day : 03/09/2010 13 results

High-school football: Final score – Port Angeles 41, Chief Sealth 0


(Photo by Ian McKay)
9:58 PM: From Southwest Athletic Complex, that’s the final score of tonight’s game: Port Angeles 41, Chief Sealth 0, in West Seattle’s first high-school football game of the season. More details to come, including the special tribute to Sealth alum Petty Officer Jarod Newlove, the Sealth alum killed in Afghanistan last month. (We tweeted live during the game at @wsblive.)

12:02 AM UPDATE: The night began with a barbecue at Sealth. That’s where we found principal John Boyd sporting the official T-shirt, plus showing the Sealth helmets with “JN” as a tribute to Petty Officer Newlove. The barbecue raised money for a scholarship fund in PO Newlove’s honor:

Athletic director Sam Reed tells us the team had the idea to dedicate the season to PO Newlove. Meantime, we noted the signage going up outside the renovated campus, where there’s a ribboncutting on Tuesday and classes begin Wednesday:

And before the game, the band, cheerleaders, and team marched from the campus over to the stadium:

More high-school football on Saturday: Seattle Lutheran High School plays in the morning, West Seattle High School in the evening.

Update: Shooting at 61st/Admiral – 3 officers shoot armed man

(SATURDAY MORNING EDITOR’S NOTE: Until we start a new followup story, the newest information will continue to be added at the bottom of this one)

(ABOVE: Video of Deputy Chief Nick Metz‘s briefing at the scene; BELOW: Photo by Christopher Boffoli)

ORIGINAL 9 PM REPORT: We’re on the way to the reported shooting at 61st and Admiral. On the scanner, one suspect is reported to be in custody, two weapons recovered. We haven’t heard anything yet about the victim or other circumstances, aside from this all reportedly unfolding at a residence. There may be traffic effects in the area – so we’d advise staying clear.

9:10 PM UPDATE: Police are blocking westbound traffic on Admiral at 59th.

9:15 PM UPDATE: According to the scanner, the person who was shot is a 59-year-old man with a “single gunshot wound to the abdomen,” 40 caliber, who’s being rushed to Harborview Medical Center. Again, no word yet of circumstances.

9:23 PM UPDATE: Via the media hotline, Seattle PD officer Renee Witt confirms that this is a “possible officer-involved shooting.” The scanner had included discussion of “Police Guild rep(s)” (that’s the police union) which had hinted at such circumstances. Witt’s initial report – she’s going to the scene, and we will get information from her there – did NOT include anything else about the circumstances.

9:33 PM UPDATE: Police are now putting up crime-scene tape around the house in the 6100 block of Admiral where this is unfolding. The medic unit that’s transporting the shot man also has left, according to WSB co-publisher Patrick Sand, who is at the scene.

9:49 PM UPDATE: Gang Unit officers have arrived. Note that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a gang case – this is taking a lot of police resources and it might just be, all hands on deck and they’re helping too – but noteworthy at any rate.

10:05 PM UPDATE: Some official info should be forthcoming soon. Media Unit Officer Witt has just arrived, per scanner, and will be talking with SW Precinct Capt. Joe Kessler before meeting with reporters. Also, police are opening up Admiral at 59th to traffic, though the shooting-scene vicinity itself at 61st/Admiral will remain blocked off.

10:19 PM UPDATE: Officer Witt will not brief the media – Deputy Chief Nick Metz will do that, we are told.

10:35 PM UPDATE: That briefing is now expected in 10 minutes or so. We have two crews at the scene so that one will be able to relay info back to HQ as it is announced during the briefing – we’ll post “live” as it happens.

(Photo of Chief Metz briefing media, by Christopher Boffoli, added 11:33 pm)
10:45 PM UPDATE: Deputy Chief Metz’s briefing, most of this a direct transcription: A woman called and reported a shot had been fired. Then another call claimed a man had made suicidal threats. Officers were dispatched. They responded quickly, set up containment around the house, man came out the back door, officer heard a gunshot, put out over air that shots were fired, saw man holding what appeared to be assault rifle, man saw officers, leveled gun toward officers, three officers fired at him – I don’t have the exact number of shots – the man was hit, he went down, other officers responded to scene with what we call a contact team, they secured the man, called the Fire Dept medics … Deputy Chief Metz says that the man is still alive at last report but they don’t know his condition. Homicide and CSI officers are investigating and the three officers involved in the shooting are being questioned. (Now he is taking questions.) He says an AK-47 and handgun were confiscated from the man. They confirm he is 59 years old (as we had first reported from scanner traffic). We rolled video on the briefing and will post it here in its entirety once it’s back at HQ.

ADDED 12:15 AM: We have added our video of Deputy Chief Metz’s briefing, in its entirety, about 5 minutes long, to the top of this story. Or – you can also click here to watch it.

12:59 AM: No additional info – but the summary’s posted on SPD Blotter now.

2:42 AM: Drove by the scene about 20 minutes ago – Admiral Way still closed between 61st and 62nd. Meantime, the SPD Blotter account has been tweaked slightly; the man who was shot is now described as having “serious injuries.”

(Saturday morning photo by Christopher Boffoli)
8:37 AM: Admiral is open again. Police are still at the scene investigating, focusing on the alley by the house where the shooting happened. Police have updated the SPD Blotter item to add, “As of 7:00 a.m. this morning, the victim is listed in stable condition.” He has not been publicly, officially identified; we did get a name from a reliable source and checked to see if that person had any sort of a criminal history – we found nothing aside from a minor traffic violation three months ago, his first one in more than a decade. One other note: As our partners at the Seattle Times point out in their story about this incident, this is the region’s fourth shooting involving police this week.

SW District Council: Crime stats, CM Sally Clark, Junction plan…

Highlights from Wednesday night’s Southwest District Council meeting, covered for WSB by Christopher Boffoli:

First up was the Southwest Precinct‘s Lt. Norm James, who gave a quick briefing on some crime stats. Compared to the same time a year ago, major crime overall is down about 2 percent, while residential burglaries are down 10 percent. This decline in burglaries has helped the overall decline for crime rates across the SW Precinct.

According to Lt. James, there has been a modest decrease in violent crime compared to other precincts, but the violent crime rate is so low anyway in our precinct that even one incident can cause a statistical spike. Property crimes are down 2 percent overall, but what is troubling across all precincts is a rise in auto thefts. This is linked to a wave of auto theft arrests/aggressive sentencing that occurred several years ago. The theory is that those thieves are being released from prison about now and many are returning to what they used to do. Car prowls remain relatively low and stable.

Lt. James touched briefly on the smash-and-grab burglary suspect who is believed to have been responsible for 11 burglaries in the SW Precinct, 8 in the South Precinct, and 19 in King County overall, for a total of 38 smash-and-grab burglaries. He said the man arrested had been out of prison for several months (he had previous theft convictions) at the time the burglaries began. The case was a tough one, owing to the hit-and-run nature of the crimes and the fact that they had very little video footage. But he commended the SPD detectives for doing a great job coordinating with King County detectives and ultimately apprehending the alleged burglar (who pleaded not guilty this week to the three Burien cases in which he is charged so far).

Lastly, Lt. James spoke of the citywide pilot program in which SPD officers have been going door to door in neighborhoods, surveying residents for their opinions on safety and crime issues (first reported here during a trial phase). This survey is a supplement to statistical information collected when citizens call 911. The program started in the North Precinct and will soon be officially heading this way. Pigeon Point will be the first neighborhood where officers will be knocking on doors in the evening (beginning next month). Their goal is to contact every household. So he said not to be surprised to see an officer knocking on your door soon. Read on for more from the SW District Council meeting:Read More

West Seattle Crime Watch: Moral of the story – make the call!

Just out of the WSB inbox, from David:

I fell asleep on the couch last night and was awoken at 3:30 AM. It was a dead silent night and I heard strange noises coming from the portables at the southeast corner of the old Denny Middle School building (29th and Cloverdale). I looked out from my deck and saw a guy with a flash light peering around. I called 911 and reported the suspicious activity.

Two squad cars were there almost immediately and caught the guy as he was trying to leave on his bicycle. I was impressed at how fast they responded!

This morning at 8:00 AM there was a knock at my door. A uniformed police officer was there thanking me for calling 911. She explained the guy they caught last night is well known to the police department and I should call in any time I see him at night. As she explained he is always up to no good.

Anybody missing a small air compressor? The officer explained that he was caught with this item on his possession.

So the moral of the story is: Go with your gut and call 911 of any and all suspicious activity. A false alarm is better than a crime going unreported.

35th/Alaska fire, police response: Possible “mercury spill”

Just went over to 35th/Alaska (West Seattle Rotary Viewpoint Park area) to check on reports of a heavy fire/police presence. We also heard fire dispatches on the scanner, but unlike most Fire Department-involved 911 calls, this one is not on the “live” 911 log. At the scene, they told us they’re checking out a reported “mercury spill” – no further details on its extent or source, so far. 3:22 PM UPDATE: Went back to check – the scene is cleared. We have messages out seeking information on what it turned out to be – not sure if we’ll hear back; so far this afternoon, the holiday weekend seems to have kicked in already for many of the people (unrelated stories too, private and public sectors both) we’ve tried to call.

West Seattle park updates: Delridge Skatepark, Fairmount Playground

On the heels of our Myrtle Reservoir Park update (miss that story? see it here), we have two more quick updates on Seattle Parks projects in West Seattle: First, Delridge Skatepark (above: Grindline‘s final design) is going out to bid on September 15th (here’s the bid advertisement, courtesy of and should break ground in October, according to project manager Kelly Davidson. She also shares the news that the new play equipment for Fairmount Playground is scheduled to be installed next Tuesday. (The “old” merry-go-round is scheduled to be re-installed, according to our last update from when work began two months ago.)

California SW ‘upzoning’: Hearing Examiner’s decisions are in

Two weeks after the daylong hearing on the proposal to “upzone” a block-plus of California SW between Hanford and Hinds (WSB coverage here), the city Hearing Examiners rulings have just arrived in the mail – one, her recommendation regarding the proposal itself; the other, her decision on the appeal challenging the Department of Planning and Development‘s “determination of [environmental] non-significance” regarding the proposal. We are still reading the documents – and will link here if they’re online – but short report for starters: Hearing Examiner Sue Tanner recommends that the City Council approve the rezoning (from the current NC1-30 to NC2-40, which allows taller buildings with larger commercial spaces), and ruled that the DPD’s “determination of non-significance” stands. 12:45 PM UPDATE: Read on for details from the decisions, which so far as we can tell are NOT online yet – and we’ll continue to add more:Read More

What the Alki-area police response is about

Thanks to everyone who sent word of police cars speeding toward Alki, and conducting some kind of search. We’re told there was a report of a man walking with some kind of gun in the 52nd/Bonair (map) area. No word yet if anyone’s been found.

Updated traffic alert: Admiral Way back to normal

September 3, 2010 9:21 am
|    Comments Off on Updated traffic alert: Admiral Way back to normal
 |   West Seattle news | WS breaking news

We’re getting a report of wires down on the 5600 block of Admiral Way. Fire crews have been dispatched to the scene. No word yet on how it is affecting traffic or if anyone is without power. Drivers may want to avoid the area. We’re off to check now.

UPDATE 9:48 AM: Just back from the scene where everything seems back to normal. It may have been a minor situation or a false alarm. Traffic is moving fine in both directions.

Sewer-maintenance work starts Tuesday at Lowman Beach

September 3, 2010 8:57 am
|    Comments Off on Sewer-maintenance work starts Tuesday at Lowman Beach
 |   Utilities | West Seattle news

Alert for people who live near, and/or use, Lowman Beach Park – King County has just announced that three weeks of sewer-maintenance work at Murray Pump Station – which is underneath the park – will start next Tuesday (NOT a week later, as previously announced). Read on for full text of the announcement:Read More

West Seattle Friday: High-school football, and more

September 3, 2010 8:54 am
|    Comments Off on West Seattle Friday: High-school football, and more
 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

From the WSB West Seattle Events calendar: West Seattle’s first high-school football game of the year is tonight – Chief Sealth International High School (season schedule here) hosts Port Angeles for a non-conference game, 7 pm at Southwest Athletic Complex (West Seattle HS and Seattle Lutheran HS both play tomorrow) … Also tonight, the FiaFia! celebration co-presented by Southwest Youth and Family Services, 5-7 pm … and live music at venues including Coffee to a Tea in The Junction, which sends word that Shaun Cox Leonard plays 8-10 tonight, and Skylark Café and Club, with no-cover live music as always, … More on the calendar!

Provocative ‘chimney fairy’ appears in West Seattle

Certain to get some reaction in the neighborhood, a new “statue” has appeared on the chimney of a home at 44th & Brandon, the same location as the much-discussed “minotaur” wood carving that was unveiled back in 2008.

According to the staff at West Seattle Nursery (the home’s neighbors to the east), the statue was hoisted to the roof earlier yesterday, and people worked all day to install it. When we went to the house, a man on the roof helping with the installation described the sculpture as a “fairy” and said they were almost done with it.

From the street, it indeed appears to be a “fairy,” albeit one with very little clothing. The statue faces southwest, with her “wings” facing northeast toward California Avenue.

If you want to see the statue in all its glory (well, some of its glory): click here.

That’s a wrap: WS Big Band closes out 2010 Hiawatha concerts

(Story and Photos by Jason Grotelueschen)

That’s the West Seattle Big Band playing their final song, as the sun set (both literally and figuratively) on the second summer of the Admiral Neighborhood Association’s popular Summer Concerts at Hiawatha series.

A reporter-estimated crowd of 300 enjoyed the show, on a pleasant but increasingly chilly Thursday night as the wind picked up and the sun went down. The WSBB concert was the sixth and final concert of the 2010 Hiawatha season, and ANA president Katy Walum said it was a terrific summer. Here’s Katy introducing WSBB and thanking the sponsors, volunteers, and musicians who made it all possible:

Here’s the crowd spreading across Hiawatha’s east field:

And here’s the band in full swing:

We’ll update this post later with more comments from Katy Walum, and perhaps a video from WSBB’s performance.

SEPTEMBER 4 UPDATE: We’ve added a short video below of WSBB’s performance.