day : 17/01/2023 10 results

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Bail set for hate-crime suspects; ID-theft charges in eluding case after stolen mail, FBI vest, more found

We have followups on two West Seattle cases first reported by police via SPD Blotter last week:

BAIL SET FOR HATE-CRIME SUSPECTS: New information on these two arrests reported over the weekend comes from documents we obtained from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office after bail/probable-cause hearings. The SPDB post said that what started as a fight between neighbors ended with the arrests of two people for investigation of burglary, assault, and hate crimes. Here’s what the newly obtained documents – containing the police report’s full narrative – say happened:

The victim called police to the building in the 8400 block of Delridge Way SW where both he and the suspects, who are husband and wife, live. While on the way, police learned the victim had obtained an anti-harassment order against the female suspect but it had yet to be served. Arriving officers say both suspects had facial injuries. The female suspect claimed it all started when the victim yelled obscenities at her. She yelled back, “Is that all you’re going to say to me. Is that all you got?” Then, she said, he punched her in the face, grabbed her by the neck, and then swung at her husband when he came downstairs. The male suspect told officers he intervened to try to defend his wife. The victim, meantime, told officers it all started earlier when he saw the couple drive into the building’s parking lot, and he overheard her tell him something like “Oh look, he’s mean-mugging me,” as they proceeded to their apartment – which is over his – and continued making comments such as “I’m gonna get you, just watch, I’m gonna get you.” Then, the victim says, he heard a crash near his vehicle and found “a pile of dirt” had been poured on it, right below the suspects’ apartment window.

He called 911 and headed back into his apartment – but he encountered the female suspect, who, he said, told him, “I told you I was gonna get you. I’m gonna kill you, you stupid (n-word).” The victim says he tried ignoring her and continuing toward his apartment but that she allegedly threw an ashtray at him and then pushed her way into his apartment as he tried to close the door. He said she tried to punch him in the face; he tried to push her out. Then the male suspect came down and also entered the apartment. As he tried to intervene, everyone went down to the floor. Physical fighting and struggling continued. The victim says the male suspect punched him while yelling, “I’m going to kill you, you (n-word).” Then the male suspect walked out of the victim’s apartment while allegedly still yelling threats and racial slurs. At some point the female suspect left too, and the victim crawled toward his door to close and lock it..

Even then, the victim said, he was still in fear because of a previous incident in which, he said, the male suspect had pulled a knife on him; the report says he “believed (the two) would actually carry out their threat to kill him and believed it was at least partially motivated by his race.” Police interviewed neighbors who noted that, the report says, “it is common for (the two suspects) to make racially biased remarks.” Officers arrested the two and booked them into jail. Neither has been charged yet – prosecutors were awaiting referral of the cases – but both have had bail hearings; his bail is set at $50,000 – half of what prosecutors requested – and hers at $15,000. The KCPAO says this is the first time it’s dealt with these two people.

SUSPECT CHARGED AFTER FAILURE TO FLEE: Last week we reported another case spotlighted on SPD Blotter, that of a woman arrested in southeast West Seattle after police found her in a stolen car that they say she tried to drive away from them, repeatedly hitting SPD vehicles that had her boxed in. The suspect, 33-year-old Jaqueline N. Bruce of Snohomish, is now charged with one count of attempting to elude police and eight counts of identity theft. After she eventually surrendered, police say, they found – in her possession and in the car – checks, cards, a passport, and a driver license, all belonging to different people, plus almost 300 pieces of stolen mail addressed to “dozens” of people and an FBI special agent’s ballistic vest. (The latter was determined to have been stolen from the agent’s vehicle at his home in east King County.) Bruce has past convictions for trespassing and theft; she remains in the King County Jail in lieu of $22,000 bail.

FOLLOWUP: Terminal 5 Quiet Zone not expected to be done before 2024

Last Friday we reported that the Terminal 5 Quiet Zone project was open for bidding. Originally it was to be completed before the first of the two “modernized” berths at the dock had its first cargo call, but that’s been a year now, and the Quiet Zone remains yet to come. When we published Friday’s short update, one question remained: If the bidding stays on its current schedule, when will the project be built and completed? Though SDOT is responsible for the project, which will modify railroad crossings in a way that should reduce the need for train horns, they deferred the question to the Northwest Seaport Alliance, the Seattle/Tacoma cargo-shipping authority. NWSA spokesperson Melanie Stambaugh tells WSB the chosen contractor is likely to get the “notice to proceed” by this summer, and construction should be complete “in 2024.”

P.S. More project details are in this report from last July.

FOLLOWUP: Days away from next ‘king tides,’ South Park gets ‘large quantities of sandbags’ from city

(WSB photo, January 5th)

Three weeks after the weather-enhanced “king tides” that swamped parts of South Park, winter’s final round of extra-high tides is days away. The city says it’s preparing “by placing protective barriers like sandbags and other barriers in low-lying areas of the community and along the Duwamish River (and) offering sandbags to homeowners and businesses to help protect homes and property.” The ties will peak Tuesday and Wednesday morning of next week (January 24-25) but won’t be higher than the December 27th tides unless again complicated by factors including a low-pressure system and heavy rainfall. Nonetheless, Seattle Public Utilities says it’s “sandbagging key locations along the river and in South Park” including a park at 760 S. Portland and an alley off S. Kenyon.

(SPU photo)

SPU’s update today says it’s “also developing community notification systems for potentially impactful high tides.” At a City Council committee briefing last week, city staffers said 49 homes and businesses had suffered “substantial damage” in last month’s flooding. As for non-governmental response, the Duwamish River Community Coalition was first in the zone, and its page – including links to other community groups directly assisting flood victims – is here.

FOLLOWUP: All clear for South Alki after latest sewage leak

One week after a private-property sewer overflow closed South Alki beaches, they’ve reopened. We just got that confirmation from Seattle Public Utilities spokesperson Sabrina Register, who says the signage was removed today, after Public Health – Seattle & King County got test results indicating the beach and water are safe. According to SPU, the leak was at Harbor West Condominiums, the over-water complex that has had sewage-leak problems before, including one last summer.

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Two mail-truck thefts

3:22 PM: Two more USPS carriers’ mail trucks were stolen in West Seattle this afternoon; one has since been recovered, minus its contents. Both thefts were reported in the greater Alki area; the one that was found was missing its mail and packages, officers told dispatch. A home security camera from one scene is reported to have recorded a vehicle linked to the thieves, a purple early-’90s two-door Ford Ranger with a black canopy. No other details at the moment; the thefts were reported in the 5600 block of 57th SW (incident # 23-016226) and the 3300 block of Beach Drive (incident # 23-016223).

4:54 PM: According to police radio, the other one’s been found.

BIZNOTE: Just Poké says West Seattle space is finally under construction

Ten months ago, that banner on the window at 4735 42nd SW gave West Seattle poké fans hope that Just Poké was finally close to opening here. Then the banner disappeared during the recent round of snow/ice, and we’ve been getting questions about it ever since. The permit file indicates recent activity, though, and that’s confirmed today by Just Poké proprietor Norman Wu, who tells WSB, “The space is currently under construction, slated to be done at the end of February. It took us almost 10 months to just get our permit to build, which is why the project has been so delayed.” (The space was home to art gallery/framing shop Wallflower until summer 2019.) The regional chain originally indicated West Seattle plans five years ago.

BIZNOTE: Swan Dive gliding into West Seattle Junction space

The West Seattle Junction space at 4537 California SW where Virago recently closed won’t be vacant for long. A shop called Swan Dive will open there on February 1st. Proprietor Ali Brownrigg tells WSB that Swan Dive will have “vintage and previously loved clothing” as well as new shoes and clothing from Clementines in the early going – and more. Here’s how Ali, a longtime West Seattle resident, explains the plan, and the partnership:

I started Swan Dive with Linda Walsh (Clementines, Carmilia’s) in 2017 in the basement of Clementines in Pioneer Square. Swan Dive sells vintage and previously loved clothing, accessories, and home goods with a focus on affordable designer items and unique and one-of-a-kind pieces for the modern home and wardrobe. Swan Dive will be the West Seattle home of Clementines at least until the spring. Clementines focuses on new shoes and clothing from brands such as Intentionally Blank, MOMA, Atelier Delphine and Prairie Underground.

Once we get up and running, we hope to have a space to host pop-ups and trunk shows for Carmilia’s, Clementines, and Swan Dive, as well as a crafting nook for people to come hang out and knit, make pom-poms and punch needle art. Most people who know me know that I am compulsively crafty and have a desire to share my love of crafting with the masses.

(Side note – Clementines’ original home was in The Junction, part of where Pagliacci is now.) You can find Swan Dive online here and here. Hours in the new Junction space will be noon-5 pm weekdays, 11 am-5 pm Saturdays, 11 am-2 pm Sundays. Ali adds, “We’re always happy to be open by appointment if someone wants to shop outside of those hours. Email is the best way to reach me: swandivevintage@gmail.com

VIDEO: West Seattle low-bridge briefing, post-reopening (updated)

11:28 AM: Even before the three-week closure of the West Seattle low bridge (formally, Spokane Street Swing Bridge) ended last Friday afternoon, the City Council’s Transportation and Public Utilities Committee had scheduled a briefing on the situation. That just happened during the committee’s meeting this morning.

SDOT‘s Meghan Shepard led the briefing, starting with a brief explanation of how the low bridge works, and a recap of what went wrong, resulting in its three-week closure to street/path traffic.

In addition to the leaking and electrical problems, SDOT found and fixed valve problems too:

(Here’s the full slide deck.) If they kept operating it with the leaky turn cylinder, they ran the risk of a “catastrophic failure” of other parts, Shepard said. It was reiterated that all four of the turn cylinders were scheduled for refurbishment this year anyway – this just moved up the schedule. They’ll all be removed and replaced sequentially. However, SDOT’s bridges/roadway structures leader Matt Donahue said – in response to a question from West Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold – they’re not sure yet how long that’ll take, because they need “more time to determine everything that went wrong” with that cylinder, and to integrate technology upgrades. So with no timeline yet for all the cylinder repairs/overhauls, there’s no timeline for how long the bridge will be in the one-less-turning-cylinder, slower opening/closing mode. Herbold also asked how the resulting longer wait times are being communicated to bridge users; that too is a work in progress, Donahue said.

The briefing also included recaps of how SDOT quickly implemented a temporary protected bike lane – the 1st Avenue S. section has since been dismantled but the West Marginal Way one will stay indefinitely since a permanent PBL is already planned there; Shepard said the PBL was important because an average of 450 people bicycle across the low bridge daily. She also noted the week during which free bus/Water Taxi rides were made available, but said they don’t yet have metrics for how many people took advantage of the offer.

ADDED 12:45 PM: Here’s Seattle Channel video of this morning’s meeting – the low-bridge briefing starts 45 minutes in:

ADDED 8:41 PM: SDOT replied to our followup question seeking more information about the potential timeline. From spokesperson Ethan Bergerson:

We will overhaul four cylinders (two on each side of the bridge) before the bridge is once again opening and closing at the normal speed. At this point, we are considering replacing each cylinder one at a time in order to reduce the risks of more complications to bridge operations. This will be sequential as you described, but we haven’t determined the exact order.

We don’t have a time estimate yet, and it may take us several months to overhaul the entire set. We will continue to provide updates as the timeline becomes more clear. There are a few reasons for this uncertainty:

Our contractors and vendors are developing the scope and schedule for repairing the first cylinder. This will inform the overall schedule for all four cylinders, which will have to be aligned with the other improvements planned for the low bridge this year.

We won’t know the full extent of repairs needed for each of the other cylinders until after they have each been removed and dismantled so that we can see inside.

The time to obtain the necessary parts is still unknown. Many of these parts are unique and must be specially ordered or manufactured for this project, and potential supply chain issues are difficult to predict.

We will need to work with the US Coast Guard to schedule future cylinder removal and replacement activities in advance.

8 options for the rest of your West Seattle Tuesday

(Sunday morning’s rainbow off Alki Point – photo by Shaun Withers)

From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, here’s what’s happening today/tonight:

LOW-BRIDGE BRIEFING: What happened and what’s next? This briefing is part of the agenda for the City Council’s Transportation and Public Utilities Committee meeting at 9:30 am – watch via Seattle Channel (preview the presentation slide deck here).

POSTCARDS TO VOTERS: Long-distance political-advocacy group meets at 10:30 am at C & P Coffee (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor).

CITY COUNCIL: 2 pm this afternoon brings the full council’s weekly meeting, online or at City Hall (600 4th Ave.). See the agenda here; the meeting is also viewable via Seattle Channel.

DEMONSTRATION FOR BLACK LIVES: Longstanding weekly sign-waving demonstration at 16th/Holden. 5-6 pm. Signs available if you don’t have your own.

SCRABBLE NIGHT: 6-10 pm, you can play Scrabble at The Missing Piece (9456 35th SW).

DENNY/SEALTH PTSAs MEET: Joint PTSA meeting for the PTSAs of Chief Sealth International HS and Denny International MS, with health/safety the focus, in the Sealth library (2600 SW Thistle).

TRIVIA X 3: Three places where you can play Tuesday nights – 7 pm at Ounces (3809 Delridge Way SW), 7 pm at Admiral Pub (2306 California SW), 7:30 and 8:30 pm Sporcle Pub Quiz at The Lodge (4209 SW Alaska).

BELLE OF THE BALLS BINGO: Play bingo with Cookie Couture at The Skylark (3803 Delridge Way SW), 8 pm. Free, all ages!

You can always see more, and look way into the future, via our event calendar – if you have something for us to list, please email info to westseattleblog@gmail.com – thank you!

TRAFFIC, TRANSIT, WEATHER: Tuesday begins

6:01 AM: Good morning! It’s Tuesday, January 17th.

WEATHER

Mostly cloudy, chance of showers, high in the upper 40s.

TODAY’S TRANSIT STATUS

Metro is on a regular schedule today but still down buses for repairs – keep watching notification channels such as @kcmetroalerts for trip cancellations and route suspensions.

-The West Seattle Water Taxi is back on its regular schedule.

-WSF’s Triangle Route remains on its two-boat schedule- check here for alerts/updates.

SPOTLIGHT CAMERAS

Delridge cameras: Besides the one below (Delridge/Genesee), cameras are also up at Delridge/Oregon, Delridge/Juneau, Delridge/Orchard, and Delridge/Henderson.

High Bridge – the camera at the top:

High Bridge – the view from its southwest end (when SDOT points the 35th/Avalon/Fauntleroy camera that way):

Low Bridge – now that it’s open again:

1st Ave. S. Bridge – the south route:

Highway 99: – the northbound side at Lander.

MORE TRAFFIC CAMS: All working traffic cams citywide can be seen here, most with video options; West Seattle and vicinity-relevant cameras are also on this WSB page … Are movable city bridges opening for vessels? Check the @SDOTBridges Twitter feed.

If you see a problem on the roads/paths/water, please text or call us (when you can do so safely) – 206-293-6302.