day : 27/05/2010 14 results

Update: SWAT team standoff in Highland Park, man arrested

(Cameraphone photo added 1:08 am – we & other media are of course not being allowed too close)
ORIGINAL 11:53 PM REPORT: We have no official info on this yet but multiple reports from neighbors: Police are reported to be negotiating with someone inside a home around 11th/Henderson (map). A neighbor tells WSB officers told her it had something to do with domestic violence. She also says she was advised to stay in her home, and that the officers are using megaphones (or something amplified) to try to talk the man out.

12:24 AM: The standoff is still under way; the man has not responded to police’s attempts to reach him, and – as commenters in the area have mentioned – they are trying other tactics. Also, per Twitter, police now have a public-information officer heading to the scene – they confirm it began as a domestic-violence-assault call. (Whether there was a victim, is not clear; there were no medic/aid calls on the 911 log in that area.) On the media hotline, Det. Mark Jamieson says there was concern the man may have access to weapons, and that’s the reason for the major response.

1:10 AM: Commenters from Highland Park are adding some incremental info on what they’re hearing; we’ve got someone at the scene but media is being kept way back, about half a block away (TV crews are there too).

1:14 AM: Commenter Julia says police “got him out.” Waiting for official confirmation of that.

1:21 AM: Police are definitely now inside, and saying on the scanner they haven’t found any guns.

1:29 AM: Det. Jamieson has talked to us and other media. The 40-year-old suspect is being taken to the precinct for processing. Officers are searching the house, including what’s apparently a detached garage where the man was holed up. We have the whole media briefing on video and that’ll be back here at HQ in a few minutes so we can upload.

2:22 AM: Here’s the entire 4-minute briefing. As you’ll hear Det. Jamieson explain – as SWAT vehicles depart in the background – it started with an assault report involving 2 people, though he says neither was seriously hurt.

8:34 AM: The summary on SPD Blotter has a few additional details about the victims in the initial assault call, describing the victims as his “juvenile nephew” and a friend of that boy, as well as noting that the home belongs to the suspect’s sister.

‘Walk, Bike, Ride’ meetings begin – West Seattle has one June 14

“What needs to change in your neighborhood in order to make walking, biking, and riding transit easy?” WSB’ers have a LOT of answers to that one – so we want to be sure you’d heard about your next chance to speak out. The city’s “Walk, Bike, Ride” initiative has just started a series of community gatherings – kicking off with the Health/Equity/Transportation Forum you can watch in the window above – and one meeting is coming up in West Seattle – 6 pm June 14th at Delridge Community Center. The meeting invite promises that you’ll “receive information on what types of projects are possible, and fill out a ‘ballot’ that will help the city prioritize these types of transportation projects.”

Got room for summer visitors? 4 students seek sponsors

May 27, 2010 10:33 pm
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 |   How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle people

Another request tonight for help finding families who have room for a visiting international student this summer. From Andrew Ward, a teacher who lives in West Seattle:

There will be 17 students flying to Seattle from Spain this summer for the month of July, but I have yet to secure sponsor homes for FOUR of the incoming students. The other kids have already been matched with host‐families. I am looking for four more homes where they can learn more about life in America and practice their English. They have their own insurance and spending money. They just need to have their own bed to sleep in and a place at the dinner table.

Host families will need to complete an application packet. It’s pretty easy, and it’s a FUN way to get to know another culture and potentially make life‐long international friends!!! If you are interested in participating, please e-mail Mr. Andrew Ward at as soon as possible.

Time is of the essence in getting everything set up in time for them to be able to come to the US. It would be such a shame to have these few kids miss out. To have more of your questions answered, the following websites will help (too): or

Another book note: Young Authors’ Day @ Arbor Heights

(Photo by Mark Ahlness)
A big day at Arbor Heights Elementary School – the annual Young Authors’ Day. The celebration of writing and books includes projects by students, and the Book-It Assembly during which the photo above was taken (each year has a special commemorative T-shirt – red last year, teal this year). And tonight, according to the AH Facebook page, it culminated with a library dedication in memory of Lynn Barnicle, the beloved teacher lost to leukemia at age 50 last year (here’s a WSB report about a memorial last summer).

West Seattle Bookshelf, Memorial Day Weekend edition

May 27, 2010 7:43 pm
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 |   West Seattle books | West Seattle businesses | West Seattle news

Lists courtesy of Square One Books

Looking for something to read, and/or wondering what’s hot? Every week, courtesy of Gretchen Montgomery @ Square One Books (WSB sponsor), we bring you her independent West Seattle bookstore’s 5 best-sellers in each of 4 key categories:

1. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson
2. Operation Mincemeat by Ben Macintyre
3. The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall
4. Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris
5. The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman

1. The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters
2. Carrier: Untangling the Danger in My DNA by Bonnie Rough
3. The Signal by Ron Carlson
4. The Magicians by Lev Grossman
5. Manhood For Amateurs: The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son by Michael Chabon

Children/Young Adult:
1. The Mysterious Benedict Society Series by Trenton Lee Stewart
2. The Stink Series by Megan McDonald
3. The 39 Clues #9/Storm Warning by Linda Sue park
4. Star Wars/A Scanimation Picture Book by Rufus Butler Seder
5. Mama, Is it Summer Yet? by Nikki McClure

1. Whisper by Phoebe Kitanidis
2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
3. Graceling by Kristin Cashore
4. Mistwood by Lean Cypess
5. Fang by James Patterson

Square One, by the way, has a cookbook sale under way right now, through next Tuesday (June 1st).

Followups: California/Dawson flag basket; Highland Park reservoir

Couple followups. First – hours after our story last night about the long-trashed crosswalk-flag basket at California/Dawson south of The Junction, the couple who reported it, Kim and Efram – who said SDOT hadn’t answered repeated complaints – wrote to say, “This morning we woke up to…..FLAGS AT THE CROSSWALK!! SDOT must’ve come in the night and furtively put new flags in, like elves or something!” We went over to check and got the above photo at noontime (several flags were on the west side; the one in the foreground, east side, had just been carried across). They’re the orange flags that we’ve seen in private baskets, though, not the yellow ones SDOT had originally distributed … hmm.

Meantime, while looking up a link for the Highland Park Action Committee meeting report published this morning, we revisited this video from last fall’s underground tour of the West Seattle Reservoir-covering project:

At the time, Seattle Public Utilities told us the reservoir would be filled “next (this) summer.” Checked with SPU’s Andy Ryan today – and he says it’s actually being filled right now; they’re about two-thirds of the way done with filling the 30-million-gallon covered reservoir. It takes up half the space the old open one did – SPU said they didn’t need that much capacity.

Big weekend ahead for Seattle Lutheran High School athletes

May 27, 2010 3:48 pm
|    Comments Off on Big weekend ahead for Seattle Lutheran High School athletes
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

From Bil Hood at Seattle Lutheran High School:


1. to the baseball team for getting to the final 4. They will play in Yakima Friday @ 4:00 opponent to be determined. They are 2 wins away from being a State Champion.

2. to the Fast Pitch team they are 3rd in Tri-District and will be playing Friday in the 16 team State Tournament in Yakima.

3. to the following track individuals who will be going to Eastern University to compete in the State Track Meet Friday: Jilllian Smith in Long Jump and Pole Vault, Elyssa Watord in the Long Jump and shot Put, Alina Yovetich in the 400, Lucas Driscol in the Shot Put, Dylan Heckett in the Shot Put, Gordy Mueller in the Javelin, Jake Nigon in the Pole Vault, Shot Put and the 400.

We will be Tweeting results all weekend long @SeattleLutheran

Triangle notes: Jones Barbeque coming; 35th/Avalon signal change

That banner has just gone up in the window at 4417 Fauntleroy Way (map), the former OK Corral barbecue joint (which quietly went from take-out, to catering-only, to closed over the past few months): Jones Barbeque, coming soon. You may know them from SODO and/or Columbia City. We’ve got messages out to company ownership/management to find out about the West Seattle plan, so stand by for more.

We spotted the sign while heading over to take a photo of what WSB Forums member Nuni pointed out — the new left-turn signals at 35th/Avalon have just been switched on, after more than a week under wraps:

The signals are just on the west/east lights (Avalon to 35th), not the north/south ones. And yes, this is the same intersection that has one of West Seattle’s two red-light-camera systems (along with 35th/Thistle).

West Seattle Whale Watch: Transient orcas seen off WS

Orca Network is quoted by the Kitsap Sun – which has been tracking transient orcas in waterways by Bremerton and Silverdale – as saying the transients have been spotted off our shores today. No other details so far but we’re committed to sharing whale sightings, so you are now on alert! 5;31 PM UPDATE: Howard from Orca Network says the sighting in question was Tuesday, not today. The transients have been seen again in Kitsap County, but not off WS, today.

West Seattle Summer Fest: This year’s poster goes public

WSB is proud to again be among the co-sponsors of the peninsula’s biggest event of the year, West Seattle Summer Fest, coming up July 9, 10, 11 in The Junction – and we just got this copy of the newly released poster art you’ll be seeing soon all over West Seattle, as the summer’s biggest festival gets closer. (See the full-size PDF version here.) You’re probably wondering who’s on the slate of “Hot Local Bands” – the full slate is still being finalized, and you’ll see it as soon as it’s ready, but a few acts have independently announced they’re on the list (here’s a Facebook invite just tweeted by Massy Ferguson and one from Cars tribute band All Mixed Up – but don’t mark your calendar just yet, nothing’s final till it comes from the West Seattle Junction Association). Lots of newness ahead this year – features like the GreenLife sustainability/gardening expo, and also Junction Plaza Park, under construction now, to be dedicated June 29th, in plenty of time for Summer Fest.

More liquor store news: West Seattle Junction location might move

Checking out rumors is one of the best parts of our job. Often they’re unfounded, so we don’t publish anything here – just replying directly to whomever contacted us about the rumor. But sometimes, it’s a case of “where there’s smoke, there’s fire.” Michelle e-mailed this morning to ask about a rumor that the Junction liquor store might move. Our call to the Washington Liquor Control Board media-relations team yielded this info from spokesperson Anne Radford: “The lease (in The Junction) is coming to an end in February 2011, so we are considering other locations, along with the possibility of renewing our lease there. So at this point, we’re still looking at our options.” You’ll recall that West Seattle’s other state liquor store closed in Morgan Junction when its lease ended in fall 2008, leaving WS drinkers with one store until the replacement location opened at Westwood Village this past March.

Design Commission gets West Seattle ‘Holding Patterns’ ideas

One month ago, a reader tip led to first word of the Seattle Design Commission‘s “Holding Patterns” competition – soliciting ideas for stalled development sites around the city, with the possibility that ideas for temporary use might even become reality. (This of course instantly brought the “Hole Foods” site to mind for many.) The application period closed this past Monday, and this WSB Forums post inspired us to check with the SDC this morning to see if they’d heard from anyone regarding West Seattle sites. SDC’s Valerie Kinast says she did a quick check and sees “one for (a) Huling Brothers site, one strong one for the Alaska/Fauntleroy intersection, and one four blocks south of Delridge Community Center.” No specifics yet, but Kinast adds that, “In the week of June 7th, we’ll (decide) which ideas to move forward into an implementation workshop, probably on July 20th.”

West Seattle Thursday: “Mattress” at WSHS; plant sale; cruises…

(Photo by Jennifer Devenyns)
“ONCE UPON A MATTRESS” STARTS 2ND AND FINAL 3-PERFORMANCE RUN: You have three more chances to catch the West Seattle High School Drama/Music presentation of “Once Upon a Mattress,” tonight, tomorrow and Saturday at 7:30 pm. (And just in time for the occasion, the Drama Club’s debuted its new website!) Not only is it entertainment, it’s also a chance to help make sure the program has money to continue next year; tickets are $5/$10.

GARDEN CENTER SALE: 11 am-3 pm today and Saturday at the South Seattle Community College (WSB sponsor) Puget Ridge Garden Center, dozens of varieties of plants are on sale, including herbs, vegetables and fruit. Read more about the center’s plants at – and/or just go have a look on the north side of campus (6000 16th SW).

SOUTH DELRIDGE/WHITE CENTER COMMUNITY SAFETY COALITION: A popular topic these days, Block Watch, is on the agenda for this crimefighting council, along with the customary crime-trend updates from Seattle Police and King County Sheriff’s Office. The group meets at 6 pm at the White Center DSHS office, 9650 15th SW.

PARKS BOARD: This citywide advisory group (whose chair and vice chair are both from West Seattle) meets at 7 at Parks HQ downtown. The agenda this time around includes briefings on tree-trimming permits, Parks’ special programs for people with disabilities, and the department’s relationship to the city’s community-gardening program – the “briefing papers” are all linked here.

Even more on the WSB West Seattle Events calendar!

Highland Park Action Committee celebrates ‘a big turning point’

(All photos in this report are by Dina Johnson unless otherwise credited)
Billy Stauffer said he’d chain himself to a bulldozer before he let a jail get built anywhere near his Highland Park home. That was an oft-cited memory as the Highland Park Action Committee honored Stauffer and many others Wednesday night, while using part of its regular meeting to formally celebrate the end of a two-year fight against the possibility a new city jail would be built near their neighborhood – or anywhere else in the city. (If you missed the news, city and county leaders announced two weeks ago that various factors would eliminate the need for a new jail for at least 10 years, so the site-selection process was ending.) Every person singled out had a special contribution. One of those who shared the memory of Stauffer’s vow was Eddie Sherman of Pacific Plumbing Supply (close to the Highland Park Way/West Marginal Way site that was still on the jail-location list when the process shut down):

Sherman lauded HPAC for being a true “action committee,” persistently pursuing their goal. “If this fight hadn’t been taken up by your group,” he told chair Dan Mullins, “it never would have gone anywhere – I felt like I wasn’t alone. It was just a small group, able to make a big punch to stop this entire thing.” The 2008 forums at which Sherman and others spoke so passionately were recalled during the semi-ceremony. One of the honorees, local teacher Laura Drake, was ribbed a bit for the nationwide fame she gained because we and others put her fiery June 26, 2008, speech on video, where it was widely linked:

(video no longer available due to closure)

Drake’s outrage drew cheers and tears. But at Wednesday night’s meeting …Read More