West Seattle, Washington
8:34 PM: For the second night in a row, police are investigating reported gunfire in North Delridge. This time, according to an SPD tweet a few minutes ago, it’s reported near 23rd and Juneau (map), which would be near the north side of the Boren campus, which will be housing two schools, K-5 STEM and Arbor Heights Elementary, as of next month. As in last night’s case – around the same time of night, near Delridge/Brandon – so far, no injuries reported.
8:53 PM UPDATE: A woman who says she saw it happen told our crew the shots were fired from a red car heading north on 23rd just north of Juneau, and were aimed at four young men walking on the street. Again, no injuries reported.
They’re looking at bullet holes in at least two parked cars, one of which has a flat tire (photo above); police won’t say how many shots they think were fired, but the witness thinks it was at least 10.
Before we get to this weekend’s big Highway 99/Alaskan Way Viaduct closure (which continues north of the Viaduct for two days beyond that, WSDOT has announced some nighttime lane closures this week for prep work, starting tonight. Here’s the alert:
Drivers who use State Route 99 through Seattle’s SODO district should plan ahead for possible nighttime delays this week.
Contractor crews working for the Washington State Department of Transportation will close up to two lanes in both directions between Spokane and Atlantic streets nightly for pavement rehabilitation work.
The southbound lanes will begin closing at 9 p.m., and the northbound lanes will begin closing at 10 p.m. All lanes will be open by 5 a.m.
In addition to the weeknight closures, the eastbound West Seattle Bridge off-ramp to northbound SR 99 will close from 10 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21 until 5 a.m. Friday, Aug. 22.
The work will help prepare the roadway for the upcoming weekend closure of SR 99 in which 81 damaged concrete panels will either be repaired or replaced. The $10.08 million project on the south end of the Alaskan Way Viaduct will extend the life of SR 99 and provide a smoother, safer ride for drivers.
Jean Barton arrives at rally but has not spoken yet. pic.twitter.com/4d4eHMHwGE
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) August 18, 2014
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Jean Barton never did speak at the downtown rally called by housing-justice activists as a followup to the Friday arrests that removed her, her disabled husband, and one of their sons from the Morgan Junction house they long owned, as their foreclosure/eviction fight continues.
The activists, led by the group SAFE (Standing Against Foreclosure and Eviction), gathered this afternoon in Courthouse Park, to which they’d summoned the media; we were there along with regional-TV crews. While they engaged in chants denouncing King County Sheriff John Urquhart for the Friday arrests, Jean Barton arrived on the sidelines, and reporters/photographers converged.
She basically had a news conference steps away from where the advocates continued to shout and chant. She said that husband Byron Barton remains at the Seattle VA Hospital, but she wasn’t sure where she would be staying tonight, as she had been put up in a hotel for a few days but that was ending.
She also said, “As far as I am concerned, it is still our home.” Her lawyer explained that their lawsuit alleging illegal foreclosure (90-page PDF) continues to go through the courts, as does their appeal of the “unlawful detainer” complaint that resulted in their original official eviction exactly one month ago.
It was then announced via bullhorn that the protest would move over to the courthouse next door, where the KCSO is headquartered. Demonstrators marched back and forth in front of its 3rd Avenue entrances, while Jean Barton went inside to request a one-on-one meeting with the sheriff, who, as you can hear in our video, wasn’t there, she was told:
KCSO is charged with carrying out eviction orders regardless of whether they are in the jurisdiction of an agency such as the Seattle Police Department. After they evicted the Bartons on July 18th, the couple went back inside the house. SPD arrived on the scene and could have arrested them for alleged trespassing but did not; the following Monday, Mayor Murray announced he had asked SPD to “stand by” while the case played out in court.
After that, the company that bought the house at a foreclosure auction in April, Triangle Property Development, went to court to seek a “writ of mandamus” which would have ordered the city to take action. Last week, King County Superior Court Judge Mariane Spearman denied that request, saying it would have been an extraordinary action to order the city to do something in which it had discretion, while, she said, Triangle had other avenues available for getting possession of the house.
Then last Friday, KCSO showed up at the Morgan Junction house and carried out a search warrant it had obtained, signed by Superior Court Judge Helen Halpert, citing grounds that it had evidence a crime – trespassing – was happening in the house, and swept in around 8 am, arresting and removing the Bartons. Representatives of Triangle promptly occupied the house, saying they were readying it for a renter who would move in quickly. Byron Barton was reported to have been shuttled between the VA Hospital and Harborview before winding up at the former, and that brings us to what unfolded today. What’s next? We’ll continue watching court files, among other sources, to see.
Several days/nights a week, C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor) features live music, free admission. Today we have word of a show that C & P proudly announces as “kind of a big deal,” and seating is limited, with an admission charge, so here’s early word: Jon Auer, co-founder of The Posies, is playing at C & P 7-9 pm Thursday, August 28th, admission $21 – RSVP ASAP to email@example.com.
Just in via SPD Blotter:
A coffee-shop employee was beat up and robbed in the North Admiral neighborhood Monday morning while he waited for the store to open. The victim got to work, near 41st Avenue Southwest and Southwest Admiral Way, about 4 am, before the manager arrived. After he sat on the steps to read a tablet computer, three men approached and asked for money. The victim said he didn’t have any and the men began hitting him in the face and head. The robbers took the victim’s tablet, cell phone and bag, then fled. Officers arrived quickly and surrounded the area but did not find the (robbers). Medics treated the victim at the scene and gave him a ride home.
Though the item doesn’t identify the coffee shop, the only one at that corner is the Admiral Starbucks.
Another alert from SDOT – the “microsurfacing” work in Arbor Heights (and south Fauntleroy) is under way. You might already have seen the crews doing advance weed-clearing work along the roads in recent days. Here’s a larger map and full info. It’s been seven months since SDOT’s original announcement of this work.
SDOT has just sent out a general alert about crews repainting lines “on major arterial streets throughout the city” while the clear, dry weather lasts – 850 “lane miles” in all. Notes SDOT’s Marybeth Turner, “Re-marking the yellow, solid white and dashed white lines makes them easier to see, and the reflective beads in the paint also helps, enhancing safety.” The crews have already been through North Seattle and downtown, are in east Central Seattle now, and expected in our area later this week “where, if weather is favorable, they expect to complete striping in about three weeks.” The trucks carry signs warning you to keep away from the wet paint – please heed them!
9:37 AM: If you have a west-facing view and noticed the smoke by the Southworth ferry dock, it’s a house fire, according to a tweet from the Kitsap Sun. We got a call about it (thank you!) and are photographing the smoke from Constellation Park.
10:29 AM: The Sun reports firefighters say it’s “knocked down.” No other details yet but it is indeed close to the dock, according to this photo tweeted by a passenger:
House on fire from Southworth Ferry Terminal, WA. pic.twitter.com/MtsdUWzugz
— Jim Emery (@jimery) August 18, 2014
12:53 PM: Here’s the Kitsap Sun’s full story, plus a photo sent to us by Mark Dale:
(WSB photo: M/V Issaquah heading out from Fauntleroy this morning – the run is back to 3 boats today)
Getting down to the quieter weeks of summer – but not *entirely* quiet:
ONE WADING POOL, ONE SPRAYPARK: Most city wading pools’ seasons ended over the past few days, but Lincoln Park‘s wading pool remains open daily (weather permitting), 11 am-8 pm, through Labor Day – so that’s two more weeks. Same for Highland Park Spraypark, 11 am-8 pm through Labor Day. Addresses and other info here.
AFTERNOON BOOK GROUP: 2 pm at Southwest Branch Library; this month’s book is “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan” by Lisa See. No registration or previous participation required – just show up. (35th/Henderson)
P.S. for politics-watchers:
NO CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS FOR TWO WEEKS: If you keep watch on what the council and its committees are up to, you get a two-week break starting today – it’s the annual hiatus.
(WS bridge and Highway 99 views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
No major problems right now as the heart of the morning commute approaches. As reported here very early this morning, the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth ferry run is back to three boats. Here’s what’s ahead this week:
ROXBURY PAVING, TUESDAY: The city has already ground down SW Roxbury from 25th to 27th but needed dry weather to repave, so that’s now set for tomorrow.
HIGHWAY 99 CLOSURE, STARTING FRIDAY NIGHT: The stretch from the West Seattle Bridge to the Battery Street Tunnel will be closed both ways all weekend; from the tunnel to Valley Street, it will be closed late Friday night-early Wednesday morning. See maps/times here.
We noticed on Washington State Ferries‘ VesselWatch that the M/V Evergreen State, which broke down on Saturday, was back on the move as of earlier this hour – and now, WSF has sent official word that it’s back to the three-boat Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth for today’s morning commute:
Necessary repairs on the Evergreen State have been made and the route will return to the three boat schedule on Monday, August 18 beginning with the 4:05 am sailing from Vashon.
Without the Evergreen State, the “Triangle route” had been down to 2 boats all weekend, with long waits.