Video: Attack suspect back in court; bail increased, bond posted

(ADDED 6:25 PM: Final 2 1/2 minutes of this afternoon’s hearing; you’ll hear the defense lawyer and judge)
2:57 PM REPORT: We’re at the King County Jail, where Lincoln Park attack suspect Duane Starkenburg has just returned to court.

(ADDED 9:25 PM: Seattle Times photo by Jim Bates, used with permission)
As noted earlier, additional charges are under consideration against him. Besides the two potential cases of “indecent liberties” we reported here around noontime, a third was mentioned in court – a possible case of attempted indecent liberties. Starkenburg’s parents, with whom he lives in Gatewood, were again in court, and addressed the judge, saying they could vouch he would stay out of trouble. His lawyer characterized the alleged grabbing incidents – while not confirming his client had definitely been responsible – as “an inept attempt at meeting people.” The judge cited potential danger to the community in setting bail at $150,000 – less than the $250,000 requested by the prosecutor. He has another court date scheduled tomorrow afternoon, which is also the deadline for the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office to file official charges against him (he is already formally charged in the Tuesday Lincoln Park grabbing incident, but that is filed with Seattle Municipal Court as a misdemeanor). More to come.

3:23 PM UPDATE: A bail bondsman has told reporters (including us) outside the jailhouse that the Starkenburg family is posting bond to get him out of jail. (The jail register has yet to show that, or the increased bail amount.) We also have just received paperwork to clarify what he’s being investigated for, in addition to the Tuesday incident. The two others happened on August 11th and December 8th – near Colman Pool and near a Lincoln Park stairway. The documents we’ve just received from the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office tell the story of what victims and police say happened – we will transcribe excerpts here shortly.

3:36 PM UPDATE: In light of word that Starkenburg may be out of jail, we should note that the judge at today’s hearing also ordered him to stay out of Lincoln Park. It was also mentioned that he has a problem with alcohol. Notes from the “probable cause” documents, ahead:

In the December 8th incident, the victim says she was walking up a staircase at Lincoln Park (it does not say which one) when a man approached her from behind, claimed he was hurt and needed help; she offered to help him up the steps, then he somehow got back behind her, grabbed her and “buried his head in her buttocks.” She kicked her way free of him, then turned to see him on the ground, claiming it was an accident and apologizing, and also mentioning he knew there’d been attacks in the park – which she thought weird, since she hadn’t heard of any.

According to the documents, shortly after that attack, detectives looked back through their files and found the August 11th incident, which sounded very similar – also with the man grabbing them and doing the same thing with his face.

Police say that while interviewing Starkenburg after Tuesday’s attack – after reading him his Miranda rights – he claimed that had been an accident but said he went to Lincoln Park every day to watch women run because he “likes to watch them ‘jiggle and bounce’.” He went on to say to police, “It’s not like I drag them behind the bushes and rape them.”

The women he’s suspected of attacking in August and December both had dogs with them at the park.

9:21 PM UPDATE: We got a text from a KIRO TV reporter saying they interviewed Duane Starkenburg and will have it on their newscast at 11. Don’t know if it’s a two-word interview or two-minute (that’s long in TV time) interview, but in case you are interested; we’ll link to whatever they put online. The jail register has now been updated to say he was officially out of jail as of 7:49 pm. Also, we added video earlier of the last 2 1/2 minutes of today’s hearing, with his lawyer’s arguments plus the judge’s decision. And we’re adding the Seattle Times (WSB partner) photo from the hearing.

9:54 PM NOTE: KING interviewed him as well. If either (or both) stations put embeddable video online, we’ll include it in a separate story, or else we’ll add links here. (KING does news on Channel 6 at 10 pm.)

46 Replies to "Video: Attack suspect back in court; bail increased, bond posted"

  • Born To Be Mild January 27, 2011 (3:34 pm)

    Grabbing incidents are inept attempts to meet people! WooHoo! And I thought my pickup lines were bad! I’m thinkin’ I’m some smooth operator.

  • Emma Peel January 27, 2011 (3:37 pm)

    That guy needs to stay the hell away from the park!!!

  • A January 27, 2011 (3:37 pm)

    Interesting that today his lawyer says it was his way of meeting people. Yesterday didn’t they deny it and say he did accidentally trip her and was trying to apologize? Keep this nut off the street please!

  • pigeonmom January 27, 2011 (3:43 pm)

    “an inept attempt at meeting people.” – WOW.

  • angelescrest January 27, 2011 (3:43 pm)

    How frustrating! PATHETIC! I am so unnerved by this.
    Thank you for keeping up with this case on a monet-to-moment basis.
    Our eyes must be open, especially in that swath from Lincoln Park to Morgan Junction.

  • J January 27, 2011 (4:00 pm)

    I am unnerved by it too. I usually walk the Thistle St stairs a few times a week. I went there today and got all freaked out because no one else was on the stairs exercising. I hate feeling like I have to stick to crowded areas.

  • cherylc January 27, 2011 (4:01 pm)

    “It’s not like I drag them behind the bushes and rape them.” This was my point yesterday. He thinks his behavior doesn’t cross some imaginary pervert line so it’s not a big deal.

  • Mookie January 27, 2011 (4:05 pm)

    Very frustrating, creepy and scary. That whole “I’m injured, can you help me” recalls shades of our infamous Bundy with his arm in a sling. The pattern and timing of these incidents seems to have been escalating – and that kind of behavior doesn’t just plateau. I have faith that the detectives will carefully build their case as thoroughly as possible – but the wheels of justice will seem to grind really slow to those of us who live in this area.

    While I do feel for his parents over what they’ve been through in the past, it’s maddening to see the parental Blind Spot of Denial kicking in as they post his bail and “vouch” that he’ll stay out of trouble. Apparently his previous felony convictions (including one for furiously driving after a woman then punching her in the head) haven’t convinced them of their inability to have any influence or control over this disturbed adult.

  • Mike January 27, 2011 (4:09 pm)

    What a creep. Hope the police are able to find another thing to charge him with and throw him back in jail, fast. This guy is a threat.

  • Born To Be Mild January 27, 2011 (4:12 pm)

    It is soo cool that they caught him. And congratulations to the community that is going to hold him accountable. I believe that guys like this become bolder as they repeat the behavior. This is definitely going to slow him down, and maybe even teach him something?

  • CurlyQ January 27, 2011 (4:35 pm)

    And again, THANK YOU to the WS Blog for keeping us all posted and empowering our community to be on the lookout and keep one another safe. I feel blessed to live in this spectacular community.

  • NotMe January 27, 2011 (4:36 pm)

    I wish the judges that do these sorts of bail settings were reading this right now… to see how people become frightened and to afraid to go out into their own damn neighborhood. This is so frustrating.

  • SarahScoot January 27, 2011 (4:38 pm)

    I am actually nauseated after reading this. Starkenburg’s “defense” of his actions is truly sickening – “It’s not like I drag them behind the bushes and rape them.”
    My god, his poor victims.

  • SJ2 January 27, 2011 (4:57 pm)

    I can’t believe they released him on bail, and I can’t believe this happened! I switched to jogging at Lincoln Park from Camp Long because I felt unsafe running into that scary Ryan Cox guy there all the time. Yuck. :(

  • ajs January 27, 2011 (4:58 pm)

    did I read this right? this guy is out on the streets?

  • kate January 27, 2011 (5:04 pm)

    Another disturbing aspect of this story is the fact that his parents can vouch for him staying out of future trouble. Did I read that correctly? He’s 46 years old and has been linked to other incidences. Are we dealing with a suspect that has mental health issues?

    • WSB January 27, 2011 (5:23 pm)

      Kate – mental health was not mentioned at either of the hearings I have covered. Alcohol use, though.
      AJS – the jail register appears to be about midway to reporting the release on bond that the bailbondsman told us about outside the jail. It shows “release on bond” but does not have date/time of release yet; it has updated the bail amount to the $150,000 set in court today.
      I will post another visual from court today – a Seattle Times photographer was also there and I hopefully will be able to access whatever they have. Remember that as we wrote, he was ordered to stay out of Lincoln Park. If you think you see him there, call police. I will also update this story with more of what the attacker (allegedly him) was described as wearing during the incidents mentioned thus far. We’re back at HQ for a while now. – TR

  • enabling? January 27, 2011 (5:22 pm)

    If you look up the term “enabler” in the dictionary, urban or real, there is a photo of his parents.

  • MaxB January 27, 2011 (5:39 pm)

    Thank you Tracy for staying on top of this! I (and the women I love who live near Lincoln Park) appreciate it.

  • Anne January 27, 2011 (5:41 pm)

    So he has been ordered to stay out of Lincoln Park. West Seattle has lots of other parks. Can we call police if we see him in other parks?

    • WSB January 27, 2011 (5:46 pm)

      Anne, I have to check my notes from the other day. I thought he’d been ordered to stay out of parks, period, but I’m not 100 percent sure if I’m recalling correctly. Again, he’s scheduled to be back in court tomorrow afternoon, and we’ll see what happens/what is said and done then.

  • sayWA? January 27, 2011 (5:58 pm)

    I knew this guy in Elementary through High School. In fact, knew his sisters too (including the one who was tragically killed in 1990).

    While I feel terrible for the entire family for their loss, the fact is this guy was unstable the whole time I knew him.

    His sisters were much nicer, and I always felt bad for them for having a bro like him.

    This guy sounds like he is in a downward spiral. It is good news that he was caught BEFORE he started “dragging them into the bushes and raping them”.

    Something tells me that was where this was headed.

  • CitizenR January 27, 2011 (6:26 pm)

    sayWA … I’ve known him since he was a child … never a nice guy always a trouble maker …

    It’s always sad when someone is murdered … watch the company you keep!

  • Jenni w January 27, 2011 (7:02 pm)

    This man is a rapist in the pre-sociopath stage & needs to be jailed & not released. The fact of his comment “at least I didn’t rape them behind a bush” clearly indicates his sadistic thought process. This man will rape a woman it’s just a matter of time. So to the love blinded parents, your 46 yr old son is ill & needs serious counseling. Only a pervert does what he did & next time he’ll really hurt some poor woman. If he ever sticks his head in my buns he won’t be able to walk again!

  • 35this35mph January 27, 2011 (7:35 pm)

    Well, he’s *claiming* not to have raped anyone… Thus the far the allegations and evidence have not suggested otherwise, but I feel surprised by the lawyer’s quick turnaround from yesterday’s denial to today’s minimization. Dost thou protest too much?

  • waterworld January 27, 2011 (8:28 pm)

    For those of you offended by the fact that this guy’s family posted bail and he was released, I’d just like to say that although I don’t relish the idea of this guy being out and about (I live by Lincoln Park, I walk there alone, I’m female, and I get it), the amount that the judge ordered is substantial. In this state, a defendant has a right to “reasonable bail” unless the court finds either (1) the defendant is not likely to come back to court when ordered to do so, or (2) there is a “substantial danger” that the defendant will either commit a violent crime or obstruct justice. Without going into detail, indecent liberties is not always categorized as a violent offense. It is unlikely that a judge would have denied bail entirely, even if she could have done so. Usually it takes more than multiple counts of a crime like indecent liberties.

    Often, to be able to post this kind of bail, people have to secure the bond with their home. Even if the parents have the Blinders on, they will want to keep their house. That will motivate them to actually keep tabs on him. And it very often motivates the defendant to behave while his case is pending.

    The judge made one of the defendant’s conditions of release staying out of Lincoln park. So if anyone sees him there, call the police, as Tracy said. The quickest way for a guy like this to end up custody pending his trial date is to violate the terms of his release.

    Also, it’s possbible, just possible, that someone in this guy’s circle of influence will get him into the right kind of therapy or treatment or counseling that could help him modify his behavior. That, in the long run, would benefit us all more than the jail time.

    I’m not saying this to either defend or attack the process — just wanted to share what I think goes into the decision-making process. As someone who is frequently in the park walking alone, I do not want predators lurking there and I don’t want to be the next victim.

  • Ryan Cox? January 27, 2011 (9:43 pm)

    Who is the Ryan Cox guy that is referred to in the post above? I walk at Camp Long a bit, so am curious/concerned.

  • li\'l_gal January 27, 2011 (9:53 pm)

    So, according to your logic, waterworld, people like Ted Bundy could have been changed if the right intervention was used before it got out of control, right?

  • lil_gal January 27, 2011 (9:56 pm)

    I am not trying to call you out, waterworld… just trying to understand your logic.

  • Mary T January 27, 2011 (10:03 pm)

    “Meeting people.” God, that’s infuriating. And what an insult to the women who are a victim of this kind of assault.

  • Derek January 27, 2011 (10:04 pm)

    Anyone can be changed if they are provided the proper counseling and choose to welcome it. That being said, the accused gentleman should have a close eye kept on him for quite some time. Sounds like he was unhealthy when he was young, and I can only imagine how badly that’s compounded with the death of his sister.

  • Cclarue January 27, 2011 (10:10 pm)

    O this guy is a piece of work !! He was just on the news ranting and minimizing and admitting he looks at the women who run at the park because they are half naked!!! And any healthy man would do the same!!! Ick!!

  • sayWA? January 27, 2011 (10:11 pm)

    CitizenR – we likely know each other then. I don’t keep co with the guy at all, just knew him as a kid, like you (E.C Hughes / Denny / Sealth?).

    Didn’t really care for him then (for the reasons you state, “always a troublemaker) haven’t seen him since – well at least not till the booking fotos!

    His sisters were very sweet though.

    Waterworld – “someone in this guy’s circle of influence will get him into the right kind of therapy”

    The problem with this concept is, the guy needs to have a “circle of influence” at all. In this case, THIS guy sure did NOT have much of a “circle” during K-12, if any at all. I can tell you that FOR SURE!

    Now, at 46 years of age, living in his PARENTS home, hanging out in Lincoln Park all day, every day (by his OWN admission – read the brief) watching women “jiggle and bounce”, there SURE IS NOT much of a “circle of influence” present at this time, either.

    li\’l_gal has it right.

  • ellenater January 27, 2011 (10:17 pm)

    This man needs treatment but it may already be too late.

  • Mookie January 27, 2011 (10:25 pm)

    I don’t get how his defense counsel can state “…he doesn’t have the kind of criminal history, your honor, that suggests that he is a risk of violence…” when his client has a previous felony assault conviction involving out-of-control rage that ended in him driving after a woman, catching up with her and punching her in the face through her car window. To hear the judge respond with “you do have a minimal criminal history…” is scary in itself.

  • waterworld January 28, 2011 (1:57 am)

    lil_gal: I don’t believe, and I’m not saying, that every guy who attacks women can change. I think there’s good evidence that some can change and that some do change. But there’s no treatment or therapy for predators waiting in the county jail for their trial date, nor is there enough treatment options available even in most of the prisons. I’m just saying that if something was available to him while he’s out of custody, and if he took advantage of it, who knows? Maybe it would help.

    And I’m not even thinking of a Bundyesque narcissistic psychopath. I’m not sure there’s anything we can do to change those people, and we just have to protect ourselves. I wish, though, that the people who would or might benefit from treatment or therapy were getting it as soon as possible after they are caught engaging in this kind of escalating sexually violent predation. Most of these guys will one day be released from jail or prison, at which point they return to our community.

  • Sonoma January 28, 2011 (3:05 am)

    Repulsive! What will it take to get this creep off the streets? Is it legal to post his address on this site? That way, women can avoid being anywhere near his house. Of course, one can look up his address on the White Pages web site. I just did.

  • miws January 28, 2011 (4:35 am)

    But waterworld, what about the community, that now needs to be on higher alert, in case he violates his parole and goes down to Lincoln Park, or starts accosting women in other parks, or West Seattle in general? I’d feel a lot better about him being out on bail, if he had a GPS ankle bracelet.


    Getting treatment while he’s out of custody? Maybe he will, but I’m sorry, the cynic in me really doubts that he will.


    Any rights he has, are not my concern. My concern is for our community, and as the Murders of the four Lakewood Officers showed, sometimes a suspect can do additional harm while out on bail.



  • waterworld January 28, 2011 (11:55 am)

    Mike: I agree that the community needs to be on alert. Always on alert, not just when a particular incident brings the issues of our risks to the fore. And it’s precisely because cases like these get our attention that I’m also concerned about respecting the constitution.

    I’m concerned for the community just like you. That’s why I’m not only thinking about what happens right now, when he’s out on bail, but what happens later, when he’s served his sentence (assuming he is convicted) and is released. I’d like to think that whatever drives people to commit these kinds of crimes gets addressed in prison — but it does not. It amazes me how shortsighted people are about this sometimes: offenders get out of prison, they come back home, and we have to live with them again. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could feel more confident that they wouldn’t commit new crimes?

    [Onto soapbox] “Any rights he has, are not my concern”? His rights should be a concern. What good are constitutional safeguards if they can be ignored every time people are worried? Doesn’t that way lie tyranny? Ankle bracelet — great, I agree with you on that. Court-ordered evaluation — that might also be a fine idea. But deny bail in every case were it’s conceivable that the defendant will commit another offense? No, I am as concerned about the rights of the innocent as I am about community safety. I prefer to respect and defend the safeguards built into our constitution.

    [Off soapbox now.] I’m not naive, Mike. The typical defendant is not going to work on changing his behavior before he is convicted. A guy who acts out like he did in court probably does not see himself clearly. I hope he stays home with his parents until his trial (or whatever is the resolution of the case). Until then, I’ll have my eyes peeled when I’m in the park.

  • jane January 28, 2011 (2:37 pm)

    waterworld, such a rational argument, but when your physical well being is at stake constitutional rights seem less important. Our system should recognize people who do display the tendencies to commit violent acts and intervene to keep them off the streets. Our systems is inept at prevention. The courts should not let this guy go and wait until he does a worse crime to intervene. He should be removed from society now, preemptive and put into treatment until experts in the psychiatric field say he does not pose a threat. Once he has committed another violent act, the victims rights have been irreconcilably violated. My advice is to jog with a bat.

  • waterworld January 28, 2011 (3:33 pm)

    Jane: Once he’s convicted (and assuming he is) then it’s appropriate for the “system” to intervene. As it stands right now, he’s been accused. He has his story, however ridiculous it seems to us. He’ll either enter a guilty plea or he’ll go to trial and a jury will decide. In the meantime, a judge heard whatever facts were available yesterday and made a decision about how much bail was appropriate. I don’t have a problem with that. And a judge will hear if there are additional facts now that other charges have been added, and maybe the decision will change, maybe it won’t. I don’t have a problem with that, either. I do have a problem with the idea that random people could decide who needs to be detained on a “preemptive” basis, with psychiatrists to sort out whether a person might commit a crime in the future. That would be way more scary to me than feeling like I need to double up with someone when I go to the park.

  • danny January 28, 2011 (4:20 pm)

    ok people, don,t judg me but i considered myself as eddy,s best friend at one time when i seen this spiral start about a year ago i decided to distance my self from him. he does have a good heart and is a good human being his parents are the salt of the earth and helped me through rough times a a child, his farther was the couch for our baseball team, eddy has a illness i belive can be rectified, i hate to see this happening thank god he got caught before anything more happen, try to have compassion for the sick! don,t get me wrong he should pat the consequnces, i just knew a different person then he is now.i know him and i belive he is guilty, i hope he gets a mental evel and the meds or counseling he needs, there is a soul there some where,i am in no way sticking up for him it very tragic f0or all involed

  • jayf January 28, 2011 (8:43 pm)

    I am a male jogger who runs Lincoln Park quite often. I may get flamed for saying this, BUT people…this guy didn’t commit rape or murder…he is just really creepy and who did gross inappropriate touching which is uncalled for and actions that are worthy of criminal punishment…BUT do we have to have the Salem WITCH TRIALS? Relax folks. This guy needs help and it is great that he was caught. STILL We should be thankful that there aren’t people doing worse than this in our community.

  • Mary January 29, 2011 (8:55 am)

    I am in complete agreement with everything Waterworld has posted here. The things this guy has already been accused of doing are icky, frightening, alarming, and wrong, wrong, wrong and he may have the potential to do worse but that doesn’t mean that constitutional rights should be thrown out the window because we’re scared.

  • Frank January 31, 2011 (12:30 am)

    Sonoma, has his address and phone number. Some of the comments about this guy if they are true are scary. Everyone needs to watch out for this guy and people like him. I really hope he doesnt try this again.

Sorry, comment time is over.