day : 07/01/2016 11 results

HELICOPTER UPDATE: Hour-long Highland Park situation ends with man in custody

(UPDATED midday Friday with police-report narrative)

11:20 PM: Advance alert that you might be hearing the Guardian One helicopter in Highland Park – police have been searching for a man who might have a gun, in the 8100 block of 11th SW. No injuries reported but a caller had reported a possible shot fired outside a house.

11:41 PM: As discussed in comments, the helicopter is still in the area. Per scanner, the possible shot was not confirmed, but the person who was the subject of the 911 call was reported to have a gun. Police have been tracking one person from the air; it’s not clear what’s happening on the ground.

12:19 AM: In case you haven’t seen this in comment discussion – police have made contact with the man and the situation is declared to be “under control.” Sounds like they are calling Seattle Fire to come check him out for possibly being under the influence of something.

12:25 AM: It also is reported that the person who is in custody – as noted in comments, not necessarily arrested, that depends on whether police believe a crime was committed – was armed. We will follow up later this morning to see what the investigation determines.

1 AM: Guardian One’s wrapup tweet:

7:36 AM: The King County Jail register shows the 33-year-old man was booked for investigation of unlawful gun possession as well as for a Department of Corrections warrant related to an assault charge. Court records show he was declared ineligible for gun possession because of a domestic-violence assault conviction last fall. In that case, he was sentenced to time served in jail – 84 days – with an additional 364 days suspended. We’ll follow up to see what happens from here.

ADDED 11:12 AM: Here’s the police report narrative, which has a few more details about how this played out and what was found at the end, including a casing in the back yard of the original location, which is described as where the suspect lives. (Note: “C” stands for “complainant”; “S” is usually suspect but we also note one case in which it means subject – someone who was not a suspect, nor victim, nor complainant:

On 1-7-2016 I was working uniformed patrol as 3F33 in a marked patrol vehicle. At 2303 hours I was dispatched to a report of a shots fired at 81XX 11 Av SW. I arrived and made contact with C/XXXXXX who stated that his friend S/XXXXX who resides in a back room in his residence may have fired a gun in the back yard.

C/XXXXXX stated that he did not see S/XXXXX fire a gun he only heard the gun being fired. C/XXXXXX stated that he attempted to talk to S/XXXXX but he ran away from him across the street. He stated that S/XXXXX was mumbling something but it was unclear what he was saying. C/XXXXXX stated that he lost sight of S/XXXXX when he ran across the street.

C/XXXXXX stated that S/XXXXX then returned to the residence and that was when he observed S/XXXXX carrying a gun in his left hand. C/XXXXXX stated that was when S/XXXXX exited the residence and that was when he called 911.

When officers arrived we observed S/XXXXX walking from the rear of the residence. Officers yelled at S/XXXXX to try to get his attention, but he did not acknowledge us and walked away NB on 11 Av Sw. S/XXXXX continued to walk down the street and he went to several homes on 12 Av Sw. Officer continued to try and make contact with him, but he would not comply with any of the commands that were given. KC Guardian 1 monitored the suspect from the air and they were informing officers on the ground with updates and location of the suspect’s whereabouts. S/XXXXX was observed by Guardian 1 running NB down 12 Av SW with two dogs that were not on a leash. It was unsure what the suspect was doing with the two dogs.

Guardian 1 informed us that the suspect was walking to 79XX 12 Av SW and he was knocking on the door. They stated that the homeowner confronted the suspect through the door he stated that he was afraid that the suspect would break his glass door. The homeowner was advised to stay in his residence due to the fact that S/XXXXX may be armed with a firearm. While S/XXXXX was in the 7900 block of 12 Av SW the two dogs that were with S/XXXXX attempted to have sex or attack a dog that was walking with his owner, S/XXXX. S/ XXXX never made contact with S/XXXXX.

S/ XXXX stated that he was able to separate the dogs from fighting by kicking one of them. He stated that he was later contacted by Ofc. Heric # 7528 informed him of the incident that was going on in the area and was advised to avoid the area.

Guardian 1 stated that the suspect was just standing in front of the address knocking on the door. We were later informed that S/XXXXX was walking WB with the two dogs and we later discovered that he was actually walking EB towards 11 Av SW and SW Elmgrove where we were holding containment south of the complainant’s address.

S/XXXXX walked EB on SW Elmgrove until about mid-block and then we believed that he was behind a bush or a tree mid-block on SW Elmgrove because he was not seen by officers anymore. All of the officers at 11 Av SW and SW Elmgrove took cover and concealment while Ofc. Chang #4617 continued to give him commands to come to the intersection to talk with him.

S/XXXXX came back into view and he crossed the street and he continued walking EB towards officers on 11 Av SW and SW Elmgrove St. S/XXXXX was ordered to get on the ground, but he did not comply when officers were telling him to get on the ground. Approximately 2-3 minutes of giving S/XXXXX commands to get on the ground he finally complied and got on the ground.

S/XXXXX was taken into custody. During a search for weapons a Taurus 9mm firearm was recovered along with .40 and .380 caliber ammo. After observation of S/XXXXX it appeared that he was under the influence of narcotics. A glass pipe did fall from S/XXXXX’s hand when he was attempting to go ground,but it was undetermined what the pipe was used for or what was inside of the pipe.

SFD E #11 responded to the scene to treat S/XXXXX. There was some blood located on S/XXXXX’s clothing, but SFD performed a body search and it was determined that blood was not from S/XXXXX, but was probably from one of the dogs that were involved in a dog fight on 12 Av SW with S/ XXXX dog.

S/XXXXX was transported to HMC by AMR. Ofc. Hancock # 7653 rode in the back of the AMR with the suspect. After searching the residence of where the shot was said to the fired we located a .9mm casing that had been fired. S/XXXXX is a convicted felon and it is illegal for him to have a firearm. After S/XXXXX was evaluated and released from HMC he was booked into KCJ for Inv. Of VUFA and the D.O.C felony warrant. I would also like to request charges for 12 A.14.071 aiming or discharging a firearm. Sgt. Trinh #5433 screened the arrest.

WEEKEND ALERT: WSB will be in temp quarters for a while

If you’re one of the many readers who come here late at night to catch up – we want to let you know that you’ll find us someplace else, temporarily, tomorrow night, and for at least part of the weekend. We’ve had a sorely needed overhaul in the works for a very long time, and our tech team tells us it’s finally ready to go live. So around 6 pm Friday night, we’ll be putting up a “Pardon Our Dust” type sign here, and providing news coverage from a temporary site while our decade of data is moved. The direct link to that temp site will be in a longer note we’ll publish here around midday tomorrow, and you’ll find it pinned in our social-media channels, so if you don’t already frequent them, please bookmark those now (particularly Twitter at and Facebook at, because we’ll also directly link our temp-site-published stories there until we’re back here live with the overhaul. Thanks in advance for your understanding!

P.S. We will also post lost/found pets on the temp site while it’s in use, because that’s one of the most valued services we provide. We will not have a temporary event calendar but we WILL publish daily highlights on the temp site on Saturday and Sunday mornings, as comprehensive as we can make them.

ROAD-CLOSURE ALERT: 22nd SW sewer work Sunday night, Monday morning, possibly beyond

The neighborhood’s been alerted, but Seattle Public Utilities wants to make sure the wider community also knows about a road closure planned this Sunday night and early Monday, 6 pm to 5 am, along two blocks of 22nd SW in Pigeon Point, north and south of SW Andover, for emergency sewer-repair work, also closing the intersection of 22nd and Andover for the duration. It’s detailed and mapped in this flyer. SPU says, “Our goal in completing the work at night is to minimize daytime traffic impacts. There is also a possibility that overnight repairs may need to continue the following night (Jan. 11-12), if crews are not able to complete work on Jan. 10-11. There will be detours in place for residents who live east of 22nd Avenue SW off of SW Andover Street. These residents will need to access their homes via SW Oregon St. Crews will place detour signs along SW Delridge Way and SW Andover Street.” There’s been one change since the flyer was originally distributed, Garrett said – they’re going to cut off work on Monday morning at 5 am instead of 7 am, to reduce the impact on people who have to leave for work and school early.

TOMORROW: Go see, hear, and cheer student authors at ‘Words, Writers, and West Seattle’

January 7, 2016 5:32 pm
|    Comments Off on TOMORROW: Go see, hear, and cheer student authors at ‘Words, Writers, and West Seattle’
 |   West Seattle books | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

This time tomorrow (Friday) night, you have the chance to cheer 14 student authors who will be in the spotlight at this month’s installment in the Words, Writers, and West Seattle literary series:

Students from Madison Middle School and Chief Sealth International High School will be talking about the books they’ve written as a part of a Community Learning Center program out of the West Seattle YMCA.

Sponsored by the Southwest Seattle Historical Society, this FREE Young Authors installment of “Words, Writers, & West Seattle” begins at 5 p.m. Friday, January 8, 2016, at Barnes & Noble/Westwood Village. All purchases made by those attending the talk that afternoon and for the next five days will result in a contribution of ten percent of proceeds to the Southwest Seattle Historical Society under the Barnes and Noble Book Fair Program.

According to the YMCA class instructor, Greg Hatcher, the students have published fiction, memoirs, and poetry in all sorts of genres. Hatcher says, “The students tend to lean toward the fantastic in their fiction but nothing is off limits.” Book titles include (from Madison Middle School students) Art In Words; Limitless; In Our Own Worlds, Fending for Ourselves; Imagination; Imagination, The Next Generation; Dubstep Kitty; Stuff and Nonsense; and More Than Just Scribbles

Students from Chief Sealth High School will be presenting Potpourri; Inkwell; Rising Sun; Shattered Moon; Harrowing Fairy Tales; and Raison d’Etre.

Stop by B&N any time between 5 and 7 Friday night to listen to some or all of the students and celebrate their accomplishments; read more about the Words, Writers, and West Seattle series here.

TRAFFIC ALERT: Crash on eastbound bridge near 4th Avenue S.

January 7, 2016 4:04 pm
|    Comments Off on TRAFFIC ALERT: Crash on eastbound bridge near 4th Avenue S.
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

4:04 PM: Though it’s not on the 911 log, we’ve just received three messages about a crash blocking at least one lane toward the east end of the eastbound bridge, so heads up if you’re headed that way. (Added) Just as we were publishing this, SDOT tweeted:

4:19 PM: The left lane is now open again, SDOT says.

VIDEO: Highway 99 tunneling machine breaks out of the pit

WSDOT posted that miscellaneous tunneling-machine-operations-in-progress video this afternoon to go along with the news that the machine is out of the “access pit” and “is now tunneling in Seattle soil after breaking through the access pit wall late Wednesday. Seattle Tunnel Partners has mined 73 feet and installed 12 concrete tunnel rings since Bertha first moved forward in the pit on Dec. 22. More mining is scheduled to occur this week. Now approaching South Main Street, near Pier 48, Bertha is digging well below the area’s notorious fill soil. The top of the machine is approximately 80 feet below the surface in a mixture of glacially compacted material.” That’s from the newest WSDOT update, which you can read in its entirety here. WSDOT also has set up a new tunnel-machine-tracking page. If all goes well from here, they’re still heading toward a March closure of the Alaskan Way Viaduct “for about two weeks” while tunneling under the structure. Speaking of The Viaduct, WSDOT adds that crews are starting to take apart the big red crane that’s been alongside it during the tunneling-machine-repair process.

FOLLOWUP: Speed-limit cuts still on the way, but Delridge will get an extra line, too

(WSB photo looking north on Delridge near Myrtle – existing ‘fog line’ is toward the left)
Though SDOT reaffirmed two months ago that its planned speed-limit cuts for three more West Seattle arterials would happen before the end of 2015 as planned, they didn’t happen. They’re still on the way, says SDOT’s Jim Curtin, but one of them – Delridge Way north of Orchard – will come with something extra: Fog lines. This news came in another round of correspondence with the concerned citizen whose questions sparked our November followup, “A Dad On Dangerous Delridge.” Curtin’s first reply to ADODD this week:

In an effort to achieve the lower speeds we seek on Delridge, we will be adding a fog line (aka edge line) to narrow the existing travel lanes on the street. The National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) has a good website dedicated to lane widths here. Some sections of Delridge already have an edge line but most areas do not. Several locations, including the area just south of the Boren Building (home to two schools), have wide swaths of roadway with little to no organization or structure. The edge line will change that and help us reduce vehicle speeds on the corridor. This work is weather-dependent so we’ll need some dry weather before we can install the new pavement markings. We are hoping to make this change in the first quarter of 2016 during a dry stretch. A public communications effort will accompany these changes to help raise awareness of the speed limit change.

After seeing that via a CC in ADODD’s correspondence, we followed up with Curtin, first to ask if there’s a specified width for the resulting, narrowed traffic lanes: “Travel lanes will be 11 to 12 feet wide depending on the location to match the existing edge lines on the corridor. The roadway channelization will look very similar to the existing conditions on Delridge between Croft Pl SW and SW Myrtle Street.” (That’s where we took the photo atop this story.) He added that “the edge line will be applied to both sides of the street. Bike lanes are not planned through this low cost effort.” No existing markings will be changed, according to Curtin, just “essentially filling in the gaps in the channelization so we will not make changes to existing pavement markings.”

Our last question: What about the other arterials set for speed-limit reduction? Curtin replied: “Fauntleroy between Alaska and California will occur first – likely within the next month or so. The speed limit is already 30 mph along most of Fauntleroy but the speed limit jumps up to 35 in this section (which contains mainly residential land uses, Fairmount Park Elementary, and a park). Speed studies show that drivers are already traveling well below the existing 35 mph speed limit on this section of Fauntleroy. We intend to recalibrate the radar speed sign at SW Brandon Street and change the existing speed limit signs. As you know, the design of the roadway was significantly changed in 2009.” The 30 mph speed limit for more arterials was first announced last February.

UPDATE: Port to start test pile-driving at West Seattle’s Terminal 5 on Saturday

11:09 AM: We’ve just checked with the Port of Seattle for the status of what it announced before Christmas – that a contractor would soon start driving test piles at Terminal 5 in West Seattle, as it gears up for the modernization project – about two months work to install “about 27 piles … at the edge of the Terminal 5 wharf.” The announcement added, “Once installed, some of the piles will be tested using a method known as rapid-load testing. The testing sounds like a half-second cannon shot. The sound can be as loud as 145 decibels at a distance of 50 feet. Nine tests are planned, with no more than one test per day.” We called port spokesperson Peter McGraw this morning to ask if the work was still set to start this week as the December announcement had said; he says the contractor tells them it’ll begin “within a few days.” The T-5 modernization project, expected to have a nine-digit price tag, is intended to make the terminal able to handle “megaships”; as reported by the Tacoma News-Tribune a week ago, one such ship is likely to visit Harbor Island’s T-18 next month.

11:27 AM: Update from the port: McGraw says, “Pile installation is scheduled to occur between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturday and between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Monday in compliance with the City of Seattle’s noise ordinance.”

West Seattle Crime Watch: Resident awakened by burglar; bicycle stolen from councilmember’s home; bike found; more

Four West Seattle Crime Watch reports to share:

OVERNIGHT BREAK-IN: Just received from Erik:

I live on 50th and Grayson and got a call from an elderly neighbor that someone broke in through her garage this morning at 1 am while she was sleeping. She woke up to them rummaging through her dresser drawers in the room she was sleeping in. She startled them and they ran out but they had some jewelry by then. She mentioned to the police how surprised she was, that she always has felt safe in our neighborhood and they responded that this is a new occurrence that has been moving in to the area and has been happening more frequently. The neighbor next door to her was prowled at 4 am the night before. In both cases they tried going through a garage or basement door that had cover from the street or light. Just wanted to bring this up to the neighborhood. Be safe!

BICYCLE STOLEN: Another reminder that crime can happen to anyone. Even a City Councilmember. West Seattle-residing at-large Councilmember Lorena González tweeted this last night:

Thanks to Joe Szilagyi for pointing out the tweet from González, who lives in The Junction.

BICYCLE FOUND: Thanks to “Northwest” for reporting this apparently dumped (which tends to mean “stolen”) bicycle on the Ferry Avenue slope:

NW says, “Discovered this bicycle while out for a walk along the top of the eastern-facing hillside about 20 feet down from the street on Ferry Ave SW. it is a mountain bike, the brand Mongoose.”

CAR PROWLED: Another one in the area between Morgan Junction and Lincoln Park:

The other day, you reported that a neighbor up the street (6300 block of 47th Pl SW) had their car windshield broken for the second time, unfortunately. We just noticed (Tuesday) night that my car had been rifled through; since it’s currently parked along the street instead of in its usual place by our driveway to allow access for some water repairs, we may not have noticed right away, so I don’t know which night it happened. I also don’t know how they got in, since the car had been locked and there was no sign of damage.

Of course as a diligent reader of WSB, I know not to leave anything of value in the car. I’m thinking of just taping a big sign inside the window: “Dear thief, please don’t waste your time breaking into this car. I’ve already taken everything of value out of it.”

Thanks for sharing Crime Watch reports to inform your neighbors across the peninsula via a website that’s accessible by all, since crime unfortunately knows no neighborhood bounds. If you ever have anything to report, tell the police first and then please e-mail us, – or if it’s happening now, aka breaking news, please text/call 206-293-6302.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Thursday updates and alerts; 16th/Holden crash

(Six WS-relevant views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
6:44 AM: Now that the new West Seattle Water Taxi M/V Doc Maynard is officially on the job (WSB coverage here), it’s on to the regular morning traffic and transit watch. So far, no incidents in/from West Seattle.

FAUNTLEROY FERRY DOCK ALERT: As previewed here earlier this week, piling-replacement work is happening today at the Fauntleroy dock, and Washington State Ferries warns that delays are possible for ferry users, 7 am-4 pm.

ICY BIKE PATH: First published last night, an alert about black ice on the path near the “low bridge,” despite above-freezing temps.

7:52 AM: Thanks to the texter who just alerted us to the big emergency response to a crash at 16th/Holden. On our way.

8:07 AM: At the scene. Car is in eastbound lanes of Holden on west side of intersection.

SPD is directing traffic. 1 person hurt (driver of that car), minor injuries but will be transported via private ambulance.

8:16 AM: Engine 11 just rolled out for a crash reported at Roxbury/Olson. We’re off to check. 16th/Holden north/south flow is back to near-normal.

8:24 AM: No traffic impact at Roxbury/Olson, fender-bender and on a side street while SPD talks with drivers:

9:11 AM: Photos added from aforementioned incidents.

VIDEO: West Seattle’s new Water Taxi M/V Doc Maynard is officially on the run between Seacrest and downtown

The M/V Doc Maynard is ending its first West Seattle-to-Downtown Seattle passenger run right about now; our Instagram clip above shows its first WS arrival, our YouTube clip below, its first departure:

TV lights shone on the first passengers to board; we were on Seacrest Pier watching as they admired the big new boat, delivered and dedicated in last September – since then, it’s spent some time filling in for its twin boat on the Vashon run, M/V Sally Fox, and awaited dock improvements at Seacrest, which were finished last month, enabling the crew to train for today and beyond. It can hold 278 passengers, more than twice its predecessor, the Spirit of Kingston, which is now the KCWT’s backup boat. And there’s rack space for 26 bicycles. KC Department of Transportation’s Marine Division director Paul Brodeur talked up other key points while the DM was boarding:

The half-million-passenger ridership milestone he mentioned was celebrated last month.