West Seattle, Washington
First, for those who wondered about the activity at Westwood Village tonight: One witness tells us it appeared someone had been hit and badly hurt, but we don’t have any official info so far. (SUNDAY UPDATE: We do have info now; see the comments.) Now, before we get to some additional Southwest Precinct reports from the past few days, a little more about the two arrest situations very early this morning in east Admiral. First, the catalytic-converter theft: One of the victims who spotted the suspect cutting a converter out from under their truck e-mailed WSB to say:
What they are after are catalytic converters, which for our truck costs $700. If you have trucks that are high enough off the ground for easy access, these guys are cutting and grabbing.
Further, we have learned through speaking to the police and our auto repair shop that this is a widespread problem across Seattle and itâ€™s typically Meth drug addicts trying to making quick money. Based on the cuts they made under (our) truck these guys were amateurs but they are BRAZEN and their lack of experience did not stop them from obtaining a pickup load of catalytic converters that (we) and one of the policemen found. Please alert your neighbors and be aware of suspicious behavior!
Police tell WSB the converters are sold as parts, not for scrap metal as you might suspect. The other case in the area, involving a woman arrested for allegedly stealing a newspaper carrier’s car and crashing it into parked cars nearby, has one side note: According to the report, the 24-year-old woman caught in the stolen car told officers “she only took the car because she was afraid of going back to jail and she wanted to get away from all the cops in the area. (She) stated, ‘I just got out of jail for a VUCSA and I don’t want to go back’.” (VUCSA means drug crime.) She then admitted she had three rocks of cocaine on her. (Jail records indeed show she was in jail Tuesday night through Wednesday night; following this morning’s arrest, she’s still there now.” More police reports ahead:Read More
We’ve been tracking the fate of 3811 California (left), the brick apartments that a developer has proposed razing and replacing with a 4-story mixed-use building. But first, the city has to decide if the buildings qualify for landmark status. As the next step in the process, the 46-page landmark-nomination document has just been posted on the city website – you can download it here (it’s fascinating to browse – detailed history, photos old and new, inside and outside – and more). Also posted on the Landmarks Board site: the official notice of a public meeting on the nomination, 3:30 pm Feb. 20, 40th floor of the Municipal Tower downtown. In the meantime, if you have an opinion on the proposed landmark status, as we mentioned earlier this week, you can e-mail Landmarks Board coordinator Beth Chave at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since we all discussed it so much … that’s mostly what we got pix of. As reported last night, Max and Quinn’s Atomic Boys Shop-O-Rama opened for business as of this morning, Admiral just west of California. Couple more pix ahead (and we’ll add a video clip later):Read More
That’s how the subject line put it, in a reader e-mail we just received, simultaneous with info that also came in from the Southwest Precinct. First, the reader report:
I just wanted to let you know about some Crime Watch activity here in N. Admiral late last night. A little after 3 am we awoke to a car alarm a few houses down at 39th and Stevens. A few moments later there was a strange sound like an engine revving really fast, but somehow different. I’m really not sure what was going on since a large tree blocked my view. Almost immediately, a police cruiser approached from Stevens. With lights on, officers got out of the car and began apprehending someone. There was a lot of shouting from the police and the suspect. … Anyways, lots more police cars showed up, and a few neighbors went up and talked to some of the officers. … A couple of the cruisers started looking around the street at other parked cars. I got the impression that they weren’t looking for another person, just more car damage. After about half an hour or so, all the excitement seemed to settle and we went back to bed.
Now, here’s what the Southwest Precinct says that was all about – we’ll paraphrase their account: Near the 2600 block of 39th SW, a citizen interrupted at least two thieves stealing the catalytic converter from his car, parked on the street. He called 911 and chased two male suspects. Officers “contained the area”; a K-9 team started tracking and found one “adult male suspect” four blocks away. Then the K-9 team started following another track that “led back to the theft scene.” At 39th and Stevens, officers heard a vehicle crashing into parked cars and speeding southbound; they stopped the damaged car and arrested an “adult female who had just stolen the car from a paper boy while he was out of the car momentarily.” She’s been booked for investigation of theft and a drug violation; police subsequently found the other suspect’s parked truck, containing stolen auto parts and tools — the man was booked for investigation of theft and malicious mischief. 7:30 PM ADDENDUM: After reviewing the reports at the Southwest Precinct, turns out this is a convoluted tale involving two separate incidents … also, the catalytic-converter theft angle is an alarming trend. More on this in a Crime Watch update later tonight.
It’s not often these days that we get first word of things from postal mail, but it just happened. According to a postcard from the city, an open house is planned to show off the design of the new Fire Station 37, 2-4 pm Saturday 2/23, at the old Station 37 (seen at left, address 7300 35th SW; postcard promises “meet your neighborhood firefighters and tour the engine” too).
We’ve been telling you (here and here) about this retro/nostalgia gifts/toys/etc. store moving into the ex-Hart’s space on Admiral west of California. Tonight, official word from owner Kent Sadow that his shop opens for business tomorrow (plus some info for those who wanted to know more about the treats he’ll sell): “We are opening the doors Friday the 8th. Finally!!! 10 am-6 pm. And yes, we have Beemans, Chick-O-Stick, Bit-O-Honey, Pop Rocks and alot more. Necco Wafers coming soon, sorry, no ‘Lik-m-ade’.”
-The latest WS’er featured on KUOW Radio‘s “Sound Focus” show is Katy Shaw of The RollerBlog (one of the highlighted sites on this WSB page). Have a listen: Audio links are on this page. (Two weeks ago, the same show featured Jim Edwards of West Seattle Big Band; audio links here.)
–Our Other Blogs in West Seattle page, however, will be one blog shorter soon … public-radio guy and funny, funny writer John Moe is leaving West Seattle, moving someplace far to the east (and we don’t mean Issaquah), according to various mysterious posts on his blog Monkey Disaster.
-West Seattle-based Pirate Radio is about to make another fleeting appearance. We got word recently: “We will probably be on the air February 16th starting very late in the evening and run through the 24th or so. The reason for being on this week is that we are planning to carry the 11th annual Homelessness Marathon (www.homelessnessmarathon.org) in its entirety.” Our source says they’ll be at 87.7 FM, a frequency that might not be receivable by all radios.
–Lora Lewis at Hotwire Coffee (WSB sponsor) was excited this morning about Hotwire’s star turn earlier this week on Evening Magazine, talking about the Valentine’s matchmaking contest. No video clip online at this point but the proof is on the links page. You can see photos of some of the “sweeties” who are participating at this page on the Hotwire site; find out more at the cafe, where it will all culminate with a gathering at 5 pm 2/16.
-Last but not least – tomorrow morning around 10 am, West Seattle’s state Sen. Joe McDermott will introduce a resolution in the Senate honoring J.P. Patches, aka Chris Wedes, who will be on hand for the occasion. This marks the 50th anniversary of the start of the J.P. Patches kids’ TV show, which ran for 23 years.
As promised yesterday, the new market/deli opened first thing this morning (2820 Alki Ave, east of 63rd, same building as Cactus and All the Best Pet Care). ADDED 9:22 AM: Here’s a 30-second video look inside. Seems pretty much as described when we interviewed the owner for this article last month.
New forecast from the National Weather Service: Wind advisory extended till 1 pm tomorrow; gusts could hit 55 mph overnight. (Wildly windy already, on our west-facing bluff.) 6:35 AM UPDATE: Looks like the worst is over; the 4 am version of the forecast, same link, mentions up to 35 mph. No West Seattle outages or major road woes reported; if you’re driving elsewhere, the “traffic incidents” link atop the WSB Traffic page can be handy.
Two nights after the Charlestown Cafe fire, another update from owner Larry Mellum: Regarding when the CC will reopen, he says, “I can’t really give you a time frame as yet but the damage doesn’t appear to be extensive enough to cause any kind of long-term closure. Our best guess barring any setbacks would be early next week if all goes as planned.” Larry also says it’s suspected that the fryer fire started because a thermostat failed and the oil got so hot (the cook tried to turn it off but couldn’t), it “spontaneously combusted.”
Just off the phone with the Southwest Precinct — updates on 3 cases: FIRST — The Freshy’s robbery yesterday (original report here) — police say they know who they’re looking for and at least one suspect should be in custody soon — plus there’s a strong likelihood, as posted in the comments on the Freshy’s report, that the main suspect also was involved in a similar robbery at Cupcake Royale Monday night — “exact same M-O,” police say — ask a question about a bus route, grab a laptop and bolt. At least one witness from Freshy’s knew the suspect’s name; separate from that, regarding the discussion about descriptive factors — light-skinned black male, 17 years old, 6’2″, 190, is what’s on the report. No good description of the other suspect(s). SECOND ITEM: The Admiral rock-throwing suspects, as reported here and here: A second suspect has now been arrested; just one more left to go. (No description but police in this case too say they know exactly who they are after.) THIRD ITEM: Police are putting out two photos of a van linked to a wallet-snatching at South Seattle Community College three weeks ago, hoping it might lead to some tips:
That’s a light blue or gray ’90s Dodge Caravan with tinted windows, used as the getaway vehicle after the robbery at 7 pm January 17. Police say a woman who works in the campus library had just parked her car and was walking to work when a suspect described only as a black man in his 20s asked her for 50 cents. She thought he was a student, so she pulled out her wallet and was going to loan him the money after a promise he would find her in the library and pay her back; he then grabbed her wallet and ran, with four other suspects (no description) suddenly appearing and fleeing with him. (No description of them.) If you have any information on the van, or anything else about this robbery, here’s who to call: Detective Jim Rodgers in the Seattle PD Robbery unit, 262-2515.
As we first told you a week and a half ago, the former Hart’s Gifts on Admiral just west of California is becoming Max and Quinn’s Atomic Boys Shop-O-Rama, featuring “retro and nostalgic” merchandise. After seeing the sign go up (as shown above), we just checked with owner Kent Sadow regarding progress toward opening; he says it’ll be within the next few days, adding (for everyone wondering about retro candy possibilities), “Spent the better part of yesterday pricing Sugar Daddys, Good & Plenty, Chuckles, Candy dots (on paper) and a lot more.” He promises he will let us all know as soon as the “open” sign goes up.
The city Transportation Department says it’s looking at ways to convince more people to turn off northbound Alki Ave at 63rd, where the yellow “residential street” sign shown above seems to be too subtle a clue that the arterial ends there, instead of continuing up and through the narrow stretch where it becomes Beach Drive at Alki Point. Sandra Woods of SDOT tells WSB that might even include physical changes to the intersection, “to make the turn more obvious.” This is part of the next stage of the process regarding pedestrian improvements west of that intersection, now that the city has told concerned area residents it won’t do anything that would take away their existing non-parallel parking in the sidewalk-less zone. (That’s the proposal that brought an upset group to the Alki Community Council last month, as we reported here.) Woods emphasizes the sidewalk plan isn’t dead — it was the result of a neighborhood application/planning process — but will likely turn into some kind of what she calls a “nonconventional walkway.” Right now, the city is developing “conceptual drawings” to be presented at a future public meeting, likely late March/early April.
Thanks to OP for that photo of one of the flyers (weatherbeaten as they can get) that’s up alerting people about the poison concerns at two local parks. As previously mentioned, the locally based animal-advocacy group Pasado’s Safe Haven (whose post-Katrina rescue had included Mo, the West Seattle dog that got sick last week) is offering a $5,000 reward, and there are now details on its website, including a flyer you can download to print and post. (P.S. A pet-helping side note: This Saturday and Sunday, 20 cats and 40 kittens will be available for adoption at Kitty Harbor next to ActivSpace on Harbor Ave, 11 am-7 pm both days. KH has found new homes for more than 500 felines in its first four months in West Seattle! 11 am-7 pm both days; call 935-1919 or go here to find out more.)
Per the P-I, city councilmembers officially voted this morning to spend money on studying six possible streetcar lines to follow the SLU…etc., including one that potentially would head out our way. (Interesting history culled from a websearch: The county looked into studying a WS streetcar more than two years ago, says this link; and of course The Junction takes its name from the fact two streetcar lines crossed there.)
(Photo courtesy Scott Kratz) We just checked with Helen Fitzpatrick of the Seattle Fire Department re: the cause of the Charlestown Cafe fire; “fire in the deep-fat fryer,” she confirms. As we reported last night, cafe owner Larry Mellum told WSB a few hours after the fire that they’d need “days” to get the restaurant back in shape – we’ll keep checking on how things are going. (Original coverage from last night is here and here, with JetCityOrange‘s fire video here. Just last week, we’d reported promising news about CC’s future.)
Luminaria like those grace the field at West Seattle Stadium one night every summer as part of the Relay for Life, an overnight event that brings together local people whose lives have been touched by cancer. Tonight, organizers are inviting you to the Relay for Life of West Seattle kickoff party, 6:30-8 pm at Fauntleroy Children’s Center; map here. (The actual Relay for Life happens 6 pm Friday, June 27, through noon Saturday, June 28.) To get more information – even if you can’t make the party tonight – call Karee Boone at 206/674-4105, Melissa Bazala at 206/281-3738, or Diane Redenbaugh at 206/937-2291.
Click for a few seconds of video panning across the full 150-plus crowd at the Chief Sealth High School cafeteria last night for the last district-presented meeting in West Seattle before the School Board makes its decision on the intensely debated Denny/Sealth construction project’s future.
That’s a photo by WSB contributing photojournalist Matt Durham, showing parent Gail McElligott at the meeting. What was seen – lots of PowerPoint slides – and what wasn’t heard – answers to audience questions – dominated the night. See most of the slides for yourself (since the district didn’t promise they’d be up online any time soon), and more, ahead:Read More