day : 14/12/2018 10 results

West Seattle weather: Wind arrives; power outage hits almost 10,000 homes/businesses


ORIGINAL REPORT, 5:35 PM: If you haven’t been outside lately – or are getting ready to head home from work – the wind has arrived. As noted earlier, the National Weather Service downgraded the alert early this morning but still warned that gusts could get into the 40s; this is supposed to ease within a few hours. We’ll be tracking the storm in the meantime. No outages or other notable effects reported in West Seattle right now but if you see/hear about something, please let us know – text/voice 206-293-6302 – thank you.

5:38 PM: And minutes later … our power went out. Yours?

5:46 PM: More than 6,700 homes/businesses, as shown on SCL map. Also, a tree is reported down in the 2700 block of 51st SW. Also, another one in an alley in the 8800 block of 24th SW.

5:58 PM: As noted in our daily preview, MANY activities were scheduled tonight, so if anybody has official word of cancellations/changes, please let us know. We are headed out to check on some locations, such as the Sealth/Denny campus. Also, a revised total: The SCL map has this grouped as two outages, one with 6,740 customers affected, one with 957, so almost 7,700 homes/businesses.

6:07 PM: The West Seattle Community Orchestras concert that was scheduled for 7 pm at Chief Sealth IHS is postponed.

6:16 PM: For those asking about an estimated restoration time – the map currently just says “December 15” (tomorrow). But as we’ve noted in coverage of many outages (first one we covered was exactly 12 years ago tonight – the Hanukkah Eve windstorm), the estimates are relatively useless, could be much sooner, or much later. In this case, given the growing number of outages around the city, plan for later. Keep your fridge closed.

(Texted photo – downed trees/limbs in Eddy St. ravine)

6:21 PM: Trees reported down in 5200 block 23rd SW and near 24th/Henderson, also trouble at 10th/Henderson.

One event that is STILL ON – Denny IMS Winter Party (Posada) – they have generator power. (photo above). … More from scanner: Stop sign blown down at 63rd/Admiral. … Per comment: Chief Sealth/Garfield basketball is canceled. … WESTWOOD VILLAGE: We went over to check – Target/Barnes&Noble side is on, center stores on, QFC out and stores north of it – to Marshall’s – are out.

6:53 PM: Now the outage map includes an area south to Roxbury that adds 2,273 to the previous West Seattle total, so that means almost 10,000 customers out in West Seattle. From comments: Cocoa For a Cause, a Brownie troop’s project at West Seattle Lights, is postponed. … Also: Art Lounge at Highland Park Improvement Club is canceled. Meantime, a party that went on as scheduled:

West Seattle Be Prepared and the WS Amateur Radio Club were having their combined holiday party when the outage hit. Reports Jim Edwards, who sent the photo: “Between solar, generator and battery powered jug lanterns we are enjoying all that this season has to offer.” … Tree reported down near 18th/Orchard … Our crew says 24th SW is blocked at Henderson/Barton, with crews working on the reported downed tree there.

7:33 PM: Multiple commenters confirm what the map shows – Junction (and points north) NOT affected, so if you are looking for dinner, etc., head there. Lafayette Elementary‘s new Festival of Lights still on, too – thanks to Max for the photos:

Tomorrow too, so if you missed tonight/didn’t want to go out in the wind, you’ll have another chance. Twelfth Night Productions’ “A Christmas Carol” at Kenyon Hall, still on tonight, too, per Lou Magor‘s note (Saturday and Sunday shows remain as well) … (Photo added – “Christmas Carol” by lantern – thanks to Anna for the pic:)

Still no new info on restoration and not likely to be, as SCL now has almost 45,000 out around the region. … We found an SDOT tree crew working at 26th/Barton in Westwood:

Be on the lookout for lost pets (here’s our lost/found pets page) – we’ve already had two lost dogs reported tonight (and reunite one) – e-mail info to or text 206-293-6302.

8:30 PM: As noted in comments, the Morgan Junction business district has power. We are headed north on California and on that arterial, the outage is from just south of Mills, southward. … Alaska, Admiral Junction all on … so is Alki.

9:07 PM: The National Weather Service extended the Wind Advisory until 10 pm. In general, the wind in our area is indeed calming – the 9 pm gusts are lower than the 8 pm gusts. For a commenter who asked, here’s a grab of the West Seattle-and-southward outage map as of a short time ago:

9:42 PM: Though the West Seattle outages don’t appear to have changed in size, the total number out throughout SCL’s service area is now 43,000+, down about 3,000 from the peak. Meantime, since we are now into the fifth hour, you might be interested in food-safety advice regarding what’s in your fridge, if you are in the outage zone.

10:15 PM: Getting reports of restoration in the High Point area.

10:30 PM: The map now reflects more than 1,300 West Seattle customers got power restored.

11:44 PM: Seventh hour without power for 8,000+ in WS. Throughout SCL’s area, 36,000+ are now mapped as out, down 10,000 from the peak. Meantime, we’ve heard about another downed tree, this one at Jacobsen and Hudson, via Alyson, who says it’s not blocking the road but appears to have brought down a cable wire.

12:54 AM: 8th/Elmgrove report of restoration via a comment. West Seattle outage is ~300 customers smaller in latest map update. Meantime, a fire alarm brought SFD to Bed Bath Beyond in Westwood, but no fire – they think the alarm was outage-related and are closing the response.

1:07 AM: Our power just came back on, after 7 1/2 hours. Hearing from others too.

1:28 AM: We’ve noted before that SCL’s new map lags more than its predecessor. Noting that now – we’ve been back on for more than 20 minutes but we’re still shown as out. So we don’t know yet how many got power back in that last wave. The map shows 30,000 still out, service-area-wide.

6:29 AM: Thanks for the updates. Looks like the outage is down to a few hundred in West Seattle, still 11,000+ out in SCL’s service area – almost half of them south of here. (added) Here’s a screen grab of the last West Seattle pockets:

We’re working on the daily highlight list right now – assuming everything’s on as scheduled but let us know at if not – then once it’s light, we’ll be looking around for storm damage – please also let us know if you’re dealing with anything (downed trees, etc.) – thank you!

7:43 AM: A few reports of power going out again in part of High Point a few minutes ago. Ours in Upper Fauntleroy flickered.

7:59 AM: Launching a new report on current outages and aftermath. (added) Find it here.

FOLLOWUP: Charges filed in attack, attempted robbery at Juneau Street Market; victim’s family starts crowdfunding campaign

(WSB photo from Tuesday)

The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office filed assault and attempted robbery charges this afternoon against 51-year-old Farrall M. Ditschinger, arrested after Tuesday’s attack on a 71-year-old Juneau Street Market employee. Here’s the narrative from the probable-cause document, written by SPD detectives:

On 12-11-18 at approximately 1215 hours Farrall M Ditschinger 5/12/67 walks into the Juneau Street Market … from the South. Upon entering the business Ditschinger walks up the beer aisle. Ditschinger then walks along the back wall where he looks into the office area and glances down the soda aisle , ensuring that no other employees are present. Ditschinger then walks down the middle aisle and approaches the lone, 71 year old female employee …

As Ditschinger approaches (her), he removes a pair of silver metal handcuffs from his left coat pocket with his left hand and transfers the handcuffs to his right hand. Ditschinger is wearing a white latex glove on his right hand. At approximately 1216 hours, (victim) has her back to Ditschinger as she stocks shelves, Ditschinger begins a vicious assault on (her) by striking her in the back of her head with the handcuffs, held in his right hand, approximately 6 times.

(victim) attempts to get away from Ditschinger by moving over to the cash register area, with Ditschinger following right behind her. (victim) attempts to cover her head with her right hand as Ditschinger is pulling on her left arm with his left hand. Ditschinger strikes (victim) with the handcuffs, held in his right hand, approximately 22 times in the area of her head and right hand/arm area. Ditschinger then pulls (victim) out from behind the counter area and pulls her down to the ground in front of the soda coolers.

Ditschinger continues to swing the handcuffs at (victim) approximately 37 more times. At 1217 hours (victim) manages to stand up and Ditschinger walks to the back of the store. As (victim) walks back to the area of the cash register, Ditschinger walks down the middle aisle, removing a black handled knife from his right coat pocket. The knife is in his right hand and the handcuffs are held in his left hand. As Ditschinger reengages (victim), (she) throws something at Ditschinger to defend herself. Ditschinger swings the knife at the left arm area of (victim). Ditschinger backs away from (victim), into the middle aisle, the knife being held in his left hand the the handcuffs in his right hand. (victim) picks up some type of tray and attempts to use it as a barrier between her and Ditschinger. When (victim) gets to the area of the middle aisle she attempt to flee the business through the open front business door. As (victim) is at the threshold of the door Ditschinger grabs ahold of (victim), by the shoulders, and pulls her back inside the business where he throws her onto the floor.

As (victim) is trying to escape a Bud Light Delivery truck is pulling to the curb in front of the business. A female witness … is walking northbound on the sidewalk in front of the store, just after Ditschinger has thrown (victim) to the floor and begun to strike her with the handcuffs again. (The witness) immediately calls 911 on her cellphone and remains outside the store.

After being thrown to the floor Ditschinger swings the handcuffs at (victim) approximately 51 more times. At some point during this time Ditschinger realizes that the knife blade has broken and he puts the knife handle back into his jacket pocket. Also during this time another witness … almost walks into the store as Ditschinger is beating (victim). (Driver) retreats outside the store and calls 911. At 1219 hours Ditschinger steps over (victim), who is still lying on the floor, and closes the door to the business. Ditschinger re-approaches (victim) and swings the handcuffs at her a few more times at which point he knocks down a metal display case onto (victim). With the display case now acting as a barrier, (victim) attempts to crawl to the front doors. Ditschinger attempts to stop (victim)’s effort by further assault but (she) is able to open the door slightly. At this same time, the Bud Light delivery worker … is approaching the door and observes (victim) in distress.

At 1221 hours (the driver) pulls the door completely open which prevents any further assault on (victim) by Ditschinger. Ditschinger then calmly walks behind the counter and begins to press the keys on the cash register with his latex covered right hand in an attempt to open the cash till. The till does not open and as (driver) is pulling (victim) to safety, to a business to the south, to open the cash register a second times by the same means used the first time. Ditschinger is unable to open the cash till. Just prior to Ditschinger attempting to exit the front door (driver and bystander) use their body weight to keep the door closed, as Ditschinger is pushing against it. Ditschinger then flees out the back door into the alley when he realizes he cannot exit out the way that he entered the store.

Responding SPD Officers arrived and observed Ditschinger running from the scene and after a short foot pursuit, Ditschinger was taken into custody. At the time Ditschinger was taken into custody, he still had the handcuffs used to assault (victim) in his hands. Search incident to arrest, the broken knife handle was also recovered from Ditschinger’s person. The investigating officers performed witness show up with (witnesses). All 3 positively identified Ditschinger as the male they observed assaulting (victim), Officers processed the crime scene inside the Juneau Street Market and recovered a broken knife blade inside the store near the front door. This was collected as evidence, as was the surveillance video that captured the incident in its entirety. Some of Ditschinger’s clothing was recovered at the time of his arrest. The remainder of the clothing was collected at the Robbery Office and when Ditschinger was booked into KCJ. At no time while Ditschinger was in police custody did he say anything or make any sound. Ditschinger was originally listed as John Doe but his identify was revealed at KCJ via fingerprints.

Other SPD Officers contacted (victim) in the foyer of a business to the south of the Juneau Street Market. (victim) was covered in blood and bleeding profusely from a wound on the back of her head. SFD responded to the scene, rendered aid and (victim) was transported to HMC via a Medic unit for further treatment. SPD Robbery Detectives responded to the hospital to investigate.

Sgt Aratani and I contacted (victim) at HMC … where she was receiving medical treatment. After (victim) was stabilized I was able to obtain an audiotaped statement from her. In her statement, (she) said that an unknown WM suspect, whom she described as W/M, late 30’s, 5’5″, 150, blonde “bowl” type hair style, no facial hair, wearing a black jacket, khaki pants and black dress shoes. (She) recalled being beaten with handcuffs and also recalled the suspect having a knife with a serrated edge, like a steak knife. (victim) stated that she was aware of who the suspect was as she had worked with his mother years ago at Sears, but that she did not know the suspect personally. (victim) verified that the attack was completely unprovoked and that at no time did the suspect say anything to her. Some initial photos were taken of (victim)’s injuries as some initial treatment had been performed and she had other exams still pending.

On 12/12/18 I went to HMC and contacted (the victim, who) was diagnosed with a left orbital fracture, a left arm fracture, lacerations to the back of her head that required stitches or staples to close and multiple abrasions, contusions and lacerations to her arms, hand and back area. …

Probable cause has been established that Ditschinger did commit Assault in the 1 Degree of (victim), a 71 year old female, by striking/swinging at her with handcuffs over 115 times. (Victim) did sustain severe injury requiring medical attention. Ditschinger also attempted to remove money from the cash register of the Juneau Street Market after using force to disable the lone employee of the store.

According to the charging documents, Ditschinger “has no known criminal convictions.” We noted in an earlier report that we found one assault case in Municipal Court records, from 32 years ago, but no details. He is being held in lieu of $750,000 bail, the amount requested by prosecutors.

HELPING THE VICTIM: Her family has started a GoFundMe campaign to help with the resulting financial challenges, describing her as “the most hard working, giving individual I’ve ever known.” Here’s the link where you can contribute.

HAPPENING NOW: Santa photos at HomeStreet Bank in the West Seattle Junction

December 14, 2018 3:42 pm
|    Comments Off on HAPPENING NOW: Santa photos at HomeStreet Bank in the West Seattle Junction
 |   Holidays | West Seattle news

Just a week and a half until Christmas, and if someone in your family hasn’t pleaded their case yet with Santa about being naughty and/or nice, your next chance is happening right now at HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor) at 41st/Alaska in The Junction. Santa’s there until 6 pm. All welcome; you don’t have to be a HSB customer. If you can, bring nonperishable food for the West Seattle Food Bank!

ELECTION 2019: Isaiah T. Willoughby becomes 2nd to file for District 1 City Council

We’ve continued watching the city’s list of candidates who register City Council campaigns for next year. A second candidate has registered to campaign for the District 1 (West Seattle/South Park) City Council seat – Isaiah T. Willoughby. He doesn’t have a website but the information on file with the city does include an e-mail address, as well as the organizational title “Promoting Healthy Minds and Spirits,” so we sent a note requesting more information. He sent this reply: “Read this article; everything you need to know about me.” It accompanied this link to a 1997 Seattle Times report about him and his siblings being raised by adoptive parents in a family helped by the Times’ Fund for the Needy. Willoughby’s filing comes almost two months after Phillip Tavel became the first candidate to register a campaign for the seat currently held by Lisa Herbold, who has not yet announced whether she will run for re-election.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Stolen white Jeep Grand Cherokee

December 14, 2018 12:42 pm
|    Comments Off on West Seattle Crime Watch: Stolen white Jeep Grand Cherokee
 |   Crime | West Seattle news

Chuck reports, “Our Jeep Grand Cherokee was stolen last night, 47th SW and Walker, North Admiral.” It’s white, plates ABR2954, SPD incident # 18-465428. Call 911 if you see it.

Lights, concerts, wine, Santa, deals, gift fairs, more for the rest of your West Seattle Friday!

For the rest of your Friday, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar and Holiday Guide:

(WSB photo from November Gift Fair at Duwamish Longhouse)

GIFT FAIR AT THE LONGHOUSE: December edition of the Duwamish Native NW Holiday Gift Fair, until 5 pm (and again 10 am-5 pm Saturday and Sunday) at the Duwamish Tribe Longhouse. (4705 W. Marginal Way SW)

GIVE THE GIFT OF LIFE: During this season of giving, if you can donate blood, you’re encouraged to do it 1-7 pm at Peace Lutheran Church in Gatewood. (39th/Thistle)

TALK WITH YOUR CITY COUNCILMEMBER: 2=7 pm at South Park Community Center, it’s the final in-district office-hours session of the year for District 1 City Councilmember Lisa Herbold. Walk-ins welcome before 6:30 pm. (8319 8th Ave. S.)

SANTA! Get your free Santa photos at HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor), 3-6 pm. (4022 SW Alaska)

VISCON CELLARS WINE RELEASE: 5-9 pm at the Viscon Cellars (WSB sponsor) tasting room:

Your local West Seattle, award-winning winery Viscon Cellars is releasing two new wines for the Holiday Season on Dec 14th and 15th: 2014 Long Road Red Cabernet Sauvignon and 2014 Another Story.. Petite Sirah. Beautiful wines to enjoy for the Holidays, also make great gifts. Stop by to try, and pick up, these wines Friday 12/14 from 5-9 and Saturday 12/15 from 2-7 pm.

(5910 California SW)

TASTING: Cider and cheese tasting at Sound & Fog, 5 pm-8 pm. (4735 40th SW)

WEST SEATTLE NIGHT MARKET: 5-9 pm. Locally made and handcrafted goods. Sarah of Sage to Sea Designs says they’ll have more than a dozen vendors: “We will have handmade candles, jewelry, handbags, blown glass, bakery items and more.” The list is in our calendar listing. (4156 California SW)

HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE AT VAIN: At VAIN (WSB sponsor) in The Junction: “Join us at VAIN’s holiday open house. 10-30% discounts storewide and complimentary refreshments served. 6-9 pm. 100s of classy and affordable gifts, jewelry and accessories available under $40. Hair tinsel services so you can sparkle all season long! Free gifts with purchase while supplies last. Chance to win a hair service package to make your 2019 style dreams come true!” (4513 California SW)

INTERNATIONAL WINTER PARTY: You’re invited to celebrate tonight at Denny International Middle School, 6-9 pm. With Banda Vagos, Chief Sealth Mariachi, more – info in our calendar listing. (2601 SW Kenyon)

LIGHTS AT LAFAYETTE: New event, tonight and tomorrow! Outdoor Winter Festival of Lights:

Lafayette Elementary students, teachers and families will create a beautiful outdoor display of lights to share with our community December 14 & 15th, 6 pm-8 pm. Come sip hot cocoa and enjoy a cookie while walking through our outdoor display Winter Festival of Lights. Suggested donation $2 per person.

(California & Lander)

COCOA FOR A CAUSE: “Please join local Brownie Troop 41169 for our second-annual Cocoa for a Cause! Our Girl Scout troop will be providing cocoa to anyone who brings a donation (food or cash) for the West Seattle Food Bank. We will be at the West Seattle Lights display near the Charleston water tower on December 14, 2018 from 6:30 pm-8:30 pm.” (3908 SW Charlestown)

FREE CONCERT! West Seattle Community Orchestras‘ Intermediate Orchestra and Wind Symphony in concert with Chief Sealth IHS Choir: 7 pm at Chief Sealth International High School Auditorium. Here’s a clip from rehearsal:

See the full program in our calendar listing. Admission is FREE; donations appreciated! (2600 SW Thistle)

ART LOUNGE: Highland Park Improvement Club‘s monthly 21+ night for artists. Doors open 7 pm, live models available starting around 8. (1116 SW Holden)

PEARL COLLECTIVE: 7:30-9 pm at Resistencia Coffee in South Park, celebrating the collective’s website and logo reveal: “We are a growing collective of people, organizations, and businesses who assist individuals, families, and pets in the end of life, using love, wisdom, knowledge, law, and strength to guide them in their approach to death. ​Our members hope to earn your trust; in doing so, we pledge to provide honest information and assistance with end-of-life events.” More info here. (1249 S. Cloverdale)

‘A CHRISTMAS CAROL’: Final weekend begins for Twelfth Night Productions‘ presentation of “A Christmas Carol: A Live Radio Play.” 7:30 pm at Kenyon Hall. Buy your ticket(s) online at this Brown Paper Tickets link, or at the venue box office. (7904 35th SW)

SEATTLE GIRLS’ CHOIR PRIME VOCI: At Holy Rosary, 8 pm, Carmina Angelorum: Songs of the Angels: “Join us for an evening of elegant music celebrating winter and the holiday season.” Tickets here. (42nd/Genesee)

THERE’S MORE … in the Event Calendar and Holiday Guide!

VIADUCT-TO-TUNNEL: What’s closing when? See the ‘final’ Highway 99 realignment timeline

WSDOT has announced the specific shutdown times for what it calls “Realign 99,” the viaduct-to-tunnel transition. Note the actual shutdown is now starting later in the evening than previously announced:

10 p.m. Friday, Jan. 4: Stadium ramps close

Northbound SR 99 on-ramp at South Royal Brougham Way closes (near stadiums; connection to I-90 and I-5).
Southbound SR 99 off-ramp at South Atlantic Street closes (near stadiums; connection to I-90 and I-5).

10 p.m. Friday, Jan. 11: Full SR 99 closure through downtown Seattle begins

SR 99 closes both directions from South Spokane Street to the south end of the Battery Street Tunnel.
Battery Street Tunnel remains open with one lane in each direction. Ramps to and from Western Avenue remain open.

West Seattle Bridge and off-ramps to First Avenue and Fourth Avenue remain open and do not close as part of Realign99.

10 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1: Battery Street Tunnel closes

Battery Street Tunnel closes. All southbound SR 99 traffic must exit at Valley Street. Northbound SR 99 traffic can join highway at Valley Street.

Early February (exact date TBD): New tunnel opens

SR 99 reopens about three weeks after Jan. 11, with highway using new SR 99 tunnel. Alaskan Way Viaduct and Battery Street Tunnel remain closed. One SR 99 off-ramp remains closed (see below).
Approx. 2 weeks later: Final ramp opens

New SR 99 northbound off-ramp to downtown and Alaskan Way (just south of tunnel) opens, about two weeks after SR 99 tunnel opens.

Earlier this week, King County announced the Water Taxi’s extra-service schedule for the shutdown, which will continue running until the spring/summer schedule starts in late March, while also announcing a new shuttle service for part of WS.

Gas leak on Belvidere

December 14, 2018 10:38 am
|    Comments Off on Gas leak on Belvidere
 |   West Seattle news | WS breaking news

Thanks to the texter who sent the photo from the scene of a gas leak that has drawn multiple Seattle Fire units to the 3400 block of Belvidere [map]. Puget Sound Energy has responded too. No word of any injuries.

VIDEO: New mural dedicated in the West Seattle Junction

December 14, 2018 10:05 am
|    Comments Off on VIDEO: New mural dedicated in the West Seattle Junction
 |   West Seattle news | WS culture/arts

Five months after artist Stacey Sterling worked with about 200 people of all ages – toddlers on up – to create that mural, it’s on display in The Junction. A short ceremony was held in the breezeway on the west side of the 4700 block of California SW during last night’s West Seattle Art Walk.

As Junction Association executive director Lora Radford explained, this is the first new mural funded as part of the project to restore the “old” ones.

The other murals on the breezeway walls were recently cleaned and reinstalled.


December 14, 2018 6:53 am
|    Comments Off on TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Friday watch
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

(SDOT MAP with travel times/ Is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE/ West Seattle-relevant traffic cams HERE)

6:53 AM: Good morning! No traffic incidents or transit alerts for our area so far.

WEATHER ALERT DOWNGRADED: It’s now a “wind advisory” for 1-7 pm.