FOLLOWUP: 2 victims identified in West Seattle ‘human remains’ case

(WSB photo, June 19th)

We’ve been checking with police and the Medical Examiner‘s office repeatedly since the discovery a week and a half ago of “human remains” found off Luna/Anchor Park. Today – new information: Police say the remains were those of two people, a 27-year-old man and a 36-year-old woman.(Their names have not yet been made public, nor has the cause of death.) They’re not saying anything more except that it’s very much an active homicide investigation and they “do not believe this case is connected to any other investigations in the Puget Sound area.” Police add, “Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact the Seattle Police Department’s Violent Crimes tip line at (206) 233-5000.”

ADDED – MORE BACKSTORY: As noted in our first followup last week, the discovery on June 19th – chronicled by teenagers in a TikTok video – involved a suitcase on the rocks by the Luna/Anchor Park viewpoint. The teens, who said they went to the park while playing Randonautica, called police because the suitcase smelled bad; officers weren’t able to get there for two hours, by which time the tide had risen and the suitcase’s contents started floating away.

81 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: 2 victims identified in West Seattle 'human remains' case"

  • Alki resident June 30, 2020 (3:23 pm)

    Very sad and so sick. I’m sorry to their family and friends. I can’t even imagine the hell they went through. 

  • Js June 30, 2020 (3:33 pm)

    That was quick. Technology in dna and search is incredible. The  back story should be interesting.

    • Conan June 30, 2020 (6:42 pm)

      More likely that their IDs were still on them or they still had finger prints.

      • Sara June 30, 2020 (10:54 pm)

        Conan are you suggesting that someone went through the trouble of dismembering bodies and stuffing the parts into suitcases, but left things like their wallets on them??

        • Conan July 1, 2020 (7:11 am)

          Maybe.  I don’t watch TV so I don’t know how these things go.

  • Craig June 30, 2020 (3:46 pm)

    Wow. 2hours response time for a Potenial murder call. Just wtf are they doing with 1/3 of a billion a yr we give them at spd

    • rpo June 30, 2020 (4:01 pm)

      To be fair, it was not a potential murder call. It was two suitcases that simply smelled bad.

    • police priorities June 30, 2020 (4:04 pm)

      To be fair to the police, I think the call was for a suitcase that smelled really bad at the beach.  They didn’t know it was a body, much less a murder, nobody was in imminent danger. Quicker response is always nice, but they do need to prioritize.

      • SAVE SPD FROM THEMSELVES June 30, 2020 (7:19 pm)

        To be fair to all involved, you don’t know what was said in those calls.  But if you’re going to speculate, at least credit them with something more strategic than not taking the call seriously because the original complaint lacked mature vocabulary. At the very least, SPD could have requested video or photos to help them prioritize. Maybe if they weren’t saddled with calls better handled by social workers, their response to PRESERVE EVIDENCE OF MURDER would have been quicker.

        • Erin June 30, 2020 (8:55 pm)

          Are you aware of how 911 dispatching works? You’re suggesting the people who found the suitcases send pictures to the 911 dispatcher to help them determine if this was a higher priority? Some people’s inability to think critically is mind boggling. 

          • SAVE SPD FROM THEMSELVES July 1, 2020 (1:01 am)

            I’m very aware of how it works because an officer asked me to do it once LOL. It just required proper triage. Your commitment to your narrative is so outstanding that you just blasted ME for a police officer’s instruction. You’re not helping them.

        • Get a Hobby June 30, 2020 (10:08 pm)

          Here come the hindsighters.  You couldn’t  make the team so you criticize them.

          • zark00 July 1, 2020 (10:12 am)

            They deserve the criticism 100% – proper procedure when there is even a suspicion of homicide is to secure the scene as quickly as you can safely manage.  Dispatch has nothing to do with this, they would have ‘foul smelling container in unexpected location’ a beach no less, and they would pass that to SPD.  SPD dropped the ball by not assuming it was a homicide and sending officers immediately to secure the scene.  This is a what it looks like when an investigation is botched from the get go.

    • Will June 30, 2020 (4:06 pm)

      Way to politicize a tragedy Craig. Looks like we do need the police after all. Wow. Hopefully this combined with the every other day chop shootings will shut up the “we do not need the police” clowns. There’s a difference between addressing some very serious policing issues and having no police/defunded police.We need more and better quality police in Seattle. 

      • Get it right June 30, 2020 (4:55 pm)

        Will…No one, I repeat, no one is suggesting there should be no police. I encourage you research what is meant when people say defund their police. If you want your vote to count, educate it first. 

        • You Got It Wrong June 30, 2020 (9:44 pm)

          The very first demand made in CHAZ was the complete abolition of the police:

          “The Seattle Police Department and attached court system are beyond reform. We do not request reform, we demand abolition. We demand
          that the Seattle Council and the Mayor defund and abolish the Seattle
          Police Department and the attached Criminal Justice Apparatus. This
          means 100% of funding, including existing pensions for Seattle Police.
          At an equal level of priority we also demand that the city disallow the
          operations of ICE in the city of Seattle.”

          You literally could not be more wrong.

        • Will July 1, 2020 (10:08 am)

          So, get it right, if you were joking your comment was poorly worded. It almost seemed you were being serious.The damage that extreme activists have done to the blm movement by demanding abolishing the police is tremendous.  Chop ended up doing  a ton of harm to blm, make no mistake. 

      • KM June 30, 2020 (4:56 pm)

        Way to politicize a response, Will.

      • zark00 July 1, 2020 (10:14 am)

        Police you are thinking of would do nothing in this investigation except secure the scene.  This would be homicide detectives of course.

    • Tt June 30, 2020 (4:07 pm)

      Craig, it says they called 911 for a bad smell from a suitcase. The call didn’t state there were human remains nor that there was evidence of murder. I don’t think cops race around to calls for smells. 

    • Kram June 30, 2020 (4:18 pm)

      Everything in context Craig. Police prioritize calls. A call about a ‘stinky luggage bag’ doesn’t warrant a quick police response. Police are busy and understaffed.

    • Mandy June 30, 2020 (4:25 pm)

      It was not stated as murder in a call.  A bag which was smelled was found. It poised a suspicion but the situation was not urgent. In addition, there are many other urgent calls from 360 minute to minute. The police force is organized. Which officers have to be dispatched are recorded for tracing. On average the time in consideration during a lockdown and amid a pandemic was acceptable. The policemen need to save the lives in priority. 

    • Aero June 30, 2020 (4:26 pm)

      Craig, I suggest you go on a ride along with SPD. There are only so many officers on in west seattle at a given time. You’d probably be shocked as to how many calls they have stacked at once…many of these calls (like domestic violence) requiring a minimum of two officers. If you’re unhappy with response times, I hope you’re against defunding. 

      • Will June 30, 2020 (4:50 pm)

        Exactly Aero. Instead of defunding maybe a better result would come from increased funding. We need more spd  in ws. 

        • Elise July 1, 2020 (12:54 am)

          Right?! If you want better police, you need more training, which requires *more* funding. Everyone keeps saying defund these “problematic” police without saying what the actual problem is – backed by actual evidence, not feelings – or providing solutions that they didn’t just pick up on Sawant’s twitter feed.

          And the arguing over terminology? It’s called “Defund the Police” – it means exactly what it says. The other commenter who listed out the demands above is 100% correct, so don’t dismiss it, because it’s exactly what they did in Minneapolis.

          To the commenter who started all this — watch the TikTok video of the kids calling about a smelly suspicious suitcase. You can hear the audio. It’s clearly a non-emergency call. This is objective fact. A non-emergency call can take up to 24 hours. Want better, faster service? Then you have pay for it (i.e., fund the police) like we do everything else here. 

    • SLJ June 30, 2020 (4:29 pm)

      I would imagine that any suitcase that washed up from the sound would smell bad. Bodies in a suitcase is not the most likely explanation.

    • Marian June 30, 2020 (4:31 pm)

      Actually all the police were told that kids had found a suitcase and it smelled bad…..not an indication there was a murder or even that anything bad had happened….could have been full of dog poop, fish guts etc,etc….soooo a 2 hour response by very busy police  is not unusual!

      • Elle Nell July 1, 2020 (1:34 am)

        First off, CHAZ does not speak for everyone and at this point they have lost the platform. STOP acting like they are some sort of leaders to dismantle RACISM. IF anything, this is EVERYONE against RACISTS!! WE thE PEoPle, want to change the entire police system to make it work. FOR EVERYONE. This is NOT political this is a RIGHT as tax paying citizens. WE DESERVE A SYSTEM THAT WORKS!! Wake up!  THIS IS NOT GOING AWAY! 

  • Robert June 30, 2020 (4:04 pm)

    Two hours for the cops to respond.  This is the issue.  We are overpaying the cops, and they are understaffed if it’s taking that long.  COME ON!

    • heartless June 30, 2020 (4:43 pm)

      They are indeed understaffed–or, to put it a slightly different way–overworked.  But I’m not at all sure they are overpaid–I think it’s a hard, important, and often thankless job and Seattle is an expensive city.  You’d have to mount a pretty compelling argument to convince me they’re overpaid.

      • mok4315 June 30, 2020 (9:54 pm)

        heartless, never in my life did I think I would ever agree with you, but that day has come. Well said. 

      • zark00 July 1, 2020 (10:24 am)

        I would guess you’ve never actually looked at how much we pay police officers, it’s a lot. They also get a pension, 60 after 20 years I believe it is. 1,326 highly compensated SPD employees made six-figures or more while 364 employees earned over $200,000 last year. Review the entire payroll posted at OpenTheBooks.com.Twenty SPD employees out-earned police chief Carmen Best ($289,420).
        The five highest paid included Ron Morgan Willis (patrol officer –
        $414,543); William Edward Jr (sergeant – $360,277); Steven Kim (officer –
        $332,274); Eric Zerr (sergeant – $331,413); and Brian Miles (sergeant –
        $328,338).
        Other high earners included assistant chief of collaborative policing
        Adrian Diaz ($241,802), who seeks to foster positive relationships
        between the department and the community; hostage negotiation officer
        James Garner ($273,917); and bomb squad sergeant Daniel Miller
        ($279,266).
        SPD employees earning six figures last year cost taxpayers a total of
        $237 million and included 1,052 officers, 172 sergeants, 61
        lieutenants, and 23 captains.

        • heartless July 1, 2020 (11:12 am)

          Zark:
          I knew they were paid a lot, although some of your numbers surprised me.  I am in favor of them earning 200-300k, but agree that 300k+ seems excessive.  And I know that even 200-300k is a lot, but I still feel it’s merited.

          That said, I also think they should be licensed and have at least two full years of training, and that there should be a LOT fewer of them (obviously with others hired to replace those duties police were never intended for (& never wanted to do in the first place)).

          If I had my druthers we’d have a top-notch, small, nimble, professional police force, complemented by non-police traffic enforcers, social service workers, investigators, etc.

        • alki_2008 July 1, 2020 (4:12 pm)

          Keep in  mind that much of the police pay is from overtime. Which would maybe be lower if SPD was not understaffed.There is another searchable database that shows Base Pay vs Overtime. It is for 2018 though, not 2019.It says Ron Willis had Base Pay of $107k and another $137k of overtime in 2018. Whereas your OpenTheBook site says Ron Willis made $123k in 2018 and then $414k in 2019.The other site also shows that Will Edward had Base of $120k and another $129k of overtime in 2018. Whereas your OpenTheBook site says Will Edwards made $144 in 2018 and then $360k in 2019.Not sure why there is such a huge jump in 2019. Just take your examples and select “All” years, and see how 2019 is multiples higher than those same people in prior 2 years. Something seems fishy.

    • Anne June 30, 2020 (5:16 pm)

      What a bunch of baloney-why don’t you go down to the precinct & demand the police respond faster to a smelly suitcase-I’m sure they’d appreciate your input.  COME ON!

    • Aero June 30, 2020 (5:22 pm)

      Two hours for them to respond to a bad smelling suitcase, yes. Do you know how many calls take priority over that? Domestic violence, car accidents, among many others. If you’re unhappy with the response times, it’s because there aren’t enough officers on shift at a given time. What does that have to do with overpaying them if they’re busy on other priority calls?

  • Befuddled June 30, 2020 (4:21 pm)

    We absolutely deserve an answer on why the response time was over 2 hours. The location is on a path that Southwest Precinct has as a typical beat and ESPECIALLY since that road is one of the most active areas during the summer for the W1 sector. 

    • Anne June 30, 2020 (5:25 pm)

      No-we don’t necessarily “ deserve” an answer as to why the police response to a smelly suitcase call took over 2hours. But hey-why don’t you go along with Robert & Craig -down to the precinct & demand one. Advise them – on just how much time  you think the response time should  be to a call like that-since you know so much about the typical SW Precinct beat & the most active areas of W1-I’m sure they’d appreciate your input. 

      • Elise July 1, 2020 (1:01 am)

        Yeah, seriously. “Defund these overpaid cops with their bloated budgets and their slow response times! I want faster service! For less money!”Yeah, there’s some cognitive dissonance right there.

    • Jon Wright June 30, 2020 (5:33 pm)

      Not sure what is so “befuddling.” The police work high priority calls first and eventually get to lower-priority calls.

    • Patrick June 30, 2020 (5:35 pm)

      OK, here is your answer……the original call was for a smelly suitcase on the beach.  Not a real emergency compared to what else was happening in the city at that time.  Couple  the fact that it is documented that the SPD is understaffed and been trying unsuccessfully to hire more officers for months on end.  For which you can thank your far left extremist council and mayor. So, Robert and Befuddled, can I assume you are against the calls to FURTHER reduce the police force through defunding efforts that are currently in the news.

    • sw June 30, 2020 (9:21 pm)

      I “deserve” a respite from all the people insisting they “deserve” things. 

  • Girl June 30, 2020 (4:53 pm)

    Man, some of you people with your comments.  Two people washed up shore in suit cases, and some how instead of having sympathy for them you choose to just complain.What a terrible tragedy this is. My heart goes out to the victims and the families. Stay safe West Seattle

    • Woman July 4, 2020 (5:04 pm)

      Agree…came here mainly  out of curiosity about the app. that kid’s used & results of what happened. And it totally went off to ??? Praying for the families as well as victims, & kids who will probably be traumatized by this discovery. 

  • Alki resident June 30, 2020 (4:53 pm)

    Has anyone even considered it may have been shift change? 

  • Really June 30, 2020 (5:00 pm)

    I am trying to integrate West Seattle’s sentiment towards police. So far I have something like “the police we do not need are paid too much and took too long to get to a crime scene that should probably be taken care of by social workers. However, there are not enough police to address every crime so we should cut them some slack.”

    • Emma July 2, 2020 (3:08 pm)

      Almost as if West Seattle isn’t a single person with a single opinion on the subject.

  • Poirot June 30, 2020 (5:18 pm)

    With all of the ridiculous posts that I regularly read on WSB (including this story) I’m surprised no one has solved this murder/conspiracy/assassination yet.  Wait for it, wait …

  • Guy June 30, 2020 (5:37 pm)

    I wonder where they were from? 

  • Friend June 30, 2020 (6:13 pm)

    If you’re unhappy with the police response time, then you should join the police academy and chip in. If you think they are overpaid, then you should join, so you too can be overpaid? 

    • Sam June 30, 2020 (7:12 pm)

      Friend- I agree. So many complaints. If people want change, then join the police force and work to make changes from the inside. People have no idea what a difficult job being an officer is and yet they’re so quick to judge. My friend is an SPD officer and was off her beat the other day after going on a welfare check and finding a man who had taken his own life with a gunshot wound. Processing a scene like that takes hours and takes multiple officers off of the roads. People assume they know what’s going on in their neighborhoods but trust me, we don’t know the half of it.

      • Elle Nell July 1, 2020 (1:43 am)

        No they should do their damn job! I’m not going to be a cop because that is not my profession. bUT if it was, I would do my job!! This is BS. Cops should also be required to have degree! Some real education in criminal justice, mental health, de escalation, community, and what it means to SERVE.

        • KJ July 1, 2020 (4:27 pm)

          Elle Nell- what leads you to believe they weren’t doing their job? Do you know if they were at the scene of an accident or a domestic violence call that took priority over this? They prioritize calls. They’re busy. People like you need to go on a ride along and see all of the crap that happens in West Seattle. 

        • Sara July 1, 2020 (4:28 pm)

          All of the cops I personally know have a degree. Many of them even have their Masters. Just an FYI. 

  • Lauren June 30, 2020 (7:06 pm)

    seriously can’t believe all these comments about the police response time. my goodness, folks. so sorry to hear this is a homicide, and two people. the wording of “do not believe this case is connected to any other investigations in the Puget Sound area” makes me curious, I’m surprised there’s no local active missing persons case for these two victims. Or maybe I’m reading too much into that.  I wonder if police suspect the suitcase was placed on that beach by someone, or could have come from a totally different location in Puget Sound or tossed off a boat, and washed up.

    • heartless June 30, 2020 (8:03 pm)

      As to whether or not it’s related to a local case:  I think that the remains were in a suitcase and also dumped in the water means they could have traveled/been transported really quite far.  In which case it seems less surprising that there are no active local missing person cases.  But that’s just me spit-balling, aside from a deep fondness for Ed McBain (rip) novels I have no credentials here!

      • WestSide June 30, 2020 (9:13 pm)

        That suitcase looked too good to have traveled from a far away place. I didn’t see any damage/discoloration or even any seaweed or anything stuck to it in that video. It looked as if it was somewhat recently dumped there.

        • heartless July 1, 2020 (3:37 pm)

          Good call, you were absolutely right!

        • alki_2008 July 1, 2020 (3:42 pm)

          My first thought was that the suitcase could’ve been dropped off one of the ferries, and then washed to shore from there.

  • Wsresident June 30, 2020 (7:49 pm)

    Is this article about Seattle police response time OR THAT TWO YOUNG HUMANS WERE MURDERED AND STUFFED INTO SUITCASES, AND THROWN INTO THE SOUND. Jesus people, have a bit of compassion, for these victims and their families, instead of pushing your OPINION of how our police operate. I invite you to think about the loss of life, and how their families might feel, reading some of these comments. As someone who lost a family member to murder, it’s outrageous how little empathy people can have these days. 

    • Girl June 30, 2020 (9:26 pm)

      Well said.  Hoping the families can find answers and some sort of closure.

    • Lilyandra Xavier July 1, 2020 (1:04 am)

      The issue with the police response time is that evidence was literally being washed away because they did not prioritize the call. I hope the slow response isn’t going to affect the investigation in any way and I hope the victims and their family will get justice and peace eventually.I can’t imagine what you’ve been through. I am sorry for your loss. 

      • Wsresident July 1, 2020 (5:40 am)

        The suitcase were on the rocks. Nothing was floating away, had they had some indication there was fowl play, they would’ve responded sooner. I had a shooting by my house twice in the last 5 years and the police response was on point. 

        • Lilyandra Xavier July 1, 2020 (3:02 pm)

          You obviously didn’t see the whole video where the suitcase was being pulled out to sea by the incoming tide. The reason divers had to retrieve the “other bags” was because the ocean waves had knocked them out of the suitcase.

  • old timer June 30, 2020 (9:19 pm)

    All this talk about the police response and no one asks how a TicToc app sends these children to find bodies in a suitcase. What kind of “games” are people playing?

    • Alki resident June 30, 2020 (10:28 pm)

      These weren’t children. They were young adults. 

    • lexham July 1, 2020 (8:24 am)

      TikTok is a video app. Randonautica is the app that sent them there, apparently it sends you to random locations.It’s not as if the app sent them there to find dead bodies.

  • Kristin June 30, 2020 (10:04 pm)

    The phrasing around “Do not believe this case is connected to any other investigations in the Puget Sound area…“ coupled with the lack of any additional details is strange to me, as another commenter said. Instead of arguing about the police response times does anyone want to speculate what is meant by that? Because I think there are two theories, right?

    1. They were Canadian or some such and disposed of from further up north and washed into the Duwamish. (Or I guess they could have been transported into Seattle in a vehicle and then disposed of).
    2. Or: the police are lying about connections to our area because they know exactly what happened and are trying not to scare off whoever is responsible while they locate him or her.
    3. Anyone want to speculate with me?
    • WSB June 30, 2020 (11:04 pm)

      As I noted upthread, SPD told me they were making a point of saying that because of wild theories/fears apparently circulating on social media somewhere – like fears of a serial killer.

  • ScubaFrog June 30, 2020 (10:14 pm)

    Just awful.   The poor families of both, the scope of devastation in losing 2 people to a murderer is awful.  I hope there was really good evidence that SPD can use to identify the perpetrator and put them in prison for life.  

  • TC June 30, 2020 (11:04 pm)

    Fell into a reddit rabbit hole on Randonautica. The app seems interesting and I can see the fascination with it. In reference to the  “not connected to any other investigations in the Puget Sound area,” one person on reddit referenced human remains discovered in 2 different pieces of luggage during the  summer 2015 : SeaTac and along Greenriver.  Unsure if those were solved.

  • Mandy July 1, 2020 (12:35 am)

    This has aroused a tremendous amount of interests domestically and internationally. First, we have to know if the remains were dumped recently. It has to be attested by the forensic science on the materials and autopsy. Second, were they deceased Washington state residents? Sound most likely. Third, were they related or were they neighbours? Were they robbed? Fourth, the propinquity of the dumping location if they weren’t dumped from the beach. A ferry pier nearby as an alternative perhaps? Fifth, any reason why the deceased have to be vanished and unfound? Sixth, a curious question, why burying was not opted? And many other questions for consideration. It is no doubt a very gruesome homicide. Amid pandemic, and a lockdown, without normally active activities in public, this appears to be standing out. 

  • Andrew July 1, 2020 (5:09 am)

    One thing is for certain – there will be a documentary or movie produced on this case. This case has mystery and horror; both subjects will draw in the audience.

  • helpermonkey July 1, 2020 (8:27 am)

     people here obviously watch way too much CSI and Law and Order. 

  • wetone July 1, 2020 (10:00 am)

     Very sad deal for all involved, but what’s just as sad is people slamming SPD for response time. SPD is controlled by mayor and city council. That’s where ALL blame should be placed. People are saying cops are paid to much, really ? their base salary for what’s required of them is terrible. Officers make there money working overtime. As to people commenting on time line from initial phone call and many of the other comments, did any of you request a public disclosure request so you know what your talking about ?  I agree 100% that 2hrs is unacceptable no matter what a call is for, but things are only going to get worse with current mayor and city council we have at this time. This city is broke money wise and in leadership. 

    • Mam July 1, 2020 (4:32 pm)

      Wetone- exactly. The response time is slow because there aren’t that many of them on in WS at a given time for all of the calls they’re responding to. Apparently we have some people commenting on here who think they know everything about what the actual officers do on a daily basis. Unhappy with that? Talk to the mayor and city council. The direction the city is going isn’t going to fix that, it’ll only get worse.

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