West Seattle, Washington
Thanks for all the texts about the Guardian One helicopter over North Delridge. We hadn’t heard about any corresponding ground activity so started heading that way – and they promptly left. But on Twitter they’ve responded to our mention by saying they were helping find a stolen vehicle that was emitting a LoJack signal. They say SPD is recovering it now.
Police released photos Wednesday night of four people they describe as “associated with” one of this year’s four remaining unsolved West Seattle murders – the July 20th stabbing death of 34-year-old Mike Abay. From SPD:
Detectives are attempting to identify two men and two women associated with the July 20th fatal stabbing that occurred at 16th Avenue SW and SW Cambridge Street. All four were captured on surveillance cameras in the area of the stabbing.
If you recognize any of the individuals, or have additional information, please call the tip line at 206- 233-5000.
Police did not elaborate on why or how they believe these people are “associated” with the July 20th stabbing. That night, police said, someone called SPD to report a man down in the street, and when they arrived, Mr. Abay was already dead.
3:37 PM: Just in from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office: 16-year-old Loyan A. Ahmed has been charged as an adult in the shooting death last Thursday night of 37-year-old Taylor Fehlen. He is charged with second-degree murder and unlawful gun possession. We don’t have the charging documents yet but we have the probable-cause document, from which the following is taken, with all but suspect and victim names redacted. It also reveals what preceded the murder:
On August 09, 2018 at approximately 2309 hours, Seattle Police Officers responded to a shooting at 35 Ave SW and SW Morgan Street. Officers arrived and located a victim down on the ground suffering from gunshot wounds. Witnesses told them that after shooting the victim multiple times the armed male suspect ran northeast across 35 Ave SW. The victim was lying on the sidewalk near the northwest comer of the intersection.
Seattle Fire Medics transported the victim to Harborview Medical Center where he died from his injuries. The victim was identified as 37-year-old Taylor C. Fehlen. Homicide detectives were called to the scene.
Metro Coach #7003 was parked beside where the victim fell. Officers located several shell casings and the Coach appeared to have been struck by gunfire. Officers learned that the victim and the suspect had both been passengers on board the Metro Coach.
Witnesses consistently described the shooter as a young Black male, wearing a dark colored hoodie and long pants. Officers scoured the area immediately but did not find the suspect. An SPD Police Dog (PD) verified witness testimony that the suspect ran to the NE, across 35th Ave SW, through a parking lot of a Walgreens drug store. During the determined PD search, a semi-automatic firearm was discovered in some shrubs on the east side of that store. The gun was out-of-battery as if it had recently been used. A single bullet was “stove-piped” in the firing chamber.
The caliber and brand of ammunition in the gun were the same as those found at the shooting scene. The PD also alerted to on fenced yards east of the alley but the suspect was not located. Detectives determined that the Metro Coach was equipped with security cameras that recorded the incident.
A review of that footage showed the suspect boarded the Coach at 16 Ave SW and SW Roxbury. When he boarded the coach, he paid for his fare by “tapping” his ORCA card. During their investigation, detectives leamed the card had been issued to Loyan A. Ahmed … The victim, and several other passengers were already on board. Ahmed sat directly behind the driver. To the ire of the passengers, Ahmed repeatedly pulled the stop cord on the coach. The driver stopped the coach each time but Ahmed didn’t disembark. The driver and passengers, including the victim, expressed their anger at Ahmed. Ahmed and the victim quarreled … After this occurred the Ahmed appeared to ready himself by deliberately dawning his hood, synching the drawstring to conceal his face and by tucking in his pant legs. As the coach neared the intersection of 35 Ave SW and SW Morgan Street the victim raised from his seat and pulled the stop cord. Ahmed got up and moved to the back door where he manipulated something under his hoodie in his waistband. When the door opened, Ahmed got off, walked a short distance and waited for the victim. Ahmed yelled for the victim to get off the bus. The victim exited the front door and started walking toward Ahmed. Ahmed drew a handgun from his waist, shot the victim multiple times and ran off.
Still images depicting the suspect were disseminated to local media.
Detectives obtained a recent school photo of Ahmed and he matched the suspect depicted in the Metro video. Further, they determined that Ahmed lived with his mother … The residence is blocks from the crime scene and in direct line with the suspect’s direction of travel from the scene.
Detectives were preparing to arrest Ahmed for the murder when his mother unexpectedly called 9ll. She reported that her juvenile soon wanted to talk to police about being a murder suspect. (A detective) called Ahmed’s mother … She informed me that she had seen images of her son on the West Seattle Blog and identified him as being the murder suspect. SPD SWAT responded to their residence where Ahmed was taken into custody without incident.
The suspect’s arraignment – initial hearing for entering a plea – is set for August 29th.
ADDED 3:56 PM: We now also have the charging documents, with the additional details that prosecutors requested $1 million bail and that the suspect has “no known criminal history.”
3:31 PM: Police have now confirmed that they’ve arrested a 16-year-old suspect in last Thursday night’s deadly shooting of a 37-year-old man after the two got off a bus on the west side of the 35th and Morgan intersection. He was arrested in High Point – where detectives have been on scene along Lanham north of Graham for a while, though when we asked for comment about an hour ago, after taking the photo above, we were told they had nothing to release yet. SPD’s announcement adds, “Detectives are interviewing the teen and plan to book him into the King County Youth Service Center for investigation of murder. Thank you to everyone who called in with information about this case.” The arrest comes one day after police released Metro surveillance video of a person they described as the murder suspect. This is the fifth murder case of the year in West Seattle and the first with an arrest.
7:52 PM: The victim has been identified as Taylor C. Fehlen; a commenter shared this link to his obituary, which says a memorial gathering is planned tomorrow.
After questions about that white truck facing uphill in the downhill lanes of SW Morgan near 40th SW, we went over to check. Police say the driver lost control of the truck’s forward gears several blocks east – the first report was from 31st/Sylvan – and tried traveling in reverse gear for a while, but that didn’t work out too well, as some trees and other vehicles were hit along the way, including the purple-and-gold van in the photo. No injuries reported; police were directing traffic until the truck could be moved.
First – as reported here Saturday morning – police released still images of a person they say is the suspect they’re seeking in Thursday night’s High Point bus-stop murder. This morning, they have released video from Metro bus security cameras. Police said Friday that they believe the 37-year-old victim (who has not yet been publicly identified) and his killer were involved in a “disturbance” on board before exiting the bus on the west side of the 35th and Morgan intersection, where the shooting happened. Here’s the description of the suspect: “16-21 years old, 5’7” to 5’9”, has a thin build, and was last seen wearing a dark gray hoody & jeans.” If you have any info on his identity, the SPD tipline is 206-233-5000, or call 911.
Thanks for the texts about the Medical Examiner and police near 55th/Alki earlier this morning, after someone was found dead on the beach. The scene was cleared by the time we got there but we’ve since been able to confirm with police that they believe this was a death by suicide. No other details except that there was an initial medical call to the area at 6:25 am.
As always, when we report a case of suicide, we include a reminder that the Crisis Clinic has a 24-hour hotline, 206-461-3222.
NOON: Since the 6 am hour, we’ve been covering a standoff that’s led police to close off much of Harbor Avenue SW, between the bridge and California Way. A man broke into one of the vacant buildings at the old Sea-Way site around 3 am. He has refused to surrender. For a while he was inside; you cannot clearly see him in the reader photo above, but for some time he has been outside one building’s window, on an awning/ledge section. The SWAT team and negotiators have been on site for hours trying to talk him into giving up; he’s reported to be wielding a foot-long piece of broken glass as well as a screwdriver. Harbor remains closed at the bridge and at California Way. Some bicyclists have reported that the path was closed as well as the road. Our photographer, who went to the scene for a while early this morning, is back there now so we’ll have updates from him as well as via scanner.
12:23 PM: Our crew reports this is coming to an end. The man apparently tried to bolt, and was taken into custody.
12:28 PM: Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis tells us at the scene that they’ll get Harbor Avenue reopened as fast as they can – hopefully within 15 minutes or so.
12:49 PM: Per scanner, reopening now. We will update with more photos and followup info a bit later.
2:20 PM: Two more photos added above, including the man as he came down from the ledge. It wasn’t clear from radio communication at the time whether he was being taken to Harborview for evaluation or directly to jail; SPD media relations says the former.
12:39 AM: Now there’s another “scenes of violence” callout, this time in the 2800 block of Harbor SW. Details to come.
12:45 AM: The call has closed.
ADDED: As noted in comments, this may be related to the later Harbor Avenue standoff after all. We hope to be able to check on that with police after the standoff is over.
Be part of shaping your nearest Microcommunity Policing Plan, while sharing your feedback about neighborhood crime, safety, and policing. You can do that by participating in one of the focus groups that will be conducted by Seattle University – SPD won’t be present, but will get the eventual findings. Here’s what’s coming up this month in West Seattle:
–High Point Community: 8/11, 2-3 pm, at High Point Library [3411 SW Raymond]
–Fauntleroy Community: 8/15, 5:30-6:30 pm, at Southwest Library [9010 35th SW]
–Morgan Junction Community: 8/19, 3-4 pm, at High Point Library
–Commercial Harbor Island Community: 8/20, 6-7 pm, at Delridge Library [5423 Delridge Way SW]
–Pigeon Point Community: 8/25, 11:30-12:30 pm, at Delridge Library
–Commercial Duwamish Community: 8/27, 6-7 pm, at Delridge Library
–Alki Community: 8/29, 6-7 pm, at West Seattle Library [2306 42nd SW]
You can contact the Southwest Precinct‘s Seattle U intern Tiana Lee with questions, and to RSVP, at firstname.lastname@example.org
6:03 PM: Thanks for the tips. A police search in Sunrise Heights followed a 2-car crash at 31st and Elmgrove. Readers report one person was taken to the hospital and the other driver bolted, which led to the search.
6:23 PM: We’re in the area. Elmgrove is blocked off, with police cars and crime-scene tape. Traffic Collision Investigation Squad detectives are here; police confirm one driver was transported to the hospital and the other is being sought.
Police say the car below is the one whose driver was taken to the hospital; they’re looking for the driver of the one above.
They expect Elmgrove will be closed another hour or so.
7:10 PM: Updated which car was which, after neighbors corrected us.
8:17 PM: We asked SFD about the driver taken to the hospital. Tge man’s believed to be in his early 30s and his injuries were not life-threatening.
(Photo courtesy Pete Spalding. P.S. For Delridge Day info, here’s our most-recent update!)
Clever sign like that one from Pigeon Point NOT required – but if you want to close a (non-arterial) street for your Night Out block party tomorrow night, you have until 5 pm today to register it. Just go here. And you can go here to find templates for street-closure signs and neighborhood invitations. If you won’t be at your own block/building party – remember that as of last count, more than 260 parties were registered in this area, so be mindful of many closed side streets between 6-9 pm tomorrow!
The vote was 4-0 minutes ago as the City Council’s Civic Development, Public Assets, and Native Communities Committee gave their approval to buying a 5,600-square-foot parcel for expansion of the Orchard Street Ravine. We previewed the proposal in this story; if the full Council gives final approval next Monday, the site at 7137 38th SW (shown on this map)will be bought with $235,000 in Park District levy money. The presentation at today’s meeting was relatively short; earlier, as expected, several neighbors and community advocates spoke in favor of the purchase. (4:59 PM UPDATE: Here’s the Seattle Channel video – this is the last item, 46 minutes in.) The councilmembers present and voting yes today were committee chair Debora Juarez, Lorena González, Sally Bagshaw, and Lisa Herbold, who said as the meeting wrapped up that she’d heard another OSR neighbor is interested in donating/selling land, and Seattle Parks reps confirmed they’re looking into that.
Less than a week until Night Out – next Tuesday is the night when neighborhoods around the nation have block/building/etc. parties to celebrate community and safety. We checked in with Southwest Precinct crime-prevention coordinator Jennifer Danner, who says 266 Night Out events are registered so far in our area (still the second-highest total in the city, though SW is the smallest precinct). If you want to close a (non-arterial) street and/or request a Night Out visit by public-safety personnel, register your event ASAP (you have until Monday afternoon, but why procrastinate?) – just go here. If you’re already registered, that page is also where you can download invitations, street-closure signs, and other Night Out collateral.
7:15 PM: We’ve just arrived at 31st SW and SW 106th in Arbor Heights, where we heard via scanner that police were setting up a command post and calling for the mobile precinct, but didn’t hear why, so we headed out to see what we could find out. It’s a “person in crisis” situation but it’s in the process of getting resolved – the person in question is now in custody.
7:23 PM: The lieutenant at the scene tells us that the person is going to be taken to the hospital by private (AMR) ambulance for an evaluation – as is common in “person in crisis” situations – and the police response will be winding down.
6:03 PM: Now police and fire are at the scene of another shooting incident in southeast West Seattle, with someone found outside the Arrowhead Gardens senior-apartments complex (9200 2nd SW) with what is reported to be a gunshot wound to the arm. No other info yet; we’re headed to that scene.
6:23 PM: As you probably know, this scene is not far from the earlier homicide on 1st Avenue S. Though the victim here does not have life-threatening wounds, a Homicide Unit detective is here, and they will only say they are looking to see whether the two incidents might be related. The victim here, meantime, has two wounds to the arm; he will be taken to the hospital by private (AMR) ambulance.
We’ve received several questions about a police response on Puget Ridge, west of South Seattle College (WSB sponsor). There was briefly a report of a missing child. The child is reported to have been found and is safe. There was a report that the child had possibly been seen walking with someone he didn’t know and so police have been looking for that person. That’s all we know at this point but will check back with police later.
Across Delridge from the scene of Friday night’s deadly stabbing of 34-year-old Michael Abay, the Southwest Precinct’s second-in-command has just provided a short update on the case. Asked to speak to those gathered for a 34th District State Senate candidates’ forum (separate forum story later), Lt. Steve Strand said police believe Abay was “targeted.” He did not comment on why. He also said that while they haven’t identified a suspect yet, he believes they will. Mr. Abay’s death was the third homicide case of the year in West Seattle and police have described all three as “targeted.”
All set for a block (or building, or …) party to celebrate Night Out? It’s exactly two weeks away – Tuesday, August 7th. If you want to close the street for your party, you need to register with Seattle Police, and Southwest Precinct crime-prevention coordinator Jennifer Danner provides the link – just go here. Side note: Though the SW Precinct is the smallest in the city, Jennifer says it had the second-highest number of parties signed up as of a few days ago!
P.S. We’ll be out stopping by Night Out parties as always – if you wouldn’t mind us stopping by yours for a photo, please e-mail us the location, email@example.com – thank you!
9:53 PM: Police are converging on the vicinity of 16th and Cambridge, where someone is reported – per radio communication – to have been found stabbed to death. No one’s in custody so far.
10:02 PM: The Guardian One helicopter is joining the search, as is at least one Seattle Police K9 team.
10:11 PM: SFD at the scene confirms to our crew that the victim is dead and male.
10:25 PM: This is the third homicide case of the year in West Seattle, after the June stabbing of Jonathan Pecina on Alki Avenue SW and the May 8th shooting of Lorenzo Marr at West Seattle Stadium. No arrests reported in either of those cases.
10:44 PM: We’ve added photos from the scene. Still no one in custody. We asked police about the circumstances of the original call on this – they say it was phoned in to 911 as someone down in the street, and they arrived before SFD, to discover the person was dead.
SATURDAY MORNING, 9:23 AM: Just saw SW Precinct Operations Lt. Steve Strand in the staging zone for the Grand Parade and asked him if there had been an arrest overnight. Answer: No.
SATURDAY AFTERNOON: A summary is now on SPD Blotter but the only information not already reported here is that the victim was 34 years old. If you have information, you’re asked to call SPD’s tip line at 206-233-5000.
11:23 PM: A report of gunfire in Westwood has police searching for up to five suspects. Per scanner, they were most recently reported to have fled behind the 35th/Barton 7-11 southbound and then westbound. A K-9 team is joining the search. The person reported to have fired one shot is described as a young “light-skinned black male” wearing a “sparkly red jacket.” No injuries reported.
11:29 PM: The gunshot reportedly happened near the Southwest Library (35th/Henderson). Also, the Guardian One helicopter is joining the search.
11:35 PM: Per radio communication, this involved someone “chasing (the suspects) with a two-by-four” when one “turned around and shot at” that person.
11:49 PM: The search is scaling down; they’ve exhausted the possibilities and there are other pending calls.
ADDED THURSDAY AFTERNOON: We have obtained the report narrative from SPD. The person who said he was fired at told police that he was chasing the suspects because they had assaulted his girlfriend. He said the two of them are squatting in an empty house in the 9000 block of 35th SW. She was walking in the alley and around the 34th/Barton P-Patch, looking for cigarette butts, when she encountered the suspects. One asked her for cigarettes; she said she had none and was looking for them herself. Then, the boyfriend told police, the suspects called her names, punched her in the face, knocked her down, and kicked her. She screamed for help; her boyfriend went to the house where they were squatting, got a 2 x 4, and chased the suspects after calling 911. That’s when one turned and shot at him, he said, as they were running southbound behind the 35th/Barton 7-11. He said he lost track of them at that point. While he insisted that’s where the shot was fired, police did not find a shell casing nor any other evidence of gunfire. Nearby residents also said they heard the shot. As we reported last night, helicopter and K9 assisted in the subsequent search, but no one was found.
That’s free for you to borrow and use … just in case. Southwest Precinct Crime-Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Danner explains:
Due to a continued increase in burglaries over the last few months- the SW Precinct would like to remind our community members that you can rent a professional engraver from the SW Precinct for free!
These engravers allow you to mark your property (such as tools, bicycles and electronics) with an identifying number- such as your Driver’s License number. Then if/when your items are stolen- you are able to report to law enforcement that it was marked. These markings assist the Seattle Police Department in getting recovered property back to victims, as well as aid with investigations.
If you are interested in renting an engraver- please stop by the SW Precinct (2300 SW Webster St.) and speak with the desk officer. Remember the SW Precinct is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!
Please also keep in mind that I, as your SW Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator, offer free residential and commercial safety/security assessments! Contact me directly for more information and for scheduling.
firstname.lastname@example.org is the best way to reach her. Meantime, whether you choose to borrow/use the engraver or not, she also recommends you keep a home inventory – here’s a template that can help.
(10:34 am: Clicking “play” should take you to the archived video of what was a live feed from announcement at City Hall)
9:47 AM: Ten days after she was announced as back in the running for the permanent job, Interim Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best is about to get it. That’s according to a media advisory from the mayor’s office, which says Mayor Durkan will make the announcement at 10 am. We’ll add the official news release when it’s available.
10:12 AM: We have the live announcement going in a stream from City Hall above right now. Durkan says “everybody knows” Chief Best and knows she can do the job. “She knows our city and our officers.” Chief Best says, “I know great things are ahead” and says she is “incredibly grateful for the opportunity.”
10:21 AM: The speeches are over and now it’s question time. First, the mayor announced there’s a 3:30 pm meet-and-greet at City Hall’s Bertha Knight Landes Room this afternoon for anyone who wants to meet the new chief (who does still need to be confirmed by the council), and she says they’ll be touring the city, visiting precinct roll calls, etc.
10:32 AM: The announcement event is over. The video window above should now take you to the archived video.
12:14 PM: After the jump (if you’re reading from our home page), the official news release: