The WSBeat: What else turned up in the police files…

By Megan Sheppard
On the WSBeat, for West Seattle Blog

As always, the WSBeat summaries are from reports on cases handled recently by Southwest Precinct officers that (usually) have not already appeared here in breaking-news coverage or West Seattle Crime Watch reports, but that might at least answer the question “what WERE all those police doing on my block?”:

*At 2 pm this past Saturday, officers helped Animal Control on a call about a dog being mistreated in a wooded area on Myers Way. The dog’s owner was wanted on $5,000 worth of warrants for vehicle prowling, theft, harassment and failure to appear. Both he and the dog were taken into custody without incident. From the man’s campsite, officers recovered a pry tool, window punch tool and an ax.

*An Arbor Heights woman known to “care for dogs” refused to give a canine back to its owner, claiming she had spent $1250 on veterinary costs after the dog had been placed in her care. The owner had never approved any veterinary treatment. An officer explained that the caregiver had taken on the expense at her own risk and that if she refused to return the dog to the owner, she would be charged with theft. The caregiver said, “Fine,” and decided to keep the dog. Both parties were given a case number.

Nine more summaries ahead:

*Late Friday the 25th, three young men were walking to catch a bus in the Admiral Junction when they were suddenly confronted by four white males in their late teens who jumped out of a white Dodge van. They surrounded the three and demanded their possessions. One young man broke away and ran toward Safeway for help. Two strangers, both young men, ran over to assist the victims and became the primary targets of the attack. Then 3 or 4 more people (friends of the attackers) climbed out of a nearby white or silver Ford F150LX pickup truck and joined the fray. The attack might have been captured on video tape. The suspects fled after several witnesses called 911.

*On the 25th, in the 8100 block of 12th SW, a woman was dropping off some groceries for her daughter but had to hurry into the house when a man began screaming when she stepped out of her car. He proceeded to kick her vehicle until the car alarm went off and then began taking off his clothes. After trying unsuccessfully to open the woman’s front door, he wandered around the yard, staring through windows. He was so under the influence that officers had him transported to Harborview for being a danger to himself or others. The 21-year-old suspect is well known to local officers.

*A man who originally said he had been stabbed in a robbery called 911 to explain that he had actually been stabbed by his girlfriend, and he’d like to tell the story to officers. He gave a statement at Harborview. The story checked out with another person (who had been asked to dispose of the weapon, but thought better of it and encouraged the victim to go to police with the truth). The girlfriend was arrested outside Harborview and booked into King County Jail for investigation of armed domestic violence assault and on a $10,000 warrant.

*An intoxicated man who initially contacted officers about being assaulted in the Admiral area early Friday ended up being arrested himself for investigation of phone harassment after making over a dozen calls to 911 about the incident. He was taken into custody at his home, where he stood outside yelling at officers to, “Get outta here, you’re going to wake up my neighbors.” The officers advised that his yelling had likely already taken care of that.

*On the afternoon of the 25th, officers went to an apartment in the 5600 block of California Ave SW regarding an assault. Medics were treating a man for serious facial and head trauma. He also had defensive cuts on his forearms and scalp and foot lacerations. A violent struggle had taken place: Shards of glass and blood spatter littered the living room carpet, nearly-dried blood covered the kitchen floor and blood smears were found in a hallway and in the bathtub. The victim couldn’t provide any information and didn’t remember being assaulted, though he had called a friend saying he had been robbed. It was the friend who called 911. The victim was taken to Harborview for further treatment.

*On the 14th, an Arbor Heights resident called 911 to report that a running vehicle had been parked on the street for a suspicious amount of time. An officer responded and found two people asleep inside. One was wanted on a $10,000 felony warrant for possession of a stolen vehicle. He was booked into King County Jail.

*Just after midnight on the 9th, officers encountered a vehicle parked illegally in the 4700 block of 25th SW. Inside, they could see two individuals and the recurring spark of a lighter (a sign of drug use). A records check showed that the car’s owner was associated with narcotic possession and prostitution. Due to recent burglaries, drug problems and car prowls in the area, officers decided to investigate. The driver game them a false name, refused to obey orders, and was taken into custody. The car’s interior was “in total disarray”, with $20 bills lying on the floor seat and dashboard and tin foil squares throughout. The driver carried a meth pipe. The passenger admitted to smoking heroin just before officers arrived. She was cooperative and honest and released from the scene. The driver was booked into King County Jail for investigation of drug violations and false reporting.

*A pair in a dark blue Honda Accord are suspected of mail theft in both West Seattle and Tacoma. On the 9th they were spotted in the 4000 block of 42nd SW and near 35th and Juneau. They are described as an Asian woman in her 20s with long dark hair, dark eyeglasses, a dark, puffy, fur-lined hooded jacket and a larger dark-skinned (possibly black) man.

(More details on an incident reported here last week:) *On the 21st, video cameras recorded the theft of an 11-meter boat, its 40-foot Maaco trailer, and a 1987 Freightliner cab and tractor it had been attached to. The theft occurred after several people broke into a work yard in the 1400 block of S. Henderson.

EDITOR’S NOTES: Remember, the CRISIS CLINIC hotline is a resource for those in crisis, including thoughts or acts of self-harm, or trying to find help for someone in crisis: 206.461.3222 … Previous WSBeat roundups are archived here. We also publish crime reports when we get tips or otherwise hear about noteworthy incidents – they don’t all turn up on the scanner, so please don’t be shy about letting us know when you see/hear something happening = calling or texting 206-293-6302 is the best way.

15 Replies to "The WSBeat: What else turned up in the police files..."

  • West Seattle Wanderer January 30, 2013 (5:33 am)

    ” The passenger admitted to smoking heroin just before officers arrived. She was cooperative and honest and released from the scene.”

    Am I the only one who thinks there is something wrong with this?

  • MercyMoi January 30, 2013 (6:39 am)

    I wonder if the story of the guy who originally reported a mugger stabbing him was the guy hurt on Delridge recently, who took 15 mins to call the police about the stabbing. It would be nice to know if it was his girlfriend since several people were upset about the random nature of the assault.

  • RG January 30, 2013 (7:05 am)

    “Due to recent burglaries, drug problems and car prowls in the area, officers decided to investigate.”
    Otherwise, they would have done what… left?

  • kayo January 30, 2013 (7:17 am)

    West seattle wanderer. I agree completely, especially because this was a block from my house! Yikes. Prostituting and smoking heroin is not enough to at least get hauled off to jail these days? I shake my head.

    That brawl in North Admiral sounds crazy. High schoolers I am guessing? Do their parents know what they were doing? Apparently not.

  • onceachef January 30, 2013 (9:43 am)

    Do the parents know what they’re doing…the parents are busy smoking crack somewhere….c’mon!

  • J January 30, 2013 (11:17 am)

    It’s time to get rid of all unauthorized encampments near 1st ave bridge and surrounding greenbelts. The encampment which is viewable on the right a you drive south on the bridge out on the”island” has been there more than two years! Get rid of Nicklesville while we’re at it and watch highland park car prowls plummet.

  • Christopher January 30, 2013 (12:25 pm)

    What have YOU done to help make Nicklesville unnecessary?

  • Heather January 30, 2013 (12:41 pm)

    And on a lighter note I tried the shoo fly pie @ Shoo Fly Pies on CA the other day. With a little home made whipped cream, which they had, it was by far the most delicious thing I’d eaten all week! Yum!

  • waterworld January 30, 2013 (12:41 pm)

    WSWanderer and Kayo: From what it says here, the driver is the only person the officers had any basis to arrest in that situation. It does not appear from the description that the passenger was in possession of any heroin or other narcotics when the police arrived. Her admission of having used it is not sufficient to prove possession under the law. (Possession of drugs, distribution, manufacture, etc. are crimes; having used a drug is not a crime.)

    As for the prostitution, the fact of a history of prostitution is not a basis to arrest. The officers could have arrested someone for that if there was evidence that one of them, or both, were engaged in a prostitution-related crime at the time the police encountered them, but the story doesn’t say that was going on.

  • Jim P. January 30, 2013 (2:04 pm)

    “An officer explained that the caregiver had taken on the expense at her own risk and that if she refused to return the dog to the owner, she would be charged with theft.”

    Wait…the woman admitted she is stealing the dog to the officer and he did not arrest her on the spot?

    What am I missing here?

  • waterworld January 30, 2013 (7:06 pm)

    Jim P.: Officers are not always required to arrest a person who appears to have engaged in a crime. There are many situations where an officer has discretion and can choose not to make an arrest. Arrest or no arrest, the person can still be prosecuted. In the situation described here, if the officer believes the alleged perpetrator does not pose a danger to the community, the officer can collect identification and contact information and write up the incident report later. The report then goes to the prosecutor’s office to be reviewed. If the prosecutor decides to file charges, a summons is issued and sent to the defendant’s address. The summons says that charges have been filed and directs the defendant to be in court on a specific date to be arraigned.

    The thing about this incident is that, from what the story says, the dog was not stolen from the owner by the caregiver: one way or another, the dog was “placed in her care.” The issues seem to be (a) whether the owner is required to reimburse the caregiver the cost of veterinary care he says he did not authorize, and (b) whether the caregiver is entitled to keep the dog unless and until the owner pays the bill (or maybe even regardless of whether the owner is willing to pay the bill).

  • Jim P. January 30, 2013 (11:00 pm)

    That’s cool, you can admit theft to an officer and get to keep the property in question. Nice racket but a bit rough on the dog and the real owner.

    The problem, to me is she admitted to the cop’s face she stole the dog.
    ” ..if she refused to return the dog to the owner, she would be charged with theft..The caregiver said, “Fine,” and decided to keep the dog. ”

    I wasn’t aware a thief was allowed a choice in retaining stolen property. Not the officer said “would be” charged, not “might be”, rather a large difference. I hope the dog owner goes after the city if her animal is harmed by this woman.

    Car thieves should try this. “I took care of his car, he owes me $1200 for detailing it and he can’t have it back until he pays.” Officer “Oh, OK. Here’s a case number, you two work this out and let us know how it goes.”

    Being admittedly in possession of stolen property and having the cop just give you a case number just doesn’t sound either fair or proper to me.

  • waterworld January 30, 2013 (11:24 pm)

    Jim: I am not assuming that the caregiver will get to keep the dog. I assume there are facts we don’t know about why the officer did not take the dog from the caregiver. I was responding to your question about why she wasn’t arrested on the spot. I think the comparison to car thieves misses the mark, because from what I read here, the caregiver did not steal the dog — someone brought it to her to take care of it. This sounds more like a situation where someone takes his car to the shop and the mechanic does more work than was authorized. The mechanic wants to hold the car until he gets paid; the car owner wants the car back without paying for the unauthorized work.

  • Ajax January 31, 2013 (2:37 am)

    It’s pretty disgusting that this has turned into an argument about property rights and the definition of theft and not about which person can better provide a good home for the dog. Par for the course when animals are considered property under the law.

  • RG January 31, 2013 (6:51 am)

    Ajax, I don’t think they’re arguing. I think they’re just trying to make sense of what happened.

Sorry, comment time is over.