West Seattle, Washington
The latest on the pandemic:
NEWEST KING COUNTY NUMBERS: From the Seattle-King County Public Health daily-summary dashboard, the cumulative totals:
*80,157 people have tested positive, 140 more than yesterday’s total
*1,320 people have died, 8 more than yesterday’s total
*5,021 people have been hospitalized, 13 more than yesterday’s total
*882,196 people have been tested, 2,397 more than yesterday’s total
One week ago, the four totals we track were 79,167/1,305/4,942/867,433.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: Find them, county by county, on the state Department of Health page,.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: See them, nation by nation, here.
WEEKLY HEALTH BRIEFING TOMORROW: State health officials present their weekly update and answer media questions at 9 am tomorrow; watch it live here.
VACCINE WEBINAR: Got questions about vaccine eligibility and distribution? The state is offering a webinar at 5 pm tomorrow. Here’s the info, including how to attend.
CITY CLINICS: The city is continuing to get a limited number of doses and says its next round will include pop-up clinics in West Seattle, South Park, and South Seattle, with outreach being handled by El Comite, Villa Comunitaria, the Senior Center of West Seattle, and Seattle Housing Authority.
GOT INFO? Email us at email@example.com or phone us, text or voice, at 206-293-6302 – thank you!
As noted in the comment section following this afternoon’s report on transient orcas’ visit, their cousins the Southern Resident Killer Whales have a new addition.
A new calf in L pod! The Center for Whale Research (CWR) is thrilled to confirm that a new calf, L125, has been born into the Southern Resident killer whale (SRKW) community. https://t.co/pLc7lCSxQK pic.twitter.com/TSxpFbu7EP
— Whale Research (@CWROrcas) February 18, 2021
From the Center for Whale Research‘s announcement:
Following word that J, K, and L pod were in Haro Strait, CWR dispatched two boats with field researchers to photo-identify the new calf and as many other SRKWs as possible for our annual population census.
CWR’s photo-ID expert, Dave Ellifrit, captured images that show L125 with fetal folds, indicating a relatively recent birth. “It is nicely filled out and appears to be a perfectly normal little calf,” said Ellifrit.
L125’s size and shape are typical of a calf in good physical condition. The new calf’s mother is L86 [born in 1991], her fourth offspring.
Drs. John Durban and Holly Fernbach (SR3) captured drone photos of L125 and, given its size, estimate it to be 1 – 1 1/2 months old.
L125 has one living sibling, L106 (male), born in 2005. L86 has given birth to two other calves: L112 and L120, both now deceased. L112 (born in 2009) was killed by blunt-force trauma during military exercises in 2012. L120 was born and died in 2014.
L125 is the first calf born into L pod since January 2019, when L77 gave birth to L124.
The last time the Center for Whale Research encountered Southern Resident orcas in the Salish Sea was January 20, 2021 (J and K pod). CWR’s most recent previous encounter with L pod was September 24, 2020.
The other calves born into J pod in 2020, J57 and J58, were observed today and looked to be doing well.
Both of those calves were born last September.
6:55 PM: Thanks for the tip. A “car fire” callout in the 4000 block of SW Barton is actually a solid-waste truck fire, says our texter, and police are being dispatched for traffic control – the dispatcher described it as a “large trash fire in the roadway.’ We’re on the way to check it out.
7:11 PM: Adding reader video sent by Eric Nordlund. As it shows, and as our crew reports, the truck had to dump trash in the street after the truck broke out – and that’s where the trash burned. No injuries.
Now they have to figure out how to get it cleaned up.
7:24 PM: Police have just told dispatch that the road is likely to be blocked “for several hours.”
The first challenger for Seattle Port Commissioner Stephanie Bowman announced her candidacy today: Hamdi Mohamed. She is currently a King County Office of Equity & Social Justice policy adviser. Her announcement says Mohamed would be “the first-ever woman of color and East African (on) the Port Commission, as well as the only commissioner to live in the airport community.” Her past work includes serving as deputy district director for Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal. The announcement says that Mohamed priorities include creating “more living-wage job opportunities for all of our communities at the Port,” expecting that such jobs will play a big role in the post-pandemic recovery, and “prioritizing diversity and access for small businesses in contracting.” She also vows that environmental justice will be at the heart of her campaign. The primary is on August 2nd; the lineup of candidates won’t be finalized until May.
Two more West Seattle Crime Watch reports today:
ANOTHER PHARMACY ROBBERY: Third one in West Seattle in five days – the Jefferson Square Bartell Drugs on Saturday, the Westwood Village Rite Aid on Monday, and today QFC in The Junction. We obtained the police report after a tip about the robbery. It happened around 9:30 this morning. There was one robber this time, described in the report as “a Black male, approximately 5’10 – 6’2, slim, wearing a black beanie, blue surgical mask, black puffy jacket, black pants, and black sneakers with white bottoms.” He pulled what looked like the handle of a gun and demanded Percocet. When an employee hesitated, he yelled, “Do you really want to die over Percocet?” He was given a bottle of pills and fled out the store’s front door. Security video showed it all lasted less than two minutes. Asked about the first two robberies at last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, Southwest Precinct Lt. Dorothy Kim said it’s believed these are part of a ring responsible for a “regional” series of holdups.
STOLEN CAR: The report and photo are from Angela:
My car was stolen from Holden qnd 35th Ave SW sometime between 10 pm and 8:30 am, case #2021-039912.
FRIDAY UPDATE: Angela has commented below to say her car’s been found.
(First 2 photos by Trevor Simonton)
2:52 PM: Thanks to Kersti Muul from Salish Wildlife Watch for the report – transient killer whales are passing West Seattle again, southbound right now, visible from Alki. Let us know if you see them!
3:29 PM: Via email, Robin Sinner says they’re moving southwest, with a research boat trailing.
4:16 PM: Kersti and Robin both note in comments that the orcas are now in Elliott Bay, near the grain terminal.
6:51 PM: Photos added.
City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda has her first challenger for citywide Position 8: South Lake Union community advocate and business owner Mike McQuaid announced today that he’s running, and planning a citywide campaign tour tomorrow, including a West Seattle stop. The campaign news release describes McQuaid as “a fourth-generation Seattleite who served as elected member, president and transportation chair of the South Lake Union Community Council from 2010 – 19 during a period of significant growth and revitalization” and says he “has also served in a number of volunteer civic leadership capacities including a mayoral appointment to the Seattle Sister Cities Coordinating Council and a leadership role in the then Key Arena – Redevelopment Community Advisory Group.” The announcement cites pandemic recovery and neighborhood-business resiliency among his priorities and says the candidate is “passionate about Seattle’s parks, transportation infrastructure and neighborhoods.” McQuaid’s campaign stops in all seven council districts tomorrow will include a visit to Husky Deli in The Junction between 1:30 and 2 pm.
(UPDATED 8:50 PM with Prosecuting Attorney’s Office information about past cases)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Last Thursday, we published a police alert about 37-year-old Jason A. Turner, who they describe as a “prolific mail thief” who focuses on North Delridge.
This morning he’s in jail again, after a second arrest in four days. Police say they objected to his release after Saturday’s arrest but he was let go Monday anyway – then arrested again on Tuesday.
According to the police-report narrative from Saturday’s arrest, officers spotted Turner “walking near Sylvan Way/Delridge Way” just after 3 pm. fitting the description of a suspect in two reports of mail theft that day. The report says he had pieces of mail stuffed into his clothing: “Without being asked, Turner stated he goes into mailboxes to get mail because he is looking for good things to sell.” Police say he was in possession of “14 total pieces from 3 different addresses, with 4 different names,” none of them his. That qualified as a potential felony (RCW 9A.56.370). After he was arrested and read his rights, the report adds, he told police “he was specifically looking for credit cards that people had applied for because he has had success using those in the past.” Turner was booked into jail but released Monday evening, without bail being set.
Then on Tuesday, according to SW Precinct commander Capt. Kevin Grossman, officers arrested Turner again “after responding to a 911 call that he was stealing mail along 25th Ave SW (near SW Brandon St).” That was one of two calls, the first at 7:46 am, just 13 hours after he got out of jail. Capt. Grossman says one caller recognized the suspect from the photo we published last week. This time, police say, they recovered nearly 200 pieces of stolen mail.
Turner will likely have a first-appearance hearing today and police will again ask that he not be released on personal recognizance. They say the case that one detective will send to prosecutors includes a 2020 mail-theft case with ~20 victims, a more-recent case alleging mail theft and forgery with almost 50 victims, an attempted car prowl, plus these brand-new cases. Police also say another detective has been investigating a January mail-theft case. Records show no previous felony charges against Turner, but he has two open cases in which he’s been charged with misdemeanors.
What about federal charges for mail theft? you might wonder. Police say a USPIS Inspector also was called to the precinct to interview Turner before he wa taken to jail, where he’s been since just after 2 pm Tuesday.
This is his third arrest this month. After the first one, on February 3rd, prosecutors told police that they did not push to keep him in custody because a judge was unlikely to require bail given that it was a non-violent crime and that Turner had a “limited warrant history.” We have asked the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for comment on their policies – if commenting on this specific case is not possible – and will update this story when we hear back, as well as when we get word on what happens in court today.
5:46 PM: The jail register says bail was set for Turner today – $2,500. We also have received a response from the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office and will add that later this evening.
8:50 PM: KCPAO spokesperson Casey McNerthney responded with information about Turner’s history as applies to their office, going back to 2017.
Thanks for the tips. 8 Limbs Yoga has announced via email that its West Seattle Junction yoga studio is closing at month’s end. From the email sent by owner Amaan Kurji:
When I took over the reigns of 8 Limbs Yoga Centers in January 2020 and a lease at W. Seattle set to expire a month later, my goal and hope was that by extending the lease and some investment and TLC, I would be able to revitalize the studio and keep it in the 8 Limbs family for many more years. There was no doubt that the studio held an incredibly special place in the hearts of so many of our students, teachers, and partners.
Unfortunately, Covid 19, the resulting shutdown of the studio two months later, and a continued closure has made any chance of achieving this reality highly improbable. With a heavy heart, I am writing to let you know that the 8 Limbs studio at 4546½ California Ave SW, Seattle, will permanently close its doors on February 28th, 2021.
I know that for many of our students and teachers, this studio has played an important role in their development and growth as yoga practitioners. It is because of this community that 8 Limbs was able to stay the course for almost 16 years. On behalf of all at 8 Limbs, thank you for this trust and support. ….
The full announcement is published on the 8 Limbs website, including information on a plan for “opening the doors for folks to come by, say goodbye to the space, and pick up a few things for their home studios.” The company plans to continue offering online classes as well as in-person classes “when we re-open our other studios in Capitol Hill, Phinney Ridge, and Wedgwood.” 8 Limbs is the second Junction yoga studio to close in six months; Bikram Yoga closed last fall.
Thanks to Troy for the tip. If you are having any water trouble in Gatewood, could be related to a problem in the vicinity of 39th SW/SW Rose, where that crew has been working. Nothing is showing on the Seattle Public Utilities water-outage map, so we have an inquiry out and will update with whatever we hear back.
ADDED WEDNESDAY NIGHT: We have yet to get a response from SPU. But as noted in comments, Arbor Heights had an outage today too, near 37th and 106th. That one did turn up on the map.
7:50 AM: Thanks for the tips. Big police response at Westwood Village right now. Officers at the scene tell us there was a break-in at the building that houses businesses including Wyatt’s Jewelers (WSB sponsor) and Chico’s. They believe one suspect might be in the future Ross building to the south. Target is closed until police give them the go-ahead to reopen. K-9s are helping with the search; police say there is concern the suspect might have a weapon. More later.
9:17 AM: We just went back to check on the status. No one in custody yet. SWAT officers have arrived.
10:09 AM: No arrest yet. Target remains closed (see photo above). But the east side of the center remains open. We have a crew remaining on scene so we’ll update as soon as there’s a change.
10:21 AM: Suspect in custody. Photo just in from our crew:
(Updated photo substituted at 12:03 pm)
We’re expecting more info shortly in a police briefing.
10:59 AM: Police say they initially responded to an alarm around 5:30 am. They made one arrest early on, so the person just arrested (added: found on the roof) is a second suspect. They say the burglary did some damage to businesses including a hole punched in a wall. No injuries reported. We’ll add video of the briefing when our crew’s back. (added – here’s what Officer Judinna Gulpan told media:)
In case you’re wondering – the businesses in the same building as Ross/Target haven’t reopened yet.
2:07 PM: We went back over to check – Target is going to remain closed until tomorrow morning.
We’re still checking on the other businesses.
5:08 PM: Wyatt’s and Chico’s were still closed when we went by a short time ago; Sport Clips was open.
6:16 AM: Good morning. Almost back to normal – sunshine in the forecast today. Tuesday’s sunset – photographed by James Tilley from Alki – hinted at it:
TRANSIT: Metro is on its regular routes. … MV Doc Maynard is back as the West Seattle Water Taxi vessel … The Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth ferry route is back to 2-boat service.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES: 331st morning without the West Seattle Bridge. Here’s how things are looking:
Low Bridge: Sixth week for automated enforcement cameras, while restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily. Here’s a bridge view:
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden – with a new left-turn signal for northbound HP Way, turning to westbound Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
The 1st Avenue South Bridge (map):
For the South Park Bridge (map), here’s the nearest camera:
To check for bridges’ marine-traffic openings, see the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed.
See all local traffic cams here; locally relevant cameras are also shown on this WSB page.
Trouble on the streets/paths/bridges/water? Let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.
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