WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Building break-in; ‘pretty convincing’ phone scam; dumped Novara bicycle

Three reader reports:


At about 8:30 (Thursday) morning, a person gained access to our condo building near California and Findlay and managed to break into some storage lockers.

We will add the police-report number when we get it.

PHONE SCAM: The utility-shutoff scam callers are still at it, and Emily emailed this warning:

I live near the Junction and just received a scam call (a 206 number) from someone claiming they were from Seattle City Light and that my account is past due (it isn’t) and they were giving me a courtesy call because they were about to disconnect my electricity. They then gave me an 800 number to call to resolve my balance and prevent disconnection.

I didn’t call the 800 number, I instead called Seattle City Light to verify my account was ok and they told me that there was a scam happening right now and that Seattle PD was investigating. Apparently a lot of people have been victims and Seattle City Light can’t really do much to help them. Just wanted to share in case they’re calling other West Seattle neighbors – the guy was pretty convincing!

City Light’s website notes: “City Light will never demand payment over the phone. If you receive a call from someone demanding payment and threatening to shut off your power, hang up immediately and call 206-684-3000 to confirm your account status. You can report attempted scams to City Light using our online form.”

P.S. Same goes for other utilities – if you get a call claiming shutoff is imminent, hang up and call the utility to check your status.

DUMPED BICYCLE: The photo and report are from CJ:

I found this bike stashed in my backyard this morning at 42nd Ave SW and Heights. Looks like a beat-up Novara brand that’s been spray painted silver.

Yours? Let us know and we’ll connect you.

8 Replies to "WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Building break-in; 'pretty convincing' phone scam; dumped Novara bicycle"

  • Richard May 21, 2021 (3:49 pm)

    I always think, who the heck would fall for one of these very obvious scams???  Well my mother-in-law apparently!  She received a call last year from someone claiming to be her nephew asking for $2,000 to pay for urgent medical care.  She replied, “Steven???”  And of course the scammer said, “yes, this is Steven.”  He continued with his convincing sob story.  (trust me, I’m still shaking my head about this)

    Long story short, there are many vulnerable people who get taken every year.  And yes, my elderly mother-in-law mailed the scammer a check for $2,000.  She told my wife about it months after this happened; the money long gone & being very embarrassed after realizing she was taken, refused to contact the police.  I know, huh? 

  • petty May 21, 2021 (3:58 pm)

    I got the scam call too. I just kept calling the 800 number and not talking when they answered, hoping I am costing them money or at least taking up someone’s time so they can’t scam anyone else. It’s childish, I know, but I feel a little better thinking I am slowing down their process. 

  • Carole May 21, 2021 (5:39 pm)

    The social security scammers are active again. I’ve been getting at least 1 call per day, sometimes more, for the last 10 days or so. I just hang up and block the (likely phished)  numbers. 

  • AT May 21, 2021 (6:23 pm)

    I don’t know, but those pants are a crime ;)

  • Wenna May 21, 2021 (6:51 pm)

    I saw this man yesterday in my apartment garage  area. Hey was looking through recycling at mail.  Oddly enough woke up this morning to our mailboxes broken into.  He was muttering to himself and was a little scary. This was around noon. He has a soft lunchbox type crossover to put his stolen finds in. 

  • Zipda May 21, 2021 (7:05 pm)

    He should be arrested just for wearing those pants.

  • Jack J May 26, 2021 (12:28 pm)

    It is amazing how long the Seattle City Light shut off scam has been going on.  I got a voice mail on my house phone a year ago from a spoof number that is based in my neighborhood, the University District.for starters, All Seattle agencies, regardless of location, have a downtown number.  Second of all, I do Not have an account with any of the SPU’s.It will be nice to see some of these scammers going to prison for a long haul.

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