY STORY TIME: 11:30 am at High Point Library – bring the little one(s) up to 12 months old. (35th SW/W Raymond)

FREE SELF-DEFENSE WORKSHOP: 3:30-5:30 pm at West Seattle High School Library. While this is aimed at girls and women, all are welcome – details in our calendar listing. (3000 California SW)

ROXBURY PAVING OPEN HOUSE: As we’ve been reporting, SDOT might move up the SW Roxbury paving project to 2019, and tonight is your chance to find out more and get your questions answered by dropping in at an open house, 5:30-7 pm at Southwest Library. (35th SW/SW Henderson)

ULTIMATE FRISBEE PICKUP GAME: Join your neighbors for an informal pickup game at 6 pm Wednesdays, starting tonight at Fairmount Playfield. (Fauntleroy Way SW/SW Brandon)

WORDSWEST LITERARY SERIES: 7 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), this month’s WordsWest Literary Series event:

“Disruption and Repair” with Laura Da’ and Lena Khalaf Tuffaha

Both Laura Da’ and Lena Khalaf Tuffaha are incredible poets who bring unique perspectives from their extraordinary backgrounds.

We also host a community member to share his or her favorite poem as part of the Favorite Poem Project. This month: Pathfinder K-8 Teacher Kelly Riggle Hower.

Free; all welcome. (5612 California SW)

DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOODS DISTRICT COUNCIL: 7 pm at Neighborhood House High Point. (6400 Sylvan Way SW)

THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO SENDS CALENDAR LISTINGS! – plain text in the body of your e-mail, as far in advance as possible. Thank you!

SPORTS: West Seattle High School soccer team advances @ state with double-OT victory

(Thanks to Sara for the photo!)

The West Seattle High School boys-soccer team has advanced to the next round of the state playoffs with a 2-1 win last night over previously unbeaten Stadium HS – via a double-overtime goal. Later this week, the Wildcats play Gig Harbor; as of early this morning, the time/site were not yet listed on the bracket page.


(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

6:25 AM: Good morning! No incidents so far in/from West Seattle.

Looking ahead:

BIKE EVERYWHERE DAY ON FRIDAY: What used to be Bike to Work Day is Bike Everywhere Day, and once again, West Seattle Bike Connections and friends will have a special stop along the bike path 6-9 am, with bicyclists also invited to join a 7:30 am ride to the rally downtown – details in our calendar listing.

WEST SEATTLE 5K ON SUNDAY: Alki Avenue closes to traffic on Sunday morning (May 21st) at 8 am for the West Seattle 5K and should reopen sometime in the 11 am hour – the route is from 61st/Alki to Anchor Park, and the closure usually goes a bit beyond on both sides, Don Armeni to 63rd/Alki.

6:45 AM: Waikikigirl e-mailed to ask you to watch out for wildlife crossing: “This morning at 5:30am walking eastbound on SW Roxbury (south side of road) and approximately 22nd Ave SW, there were a Mother duck and her 6 babies walking the fog line. PLEASE BE CAREFUL, motorists – KEEP AN EYE out for them!”

8:03 AM: SDOT reports a crash at Delridge/Oregon; SFD has been dispatched.

8:16 AM: SFD has closed that call.

WEST SEATTLE WILDLIFE: Harbor porpoise found dead on Alki Point

Our hotline (206-293-6302) rang this afternoon – someone wondering who to call about a dead porpoise. In West Seattle, if it’s a stranded (dead or alive) marine mammal, you call Seal Sitters Marine Mammal Stranding Network, we replied – 206-905-SEAL. We just found out what happened later, with local wildlife advocate Kersti Muul sending photos and this report:

This evening there was a washed-up female harbor porpoise on the beach at low tide just South of the Lighthouse…. Initial rudimentary scans appear to reveal some issue with birthing perhaps. She was so beautiful, practically flawless and beautifully designed by nature…. I photographed her for evidence of transient orca interference but found none.

Seal Sitters was there with her and a group of us helped carry her to a private driveway where she was to be picked up for necropsy by Cascadia Research Collective.

As noted by NOAA last year, harbor porpoises had dwindled in Puget Sound until a big comeback in recent years

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