Crime Watch reader report: Kids shoot window

Steve lives in the 2400 block of 44th SW and just sent this (we’ll be looking for the official police report during our forthcoming trip to the Southwest Precinct):

Yesterday (Tuesday 2/26) we were disturbed to learn that our next-door neighbors’ house was shot at by a group of five young boys. There is a sizable bullet hole in their front picture window, and police who responded to the incident confirmed that the hole was made by something larger than a BB gun. According to our neighbor, she was returning home from walking their dog when she noticed the boys congregated on the landscaped parking strip in front of their house. The boys appeared to be of middle-school age. One of them was holding a gun pointed at the house. The gun holder tucked the weapon into the front of his pants took off running south down 44th Ave SW with the rest of the boys when she called out to them asking what they were doing. She began to pursue them but pulled up short when one of the boys called out to the others “She’s after us!” followed by something about using the gun.

When she returned to her house she noticed for the first time the large bullet hole in her front window and called the SPD. The bullet passed through the main living room where the family often spend time. Fortunately no one was home when the shooting occurred.

This happened around 9:30 am on Tuesday.

27 Replies to "Crime Watch reader report: Kids shoot window"

  • TeaLady February 27, 2008 (3:59 pm)

    Wha….WHAT???!!!! What the HELL is going on??? Middle school age? 9:30 a.m.???? WHAT!!!!!???

  • Jack Loblaw February 27, 2008 (4:10 pm)

    The middle school crowd had a 2 hour late start on Tuesday at Madison…probably had some time on their hands.

  • lala February 27, 2008 (4:11 pm)

    It’s 9:30 am in a middle class area of West Seattle… do you know where your child is?

  • Wes February 27, 2008 (4:11 pm)

    why is this surprising?

  • Pete February 27, 2008 (4:29 pm)

    SURPRISING???? I hope like hell you are joking.

  • Johnny Davies February 27, 2008 (4:30 pm)

    I’m very sorry to the homeowner in this situation. I can’t imagine the fear that this incident has brought to you.

    If the shooter is found and the firearm is owned by his household, the gaurdians of that young man should be held as responsible as if they had pulled the trigger themselves.

    The fact that gun owners can leave their firearms easily accessible to kids and/or theives makes me furious.

    If you own a gun – get a gun safe and trigger locks. This can stop a MAJORITY of these incidents. Please! Be responsible adults!

  • villagegreen February 27, 2008 (4:59 pm)

    Dumbass parents with handguns. Good times!

  • GatewoodHillResident February 27, 2008 (6:32 pm)

    I gotta stop reading these crime posts…really, it’s making me crazy and hypervigilant. Was there always this much crap going on around WS or am I now just gainfully aware? Regardless, there seems to be an evil spirit lurking amongst our community…maybe Mars Hill can scare it away.

  • WSB February 27, 2008 (7:30 pm)

    GHR, yes, this is pretty much standard. I guess you could say ignorance is bliss; we would prefer to think that knowledge is power. We chose to frequently peruse the police reports so we could share information in a more timely manner, and hopefully help people feel more empowered to take protective action if necessary – and possibly come together as community members (the West Seattle and South Delridge Community Safety Partnerships are great organizations; your own Block Watch is a good thing to have, too) to fight back. But reader reports like this one are a vital supplement to our police-report roundups, as community members can get info out immediately (recent example, the coffee-shop laptop snatchings – after the one at Freshy’s, we had a witness report here within an hour or so — if police had not been able to make a quick arrest, that might have helped people know to be especially watchful – not paranoid, just watchful).

  • JanS February 27, 2008 (8:59 pm)

    I live in the Admiral District, within blocks of where this occurred (2600 block of 42nd). I work at home so see what goes on at times around the hood. Even if Madison hadn’t had a late start, there are always kids walking the streets around here during school hours. They hang out in the alleys, anywhere there might be areas where they can hide, sit down. I once came home not too long ago (noonish), walked from my car parked behind my building to the front door of my building which is pretty much hidden from the street, and there were 4 big highschool guys sitting on the stoop blocking my way smoking…pot? didn’t really smell like pot…something else that they may smoke? they were certainly passing it around. I politely said…you have to leave…and they got up slowly and meandered off.

    We need some truant officers…walking the neighborhoods around Madison and WSHS. Or closed campuses…..yes, I’ll hear an uproar about that, but, hey…it would work. The incorrigibles wold still manage to escape, but things would definitely improve all around.

    I find it interesting that the big thing right now is what to do with Sealth and Denny…a lot of the argument to not mix is because of the “bad influence” that the highschool kids would have on the Middle school kids. Sealth doesn’t have a corner on less than wonderful kids ( I don’t want to label them “bad”). It is shared with other highschools and middle schools….and we need to start paying attention..perhaps program the school numbers into your cells and start calling whenever you see them out and about. Enough calls and maybe something will be done.

    The gun use is damned scary…the disregard for other’s belongings, the disregard for other people, period. It take a village, and we’re failing some…

  • Gina February 27, 2008 (9:26 pm)

    West Seattle and Madison could use someone at the Metro bus stop at the PCC and by the Presbyterian church in the morning. I swear there are kids that hop off the school bus, meet with their friends, and go wait for the 128 to take them to Southcenter.

    The boys with a gun-the most likely thing to happen next is that one of them is hurt, or worse while goofing off with it. Every year some kids who are too young to be saddled with lifelong grief from accidently shooting a best friend or relative repeat this tragedy.

  • herongrrrl February 27, 2008 (10:10 pm)

    Calling the schools when you see wandering students is a good idea. The students are, after all, the legal responsibilities of the school district during school hours, so you’d think they would have an interest in making sure the students were where they are supposed to be. I like the idea of truant officers and closed campuses, too. When I was in middle school, we still had closed campuses there and no one thought twice about it.

    As someone who worked with public middle and high schools for years, I have to say, the best thing you can do about “kids these days” is to 1) treat them like they are human, because they are, but they are seldom treated so and generally respond pretty well to someone who takes a genuine interest in them, and 2) if you have any time to spare at all, volunteer in ways that support them (Boys and Girls clubs, Big Brothers/Sisters, homework helpers, etc.). There will always be parents who aren’t minding the ship properly, but even kids from families where parents are checked out can do well if they have some kind of mentorship and support from somewhere. Hiding in fear and shaking fingers angrily at the younger generations only lets this stuff get worse.

  • lala February 27, 2008 (10:23 pm)

    Gah.. I’m really getting sick of the teens and tweens in this area of WS. You live in a good part of town, for crapsake. Stop trying to be so freaking hardcore ghetto. Boys, pull your jeans up, girls, pull your shirt bottoms down… and stop with the wannabe graffiti, and shooting out neighborhood windows in the weekday morning hours. You’re in WS. Not the hood.

    And seriously, parents of kids this age? Parent.

  • thinking February 27, 2008 (10:33 pm)

    Have the schools been made aware of this? Should they be following up with the idea that someone may be bringing a gun to school? We would all like to think that it’s not our child playing with “that” crowd. But maybe they are playing with that crowd and know of someone who has a gun. Ask your daughter or son. I hope that if they do they feel that they can trust you and tell you.

  • JanS February 27, 2008 (11:37 pm)

    Gina…I’ve noticed the kids at those bus stops at numerous times during the day.

    An aside…when my daughter was going to Madison, I usually drove here there. I received a xcall one morning from another parent just as I got back home…telling me that she saw my daughter headed AWAY from the school in the direction of “Ashley’s house”. Got in my car and went to “Ashley’s house”…a whole bunch of kids there…I stood at the door and yelled until she came out…embarrassed the hell out of her…took her to school, gave her a note to get in, and handled it privately at the end of the day…lots of groundings. She come I always get caught? I explained that we played by the rules, so when she didn’t it was such an abberation that it stood out…

    These kids out there…I doubt if some of their parents care, but I bet there are some who haven’t got a clue as to what their kids are doing..

  • nalu February 28, 2008 (7:07 am)

    I have on several occasions had to shoo high-schoolers off my property during school hours. They like to stand behind my hedge off the alley and smoke. I have called the attendance lines at both WSH and Madison and given descriptions, but I really have no idea if these kids are actually from our neighborhood schools or not.
    Back in the day, when kids didn’t show up at school….parents got a phone call asking why Johnny’s not here today. I wonder if that checkpoint is still viable?

  • Bernicki February 28, 2008 (7:24 am)

    I’m in the Madison vicinity and I’ve seen trouble on late arrival days too. Last spring, on a late arrival day at about 9 a.m., a sizeable pack of students was running around the neighborhood throwing rocks at front doors, pushing each other into the street, and generally looking for trouble. They got it when a driver pulled over and got out (I didn’t see what they had done to his car, but he was pretty angry). They taunted him as a group, hurling the n-word and other insults, while he threatened to f’ them up. Eventually he got back in his car and drove away. And, eventually, the crowd (which happened to be both white and black males and females) stopped throwing rocks and ran toward Madison, presumably to start their school day.

    I emailed the police department with a description of this incident, and with a list of the remaining Madison late-start days for the 2007 school year. I requested a higher police presence in the area between the bus stop at the PCC and the middle school on those mornings. Guess it’s time to do that for the 2008 school year too. The remaining 2-hour late-start days are as follows:
    March 11
    March 25
    May 6
    May 13
    June 3
    Madison neighbors might want to keep an eye on the streets on those days.

  • djake February 28, 2008 (7:45 am)

    having worked with and for students for the past 25 years, I’d have to say, as maddening as they and their actions can be, it does come back primarily to what some have alluded to….parenting. My generation has created this generation by insisting on getting ahead and getting for ourselves at all costs. We now all get a ringside seat to see what the “cost” really is. As a general rule, schools aren’t really investing in the “lives” of them and neither are the parents. The few brave and caring parents, grandparents, teachers, and youth workers who do are acting like fingers plugging the holes in the dam. We only have so many fingers.

  • Bonnie February 28, 2008 (7:56 am)

    Calling the school would help but what about grabbing your camera phone or camera and taking a pic. Email it to the school. they should recognize who is out and about causing problems during school hours. Maybe that is illegal to take pictures of minors though? Don’t know.

  • WSB February 28, 2008 (10:20 am)

    It’s not illegal to take a picture of anyone or anything visible from public property (street, sidewalk, etc.) or visible from your property. (However, if you go onto, say, school grounds, they have some rules to protect the kids, which is why release forms usually go home at the start of each year, so that if there’s media coverage or school publicity, they’ll know who to keep out of the pix).

  • Ann K February 28, 2008 (12:42 pm)

    um parents where are you? I live in this neighborhood and usually walk my baby through the neighborhood during the morning – now I have to watch for this crap? The drug deals at Hiawatha are bad enough.

  • sassy February 28, 2008 (3:48 pm)

    The kids I’ve seen at Safeway @ lunchtime – well, they make me want to shop elsewhere.
    And they don’t live in your neighborhood. They are bussed in.

  • My2cents February 29, 2008 (9:55 am)

    Seattle Public Schools Truancy Office
    Phone: 206.252.0825 or 206.252.0821

  • Debra February 29, 2008 (11:41 am)

    Sassy, how do you know who is “bussed in”? If someone doesn’t look or act the way YOU think they should, does that mean they can’t be from West Seattle? Pathetic…Debra

  • Jan February 29, 2008 (1:01 pm)

    I can at least agree with sassy on one thing…lunch hour for the highschool is at 10:40am right now ( that will change next year when they go to 6 periods). I live across the street from Safeway on 42nd SW…and to say they’re annoying is an understatement. I will not shop at Safeway during the period form 10:40am until 11:30. The students yell and scream, absolutely take over the store, are often times rude, and leave their trash around the neighborhood. Of course, they are banned from going into some of the local businesses during school hours. Safeway did it once, and then relented. Oh…and nutricious lunch is not in their vocabulary – lol…

  • Alison March 4, 2008 (6:30 pm)

    It’s interesting to me that some people still believe that if they live in the “good part” of West Seattle they will be immune to the crime and out-of-control youth who live in our community. When I tell people that I live in West Seattle they often ask me which area I reside in. Presumably this question is asked to determine my socio-economic status and whether I live in the “good part.” The question nearly always irritates me.
    There is no safe haven anymore. Eventually, crime, if left unchecked, will affect us all. There shouldn’t be any smugness if you live in the Admiral District,or on Alki. Nor should you be ashamed if you live in Delridge or White Center. Whether you like it or not, we’re in it together. Deal with it.

  • Major March 17, 2008 (8:05 pm)

    Sassy said it, a lot of kids who grow up around crime are the same ones who are bussed to West Seattle High School. As far as others comments to “where are their parents” – unfortunately a great number of the bussed kids have absent parents as well. While West Seattle High is a nice building, when we have kids there will be no public high school for them even though we are 2 blocks from it. Not a chance, unless something drastic changes like a complete overhaul of the Seattle Public School system.

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