month : 02/2014 308 results

West Seattle Green Space Coalition to rally at Genesee Hill ex-substation tomorrow

Before (or while) sporting Seahawks blue and green tomorrow, you’re invited to join the West Seattle Green Space Coalition in a rally.

On Sunday at noon (before the Super Bowl game), according to coalition leader Mary Fleck, “neighbors at 50th Ave SW & Dakota will be tying ribbons around the trees at the Dakota St. surplus substation to express the neighbors’ love for the wooded, green space.”

According to a detailed announcement on the Genesee-Schmitz Neighborhood Council mailing list, it’s feared that Seattle City Light will remove the trees and shrubbery from the site soon as it continues what it says are cleanup operations at surplus ex-substations around the area – though it has not yet presented the City Council with its recommendations of what to do with the sites, 6 of which are in West Seattle. The sites in Pigeon Point and Highland Park already have had vegetation removed, and Fleck has filed complaints with the city saying it was done without permits/reviews.

Most other ex-substation sites around the city sold in recent years have gone to residential developers; the Genesee Hill site that’s the focus of tomorrow’s rally is just under 10,000 square feet and is zoned residential, SF (single-family) 5000. The WSGSC wants the utility to slow the disposition process to increase the possibility some sites might be preserved as greenspace.

WSB site note: Sorry about the outage!

Our apologies for WSB having been mostly unreachable for more than an hour this evening. Thanks to those who checked to make sure we knew – our 24-hour hotline, 206-293-6302, text or voice, is the best way to reach us with something urgent. Downtime is rare – our last major problem was almost five months ago – but if WSB ever doesn’t come up for you, please check our main social-media channels – Facebook ( – if you “friended” us in the early days at, please note the “WS Blog” page is long-decommissioned, so you need to “like” WSB at /westseattleblog instead) and Twitter ( We also have a blog-format backup site at Thanks for your patience and support!

West Seattle whale watching: Orcas not too far away

February 1, 2014 3:24 pm
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 |   Seen at sea | West Seattle news | Wildlife

There’s a chance we will see orcas off our shores before the day’s out, according to sightings reported on the Orca Network Facebook page – they’ve been seen as close as south Bainbridge Island. Conflicting reports about which direction they’re heading, so we’re sharing this alert just in case. Please let us know if you see them from West Seattle – 206-293-6302 is our breaking-news line, text or voice any time – thanks!

West Seattle Crime Watch: South Delridge robbery, search

(WSB photos, added 1:44 pm)
1:02 PM: Police are looking right now for someone who is reported to have held up or tried to hold up a neighborhood grocery store in the 9000 block of 16th SW. He is described as a white man, about 18 years old, six feet tall, heavy, with a white hoodie and blue jeans, and a “small black gun,” last seen heading eastbound on Henderson. More as we get it.

1:10 PM: From scanner – the robber might be in the company of a young woman about the same age, also in a white hoodie, possibly carrying a guitar case. A K-9 team has arrived to help with the search.

1:49 PM: The K-9 team reported the trail ran out between two nearby houses, and has departed. No word of arrests so far.

Video: See Guardian One’s aerial view of auto-theft suspect on the run in West Seattle

Following up on our as-it-happened coverage from last night – the King County Sheriff’s Office Air Support Unit has published video with the Guardian One helicopter’s infrared view of last night’s stolen-SUV incident southwest of The Junction. The audio is exactly what could be heard on the scanner as this all moved toward the 4800 block of 47th SW, including the stolen Chevrolet Tahoe crashing through a fence and its driver running. We’re checking to see if we can find out more about him. Thanks to commenter Lola for spotting the video and sharing word of it in the 140+-comment thread following last night’s coverage. Again, as police confirmed to us on the scene last night and reiterated in today’s SPD Blotter summary, they were alerted to the stolen vehicle by a LoJack signal – here’s the explanation of how that works.

P.S. We’re still checking into the record of the 32-year-old man booked into jail for investigation of burglary and auto theft. It’s long. Will add details as we pull them out.

2:56 PM UPDATE: Most of his record – 38 cases in the Washington State court-system files – is from outside King County (mostly Pierce County) so the documents are not so easy to come by. The most recent King County Superior Court cases is from 2008, when charges were filed in a 2005 Bellevue “trafficking in stolen property” case. A pickup truck stolen in Bellevue was found – but minus UW Huskies football season tickets that had been in the truck. The tickets were sold to someone via Craigslist, and that’s how detectives tracked down this man – who already by that point had a record including assault, theft, drugs, and forgery – and a female accomplice.

Meantime, back on 47th SW, as noted in comments, neighbors banded together today and did some cleanup, including putting temporary fencing up around a pool that the stolen pickup almost crashed into:

After we visited the neighborhood and took that photo, we heard from neighbor Jeff, who said he found evidence of the gunshot that many neighbors heard last night – he sent this photo:

Jeff said, “I’m the neighbor whose yard he ran through and this is my gate this morning. I could dig the bullet out of the post with a little patience.” We’ll continue to follow up on this case.

West Seattle Saturday: Super Bowl Eve and more

February 1, 2014 10:57 am
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 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

Here a 12, there a 12, everywhere a 12 … Thanks to Gary Jones for sharing that photo of the Alki Point Lighthouse shining a beacon of Seahawks spirit.

For the full list of what’s up today/tonight, we point you to the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar – which includes:

*Help with college applications, 1-6 pm @ West Seattle Library (2306 42nd SW)

*Lunar New Year celebration (lion dance, and more) @ Pho Aroma at 2 pm (Delridge/Findlay)

*West Seattle Meaningful Movies presents “Broken on All Sides,” 7 pm at Neighborhood House’s High Point Center (6400 Sylvan Way SW)

*Still getting ready for your Super Bowl party? Check our special West Seattle Super Bowl page for takeout deals, decorations, or where to watch the game (including all-ages and non-bar venues) if you’re NOT having a party.

Update: Crash on 35th SW cleared

(Photo shared by Laura via Facebook)
8:40 AM: Thanks to the tipster who just texted about this: If you’re heading southbound out on 35th SW any time soon, there’s a 2-car crash at 35th and Austin (map).

8:47 AM UPDATE: This is affecting traffic in both directions; we’re off to check.

9:09 AM UPDATE: Added a photo.

(WSB photo by Patrick Sand)
No serious injuries reported. As the photo shows, it’s right by the Sunrise Heights business district, and tow trucks are already starting to clear the scene; in the meantime, there’s one lane open on the east side of the road, and police were working to make sure buses could get through.

9:23 AM UPDATE: Thanks to Laura for sharing the photo we’ve added atop the story, an overview of the scene fairly early on.

9:46 AM: Just went back to check; the scene is now clear.

High-school swimming: Chief Sealth wins meet vs. WSHS

February 1, 2014 8:35 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

Friday was a big night for high-school sports, starting with swimming – last dual meet of the year for Chief Sealth International High School, as Trisha Montemayor reports:

Chief Sealth hosted West Seattle, winning the meet. It was Senior Night for Sealth, recognizing the following seniors: Carlos Montemayor, Michael Stewart, John Woefel, Chris Rodriquez, Anthony George, Danica Langaynor, Kenaia Neumann, Rachel Varney and Katy Carter.

Here are the results:

(If you can’t see the embedded document above, view it as PDF by clicking here.) Metro League competition is Friday-Saturday, February 7-8; Trisha notes, “Chief Sealth will be will be well-represented at this meet.”

West Seattle traffic alert: Low bridge back to normal operation, post-dredging

Just confirmed by SDOT: The Spokane Street Swing Bridge (aka the West Seattle “low bridge”) is back to normal operations after dredging put it out of vehicle/bike/pedestrian service for about four hours.