West Seattle, Washington
Continuing our coverage of the murder trial in the February 2009 West Seattle shooting death of Steve Bushaw: Court is now in recess till 9 am Monday. That originally was projected as the date testimony would begin, but this case hasn’t even gotten to jury selection yet, because of an ongoing series of twists and turns among the four original defendants. Two of them have pleaded guilty in the past two weeks, but one of them may withdraw that plea when court resumes Monday. Details ahead:Read More
Story and photos by Jason Grotelueschen
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
About 30 people gathered for Sustainable West Seattle‘s monthly Community Forum on Tuesday night at Coffee to a Tea with Sugar in the Alaska Junction (the event’s original venue, the Senior Center of West Seattle, was unavailable at the last minute).
Although the group’s “volunteer fair” format couldn’t happen Tuesday night because of space/time limitations related to the venue change, it was a busy night of “annual reports” for 2010, and guest presentations from the West Seattle Wildlife Habitat Project and the Salish Sea Trading Co-op.
Highlights on what’s been accomplished – and what’s coming up, plus the lineup of new SWS leadership, ahead:Read More
(Added 4:09 pm: Photo by Tristan Baurick/Kitsap Sun; used with permission)
2:18 PM: Through the comments following our latest story on the search for missing 24-year-old West Seattleite Jeremy Peck, we learned of an investigation on Bainbridge Island – a body, believed to be male, washed up today, and the Kitsap Sun reports that Bainbridge Police are working with Seattle Police. Commenters wondered, is there any link to the Jeremy Peck search? We have checked with Seattle Police’s media unit, which is in turn checking with detectives, and with Seattle Police’s West Seattle leadership, through the Southwest Precinct; Capt. Steve Paulsen says they haven’t heard anything. The Kitsap Sun’s latest update says their county’s medical examiner is handling the case and will be responsible for identification. Again, there is nothing so far that says there’s any relation, except that Bainbridge police are quoted as saying it might be related to a Seattle missing-persons case, and that the body may have been in the water two or three weeks; we wanted to let you know we are checking. Our latest update on the Jeremy Peck search is here; we just added a news release sent by organizers of this Sunday’s vigil.
3:45 PM UPDATE: Commenting via e-mail, Jeremy Peck’s longtime friend Ben Doty, who is helping lead search effort, told WSB, “At this time, we’re aware of what happened in Bainbridge Island. Nothing has been confirmed. We remain hopeful.”
11:06 PM UPDATE: KING5 picked up the story tonight; here’s their link. The Sun has updated to say that the King County Medical Examiner now has possession of the Bainbridge body and will announce the ID if/when that’s available. In their comment section, another case of a young adult man missing about the same period of time was brought up – a 25-year-old soldier who jumped off the Tacoma Narrows Bridge a few days before Christmas.
THURSDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: The King County Medical Examiner’s Office just got the body today, according to both a KCME spokesperson and Seattle Police spokesperson Det. Mark Jamieson. The official ID has not yet been determined nor made public. Until it is, and until cause of death is determined, according to Det. Jamieson, police’s next move won’t be clear – for example, even if it is Jeremy Peck, was it homicide, suicide, or an accident? All that is part of what the KC Medical Examiner is looking at right now.
A sighting of El Chupacabra on Alki is expected soon – but it won’t be fodder for summoning paranormal investigators – it’ll be a reason to dine and drink. Shortly after Casa Feliz closed on the lower level of 2620 Alki Avenue SW (photo above added 4:18 pm), brown paper went up and tips came into the WSB inbox asking “what’s moving in?” This afternoon, we have the answer. We spoke with Aaron Wright, whose El Chupacabra Mexican restaurant and bar is about to celebrate its 5th anniversary on Phinney Ridge – he is hoping to open the Alki branch before that mid-March date. Read on for details:Read More
“Welcome to 2011!” With that, West Seattle Crime Prevention Council president Dot Beard opened last night’s meeting at the Southwest Precinct, the first WSCPC meeting in two months – and her last one as president. As the meeting began, more than 15 people were on hand, not counting three uniformed SPD reps – Lt. Pierre Davis and Community Police Team Officers Jonathan Kiehn and Ken Mazzuca – plus soon-to-retire Crime Prevention Coordinator Benjamin Kinlow. Precinct commander Capt. Steve Paulsen joined in time to deliver his assessment of the latest West Seattle crime trends – which included at least one surprise. That and other meeting toplines, after the jump:Read More
Hope you were up early (or late) enough to see this morning’s amazing moonset. In case you weren’t – Gatewood photographer Long Bach Nguyen has shared two beautiful photos (thanks!).
With another round of Spokane Street Viaduct Widening Project construction closures starting tonight – 10 pm-5 am for the next three nights, WESTBOUND ONLY (which means no bridge access from I-5 or Beacon Hill), and 3 more nights next week – you might be wondering, how’s the construction work going? We have the answer, and a few photos, from SDOT‘s Marybeth Turner:
As 2011 gets underway, work on the Spokane Street Viaduct Widening Project remains on schedule.
The contractor recently completed more than half of all the columns needed to support the widened portion of the deck that extends 42 feet further to the north. The crews have installed nearly three quarters of all support shafts that support the columns (there are a total of 154 in the design).
In addition, the contractor is nearly finished pouring the concrete deck from Fifth Avenue to Second Avenue. The intersection of Fourth Avenue and lower Spokane Street – long impacted by construction under the viaduct – should be restored to two lanes in each direction by March, though there may be occasional short-term lane restrictions after that.
Meanwhile, the big milestone for this year, the opening of the new First Avenue on-and off-ramp, is expected to be reached before the end of this year. We expect the total project to be completed in the spring of 2012.
That ramp will not be a replication of the one that was closed and demolished last year – its entrance is further north on 1st Avenue South, and it’s a two-way ramp. If you missed previous coverage of the project, we have an extensive archive dating back almost three years (find it here).
From the WSB West Seattle Events calendar: Spokane Street Viaduct construction closures – WESTBOUND ONLY – start tonight through Friday night, then again Jan. 24-26 (details here) … The next round of All-Access afterschool classes at Youngstown Arts Center starts today, with orientation at 3:30 pm, then a 4-6 pm kickoff event … Chief Sealth International High School‘s PTSA meets at 7 tonight, room 222 … 2 major community meetings: Delridge Neighborhoods District Council at Youngstown, with “Strategic Delridge” discussion 6-7 pm, meeting intros/reports start at 7, scheduled guests from the Department of Neighborhoods and West Seattle Blockwatch Captains Network; the Morgan Community Association is at The Kenney, 7 pm, full agenda online here … And if you see this early, the Kiwanis Club of West Seattle‘s breakfast briefing by a West Seattle bird expert is at 7 am at Be’s Restaurant (here’s our preview). … Outside WS: SDOT invites you to tonight’s seawall meeting.
About 15 people gathered at West Seattle’s Chelan Café to plot the next steps in the search for 24-year-old Jeremy Peck, last seen in the early-morning hours of December 24th. Among them, in the next photo L to R, a longtime friend of Jeremy’s, Ben Doty, who graduated West Seattle High School with him in 2005, and Jeremy’s birth father Stephan Peck:
Though Jeremy was raised by his uncle John Peck, Stephan came to West Seattle more than a week ago to help search for him; tomorrow he has to go home to Wenatchee.
“I am trying to think positive about this. But, sometimes, I … I’d just like him to come home. Or just show up anywhere.”
And Jeremy could be anywhere at this point. Parks have been checked, it was noted at the meeting, like Schmitz Park and Me-Kwa-Mooks, but volunteers acknowledge they could use more coordination. WSB contributor Deanie Schwarz, covering the meeting, reports that they say only one or two people were covering each of these areas; they feel as if they need to search all of them again with many more people scouring the brush and hillsides. “We’re not professionally trained and the areas are so vast, and some are steep hills … We need somebody to coordinate those search efforts,” Doty said.
Also in the works, an account (at Wells Fargo) where money can be donated for the search efforts, which have now grown into an operation with its own checklists – flyers, banners, posters, a lawyer (to get cell-phone records made public), search dogs, private detective, psychic. And they’re working to set up a website where information will be available as well as a PayPal account for donations, in addition to the “Find Jeremy Peck” Facebook page.
If you’ve missed the original coverage or need a reminder: Jeremy is 6’2″, about 177 pounds, has medium brown hair and brown eyes, and was last seen wearing blue jeans, tennis shoes, and a black waist length coat over a gray hoodie sweatshirt.
An anonymous tip line has been created for anyone with information: 206-478-4905.
ADDED MIDDAY WEDNESDAY: The group has sent an official news release about Sunday’s vigil – after the jump:Read More