West Seattle, Washington
We’ve just gone through the last week’s worth of West Seattle police reports from the Southwest Precinct, so we can bring you summaries of notable incidents. We start with the arrest of a teenager who confessed to car prowling (described by local police recently as the most serious current crime trend): Early Friday morning, police answered a call about two suspicious males leaving a driveway at 32nd and 97th. When they got close to the area, they saw two people take off running as soon as the patrol car was within sight; the two, ages 18 and 14, were stopped behind Roxbury Lanes/Casino. As an officer patted down the older suspect for weapons, he felt various items which the suspect said was change he’d taken out of a gray SUV a few blocks away. A wallet also turned up, and the suspect said that had been taken from a vehicle. After being placed under arrest, the 18-year-old told police he had gone into five vehicles in all, but said that the 14-year-old had not gone into any of them. The 18-year-old was booked into the King County Jail for theft. (The jail register says he got out 36 hours later, with bail having been set at $475; it also lists a two-day jail stay for the same suspect less than two weeks earlier, for investigation of car prowl.) Ahead – car prowls that did NOT result in arrests (so far), a purse-snatch attempt in Morgan Junction, a 50 mph drunk-driving suspect in a 30 zone, a fence-jumping shoplifting suspect who needed medical attention, and much more:Read More
Thanks to Eric and Maria for sharing that photo – they say their kids spotted the bird in their Admiral backyard earlier today, and they’re wondering what it is. Their first guess was peregrine falcon; we’re thinking maybe it’s one of the young eagles (as featured in a recent WSB photo — second one in this story — and also as seen today on Beach Drive Blog) … thoughts?
(Members of Troop 2092 outside Rainier House, with some of what they donated)
Over the weekend, we showed you West Seattle Girl Scouts getting ready for their annual cookie sales, and some WSB’ers joked about the calories. Local Girl Scout mom Tracie Luthi e-mailed WSB to make sure everyone knows cookies are about a lot more than indulgence and calories – the sales are the main fundraiser for local troops, and they do some amazing things with the money, including this one that Tracie tells us about:
West Seattle Girl Scout Troop 2092 has been working on their Bronze Star award, which is the highest award a Junior troop can earn. These Fifth and Sixth graders chose furnishing an apartment at the new Rainier House as their project. The Rainier House is housing through the Downtown Emergency Service Center, which helps vulnerable mentally ill homeless people transition to apartment living.
The apartments are opening this week on Rainier Ave. I believe there is an opening ceremony (today) for the building as a whole, and on Tuesday 50 new residents move in. The troop set up the apartment (Sunday) afternoon with items they purchased with their proceeds from last year’s cookie sales. Cookies do good work!
You can read more about Rainier House in this Times article published today; as reported in our cookie-arrival story Saturday, cookie sales start this Friday (if you want to buy some and have trouble finding them, this webpage can help). Plus, you’ll hear a bit more about what local Girl Scouts are up to, after we cover a “World Thinking Day” event tomorrow night during which the Scouts will be taking action to help improve the health of people half a world away.
First, Madison Middle School will host a distinguished visitor this week — the first African-American astronaut to walk in space, Dr. Bernard Harris, is visiting this Friday, as the first stop on a national tour. Seattle Public Schools says he’ll be making a special interactive presentation and will help spotlight problem-solving through math, science, and engineering. According to this bio page from his time at NASA, Dr. Harris is a veteran of two space flights, in 1993 and 1995.
Second, from the West Seattle High School e-mail list:
The West Seattle High School Alumni Association is seeking a special logo commemorating 100 years of WSHS graduates, which will be imprinted on tee shirts, water bottles, and possibly mugs and key rings (to be determined). Contest is open to any former and current students of WSHS.
To be considered, the logo entries should be limited to 3 colors: blue and gold with white OR black contrast, no reference to any mascot (no Indians or Wildcats), and should include references to 100 years, 1910-2010, or the word centennial. Entries must be submitted on 8 1/2″ x 11″ sheet of paper.
Deadlines for submission: June 1, 2009 for current students, Oct 1, 2009 for alumni. The winner will be awarded a modest prize (also to be determined), aside from the honor of being selected. Any questions, please contact me. Thank You!
Two items to share this afternoon – first, from Keri:
Just wanted to send out an alert for my area neighbors (Morgan Junction area at Mills Street) that in the last two weeks I’ve had mail stolen from my mailbox and a package taken from my front porch. This is the first time in the year I’ve been here that this has happened
Second, from Corey:
I live in the Seaview neighborhood. Two teenage girls came to my house in the evening last week inquiring if we have ADT. I asked them what they were looking for and they were kind of vague. I mentioned this to a neighbor and they had visited them as well. My neighbor had called ADT asking if they were sending people around concering their systems and they said no and that they would not send people around in the evening. These girls are targeting houses without security systems and if anyone encounters them they should call the police so they can at the very least investigate.
At the bottom of the WSB Crime Watch page, you’ll find resource links for both deterring mail theft and dealing with solicitors.
(1254 Alki in the right foreground, 1252 and 1250 to the left)
Last November, we reported on 3 side-by-side houses for sale on Alki Ave in the 1700 block (that listing’s status is “withdrawn”). Today, we thank Shauna for tipping us to a new three-fer listing, in the 1200 block (map): $6 million dollars for what’s billed as a “20-unit condo site” in this CL listing (which also poses the question, “What will the demand be in three years?”). The addresses (linking to online property history) are 1250, 1252, and 1254.
HIGHLAND PARK ACTION COMMITTEE: If you live in southeastern West Seattle (map), come meet your neighbors and get involved with your neighborhood. Tonight’s monthly HPAC meeting is open to all, at 7 pm at the Highland Park Improvement Club (11th/Holden).
VIADUCT TO TUNNEL? One month after the new plan to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct‘s “mile in the middle” Central Waterfront section was announced, many questions remain – and your best chance to get in-person answers, right here in West Seattle, is tomorrow, 5:30-7:30 pm, Madison Middle School. This is an “open house,” NOT a sit-down-for-two-hours meeting, so any time you can drop by during that time frame, reps from the state, city, and county will be there to talk with you. That includes questions about transit and other projects, as well as the tunnel itself. (Disclosure: The Viaduct project is currently running a paid ad on WSB to promote this meeting.)
If a street light’s burned out on your block, go ahead and report it, but don’t expect it to get fixed fast. We’ve just learned there’s a big backlog of burned-out lights: 3,500 of Seattle City Light‘s street lights are awaiting repair. We got the tip from a White Center resident (City Light’s territory stretches south of the city limits) who said he’d called to report a burned-out light in his area and was told it could be six weeks. City Light’s Mike Eagan confirms that’s true: “There are many more trouble streetlights reported this time of year and the current estimated turn-around time for repair is 32 working days.” He says SCL replaces 21,000 street lights every year (that’s a fourth of the city’s 84,000 lights). The long wait time is a big change from what Eagan reported at local meetings we covered last year (including this one in July), when he said it was down to a matter of days. But he also tells WSB that one particularly dark stretch of West Seattle street that had been the source of many complaints — Delridge near Trenton — now has the lights back on. To report a burned-out light, use this online form or call 206-684-7056.
(August 2008 photo of park site at 42nd/Alaska)
Earlier this month, in our coverage of the Southwest District Council‘s latest meeting, we mentioned a preview of the upcoming Junction Plaza Park campaign, from West Seattle Junction Association executive director Susan Melrose. This morning, we have full details of the plan to finish the park – purchased with city ProParks money in 2005 — and how you can help. Susan says a group called “Friends of Junction Plaza Park” is being formed to head up the project, with leaders including Junction Neighborhood Organization president Erica Karlovits and Friends of Ercolini Park chair Katie Hjorten. The group will apply for a city Neighborhood Matching Fund grant of $100,000, to be applied toward the $350,000 needed to finish the park. Where you come in: Commitments of community support and volunteer hours are needed, to qualify for the grant – just like so many other projects that have benefited from the NMF, including Ercolini. And Susan says they only have about a month to get those commitments lined up; you don’t have to make a big commitment, she says: “We have exciting ways for people to help out with the park, and we’re looking to bring the community together – looking for small commitments of volunteer time to involve a wide section of the community.” You’ll see volunteers out at places such as the West Seattle Farmers’ Market to talk with people about volunteering for the Junction Plaza Park project, and you are invited to the first Friends of Junction Plaza Park meeting: 6:30 pm March 3, Senior Center of West Seattle. Susan stresses, they’re not looking for “huge” commitments – a little help from a lot of people will turn the long-planned park from dream to reality. If you have any questions in the meantime, or want to extend an offer of help ASAP, please contact her by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Just out of the WSB inbox from David:
Our car was stolen last night from the 4800 block between Alaska and Oregon, just two houses away from Ercolini Park [map]. I’m wondering if you have any other reports of thefts in the area, and if not, if you can post in the crime watch section so people are aware of it. It is a gold-colored 1999 Audi A4, so let me know if anyone sees it driving around!
No other reports in to us so far, but sometimes Crime Watch reports bring out news about something else happening nearby. David has called the police to come out and take a report.
It’s back to school today for Seattle Public Schools students, after the weeklong “mid-winter break.” And since open enrollment is later this year because of the closures/changes, more school tours are coming up too. Allison Carver from the Alki Elementary PTA e-mailed to flag us to added Alki tours, including one tomorrow morning and two in March; they’re listed here along with other upcoming tours at West Seattle North elementaries (WS Elementary has one this week too), while West Seattle South elementary tours are listed here (this week’s schedule includes Arbor Heights, Concord, Gatewood, Roxhill, Sanislo). Pathfinder K-8 has tours (in K-5 and 6-8 sections) this week, listed here; middle schools are listed here (Madison has one this week and Denny has more next month); for high school, West Seattle and Chief Sealth have tours next month.