day : 07/02/2014 10 results

West Seattle schools: Roxhill scholars on the move, with basketball, skating visitors

February 7, 2014 11:56 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

From Roxhill Elementary School, Chellie Lafayette shares reports and photos from “two cool events”:

We had the pleasure of welcoming two of the U of W women’s basketball players, who came to teach our 3rd-5th graders about basketball and Girls and Women in Sports Week. Kassia Fortier and Mathilde Gilling (top photo) were the student athletes that joined us.

And on wheels …

We also have a primary grade morning sports group that is run by a Coach Across America volunteer from the U of W, Steven Truong. This week he brought in coaches from Skate Like a Girl. I am excited to extend this partnership in the future.

News at YOUR school? Share it here!

Neighbor Appreciation Day tomorrow: 3 fire stations to tour

February 7, 2014 11:05 pm
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 |   Highland Park | Sunrise Heights | Triangle | West Seattle news

(Neighbor Appreciation Day at Station 37, photographed in 2011 by Cliff DesPeaux for WSB)
Going through football withdrawal? There’s lots to keep you busy this weekend. One thing we’re reminding you about quickly right now: Three West Seattle fire stations are open for tours 11 am-1 pm Saturday as part of the city’s Neighbor Appreciation Day: Station 11 in Highland Park at 16th/Holden, Station 32 in The Junction at 38th/Alaska, and Station 37 in Sunrise Heights at 35th/Holden. It’s your chance to get an up-close look WITHOUT having an emergency in your neighborhood!

West Seattle Crime Watch: One bike stolen, another found

In West Seattle Crime Watch tonight – first, a bicycle stolen late today:

Frank at Thunder Road Guitars (WSB sponsor) says that bicycle belongs to one of his customers and was taken from outside his shop at 3916 California SW about 4:30 pm today: “It’s a pretty expensive bike and a big loss for a 14-year-old kid.” If you find it, please contact police.

Meantime, Sarah reported finding this bike last weekend by her home on 106th SW near the Shorewood Grocery:

She was considering turning it in to the King County Sheriff’s Office last we heard. If you recognize it, comment here.

Ferry followup: WSF boss apologizes for Monday’s cancellations

Back on Monday, you might recall, early-morning runs were canceled on the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route, which then was on a one-boat-short schedule until noon, leading to backups. It wasn’t a case of post-Super Bowl sickout, and it was no last-minute surprise, confirmed WSF boss David Moseley in his weekly “newsletter” today:

I want to apologize to customers of the Fauntleroy/Southworth/Vashon Island (triangle) route for the service disruption experienced on Monday morning when we went to a two-boat sailing schedule due to a lack of available crew. We had vessel maintenance and crew training scheduled for Monday and when we realized that we could not cover shifts, we should have canceled training and asked that the crews to report to the vessel. I have made it clear that should this same situation occur in the future, we need to prioritize service.

WSDOT tweeted that morning that 200 calls had been made but fill-ins couldn’t be found. The tweet mentioned maintenance but not training.

West Seattle schools: Dr. Robert Gary Jr. now Madison Middle School’s permanent principal

February 7, 2014 3:25 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

Thanks to the Madison Middle School parent who just shared the memo from Superintendent José Banda: Seven months after becoming interim principal at Madison, Dr. Robert Gary Jr. now has the permanent job.

I am pleased to announce that Dr. Robert Gary, Jr. has been appointed the permanent Principal for Madison Middle School. He has been serving as Interim Principal since July 2013 and has quickly built a good relationship with staff, students and families who have described him as hard-working, fair, kind, organized and with high standards.

Dr. Gary originally came to Madison from the District’s Interagency Academy and Skills Center, where he served as co-principal during the 2011-13 school year. Robert Gary immediately demonstrated his commitment to building a multi-tiered system of support to ensure that every student is ready for high school after his or her eighth grade year, proving to be a great fit for the Madison community.

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As-it-happened coverage: Serial burglar Sean Jeardoe sentenced to 3+-year prison sentence with mandatory drug treatment

2:16 PM: We’re in the courtroom of King County Superior Court Judge Catherine Shaffer, who is presiding right now over the sentencing hearing for 21-year-old Sean Jeardoe. We first reported on his case after his arrest in a stolen truck in the West Seattle Thriftway parking lot last summer; he was not charged immediately, but was arrested again in connection with multiple other cases. As reported here in December, he confessed to 22 burglaries, not just in West Seattle, but in other areas of King County, and struck a deal to plead guilty to 14 charges – eight of them residential burglaries, plus three auto-theft-related charges and three gun-theft charges. The recommended sentence is eight and a half years. We’ll update as this goes.

2:20 PM: The prosecutor says some of his victims are in court and six letters have been submitted to the judge as well. (This was originally scheduled for a different judge, but as we noticed while covering another case last week, the sentencing calendars sometimes move around.) There’s now a short delay because the judge has ordered the defendant be unshackled for the proceedings. A second courthouse deputy had to be called; he said that it’s policy for the restraints NOT to be removed for this type of hearing, but she ordered it anyway.

The prosecutor says Jeardoe actually eventually confessed to 31 burglaries. “Coming into this from a negotiation standpoint, the state acknowledges he has no (felony) history. He appears to have a drug addiction….” He mentions that Jeardoe pointed out much of what he did; the judge asks if he helped them get some victims’ property back. Some, yes, the prosecutor says, but “there are still countless pieces of jewelry that have been melted down or gone off into pawn shops …” He now mentions that a residential burglary affects a victim forever, with sense of security, separate from whether the items can be replaced. “Based on the number of crimes and magnitude of this crime spree, the state is NOT recommending the low-end sentence or a prison-based (drug treatment) DOSA sentence.”

Before hearing from victims, the judge says she has something to say: “Mr.Jeardoe by operation of law gets credit for the time he’s already served – six months – so the maximum sentence I have to impose is 8 years … and (he will be) eligible for up to 50 percent ‘good time,’ so his sentence could be as low as 4 years. … So whatever age he’s going to be when released, I have to think about … what will protect the community.” She says she’s “looking seriously” at the drug-treatment-sentence request of the defense, which would be a mid-range sentence, and once he’s out, if he messes up again, he will have to go back for the rest of the full term. Now, she says, she welcomes victims to speak, now that they know what she’s thinking.

2:30 PM: Now a man whose home was broken into and vehicle stolen last August is speaking. “I hope Mr. Jeardoe realizes that not all the damage he’s done can be expressed in dollars and cents.” He speaks of losing items that were of great sentimental value, as well as financial records, house and vehicle keys, information that could make him vulnerable to ID theft. That said, he says he realizes that Jeardoe is a young man and hopefully can turn his life around.

The defense lawyer says Jeardoe’s history of addiction “was based in his childhood.” She calls attention to the fact his crime spree was over a matter of months but says his addiction is a serious problem and if not dealt with, he could wind up back in these straits again. Now Jeardoe’s father is speaking. He thanks victims for coming to court. He says they adopted him as a baby and he was subject to alcohol and drugs “in utero” but says that is no excuse. He has long been getting counseling for substance abuse, Jeardoe’s father says, and also mentions he spent a year in intensive treatment out of state and ‘did very well’ but relapsed upon returning here. He says his son needs to pay for his crimes but also needs some sort of “mandatory drug treatment.”

2:35 PM: Jeardoe speaks, turning to the gallery and saying “I know it’s not enough to say I’m sorry …” as he apologizes. Judge Shaffer says she has seen many burglary victims: “It’s always devastating, always. …There’s this destroyed sense of security – people never really feel they can sleep securely after that.” What he was doing “was devastating,” she admonishes him. Especially stealing some items that “can’t be gotten back.” She mentions that one victim for which this was particularly devastating was a West Seattle man who he used to live across the street from, “and they couldn’t believe he would do this to them” – it roiled the whole neighborhood. “This is a big deal, you’ve done a lot of wrong here.” She tells him “the work of getting clean and sober” is the best way he can apologize. She asks him to prove to his victims he can do that hard work. She says, “I want all the victims to know the court takes what happened very seriously but I want to make sure there are no more victims in Mr. Jeardoe’s history.” She says DOSA is “not an easy way to go” and that if he doesn’t do well he will go right back into prison. And she orders it. So this means, according to what the prosecutor just said, his prison time will total less than half of what prosecutors had sought – 44.7 months. He would then be on probation (community custody) for a roughly equal time once he gets out. The treatment, she explains, will likely start closer to release. (DOSA – drug offender sentencing alternative – is explained here.) There also will be a hearing on restitution – “all the restitution the state can prove within (the next six months, per law)” – for victims.

Design Review play-by-play: Why 3210 California SW wasn’t approved at meeting #4

(EDITOR’S NOTE: We briefly reported the decision, immediately afterward, last night; now, the meeting details)

(Click image to see larger view)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The Southwest Design Review Board seemed to have six and a half years on its all-volunteer members’ shoulders by the time its two-project meeting hit the four-hour mark last night, before a fifth review was recommended for 3210 California SW.

No one seems to have an easy role in Seattle’s unique Design Review program. It often provides the only public meetings regarding sizable developments, and that frustrates community members who want to speak out about more than the design, considering they are the ones who ultimately will be living with the results. Architects and developers bring a project to the table without knowing what changes will be recommended and whether the process will run months or more than a year, costly in more than one way. The five volunteer board members get conflicting messages about how much authority they have to order changes, and have to make their decisions in a theater-in-the-round environment, with affected parties usually staring daggers at them from all sides. (Those aren’t even all the stakeholders.)

And then, some projects have long, controversy-pocked backstories, like this one, rooted in a block-long upzoning requested in 2007 (hence our “6 1/2-year” allusion above), contested by neighbors, finalized in 2010 (all WSB coverage is reverse-chronologically archived here), then affected by a Department of Planning and Development rule change in 2012.

That rule change, as well as the backstory, was discussed extensively last week at a community meeting outside the Design Review process, a meeting scheduled after neighbors petitioned the city for it. (Here’s our report on that meeting, held January 29th at the Senior Center of West Seattle, same location as last night’s Design Review session.)

Last week’s meeting did not involve the SWDRB, though at least one member reported attending. But it included a discussion of the board’s role/authority, and last night there was more muscle-flexing as the board told the project team to come back for a fifth review – something that hasn’t happened here since the Admiral Safeway project, which came before the board (different membership then, though the same city planner was on that project and this one, Michael Dorcy) five times between September 2008 and February 2010.

At one point during the board deliberations last night, architect Boyd Pickrell from Nicholson-Kovalchick implored the board to offer directions and conditions so the project could move ahead.

Board members, however, indicated they saw shortcomings too big to do that.

Here’s how it unfolded:

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You can help! Local parent seeking bucks for bikes so more kids can ride

(Photo courtesy Theresa Beaulieu, from 2013 “Denny-Lincoln Classic” ride)
It’s a matter of health, safety, and fun! Denny International Middle School parent Theresa Beaulieu is trying to get more kids on bikes – and is hoping you’ll chip in:

For the last couple of years, I have been working hard in trying to get more students to ride their bikes to school. We have a very long backup of cars that pull in and drop their kids off in the front of the school every morning and I would like to see less cars and more bikes and walkers. We have been awarded Safe Routes to School mini-grants through SDOT for the last two years that have given us the funds to host Doughnut and Fruit days for kids who ride their bikes. These days are to encourage them. We also were able to have our new annual Denny-Lincoln Classic family bike ride that we started last year, that included t-shirts for each rider, designed by a sixth grader.

I have been working with the Major Taylor Project coordinator to get a cycling after-school program started to teach students the rules of the road, how to ride safely, and bicycle maintenance. This would be a similar program that they have going on at Chief Sealth, our shared-campus high school. This could also lead into an earn-a-bike program in the winter months. The idea is to start the kids off at Denny on Mountain bikes and then they could transition to the road bikes they have at Sealth. I was encouraged after reading the reports about the Kimball Elementary teacher who raised over 20K in funds to purchase the whole school with Seahawks jerseys so I started my own GoFundMe site. … Our school consists of many students from low-income families who don’t have access to bikes. This would give those kids and other kids the opportunity to ride. The bikes we want to purchase will be used for the after-school program and offered for the Denny-Lincoln Classic bike ride to students who have taken the after-school class. They would be stored at the school and maintained by the students themselves.

So if one community could raise $25,000 for jerseys, certainly ours can muster $8,000 for bikes! Here’s the link again. And there’s a deadline now – the money needs to be raised by March 15th to get the program started this spring.

West Seattle Friday: 7 highlights, books to bagpipes to Big Band

February 7, 2014 9:04 am
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 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

Thanks to Mark Wangerin for the photo of sanderlings; he says, “Now that the tide is lower during daylight hours, sanderlings are frequently seen south of the Alki Lighthouse. They are perhaps the most common and frequent sandpipers to visit our shores.” Might be a little cold for beachwalking today, though. Here are seven indoor highlights from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

TODDLER INDOOR GYM: Too cold to run around outside? Bring your toddler to Southwest Teen Life Center 11 am-2 pm. (NOT a drop-off situation – you’ll need to stay with her/him.) Details in our calendar listing. (2801 SW Thistle)

LYANDA LYNN HAUPT @ WORDS, WRITERS, WEST SEATTLE: The ongoing first-Friday series of author events presented by the Southwest Seattle Historical Society at West Seattle’s Barnes & Noble bookstore is 4-6 pm today, featuring Lyanda Lynn Haupt and her newest book “The Urban Bestiary.” It’s all about our lives co-existing with urban wildlife. Here’s our preview. (Westwood Village, Barton side)

‘ROBBIE BURNS NIGHT’ AT HPIC CORNER BAR: First Friday of the month is always Corner Bar night at Highland Park Improvement Club, and this one is extra-special, with a Scottish theme – in food, drink, and music, starting with bagpipes @ 6 pm. Details in our listing. (12th/Holden)

SWING DANCING, WEST SEATTLE BIG BAND @ MADISON: Tonight’s the night – the West Seattle Big Band joins musicians at Madison Middle School for a night of swing dancing and music, starting with lessons at 6 pm; more details here – fun for the whole family. Benefit for Madison Music Boosters.

ALKI ELEMENTARY PRESENTS ‘DISNEY’S ALADDIN JR.’: Students perform at 7 pm tonight in the West Seattle High School Theater – details in our calendar listing, including how to check if tickets are still available. (3000 California SW)

‘THE LITTLE DOG LAUGHED’: 7:30 pm curtain tonight for ArtsWest‘s current production; details in our calendar listing. (4711 California SW)

BEARD BROTHERS: They’re live tonight at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor), 9:30 pm. FL website says: “Not only are they world-class musicians playing classic rock in a semi acoustic setting, they’ll blow your mind with how three guys can pull off Led Zeppelin’s epic ‘Kashmir.’ Standing ovation every time.” (6451 California SW)

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Frozen Friday edition

Good morning! No out-of-the-ordinary incidents so far; we start with the bridge cameras:

More cameras, including Viaduct views, are on the WSB Traffic page.

Buses from the Fauntleroy ferry dock will likely be fuller today because the Vashon Water Taxi isn’t running this morning.

The weather’s still colder than usual – mid-20s right now – but the National Weather Service has canceled its weeklong alert for our area, and says we’ll be warming toward more-normal conditions as the weekend proceeds.

8:29 AM: Crash reported on northbound 99 around the south end of the elevated section. Doesn’t sound major but we’re monitoring.