West Seattle, Washington
Toward the end of a busy news day, we’re taking a moment to look ahead to something cool: Your next chance to jump into the new West Seattle Timebank. As organizer Tamsen Spengler puts it, “We build community, one hour at a time.” You can be part of that community-building by joining the Timebank (here’s how it works) – and if you can spare a little time tomorrow (Wednesday) night, it’s the perfect chance to get going. That’s the next West Seattle Timebank orientation; you don’t have to commit, go meet the people and think about what you need and what you can offer! 6:30 pm potluck, 7 pm meeting, Senior Center of West Seattle. Questions? email@example.com
P.S. Special presentation Wednesday by West Seattle Be Prepared!
(Crash scene viewed from east side of 35th; photo substituted for original cameraphone image)
7:17 PM: A crash at 35th/Henderson has injured at least two people and brought a sizable “automobile-rescue” response from Seattle Fire. We’re on the way.
7:27 PM UPDATE: Our crew says the crash involves an SUV and a car, in the median just north of the intersection; 35th is blocked both ways. Early radio exchanges suggest neither victim is believed to have life-threatening injuries.
7:52 PM: SFD Lt. Sue Stangl told us at the scene that the two drivers would be taken to Harborview by private ambulance to be checked out. The scene will be cleared sooner rather than later since no major injuries are involved and that means the Traffic Collision Investigation Squad won’t be called out.
(UPDATED with first official info from police – scroll or click to end of story)
6:09 PM: We’ve just learned that police are investigating another case of a “flasher” near a local school. This time, it was reported by two students from Madison Middle School. According to the mother of one of the students, the man was exposing/touching himself while in a car, with the door open, near 45th and Andover (map), about two blocks south of Madison, around 2:45 pm. She says he was described as a “30-something white male, dark hair, heavyset. Black, small 4-door sedan in poor condition.”
We are trying to reach police to see if they believe it’s linked to any of the previous recent incidents in West Seattle. (P.S. If you are just catching up with the day’s other news, that was 6 hours after rapist Michael S. Stanley was booked into jail, so there’s no chance it was him.)
6:28 PM UPDATE: And now we’re getting word of an incident outside Westside School (WSB sponsor) today as well – one of the schools targeted in earlier incidents. Multiple parents just tipped us – here’s an excerpt from the note that went home:
I regret that I must write to inform our Westside Families of another incident that happened at school today. This afternoon, several Middle School girls were playing near the fence along 32nd Ave. A man drove up, stayed in his car and began to touch himself inappropriately. The girls immediately walked away from the fence, notified an adult and were not in any physical danger. Staff were present on the playground and observant of the students. Parents of each of the girls involved have been contacted personally by the school.
Our primary concern is to keep your children safe at school and in the community. Our playground perimeter is fenced and secure, and we have video cameras in place. We have adults with children at all times on our playgrounds and in school. Just as in the previous incident, we are cooperating fully with law enforcement and will provide as much information as possible to support them in finding this individual and preventing him from engaging in this type of activity. We will also communicate with our colleagues at other schools that have been affected by recent similar events.
Those incidents were (links go to our coverage):
It should be noted, police have never said whether any or all of those are believed to be related.
Thanks to Carolyn Newman for the photo of the Greenpeace flagship Rainbow Warrior passing West Seattle earlier today. It’s docked at Pier 66, but it’s not here for a protest – it’s here on an official, pre-scheduled visit, and will be offering tours on the downtown waterfront this weekend – details here.
Before we get to today’s advice on what to put into your “Go Bag” in honor of Washington State Diaster Preparedness Month – one last reminder about a meeting tonight at which you can find out about other ways to prepare yourself and your neighborhood: The West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network will focus on preparedness resources during its monthly meeting, 6:30 tonight at the Southwest Precinct (Delridge/Webster). Everybody’s welcome!
Now, today’s get-it-in-your-bag advice, from West Seattle Be Prepared:
So far, you may have been able to fill your bag with things you have had sitting around the house. This time, you might have to go out to get this one – today you should put cash money into your kit. Recommended is about $100, and in small bills, no larger than $20 are best. This will allow you to purchase at stores even if their card-reader systems are not back on line.
Just getting started? Catching up? Planning to get started? Items 1 (the bag itself) through 20 are archived in reverse-chronological order here.
(Photo by Tony Bradley)
1:36 PM: We’re getting word that a car-motorcycle crash at East Marginal Way South and South Spokane Street (map) involves a fatality. That’s according to Seattle Fire via Twitter; the motorcycle rider was killed, while the car’s 55-year-old driver is being taken to a hospital “as a precaution.” More to come.
(Photo by WSB co-publisher Patrick Sand)
4:05 PM: Investigators are still at the scene, so motor vehicles should avoid the area (bike path unaffected).
8:07 PM: Seattle Police have just published an update via SPD Blotter, saying they believe the motorcycle rider, 24 years old, was speeding:
… Preliminary investigation indicates that a 24-year-old man was driving his white Yamaha motorcycle southbound on East Marginal Way South at a high rate of speed and passing vehicles using the bicycle lane. As the motorcyclist approached South Spokane Street he struck a green Isuzu Trooper SUV that had been travelling southbound on East Marginal Way South and was initiating a westbound turn onto South Spokane Street. The force of the collision caused the motorcyclist to be thrown from his motorcycle, and he subsequently sustained fatal injuries.
Fire department medics responded and pronounced the motorcyclist deceased at the scene. King County Medical Examiner’s Office personnel responded and took custody of the deceased man.
The 50-year-old driver of the Isuzu was transported to Harborview Medical Center via ambulance for precautionary reasons. Officers evaluated the driver of the Isuzu for signs of impairment; none were detected. …
The motorcycle rider has not been identified; his name isn’t likely to be made available by the Medical Examiner’s Office before tomorrow.
(MID-AFTERNOON UPDATE: Scroll/click ahead to bottom of story; building’s now mostly gone)
12:28 PM: As of noon, the western building on the heart-of-The-Junction development site was more than half gone. This one has far more history than the eastern building, which was torn down first; the one on the southeast corner of California/Alaska was the home of West Seattle Hospital for years, with multiple families welcoming new additions each day during the peak of the baby boom. Click ahead for photos and video from earlier this morning, when the facade started coming down (update: more images added @ 3 pm):
(UPDATE/EDITOR’S NOTE: Police now say Stanley is under investigation for sexual assault – scroll down for newest info)
9:50 AM: Just published on SPD Blotter:
Seattle police have arrested Sean Michael Stanley, a violent sex offender who fled Canada and entered the US earlier this month.
Just before 6 AM this morning, police received several reports that a man was yelling in an alley near the 2300 block of 44th Avenue SW in West Seattle.
One caller told police that when he’d asked the man to quiet down, the man had threatened to assault him.
When officers arrived at the scene, they Stanley, who became combative with officers and claimed he had a knife.
Officers found a small knife on Stanley, who appeared intoxicated, and booked him into the King County Jail for harassment.
ADDED 10:45 AM: First – in case you are wondering which alley in the 2300 block of 44th, police say it’s the one between California and 44th, behind the Admiral Theater (added: photo of the general area).
No word yet what he was doing in West Seattle; in case you haven’t seen the regional-media reports about Stanley, here’s one from the Seattle Times (WSB partner) published before today’s arrest. He is 48 years old and was out of prison in Canada after serving time for crimes including, reports the Times, “raping an 82-year-old woman who used a wheelchair and of luring and sexually assaulting two mentally challenged boys.”
On October 1st, he removed a monitoring device he had been ordered to wear, and eventually made his way to the U.S./Canada border crossing in Blaine, north of Bellingham. He turned up in Seattle last week and, while local authorities aren’t sure if he is required to register here – Canada didn’t even want him extradited – he did register as transient, saying he was living near Pike Place Market. Here is his page on the King County sex-offender registry site; we’ve added the photo from that page to this story.
11:07 AM: According to the King County Jail Register, Stanley was booked at 8:42 am and his bail is set at $1,000. He is listed on the register as Michael Shawn Stanley; the names/aliases listed on his sex-offender-registration page are Michael Sean Stanley, Michael A. Bigwolf, David Quintasket, Carl C. Youngpine. He is a U.S. citizen and entered the country on October 7th, according to Canadian reports. There’s more about his background in this story, which notes that he has a record with at least four dozen convictions.
11:39 AM: Since the charge on which he’s being held is a misdemeanor, it’s being handled by Seattle Municipal Court and the city attorney’s office, whose spokesperson Kimberly Mills says he is scheduled for arraignment tomorrow morning.
12:23 PM: Police now say Stanley is under investigation for a reported sexual assault just before his Admiral arrest early today. An update from SPD Blotter:
Shortly after arresting sex offender Michael Sean Stanley this morning, Seattle police received information that he may be the suspect in a sexual assault in West Seattle earlier today.
According to the report police received this morning, Stanley met a 16-year-old male at a grocery store, struck up a conversation with the teen, and walked with him to an alley in the 2400 block of 44th Ave. SW. In the alley, Stanley plied the teen with alcohol, grabbed the teen, and sexually assaulted him. The 16-year-old pulled a knife on Stanley and was able to run to another location and contact police.
Detectives believe this incident may have preceded several calls to police about noise and threats in the alleyway. After investigating those complaints this morning, officers arrested Stanley for harassment.
Stanley, who fled Canada and entered the US earlier this month, is currently in the King County Jail, but will be re-booked on additional charges today.
Stanley is currently registered as a sex offender and is under the supervision of the King County Sheriff’s Office. Authorities are now working to determine how this will impact his offender status.
Since attempted sexual assault is a felony, the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office will now be involved in the case; we’re checking with them regarding plans for a bail hearing – most likely won’t be before tomorrow.
3:32 PM: No new updates yet – the jail register still shows Stanley behind bars. He has been out of prison in Canada since April 2011. We haven’t found court documents for any of his cases but he does have a record in our state as well, dating up to the turn of the millennium. He had a King County Superior Court case from 1983 – when he would have been in his late teens – but the docket doesn’t cite the charge and the records are not available online.
MONDAY MORNING UPDATE, 10:05 AM: The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office tells WSB he has yet to be booked in the sexual-assault case, so he won’t be on the bail-hearing calendar for that today. He is in Seattle Municipal Court right now and citywide reporters say he has pleaded not guilty and that bail has just been set at $100,000. Separate story to come.
(WSB photo from October 2nd Sealth vs. WSHS game)
Last Saturday, the Huling Bowl … tomorrow, a rematch of division leaders in volleyball! Another West Seattle High School vs. Chief Sealth International High School game is coming up, and WSHS parent Laurie Sarver e-mailed us with an invitation/reminder for you to show up and support the schools’ athletes. Admission is free; it’s also Senior Night for four Wildcats players. The girls hit the court at 7 pm Wednesday night (October 23) in the WSHS gym (3000 California SW).
(East-facing camera on the West Seattle Bridge; see other cams on the WSB Traffic page)
Good morning! No scheduled road work to report for today. While we watch to see how your commute goes: In the ongoing-projects department, there’s a new photo from WSDOT, shared via Twitter, of the work going on at the future Highway 99 south portal, now that the tunnel-digging machine is making some progress:
The tunnel’s future south portal is coming together. pic.twitter.com/2RF5f5jcro
— Bertha (@BerthaDigsSR99) October 21, 2013
Here’s an overview of how the South Portal area will work.
At its quarterly meeting, the Morgan Community Association voted to support the new West Seattle Transportation Coalition, got an update on the about-to-be-built sewer-overflow-control project at Lowman Beach, heard about efforts to improve cleanliness and safety at Morgan Junction Park, discussed a new development – and that was just the start:
(WSB photo, taken the day after the MoCA meeting)
FRIENDS OF MORGAN JUNCTION PARKS: In addition to the volunteer work this group is doing, talk turned to those who loiter in Morgan Junction Park. Park volunteers say they have engaged the people who hang out, but so far the loiterers are not complying with trash rules. And they say not enough people are calling 911 when they see rulebreaking; more should be making those calls, for wider community representation. The behavior is getting worse, it appears – one week earlier, there was a big drinking party, and a big bonfire was started in the park; Seattle Fire came but police were never able to respond because that happened concurrently with the Westwood Village-area stabbings. To address this, MoCA is working with police to find an official sign to put up regarding, “Drinking is against the rules, here’s who to call.” Also call in matters of public safety – somebody passed out, someone injured … “Don’t be shy,” said Friends of MJP’s Tod Rodman. “It’s your park – if people are there, the bad stuff will (recede),” added FoMJP’s Barry White.
Back to the group’s main work: One more planting and mulching event will be happening in early November, an afternoon event after the Seahawks game, White said. “It’s been a great ride, and we’re getting more and more people involved.” The triangle park just north of West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor) had a great planting party recently with 20 volunteers from Peace Lutheran Church in Gatewood. The current planting project in the streetside strips by Thriftway is the store’s doing, it was revealed in subsequent discussion. Next, the Friends of MJP is going to look at the Fauntleroy/Juneau triangle property to find out how it can help.