day : 16/06/2009 18 results

West Seattle backpack attack: The police report

One more followup on the case of the 12-year-old boy hit in the head with what was believed to be a rock-filled backpack at Southwest Community Center at noontime Monday: We’ve just seen the official, detailed police report for the first time and have transcribed most of it — obviously without names, since most people involved are juveniles and no charges have been filed. The victim and suspect are both 12-year-old students at Denny Middle School; he lives in West Seattle, she does not. According to the report, he was believed to have been unconscious for about 10 minutes after getting hit in the head twice. Read on for the entirety of what police wrote up afterward (warning, the description of what witnesses said they saw after he was hit is a bit graphic):Read More

Lincoln Park owl family: “Wollet” gets fluffier

More photos tonight courtesy of Trileigh (you can see additional pix here) – who says:

The owlet seems extraordinarily fluffy these days. He must be getting a pretty good education in crow management, given the amount of time his parent spends dealing with those paparazzi!

That’s “Wollet” the barred owlet above (my, how Wollet has grown! remember this, three weeks ago?) – and one of the watchful grownups here:

West Seattle Crime Prevention Council: Updates from police

We’re at the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, where Southwest Precinct police are briefing attendees on the latest crime trends. Sgt. Jeff Durden just mentioned that plans are in place to keep things safe this Friday as school comes to a close – two Community Police Team officers will be “visible at schools” and then police will be keeping closer watch on parks, “to keep any shenanigans to a minimum.”

In other crime trends – car prowls are still a major problem, according to the latest statistics shared by Officer Adonis Topacio: 75 in the past month (since May 16) – including four in one day at Lincoln Park. (That’s actually a drop from the 100 recorded throughout the calendar month of May, according to the monthly crime statistics we published here.) Residential burglaries are trending down a bit – 45 in the last month, compared to 50 for the May calendar month; Sgt. Jeff Durden says that’s “normal” but “still too many.”

On the positive side, Officer Topacio says that Westcrest Park illicit activity has decreased dramatically – though he’s hoping the previously problematic area of the park will get more public use, to keep that “activity” from returning.

Community Police Team Officer Kevin McDaniel says “there’s an increase in gangbangers from the East side showing up in High Point” (he indicated that meant the other side of the city, not necessarily the east side of Lake Washington). He said two arrests were made last night after a call about a possible burglary; they had warrants out for their arrest, linked to the New Holly area, and had gang affiliation. Officer McDaniel says he followed up by meeting with the HP family whose son was allegedly hanging out with the people who were arrested, and said he denied any knowledge of those “kids” – so, Officer McDaniel said, “the father gave him an ultimatum – shape up, or ship out.”

As for Alki, Community Police Team Officer Ken Mazzuca provided that briefing, saying it had been fairly quiet lately, nothing major. One meeting attendee asked about noise laws and loud sound systems in cars; Officer Mazzuca says they can be cited if the noise can be heard from at least 75 feet away – and he says some citations HAVE been issued so far this summer.

Also discussed at tonight’s meeting – a reminder about signing up for this year’s Night Out (Against Crime) block parties on August 4th – and Sgt. Durden shared a little-known fact: If you want a police officer to drop by and visit your block party, just say so when you register your party (here’s where to do that).

Give Blayne, others a lift: West Seattle parade needs convertibles


(2007 parade photo courtesy Rhonda Porter from The Mortgage Porter [WSB sponsor])
Just one month till West Seattle’s 76th annual American Legion Grand Parade (July 18). That’s its official name, though you might think of it as the Hi-Yu Parade – it’s presented by American Legion Post 160, and while West Seattle Hi-Yu Summer Festival royalty, volunteers and float are IN it, they don’t present it (they handle enough other events, you can be sure). But that’s not the main reason we’re writing. We just heard from Dave Vague, parade coordinator with Post 160, who says:

We’re in need of finding three convertibles that would like to appear in the parade to drive the American Legion President, our Orville Rummel award winner for community service, and our Grand Marshal – Blayne Walsh from Project Runway.

(And, of course, from Hotwire Coffee [WSB sponsor].) This is the second consecutive year that the Legion’s put out the call for convertibles, since after the Huling/Gee dealership shutdowns in 2007, that put an end to the reliable supply of cars for parade participants to ride in. (Seafair royalty, as shown in the photo above, bring their own cars – but West Seattle’s honorees have to fend for themselves.) If you can help, here’s how to contact Dave: or 206-932-2066.

Followup: Southwest Pool pump repair done, as scheduled

So when’s the last time you saw a swimming-pool pump impeller? Jim sent that photo, taken at the Beckwith and Kuffel machine shop where one of the big parts from Southwest Pool‘s circulation pump was being fixed for those emergency repairs this afternoon. According to assistant coordinator Matt Richardson, the repairs were finished on time, and the pool did reopen at 5 pm. Lap swim’s under way now till 6, then as usual, it’s a public swim from 7:30 to 8:30, and Shallow Water Aerobics and Hydrofit from 8:30 till 9:15. Southwest Pool is West Seattle’s only municipal indoor pool; its full schedule is here. West Seattle’s only municipal outdoor pool, Colman Pool, is now in 7-day-a-week summer operation. One more SW Pool note – just noticed on its website, a three-week closure is scheduled in late summer for “main drain work,” Aug. 22-Sept. 13.

Update: Wandering toddler reunited with family

5:15 PM ORIGINAL REPORT: From Kristine:

I am up at the Southwest Library on 35th and Henderson. There is a three year old white male with blonde hair and hazel eyes with two police officers and no parent or adult. He is dressed in striped blue/yello pants and a green tee shirt. He has been here since 3:45.

We’re on our way over to find out more. Police have been alerted so call 911 or go to the library if this child is yours. 5:32 PM UPDATE: Just talked to one of the officers who were taking the child around the neighborhood in hopes of finding his house – they’ve located the right place and reunited him with his family – seems he wandered off – they’re talking with a parent now.

Full Tilt Ice Cream to give gifts, not receive, on its 1st birthday

From the WSB Forums: The acclaimed White Center ice cream-n-pinball (and more) shop Full Tilt is marking its first birthday this Saturday with a plan to give gifts instead of receiving. For every cone or pint sold in their shop this Saturday, they will donate the equivalent to the White Center Food Bank – coupons for cones, to be given to WCFB clients, and pints to be packed up and delivered to WCFB. The FT team’s been involved in a lot of community work since its opening, so you can support that through the Full Tilt First Birthday celebration. (And if you haven’t heard, they’re expanding to a location in Columbia City soon, too.)

Cat Adopt-a-Thon at All the Best Pet Care on Alki, June 28

June 16, 2009 3:19 pm
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 |   Announcements

All the Best Pet Care on Alki sent this announcement:

On June 28th, Feral Care will be holding an Adopt-A-Thon and fundraiser at All The Best Pet Care on Alki. The event will take place from noon until 5 p.m. at All The Best Pet Care’s Alki Beach store, located at 2820 Alki Ave SW (next door to the Cactus restaurant). The featured guest is Joy Turner, radio host and animal communicator. In addition to readings by Ms. Turner, there will be kittens available for adoption, a raffle, there will be lots of pet care information, samples, treats and fun things to buy to support homeless kitties.

Please visit All The Best Pet Care on Sunday, June 28th, to help raise funds for Feral Care’s ongoing efforts to end the cycle of homeless cats. Sessions with Joy Turner are available as follows: 5 minutes for $20, 15 minutes for $45, or 30 minutes for $75. Advance reservations are available by contacting All The Best Pet Care’s Alki Beach store at 206.938.7501 or

Garden or 2 still needed for West Seattle Edible Garden Tour (8/1)

June 16, 2009 3:10 pm
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 |   Gardening | How to help | West Seattle news

(Photo courtesy Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle)
It’s this year’s hottest gardening trend – growing your own food – like the arrangement above that lends a new meaning to “salad bowl.” If you have an “edible garden,” you might still have a chance to be part of the 2nd annual West Seattle Edible Garden Tour – the date’s set for August 1st and Aviva from Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle says they’re still seeking “one or two more gardens to round out the tour” – if yours might qualify, or you have one to suggest, – Meantime, CHoSS is also looking for volunteers to help pick cherries for distribution to local families in need:

With the warm summer weather, fruit harvest season is right around the corner and cherries are ripening. Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle connects volunteers with fruit tree donors, picking surplus fruit for donation to the food bank. Help distribute our local abundance. Want to harvest? Know of a tree? Have a couple of hours to help with some computer/office tasks? Contact

They’re also starting a “Grow Your Own Groceries Project” to help low-income (or recently unemployed) people learn to grow some of their own food; mentors are being sought as well as participants – same e-mail address.

Tim Burgess at West Seattle Chamber’s “Lunch with LEO”

June 16, 2009 2:45 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle politics

That’s West Seattle Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Patti Mullen with Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess at Chamber HQ earlier this afternoon, as the WSCC hosted its latest “Lunch with LEO” (Local Elected Official). Burgess was the second councilmember to take part (after Tom Rasmussen last month – WSB photo here). Since Burgess chairs the Public Safety, Human Services and Education Committee, you won’t be surprised to hear that most of the questions from participants involved crime and other public-safety matters, including much discussion of the new Youth Violence Prevention Initiative. That’s one of the main issues in the spotlight when the entire City Council comes to West Seattle later this month for a town hall-style meeting (6:30 pm June 25, The Hall at Fauntleroy, as reported here). We also asked Burgess for his thoughts on the “Nickelsville” homeless encampment situation on the eastern edge of West Seattle (most recent WSB coverage here); he did not comment directly on whether the campers should be evicted for trespassing (as they were on another section of the same site last fall) but did say, “Encampments do not provide permanent solutions,” while allowing that this one was better than encampments like those cleared off the hillsides over I-5, but then pointing out that the better solution, in his view, lies with measures such as the new Housing Levy that voters will consider this fall. (Watch the WS Chamber’s website for the next “Lunch with LEO” opportunity.)

Author Jennifer Worick to read at Admiral library this Saturday

June 16, 2009 2:13 pm
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 |   Announcements

From the West Seattle (Admiral) branch of the Seattle Public Library – an author reading this Saturday with Jennifer Worick (here’s the direct link):

Saturday, June 20 at 3pm.
Jennifer Worick
Backcountry Betty Crafting With Style: 50 Nature-Inspired Projects
This hip, snappy craft book includes projects designed to bring the outdoors in! The
author will discuss a variety of craft projects that she has divided into habitats
from your backyard to the seashore.

Milestone for Junction Plaza Park: $98,000 city matching grant

Days after West Seattle’s newest park was dedicated in Morgan Junction, there’s big news for the push to finish the long-awaited park in The (Alaska) Junction: Susan Melrose of the West Seattle Junction Association tells WSB they’ve just received word they’re getting the $98,000 city Neighborhood Matching Fund grant sought to help complete Junction Plaza Park. That brings the money gathered for the project (updated)to $295,000 – the current design will cost about $350,000 to build. (For comparison, the just-finished Morgan Junction Park cost almost half a million dollars.) Another major fundraising push will come during next month’s West Seattle Summer Fest (WSB sponsor), with a beer garden set up at the site, proceeds benefiting Friends of Junction Plaza Park. The group also will be participating in this Saturday’s Junction Clean and Green event, which will be centered at the new Genesee P-Patch (as reported here last month) — with Mayor Nickels scheduled to appear — but also will include a Junction Adopt-A-Street cleanup with work at the 42nd/Alaska park site (just a few blocks south of the P-Patch). It’s hoped that the park project will be ready for groundbreaking this fall. It’ll also be a beneficiary of the West Seattle Garden Tour coming up July 19 (tickets on sale now). ADDED 4:09 PM: A Friends of Junction Place Park meeting also has been announced, for 6 pm July 6, Senior Center of West Seattle.

Dow Constantine says no new jail if he’s elected Executive

We’re not yet publishing every back-and-forth in every key race – our in-the-works Election page will be your HQ for that, if you’re interested – but since this is a major issue for West Seattle, here’s the statement just issued by King County Council Chair Dow Constantine‘s County Executive campaign regarding the latest developments in the continuing process of a potential new Seattle-and-other-cities misdemeanor-offenders jail (with a West Seattle site remaining under consideration) – he says if he’s elected KCE, there won’t be a need for a new city jail – read on:Read More

Girl Scout alumnae event (from WS and beyond) July 1st

June 16, 2009 12:20 pm
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 |   Announcements

The event’s not in West Seattle, but they’re hoping to draw Girl Scout “alumnae” from all over the area, so here’s the official announcement:

Girl Scout Alumnae Happy Hour at Twist Restaurant and Lounge

Wednesday, July 1, 2009
6-7:30 p.m.
2313 1st Ave.

Join us while we mingle, enjoy delicious hors d’oeuvres, and have fun! Learn what’s new with Girl Scouting and connect other women who believe that girls can and should lead lives of courage, confidence and character! $5 ticket price at the door. All Girl Scout alumnae welcome!

*Please contact Sue Ramsey to RSVP at or (206) 633-5600 ext. 215

Another big-name addition to West Seattle Summer Fest music

Just got word that one of the final TBA slots on the music slate at West Seattle Summer Fest (WSB sponsor), the three-day festival in The Junction that starts three weeks from Friday: Caspar Babypants, the family-music act launched by Chris Ballew, who you probably know best as lead singer of The Presidents of the United States of America. They’ll perform at 2:15 pm Saturday 7/11 (currently listed as “TBA” on the official Summer Fest music-lineup page). They also have a new CD out (more info here; more videos here) and we’re told that this is yet another West Seattle link to the Summer Fest slate – because Ballew has just bought a house in West Seattle. Read on for the list of Summer Fest bands with West Seattle ties (besides Caspar Babypants):Read More

What’s in the water? Fauntleroy Cove discoloration

Thanks to the WSB’er who called Monday afternoon to tip us to reddish-brown discoloration in Fauntleroy Cove alongside the ferry dock. She said the county had been out to make sure there wasn’t a pump problem; we’ve got a message out to them, but more close to home, so to speak, we have checked with Judy Pickens, Fauntleroy watershed steward and expert about all things from the creek to the cove, asking about the possibility it’s an algae bloom (it was also reported via Twitter a few miles south in the Arroyos). She hadn’t received a report yet but checked with Dr. Timothy Nelson in the biology department at Seattle Pacific, who offered:

… it could be that Ulvaria, a usually-subtidal component of green algal blooms had died and was releasing dopamine into the water. It’s very intolerant of drying, so on sunny days with a good low tide you’ll often notice the discoloration as the tide rises.

The dopamine is converted to quinones, which can some discoloration to the water. Depending on how long they’ve been in the water, and how concentrated they are, I’d describe them as pinkish, tawny-orange, or brown. (I’d include reddish-brown in that series as well!)

Take note, this would be separate from the sea-lettuce problem that sometimes manifests in Fauntleroy Cove, with not just a visual but an olfactory impact (this discoloration did NOT come with a smell). In our exchange, Judy wanted to share word of a sea-lettuce-fighting win in the most recent Legislature session:

The governor’s signature … on the state’s biennial budget could have direct implications for Fauntleroy. One of the line items, for $140,000, is for creating a grant program within the State Department of Ecology for research and removal associated with excessive growth of sea lettuce, the algae that blankets Fauntleroy Cove and gives us our summer stench.

The allocation was a fall-back position pushed by Rep. Sharon Nelson from this district and Sen. Tracey Eide from Federal Way after their detailed legislation failed during the waning days of the session. The funding will come from a portion of boat-registration fees already being collected by the state and, until now, reserved for responses to freshwater algae in lakes throughout the state. Because lakes were not fully spending the amount being collected, sharing with saltwater communities should only expand what the fund can accomplish.

We expect the money to be administered by DOE water-quality staff in Olympia, and procedures for exactly who can apply, when, and how will take awhile to be articulated. We do know the money can be used for research as well as emergency response. As we found during the run-up to summer 2008, getting permits for haul-outs of floating seaweed or beach harvesting of decaying seaweed is no easy matter, so having a pot of money is just the first step toward enabling Fauntleroy residents to breathe easier.

Judy says anyone detecting water-quality issues in Fauntleroy Cove — aside from “the stench,” for which she’s on the frontline if and when it occurs – is welcome to contact her. 5:24 PM UPDATE: Martha Tuttle from King County says, “Our operations staff were out there yesterday and determined it wasn’t a sewage spill and it appeared to be an algae bloom as you indicated. No health risk but very ugly for sure.”

Followup: Brief update on 12-year-old attack victim

This morning, Seattle Police have updated their SPDBlotter site with a quick item on a story reported here yesterday afternoon, a 12-year-old boy attacked at Southwest Community Center with what was reported to be a backpack full of rocks. What’s new in the update: His injuries are NOT believed to be life-threatening; the girl accused of attacking him is also 12, and they were not strangers.

Today/tonight in West Seattle: Plaza, pool, prevention

June 16, 2009 6:43 am
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 |   Alki Statue of Liberty | West Seattle Crime Prevention Council | West Seattle parks

ALKI STATUE OF LIBERTY PLAZA: Phase 2 of work on the 9-month-old plaza is scheduled to start today; as announced last week, fencing will go up (for about 2 weeks) as new bricks and tribute plaques go in.

EMERGENCY CLOSURE OF SOUTHWEST POOL: As the Parks Department announced yesterday , Southwest Pool has to shut down noon-5 pm today for emergency repairs on its main circulation pump. They’re expecting to reopen at 5 pm for “evening programs.”

WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL: Main item on the agenda tonight – YOU, and whatever concerns you want to bring up to Southwest Precinct police leadership, who also will share their latest toplines on crime trends. Find out what’s happening and how best to keep your family safe, 7 pm, SW Precinct meeting room (map).

Look further ahead with the WSB West Seattle Events calendar – and please be sure to send info about any events you’d like to see listed!