West Seattle, Washington
Toplines from Tuesday night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting at the Southwest Precinct:
CRIME TRENDS: Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis presented the report. As always, property crimes are the main problem in our area. Car prowls are ticking upward but a bigger spike is in burglaries; as noted in a recent precinct bulletin, outbuildings (such as sheds) are a big target, and thieves are also going into fenced yards, looking for bicycles and other items that can be fenced quickly. If you store anything outside, be sure it has some kind of unique marking so it can be matched to you if it’s taken and subsequently found. He also said there’s some investigation around the growing number of what he called “RV hubs” – central places where multiple RVs are parked. Police are checking to see if there’s a correlation between “hub” locations and criminal activity nearby. As always – if you see something, say something.
BIAS CRIMES: The meeting’s featured guest was Detective Elizabeth Wareing from this unit. She presented an overview explaining bias crimes, which fall into these categories:
– Malicious harassment – Harassment of person or group based on religious, racial, or sexual bias, for example (see the full list of protected groups/statuses here).
– Crimes with an element of bias – e.g. an assault, but during the assault, the attacker called the victim names. She said that these are investigated to see whether or not the attacker is troubled with mental issues or addiction, which can sometimes factor into this kind of crime
– Non-criminal bias – People may have seen or heard something and become concerned, though a crime might not have been committed.
Det. Wareing said she works out of the homicide and assault division and last year more than 400 incidents were reported to her branch. She said a large portion of her job is to do outreach to communities who could be affected by bias crimes, to talk about how to report those crimes and what avenues people have to redress problems, not only with the police, but with other city agencies.
The West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meets third Tuesdays most months, 7 pm at the Southwest Precinct. Next month’s scheduled guest is Jim Curtin from SDOT’s Vision Zero team.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
With the scheduled guest out sick, this month’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting was all about questions and concerns brought by those in attendance – from tagging to harassment to park problems.
First, the regular update from Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis, who as usual lauded community members for “seeing something and saying something.” Property crime remains West Seattle’s biggest problem – “always has been” – right now, all categories are spiking, and he says police suspect that’s because some “prolific offenders” are out of jail again. He vowed “to get back out there and … round them all up,” noting that police circulate weekly, sometimes daily bulletins about particular suspects, “especially if they have warrants.” If they suspect they know where specific offenders are re-offending, they “saturate the area.”
Sometimes they can get “more time for these individuals” if they can be linked to multiple crimes. “That can be the difference between having a safe and sane six or seven months and a chaotic six or seve months.” He said he knows car prowls for example “are a pain in the butt” and once they get people arrested, they see what they can do to get them kept in custody. He mentions the value of letters from individuals about defendants facing sentencing, saying those letters can be “hell on wheels,” impressing judges.
Then he opened the floor to questions.
In West Seattle Crime Watch tonight – two reader reports, plus a reminder:
CR-V STOLEN FOR THE THIRD TIME: We’ve shown you Joe‘s 2001 red Honda CR-V twice before – it was stolen, spotted by a WSB reader, then stolen again the day it was picked up from the repair shop, found again, this time in the county. Now, Joe’s mom Linda e-mails to say it’s been taken for the third time in three weeks from outside his residence near 16th SW/SW Thistle. When last found, it was drivable, but with “trash strewn inside,” Linda says, including “a female’s ID card and a letter from the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office addressed to a guy with a record.” Then on Saturday night, the car was stolen again. He has since purchased a used car and she’s given him a “Club” for that one. But if you see the red CR-V – call 911.
MUSICAL EQUIPMENT TAKEN IN CAR PROWL: From Clipper:
I would like to report that in the early hours of Sunday morning February 18th, I was victim of a car prowl. The back window of my van was broken and musical equipment stolen from the vehicle. The incident occurred near 48th Ave. SW and Andover. Items taken were:
-15 inch Bag End speaker Model S15-N, Serial # K10678. Purple colored exterior.
-Peavey 112M Wedge floor monitor speaker w/volume control
-2 black duffel bags with small items such as pedals, mike cords, speaker cables, stand lights, power cords, direct box and a SM58 Beta microphone.
A police report was filed. If anyone has any info, the case number is 18-61429. Thanks!
WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL: Concerns/questions for police? Want to hear about local crime trends firsthand? The monthly WSCPC meeting at the Southwest Precinct is tomorrow night (Tuesday, February 20th), 7 pm. Along with the community update and Q&A, there’s a special guest this month, SPD Bias Crimes Unit Detective Elizabeth Wareing. All welcome – the precinct is at 2300 SW Webster, and the meeting room is right off the public parking lot.
No special guest at last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, so it was a shorter-than-usual meeting devoted to police updates and community concerns. Read More
Two reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch:
AUTO THEFT: Darlene‘s silver 2009 Chevy Traverse, personalized plate MGICIAN, was stolen Thursday night/Friday morning near 17th/Dawson. If you see it, call 911, and refer to police report #17-196428.
PREVENTION ADVICE: Auto theft is up in the Southwest Precinct this year – Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Burbridge says that 215 cases were reported in the SWP jurisdiction (West Seattle and South Park) January through April of this year, compared to 179 in the same period last year. Here’s a one-sheet with SPD advice for protecting your vehicle(s).
ROCK THROUGH WINDSHIELD: A texter reports this vandalism in Arbor Heights early today:
It happened near 42nd and 100th.
NEXT WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL MEETING: The special guest booked by WSCPC president Richard Miller will talk, and answer questions about, gangs – 7 pm June 20th at the precinct, 2300 SW Webster.
By Randall Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
Opioid addiction continues to be the root cause behind much of West Seattle’s property crime problems, Captain Pierre Davis explained at last night’s meeting of the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council.
Opening the meeting, the Southwest Precinct commander updated community leaders and interested residents on the West Seattle/South Park police force’s progress on a number of crime-related issues. Later in the meeting, SPD’s citywide Traffic Enforcement Section commander was the special guest.
First, trends and issues: Davis says car prowls are down 22 percent from last year over the first four months of 2017, but that there continues to be a lot of auto thefts occurring in West Seattle neighborhoods (neighborhood-crime statistics are available via the SPD Crime Dashboard). While police continue to track cases and make a significant number of arrests, Davis says that reacting to crimes after the fact will have minimal impact on the issue.
“As the chief says, we will never arrest our way out of problems like this,” said Davis.
The captain reiterated advice about assuring valuables are not left in vehicles to help prevent becoming a victim, especially with the warmer weather of summer months approaching, when Davis says activity tends to rise. Read More
The questions come up often in story comments here on WSB – why don’t you see Seattle Police Traffic Enforcement officers at certain trouble spots? Why do you see them at certain spots some consider to be “speed traps”? How can you get them assigned to enforcement where you believe they’re needed? Those are just a few. Next Tuesday (May 16th), you can bring those questions directly to the commander of the traffic unit, Capt. Eric Sano, who is the scheduled guest at the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting. The monthly WSCPC meeting is also where you can bring local crime questions/concerns to Southwest Precinct leadership, and hear the latest on crime trends. The meeting’s at 7 pm Tuesday in the meeting room just off the precinct parking lot, 2300 SW Webster.
Despite the overnight gunfire spree hours earlier, turnout was low at last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, so we recorded highlights on video. Above is what precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis told attendees; below, special guest Officer James Ritter, talking about the SPD Safe Place program, which has now been adopted by more than 50 cities across the country.
Toplines: Capt. Davis said a multi-city/multi-agency task force is working on the gunfire situation, which has seen recent incidents in South Park as well as West Seattle (SP also is part of the SW Precinct’s jurisdiction). None of the WS incidents have resulted in injuries – so far; the precinct is working with special teams including the Gang Unit and SWAT and trying to get more officers out on patrol to try to get ahead of the problem. They are working to identify potential suspects who might be from out of the area – he mentioned Kent, Renton, Federal Way – but spending time with family in this area.
Also, as he has mentioned at other recent community meetings including the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce lunch last week (WSB coverage here), Capt. Davis said shoplifting is spiking and the Community Police Team is working with business owners (and, when necessary, contacting out-of-town corporate ownership) to help them prevent it.
And yes, they’re gearing up for the warm-weather crowds at Alki and elsewhere.
One more bit of news: Southwest/South Precinct Liaison city attorney Matthew York is leaving that job after almost three years – he’s just been appointed to an open judge position in King County District Court’s southeast division.
P.S. As mentioned again in today’s preview, if you’re on-peninsula and interested in talking with/hearing from police, you’re welcome at West Seattle’s first Coffee with a Cop event at the Junction Starbucks (SE corner of California/Alaska), 1-2:30 pm.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
For those interested in more alerts about repeat offenders (like the ones we wrote about last weekend) – police might soon be sharing that kind of information publicly.
That was one revelation from last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, along with a guest presentation about what to do in case of an “active shooter” situation.
More than 25 people were at the WSCPC’s monthly meeting at the Southwest Precinct, including two groups of neighbors from areas of North Delridge and Puget Ridge. Here’s how it unfolded:
CRIME TRENDS: “We’ve arrested a significant amount of people out there,” began precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis. Much of the property crime is linked to drug use, he noted, because users need to get money and “just don’t care.” So “don’t leave valuables in your car,” he reminded people. That would “help us out” in terms of discouraging criminals.
And make sure your valuables are identifiable, in case they are stolen (by burglary, for example). He mentioned repeat offenders, saying “we’re ready to start putting their faces out to the general public … so you guys can see exactly what these individuals are up to and what they look like … they don’t like it, they’ve told us they don’t like it … we’re going to ramp it up.” Read More
Toplines from last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting: The Southwest Precinct has new bicycle officers who, among other things, are tasked with patroling for car prowlers. That’s still the biggest crime problem in our area, so the precinct is hopeful this is a new way of making a dent in it.
As always, the heart of the meeting was the opportunity for attendees to discuss neighborhood crime/safety concerns. Most of the three dozen or so attendees were there because of concerns related to last Thursday’s stabbing (WSB coverage here) at a house in the 6700 block of 18th SW on Puget Ridge.
The suspect is still at large, confirmed precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis, and the investigation continues. Some attendees who identified themselves as parents and PTA members at nearby Sanislo Elementary wanted to know why the school hadn’t been in lockdown while police were searching that afternoon. Capt. Davis said he and Operations Lt. Ron Smith would see what they could find out about how that decision was made.
Others pointed out that this wasn’t the first trouble at the house in question, reminding police that it had been brought up at a Crime Prevention Council meeting about a year and a half ago. Taking action against “nuisance houses” is not a fast process, Lt. Smith noted, saying the precinct is aware this is a trouble spot. Community Police Team Officer Jon Flores will be out to talk to neighbors, he promised, to figure out what steps can be taken next.
The scheduled guest for the meeting, scheduled to talk about “active shooter” situations, was a no-show. So that made extra time for the community-concerns discussion. Next WSCPC meeting is set for February 21st, 7 pm, at the precinct (2300 SW Webster).
Just in from Richard Miller, president of the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council – the plan for its meeting next Tuesday (7 pm, January 17th):
As always, Southwest Precinct police will be there with updates on local crime trends and the chance for you to ask about/bring up neighborhood concerns. And a special guest has just been confirmed: SPD Officer Edward Anderson, a Firearms and Tactics instructor who “will lead an interactive active-shooter-mitigation presentation.” This will be the shorter version of the presentation, about an hour including 15 minutes for questions, shorter than the full version, but worth your time to come hear from an expert. All are welcome at the meeting, which is in the community room at the precinct (2300 SW Webster), right off the parking lot.
Most months, the third Tuesday brings the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, an opportunity to bring neighborhood concerns to local police, to get updates on local crime trends, and to hear from a guest speaker on a crime-related issue. Not this month, though – WSCPC president Richard Miller has canceled tomorrow’s meeting while recovering from an injury. The group doesn’t usually meet in December, so that means the next scheduled meeting is Tuesday, January 17th.
(Past week of reported car prowls, from SPD police-report map)
SOUTHWEST PRECINCT UPDATE: Car prowls remain “the crime of the day,” and “we attribute it to the drug use that’s out there,” began Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis. A resident of an apartment building north of Morgan Junction said that they’ve had two car prowls in the past month and have found needles in the alley – “what are we supposed to do?” A discussion ensued about whether, if spotting a car prowl in progress, residents should try to detain the prowler themselves. With the caveat that “we’re not your lawyer,” the general advice was no – “you never know who you’re dealing with,” Capt. Davis observed.
Another attendee said her area of Puget Ridge has been hit “19 times in two weeks,” including bicycle thefts, emergency kits stolen from porches. But she said most probably hadn’t been reported.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Two West Seattle Crime Watch notes tonight:
ATTEMPTED GARAGE BURGLARIES: From Darren, who lives in an Alki townhome complex near 60th and Admiral: “Last night someone attempted to break into 3 of our neighbors’ garages (after 7 pm, as one of our neighbors didn’t notice damage to his garage when he was taking garbage and recycling out to the curb). They didn’t get in but did some damage to the doors. Our neighbor who reported it to the police isn’t able to open her garage now as the damage affected the sensor.” SPD case number is 16-339756.
CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL TOMORROW: One last mention before the Tuesday highlight list – the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council returns from summer hiatus tomorrow night. 7 pm Tuesday at the Southwest Precinct (2300 SW Webster), bring your neighborhood concerns to local police, and hear from them about local crime trends. Plus, this month’s special guest is Lisa Love, manager of Health Education for Seattle Public Schools, who WSCPC president Richard Miller says will “discuss the topic of harassment, intimidation and bullying in our schools.”
More West Seattle Crime Watch notes this afternoon:
STOLEN CAR: Morgan‘s car was stolen last night or early today – “My car was stolen from my driveway (corner of 108th and 37th Ave SW [map]): 2016 Honda Fit, Cobra Drivers seat (says COBRA on the headrest) and license-frame bracket that says Seahawks Season ticket holder. WA plates — AYZ9219.” Call 911 if you see it.
STOLEN PACKAGE: In a comment following today’s first Crime Watch report, Chelsea reported a package theft near California and Dakota [map] and included this link to images from a security camera.
CRIME-PREVENTION ADVICE: The Southwest Precinct e-mailed two “bulletins” today with general advice on what you can do to prevent/reduce burglaries and car prowls – read them as PDFs here (burglaries) and here (car prowls).
NEXT WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL MEETING: WSCPC meetings resume this month – they are your chance to come hear about crime trends from, bring neighborhood concerns to, and ask questions of, Southwest Precinct reps, as well as special guests. WSCPC president Richard Miller tells WSB that the 7 pm meeting next Tuesday (September 20th) will feature “Lisa Love, manager, Health Education, Seattle Public Schools, to discuss the topic of harassment, intimidation, and bullying in our schools.” The meeting is at the precinct (2300 SW Webster).
From last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting at the Southwest Precinct, last one until September:
CAPTAIN’S BRIEFING: Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis opened with the declaration that a “grandiose state of car prowling is happening in our neck of the woods” – The Junction, Highland Park, and South Park are the hardest-hit spots right now. He implored people to PLEASE not leave ANYTHING in their cars – if thieves stop scoring stuff, they’ll stop trying. “We don’t want to make it lucrative for these guys to keep doing what they’re doing.” Without naming names, he mentioned that some prolific suspects have been caught. “We want to keep the pressure up throughout the whole summer.”
He said the shots-fired issues are under scrutiny as well. “Some of them have a nexus toward certain houses, or friends that they visit … these guys are riding cars, coming from (different areas, north to east to south) … if you hear it, make sure you call it in, so we can get the appropriate types of response out there.” Arrests tend to “make a lot of that activity go away,” he said. “Timely and accurate reporting is the key to a lot of this stuff … sometimes we don’t get the information until maybe the next day, which is not good enough … it’s a lot harder than … right when that stuff is happening. Load 911 up so they can get all that good information out to our officers.” He said that things in Puget Ridge/Pigeon Point had quieted down – traffic-wise as well – after emphasis patrols. One PR resident verified that. Capt. Davis said that with the 4th of July approaching, there’ll be some fireworks/gunshots confusing, but still call it in. “Sometimes we get there and it is fireworks … sometimes we get there and we find shell casings … exercise due diligence, make that 911 call.”
Next topic, burglaries: Read More
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Frustrated Puget Ridge residents came to the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting tonight to ask Southwest Precinct police what they’re doing about the gunfire problem plaguing their neighborhood.
First – the monthly crime-trends briefing:
“Our criminal element is alive and kickin’,” as is unfortunately usual in the warmer months, began Capt. Pierre Davis, Southwest Precinct commander. “Right now, the crime du jour is car prowls, up all over the city, and our regional partners are having the same type of issues.” In some areas, it’s doubled. Highland Park, Morgan Junction are getting the biggest increases right now.
He mentioned a spike in drug use, “and a lot of that activity is driving the car-prowl increase right now.”
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Gunfire was the first thing our area’s top law enforcer brought up as tonight’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting began.
CRIME TRENDS: Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis opened the meeting with his crime-trends briefing, as usual. “As of lately, there’s been a lot of shots-fired incidents, there’s reasons behind it … it is alarming,” and community members “are quite tired, and I don’t blame them one bit.”
Once shots are reported, “we do take them very seriously, our officers go out and investigate … if there’s physical evidence that can be confiscated and taken to a lab, we do that .. there’s a whole unit that does that to see if there’s a nexus between different areas of the city (and other cities). … There’s shots-fired evidence we can link to various crimes throughout the area.” According to Capt. Davis, gangs and drugs are what’s most often involved “and we’re quickly putting together the pieces as to who’s who.”
He mentioned one particular trouble spot – a mile-plus of 16th SW, from the 6900 through 9000 block. South Park (which also is served by the SW Precinct) is being plagued by gunfire incidents, too, and so, he said, patrols have been stepped up, even including SWAT officers and the Anti-Crime Team. But they can’t patrol around the clock, he warned: “Obviously these individuals are smart enough to know if you’re shooting when police are around, you’re probably going to get caught … I wish I had enough officers to have out there 24/7 but that’s not the case.”
A resident of 21st SW in Puget Ridge spoke up at this point to say she had heard gunshots for three nights.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Car prowls are still “the issue of the day” for West Seattle crime, Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis told the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council last night.
His regular briefing was one of two focuses at the meeting – the other one was pedestrian/traffic safety. More on that later in the story, but first, the crime briefing:
Hotspots right now include Westwood and south Highland Park, as well as South Park, and on a citywide basis, this category of crimes was set to be the focus of SPD’s twice-monthly Seastat meeting today.
Capt. Davis also reiterated the importance of reporting those crimes in particular, even if nothing was taken, so they have accurate records – SPD is pointing citizens at its Dashboard to check community-crime stats, but those stats won’t be accurate if people don’t report them.
And he mentioned what we had reported here earlier in the evening – two arrests following two robberies earlier in the day, targeting students. The suspects were arrested near 9th and Henderson in Highland Park, though the robberies happened elsewhere; items stolen from the victims were recovered, he said.
Also discussed: Shots-fired calls. “We are pretty aware of who we’re looking at,” Capt. Davis said, while stressing that doesn’t guarantee arrests – evidence and timing play into it, too. When an attendee asked for more info, he elaborated, “We have a group of individuals out there that are gang affiliated and when they find a target, they want to shoot at that target – we found a nexus between what’s happening in West Seattle and what’s happening in SE Seattle, in Rainier Valley, we have two groups that are going at it. … Usually when you have a spike in that kind of activity, there’s something behind it.”
So is there anything that can be done besides reporting it? asked the attendee.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Crime trends and an update on the Alert Seattle system were the focus points of last night’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting:
The dozen-ish people who showed up were from neighborhoods north to south, Admiral to Puget Ridge to Morgan Junction.
Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis told participants that more than a dozen neighborhoods in West Seattle have “micro-policing plans,” and they’re developing “targeted responses” to the issues.
In general, around West Seattle, auto thefts, robberies, and car prowls are the high-focus issues right now, he said.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The first West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting of the year drew one of its biggest recent turnouts, ~30 people. Here’s how it unfolded, from a briefing and Q/A with West Seattle’s police commander, to an insurance-industry expert’s inside information on car prowl/theft tactics:
CAPTAIN’S BRIEFING: Southwest Precinct Capt. Pierre Davis began Tuesday night’s meeting by thanking citizens for staying alert and calling 911. He mentioned the micro-community policing plans for 12 neighborhoods, while assuring people outside those areas that it doesn’t mean they get less policing resources.
As for the trends:
*Car prowls remain big, as does retail theft (shoplifting).” Also, “We’re still having street robberies,” but often there’s a relationship of some kind between robber and victim, “not so much individuals coming out there just to get (random) individuals.” He pointed out that numbers are available via the SPD Dashboard, saying it’s a “real-time” stat system.
Hot spots right now: High Point and North Delridge – “assaults, lots of gunfire, things of that nature, we’re on that as well … trying to determine what the true issues are, and sometimes they have nothing to do with West Seattle – these guys are migratory, they have cars … only thing we can do is make arrests, identify who we can identify.” He said the precinct is getting more resources, not just in house but from outside including SWAT teams, Gang Unit, etc.
Three notes in West Seattle Crime Watch tonight:
CAR PROWLS: Two notes at midday today briefly mentioned car prowls along Beach Drive – one near Me-Kwa-Mooks Park, one in the 5900 block of Beach Drive, both involving windows that appeared to have broken in.
WHAT METHODS ARE CAR PROWLERS/THIEVES USING? Next Tuesday’s West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting will include a guest from the National Insurance Crime Bureau to talk about the latest methods used to get into cars, as well as “which vehicles are the most and least likely to be stolen,” according to WSCPC president Richard Miller. The meeting is at 7 pm Tuesday, January 19th, at the Southwest Precinct (2300 SW Webster).
VANDALISM: From the Stop ‘N Shop store at the Senior Center of West Seattle in The Junction:
On December 30th, the Stop ‘N Shop sold a Pennsylvania House bedroom set for $1,500. The buyer arranged to pick the set up on January 6th. When they came to pick up the furniture, we took off the protective sheets only to discover that someone had scratched / keyed the surfaces of several pieces in the set. I believe the act of vandalism occurred (in the store) on Wednesday, January 6th, 2016. We don’t understand why someone would behave in such a manner. What we do know, is that the loss of income from this kind of crime only hurts low-income seniors who we are trying to help.
The buyer did end up accepting the damaged furniture anyway, the store notes. If you have any info, contact police.