CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Suspect charged in Peel & Press burglary

A suspect is now charged in the May 9th burglary at Morgan Junction restaurant Peel & Press – a repeat offender who was already awaiting trial for a business break-in attempt in South King County. 33 year old Rafael S. Meyers is charged with second-degree burglary in what prosecutors describe as a “brazen and sophisticated” crime, causing thousands of dollars in damage to the restaurant while apparently trying to break into the neighboring Starbucks. The charging documents say police identified Meyers with the help of a nearby resident who had video of someone coming and going in an alley by the businesses north of Fauntleroy, and gave police information on a related vehicle, including its plate number. Police say the man in that video matched the man seen in Peel & Press’s security video (frame grab at right). They got a search warrant for the vehicle and found it last Wednesday in the driveway outside Meyers’ Fauntlee Hills home, with him inside, and took him into custody. The court documents also say police found suspected heroin and paraphernalia on Meyers, and that a GRIZZLY hat like the one shown in the security video was in his car. He was booked into jail, and got out a day later after posting bond in lieu of $15,000 bail.

Online records show Meyers has an extensive record, though much of it is for non-felonies. He’s awaiting trial on a charge of attempted second-degree burglary from last August in Auburn. Charging documents from that case say he was arrested after tripping an alarm while trying to break into a business there. His next hearing in that case is scheduled for June 3rd. He also was arrested in February of last year for allegedly tagging a railroad car in SODO. The charge, a misdemeanor, was dismissed in November because of witness issues. Documents from a car-prowl case in 2011 describe Meyers as a “well-known graffiti suspect” who was at the time also known for downtown car prowls. In the new case, he is due back in court June 8th for arraignment.

29 Replies to "CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Suspect charged in Peel & Press burglary"

  • Eric1 May 27, 2020 (12:40 am)

    Lol.  Brazen and sophisticated? Excuse me while I  get the coffee out of my nose.  I am sorry about the Peel and Press damage and I am glad the criminal was arrested. But, come on; if you do thousands in damage and then get caught, you are an idiot.  Brazen? Maybe. but definitely an idiot.  Sophisticated would be that the Starbucks was completely looted and there was no evidence of a break in. Brazen would be mooning the camera as you leave, complete with a Supersonics tattoo on one cheek. 

    • WSB May 27, 2020 (12:58 am)

      The charging documents explain the methodology that police considered “sophisticated” -(as well as “elaborate and highly destructive”) – I had too much to shoehorn into this, to waste time sidebarring on that.

      • Eric1 May 27, 2020 (9:35 am)

        I didn’t mean to question the WSB.  I love you guys and all the work you do.  I just thought that with Seattle’s history of famously sophisticated criminals, that it was pretty bizarre that the  prosecutor would call this a sophisticated crime.  Heck we have D. B. Cooper on hijacking and William Scurlock (Hollywood Bandit) in bank robberies.  Both those guys planned well, stole hundreds of thousands of dollars, and took years to be caught (or never). Maybe this is a case of modern day grade inflation.  LOL

    • Elizabeth May 27, 2020 (1:32 am)

      Welp, you can’t get a more objective source than a criminal prosecutor. 

      • Joe May 27, 2020 (9:52 am)

        I would read the charging documents before judging – people can be surprisingly enterprising in the service of addiction.

  • West Seattle Hipster May 27, 2020 (5:26 am)

    I doubt the word sophisticated has ever been used to describe this guy before.  A 33 year old graffiti tagger?

    • WSB May 27, 2020 (10:19 am)

      It’s actually a myth that graffiti vandals are “kids.” In briefings we’ve covered, detectives have said most are adults.

      • Alex S. May 27, 2020 (1:48 pm)

        More like adults who never grew out of adolescence. 

  • BG May 27, 2020 (6:52 am)

    Why is he out on bail?  With other cases pending and his record, this does not make any sense.

    • Alki resident May 27, 2020 (1:27 pm)

      Are you kidding? This is Washington, this is how it’s done. Besides we need the jails for the business owners going against the phases. 

    • wscommuter May 27, 2020 (2:47 pm)

      It’s that pesky United States Constitution. Which provides a right to reasonable bail.  And yes, reasonable bail for someone with a history of low-level crimes (mostly misdemeanors apparently) and this being a property crime, means that bail can’t be the same as someone accused of a violent crime.  

    • AMD May 27, 2020 (3:21 pm)

      He is not convicted of a crime.  Like it or not, he is innocent in the eyes of the law until he is convicted.

  • AdmiralBridge May 27, 2020 (6:58 am)

    Shouldn’t bail be somewhat more than 3x the damage you caused?    

  • anonyme May 27, 2020 (7:23 am)

    Also, a photo would be good, as this vermin lives in our community and is now roaming free looking for his next criminal opportunity.

    • WSB May 27, 2020 (10:14 am)

      As his record is mostly non-felony, I don’t think he’s served time in state prison, which is the circumstance under which a mug shot is available, but I am checking with DOC.

      • Alex S. May 29, 2020 (12:32 pm)

        Also, did any of the court documentation or testimony indicate what this idiot’s tagging name / handle is?  Taggers hate it when their name/face is connected to the crappy “art” they ruin our city with.  Thanks. 

        • WSB May 29, 2020 (1:42 pm)

          Actually they’re more impressed by notoriety so we don’t publish taggers’ handles unless there is a specific reason such as a few years back when investigators were looking for help. . The one mentioned in the Seattle Municipal Court case wasn’t one I’ve ever seen or heard.

  • Duffy May 27, 2020 (8:05 am)

    Glad this loser was caught. Long rap sheet of doing this to business, many which are owned by local residents. Maybe the prosecutor will try a little more this time to keep this guy off the streets.

  • Js May 27, 2020 (8:14 am)

    Sweet! Made my day. Can we get a mug shot? I need it for my wall. Thanks !!!

  • helpermonkey May 27, 2020 (8:34 am)

    LOL at “sophisticated”! Dude managed to break into the *exterior* wall of Starbucks after a ton of work and needless damage to PnP. Yes, it was elaborate and highly destructive, but this dude is a candidate for a starring role in “World’s Dumbest Criminals”. 

  • Richard May 27, 2020 (8:35 am)

    Rafael Meyers (in August 2020) – “I’m sorry for missing my court dates, Judge.  I had other commitments on June 3rd & June 8th.  Can we do a Tuesday next time?”

  • Sillygoose May 27, 2020 (9:25 am)

     Elated this horrible waste of space was caught but so fed up with our outdated laws that he was released.  Hopefully this time he will go away for a long time but have lost all faith in our justice system, I can only imagine how frustrated and burned out our officers are re-arresting the same people over and over, 2 steps forward 10 steps back.  Bravo to a local neighbor for coming forward and willing to help.

  • DBC May 27, 2020 (10:40 am)

    It’s disgusting that these people are arrested and released. It’s a revolving door of crime. But, in all honesty, the problem is not the justice system — it’s the criminal. We need a way to get rid of these people from our community once and for all.

  • Will S. May 27, 2020 (11:37 am)

    There are a lot of problems with the cash bail system, and one of them is that the internet’s self-appointed crimedogs hold utterly mistaken beliefs about the purpose of bail.

    Bail is the amount of money defendants must post to be released from custody until their trial. Bail is not a fine. It is not supposed to be used as punishment. The purpose of bail is simply to ensure that defendants will appear for trial and all pretrial hearings for which they must be present. Bail is returned to defendants when their trial is over, in some states minus a processing fee.

    How Courts Work – Bail

    • Ice May 27, 2020 (1:35 pm)

      Yes, thank you. The bail system is far from perfect but some of the comments on here act like it is a get out of jail free card, or a legal bribe, which definitely isn’t.

      • uncle loco May 27, 2020 (3:45 pm)

        I don’t think the comments are against the bail system. I think they’re more directed at the  insignificant amounts required to post bail for these repeat offenders. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve read about these guys where they have FTA warrants.

    • Mark Schletty May 27, 2020 (5:01 pm)

      That is the purpose for bail. I don’t know if this creep has had previous failure to show charges, but I have seen a number of defendants with multiple past failure to show charges, and even some with current outstanding warrants for failure to show, turned lose with low bail or on personal recognizance. The “purpose” doesn’t seem to be important to many of our judges. Our Court system is seriously broken, and seems to function with little, or no, empathy for the victims of crimes. “It’s just a property crime” isn’t the attitude of those victims losing important property, and really shouldn’t be the attitude of anyone.  

  • anonymous May 27, 2020 (5:22 pm)

    He has a long history of crimes dating back to 2005 and is known in the neighborhood where he lives not just as a burglar or drug user but also a drug dealer.  People in the neighborhood have seen people shooting up next to family homes close to where he resides.  Crime has risen in the neighborhood because of the “customers” he attracts.  I’m disappointed he is out on bail.

  • Steve May 27, 2020 (6:02 pm)

    OMG he’s already out. The Justice System is trash. Cops do a good job and put a criminal behind bars he’s out in less than 24. 

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