Seven burglaries, one robbery, and an aggravated assault were reported to the police during October, very close to the Madison Valley average monthly totals for each of those kinds of incidents.
An interesting feature of the robberies in Madison Valley, at least during the last year or so, has been that roughly half of them have involved shoplifting attempts that escalated into robberies. When a shoplifter is confronted by a store employee and then pushes or strikes the employee, or even threatens to do so, the shoplifter becomes a perpetrator of a “strong arm robbery.” Should the shoplifter strike the employee with an object that could conceivably cause an injury, or threaten to do so, the shoplifter becomes an armed robber. In one incident during the past year, for example, a shoplifter threatened an employee with a screwdriver, and thereby committed armed robbery. The vast majority of shoplifting incidents in Madison Valley that are reported to the police originate at the Safeway store at Madison and 22nd. This is due both to the high volume of business at that location and to the fact that it is well defended by security cameras and vigilant employees. As a result, the Safeway store, although a relatively safe location for customers, has lately been the scene of roughly half of all robberies in Madison Valley, and the typical robbery victim in Madison Valley is a Safeway employee who is trying to stop a shoplifter. One such robbery occurred during October.
One of the seven burglaries in Madison Valley during October also took place in the Safeway store.
1. Shortly after 6 AM on Oct. 10 police were called to the Safeway store to investigate a burglary that had just occurred there. When they arrived, a manager told them that a man had entered the stockroom area at the back of the store and had removed a case of whiskey. After leaving the stockroom area he met an accomplice outside of the store’s public restrooms and they began to stuff the liquor bottles in their pants and jackets. As they walked toward the store’s exit an employee from the meat department confronted the accomplice, who at first claimed that he had no liquor bottles. When the employee insisted that he did have some, however, the accomplice stopped, placed four of the bottles on a deli counter, and then fled. The employee followed the burglars outside and witnessed them getting into a gold Nissan Pathfinder without license plates, which then fled northeast on Madison. Security cameras recorded all of the events inside the store and an employee reported that he recognized one of the burglars because he had previously stolen items from the store.
2. On Oct. 14 police were called to an address on 25th Ave. E. near Madison to investigate a storage unit break-in. When they arrived, the owner told them that sometime between early Sept. and Oct. 6th a burglar had broken the lock on his storage unit in the building and stolen items worth approximately $4800. The police found no fingerprints at the scene.
3. On Oct. 19 at around 6:20 PM a burglar entered a restaurant on 19th near Roy through a side door. He then entered the restaurant’s business office and after spending a little time rifling through desk drawers, took an employee’s purse from a coat hanger in the office and left via the side door. The purse and its contents were worth approximately $1300. The incident was recorded by the restaurant’s security cameras and police found fingerprints left by the burglar.
4. Police were called to a residence on 31st Ave E near Harrison at 2:30 PM on Oct. 26 to investigate a burglary that was in progress. When they arrived, the owner told them that when she returned home from work she thought she heard noises coming from inside the house and when she entered she found items out of place on the floor. She then thought she heard someone running out of the house and found that a sliding glass door on the side of the house had been smashed open. The police searched the home but found nobody inside. The owner found that one of the bedrooms had been ransacked and that some digital gaming equipment had been taken. Apparently the burglar did not have time to enter other rooms in the house, several of which contained valuable items. Police were unable to find fingerprints at the scene.
5. On Oct. 30 police were called to the same address on 25th E. near Madison as in incident #2 above, to investigate another storage unit burglary. When they arrived, the victim told them that sometime between Oct. 2 and Oct. 6 someone had broken into his storage unit and taken recreational equipment worth approximately $2400. Police did not search for fingerprints because so much time had passed since the burglary, and the police report notes that residents are considering installing a security camera system in the area containing the storage units.
6. On Nov. 5 police were called to a residence on 31st near Pike to investigate an attempted burglary that had taken place sometime after Oct. 7. The owner told them that someone had broken the window of a spare bedroom in the house, but that he hadn’t noticed it earlier. There was no evidence that the person who had broken the window had gained entry to the house and police found no fingerprints at the scene.
7. Sometime between 10:30 AM and noon on Oct. 31 burglars entered a home on Thomas near 31st through an open window in the back of the home. Once inside they ransacked the house and stole approximately $20,000 worth of items, most of them electronic devices. Police were called to the scene shortly after noon, but were unable to find any fingerprints.
On Oct. 15 at about 1:30 PM a couple who were shoplifting paper towels and laundry detergent accidentally ran into the sliding glass doors on the southwest side of the Safeway store while driving an electric shopping cart. This attracted the attention of an employee of the store, who followed the couple into the store’s parking lot and tried to stop them from loading the stolen goods into a minivan. While doing so, he was struck in the mouth by the female shoplifter, after which the minivan fled south on 23rd Ave. The incident was recorded by security cameras, and when the police arrived they were given detailed descriptions of the couple and the minivan. Shortly afterward another police unit located the van and its occupants and found that the couple had outstanding arrest warrants. After verifying that the couple were in fact the shoplifters (now robbers), the police booked them into King County Jail.
On Oct. 1 at 8:30 PM police were called to 21st Ave and Olive to investigate an aggravated assault. When they arrived, the victim, a homeless man, told them that he had been drinking beer with a group of friends behind a nearby apartment building when a newcomer to the group told the others that he wanted the group to start smoking marijuana. When the others in the group told him that they didn’t want to smoke, the newcomer became angry. The victim tried to calm him down, but when he did so the newcomer threw a beer can at him, striking him in the face. The assailant is described as a black male with blond hair, about 6′3″ weighing approximately 170 lb.
Lowell Hargens is a Madison Valley resident and former University of Washington professor of sociology specializing in the statistical analysis of data.
Greetings East Precinct Community:
There have been numerous posts on NextDoor and other neighborhood blogs regarding thefts of packages delivered to residences. The EastPAC board is pleased to feature, at our next meeting, experts from SPD’s Burglary unit and a representative from a local delivery service to share tips on avoiding package theft.
Our upcoming meeting will be held THIS THURSDAY, a week early to accommodate the Thanksgiving holiday. Don’t miss this important presentation and information meeting!
Thursday, November 16th, 6:30 to 8:00 PM
East Precinct Advisory Council
Room 142, Chardin Hall, Seattle University
1020 East Jefferson (enter on 11 and Jefferson, park free in lot)
On its website, the Seattle Police Department provides detailed incident descriptions for several categories crime. In Madison Valley, the most common of these categories is burglary, followed by robbery and aggravated assault. Data for the past four years show that on average each month there are 7 burglaries, 1.1 robberies and .3 aggravated assaults in Madison Valley. Burglaries are not only more frequent than the other two types, they also vary more from month to month. For example, over the past four years the number of burglaries in a given month ranged from one to sixteen, while the monthly totals for the other two categories were, with only one exception, in the range between zero and two. In view of these monthly averages, September 2017 was a fairly typical month in Madison Valley because five burglaries, one robbery and no aggravated assaults were reported to the police.
1. At 9 PM on Sept. 1 police were called to a residence on E. Highland Dr. near 24th to investigate a burglary. When they arrived, the victim told them that earlier that evening someone had broken into a locked storage unit on the property and had stolen tires and wheels worth approximately $2500. The police found no fingerprints at the scene.
2. Sometime during the night of Sept. 2 – 3 a burglar entered an unlocked residence on E. Roy near 26th while the residents were asleep and stole key rings and two jars containing approximately $50 in change. Using a key on one of the key rings, the burglar was also able to steal some dry cleaning from the owner’s vehicle. Police were called to investigate the next day and found fingerprints on one of the change jars that had been found abandoned in the neighborhood. However, a pair of white gloves were also found at the scene, suggesting that the finger prints may not be those of the burglar.
3. Also during the night of Sept. 2 – 3 a burglar entered another unlocked home nearby on 27th Ave. E close to Roy and stole items from the top of a dresser near where the owner was sleeping. After leaving the house, the burglar used a stolen key to steal the owner’s car. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
4. Shortly after 10 PM on Sept. 12 police were called to an apartment building on 19th near Howell to investigate a burglary. When they arrived, they detained a suspect leaving the building carrying two large bags. Upon further investigation, they learned that another person, described as a tall and skinny white male wearing dark clothes, had broken down the door of one of the apartments and had entered the unit. The police report suggests that the police have information about the identity of the burglar.
5. On Sept. 13 a burglar once again broke into the storage unit involved in burglary number 1 above. After stealing cleaning supplies, a compressor and a jack handle, the burglar fled in a vehicle south in the alley toward Prospect. A security camera recorded the incident and the video footage was forwarded to the police lab for analysis. The victim believes that the same burglar responsible for the previous Sept. 1 incident carried out the this one.
The robbery reported in Madison Valley in September was an armed robbery committed in broad daylight.
On September 27th at around 4:30 PM a woman visiting from San Francisco was approached by a man holding an knife while she was walking north on 21st Ave. E. near Galer. The man, described as a young black male wearing a grey hoodie and saggy dark jeans that revealed his underwear, told the woman “Excuse me, give me your purse and just go.” The woman initially refused, but when the robber repeated his demand, she gave him the purse, which contained a cell phone, credit cards and $120 in cash. After the robber fled west on Galer, the woman returned to a friend’s house in the neighborhood and called the police. The police searched the neighborhood but were unable to find anyone matching the description of the robber.
Lowell Hargens is a Madison Valley resident and former University of Washington professor of sociology specializing in the statistical analysis of data.
In mid-August the SPD unveiled a new website for access to its Police Report data. Although the new website makes some kinds of analyses easier, it makes others, such as presenting monthly data specific to Madison Valley, more difficult. As a result, until I become more familiar with the new system I will focus the monthly Madison Valley report on the types incidents for which detailed descriptions are available, such as robberies, burglaries and aggravated assaults. This means that information about the numbers and locations of other incidents, such as car prowls and property damage/graffiti, will not be reported. I hope to be able to find a way to obtain such information soon so that future monthly reports can again cover these less serious incidents.
During August, there were five burglaries, an aggravated assault, and an armed robbery in Madison Valley.
1. Sometime during Aug. 05 – 14 someone broke into the garage of a residence on 21st Ave. E. near Highland and took a generator and a bicycle. Police found a bottle that the burglar had left in the garage and sent it the police lab for a fingerprint search.
2. On Aug. 9 there was a non-residential burglary on 25th near Harrison, but no details of the incident have been posted.
3. On Aug. 15 at approximately 4:30 PM a burglar broke into an apartment on 20th near John by removing a window screen and crawling through the uncovered window. Once inside the apartment, the burglar took a black handbag containing a wallet with $60 inside as well as personal ID and credit cards. The victim called the police upon returning to the apartment the next day, by which time several purchases had been made with the credit cards. Security cameras at the building recorded the burglar, described as a white male about 5”11” tall with a thin build, short dark hair and wearing black clothes, breaking into the apartment and leaving it carrying a black handbag. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
4. Police were called to an apartment building on 24th Ave. E near Denny on Aug. 16 to investigate a burglary that apparently occurred sometime between Aug. 9 and Aug. 15. A neighbor discovered several open packages outside the building that were addressed to residents of the building and reported this to the building’s manager. The police learned that someone had recently forced open mailboxes in the building and the door to a storage room, but were unable to locate usable fingerprints.
5. Sometime between Aug. 16 and Sept. 8 a burglar entered an apartment on 19th near Thomas, and after ransacking it, took a laptop and approximately $60 in cash. The victim, who had been away since Aug. 16, found upon returning that her front door was ajar even though she had locked the deadbolt when she left. The victim told police that there were ongoing problems with security at the apartment building.
6. Sometime between Aug. 25 and Sept. 2 there was a burglary at a home on 24th Ave. E. near Valley, but no details have been posted.
On Aug. 7, shortly after noon there was an aggravated assault at 22nd and Union. Although the police have posted no details, this incident is listed as a possible hate crime.
At 11:50 P.M. on Aug. 31 police were called to a business on Union near 24th to investigate an armed robbery that had just occurred. When they arrived, employees told them that while they were cleaning up and preparing to close for the day, three robbers, dressed in hoodies and wearing face masks, came into the store brandishing handguns with laser sights. The gunmen ordered the employees into a back room and made them lie face down on the floor. The night manager of the store, who was in the back room getting ready for closing, was ordered to open a locked safe, but told the robbers that he didn’t know the combination. The robbers then took a bag containing over $5000 in cash and fled the store. The entire incident took less than a minute and was recorded by the store’s security cameras.
Lowell Hargens is a Madison Valley resident and former University of Washington professor of sociology specializing in the statistical analysis of data.
There were 38 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during July, the third month in a row with an exceptionally low total. Car prowling and vehicle theft remained at low levels and there were only two burglaries.
1. On July 6 police were called to a residence on E. 25th near Denny to investigate a burglary. When they arrived, the victim told them that sometime between June 27and July 3 someone had taken a bicycle worth approximately $840 from the garage at his residence. The victim and his roommates had left the garage unlocked while they cleaned it out during the previous days, and the burglar apparently took the bicycle while the garage was unattended. The victim provided the police with the serial number of the stolen bicycle.
2. On July 10, sometime between noon and 4 PM, someone stole a wallet from the maintenance room of a commercial building on 23rd near Denny. The victim told police that he realized that he didn’t have his wallet only when he had returned home after work, and that subsequently he had been notified that charges were being made to his credit card. The maintenance room opens onto the garage at the commercial building and the victim told police that residents of the building often let unauthorized people in when they open the door to enter the garage. It is likely that security cameras recorded the burglar when she or he entered the garage.
In addition, there were two robberies reported in Madison Valley during July.
1. At 11:05 PM on July 18 police responded to a call from the supermarket at E 22nd and Madison. When they arrived, the store manager told them that the store’s security officer had observed a man riding one of the store’s motorized scooters out of the store with a large bag filled with merchandise that he had not paid for. When the security officer tried to stop him, the shoplifter tried to ram him with the scooter. The shoplifter, who had thereby become an armed robber, then drove the scooter to his vehicle outside the store, put the bag of merchandise in his vehicle, and fled southbound on 23rd. The security officer and the store manager gave the police the license plate number of the robber’s vehicle and video tape footage of the incident. A store employee estimated that the robber took approximately $1200 worth of merchandise.
2. On July 25 at approximately 10 PM police were called to investigate a strong-arm robbery that had occurred at around 2 PM that day near 22nd and Pine. The victim told police that she had been walking south on 22nd with her baby in a stroller when the robber, described as a black male in his mid 30s, intentionally collided with her. The robber immediately apologized and claimed the physical contact had been an accident, but after he had started walking away the victim noticed that her cell phone had been taken from the cup holder on the stroller. She then shouted at the robber, who began running north on 22nd. The victim followed the robber, who stopped and told her that he did not have her cell phone and emptied his pockets to prove it. At this point the victim asked the robber to help her locate where he had put her cell phone, and they shortly found it in some bushes. The police believe that the robber threw the cell phone away so that it would not be on his person if the police later detained him. Neither the victim nor her baby was injured in the incident.
June saw another decrease in the total number of incidents reported to the police from Madison Valley. The June total, 28, was down from 43 in May, 56 in April, and 63 in March. Car prowls and vehicle thefts remained in the single digits during June, and there were only three burglaries.
1. Around 5 PM on June 27th police were called to investigate a burglary that took place earlier that day at a residence on E. 22nd near Mercer. When they arrived, they found that a window pane in the back door of the residence had been kicked in, allowing the burglar to unlock the door. Once inside, the burglar rummaged through the house but apparently took only $230 in cash from a drawer in an upstairs bedroom closet. The police found fingerprints at the scene and the police report notes that a high fence around the back yard of the residence would have prevented anyone from being able to detect that a burglary was taking place.
2. Sometime during June 27 – 29 someone took a bicycle from the garage of a residence on 25th near Denny. There was no forced entry into the garage and it appears that the burglar took the bicycle while the garage was being cleaned up. The robbery wasn’t reported to the police until July 6.
3. During the night of June 29 – 30 a burglar gained entry at a restaurant on Madison near MLK and took two digital devices and $1,400 in cash. The police and an employee were unable to find any evidence that there had been a forced entry into the restaurant and the employee reported although he was sure that a front door deadbolt was locked when he closed the business the previous evening, he found it unlocked that morning. The business owner told police that she planned to add a security system to the business. The police found no fingerprints at the scene.
Finally, a robbery and an armed assault were reported during June.
At around 10 PM on June 6 police received complaints about a vagrant sleeping on a sidewalk on 19th near Pine. After arriving at the scene, the police found the alleged vagrant at a nearby bus stop and he told them he had been the victim of an armed robbery that had taken place on 19th at around 6 PM that day. The victim told the police that the robber had demanded his wallet, which contained $50 and two debit cards, and threatened him with a knife while doing so. At one point during the altercation the robber thrust his knife at the victim and when he tried to ward it off with his hand he had sustained a cut from the knife. The victim refused to tell the police what had happened after he had been robbed.
A unit from the fire department arrived to tend to the victim’s wound.
On June 17 at approximately 7 PM police responded to a report of an armed assault that had just taken place on E. 24th near Gayler. The victim told police that he had been driving north on 23rd and had stopped for the light at Madison when another vehicle stopped extremely close alongside his. When the light changed and the vehicles started moving, he heard bumping noises at which point the driver of the other car started driving erratically and yelling at him. Both vehicles continued driving north on 23rd, but after they had stopped at another red light at 24th and Galer, the driver of the other vehicle angrily pointed a handgun at him. Just then the light changed and the assailant continued to follow the victim’s car until they reached E. Lynn, at which point the assailant turned east. The victim gave the police a description of the assailant’s car and its license number.
The overall number of incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police dropped to 43 in May, down from 56 in April. The decline was due to small drops in many types of offenses rather than following the usual pattern whereby changes in car prowls and auto theft drive changes in the overall monthly totals. Seven burglaries were reported during May and there was also another incident in which a shoplifting incident became an “armed robbery.”
1. On May 2nd police were called to investigate a burglary at a residence on 21st Ave. E. near Denny. Earlier that day someone had taken a bicycle from an open garage and a gas grill from a patio. Police searched for fingerprints but found none.
2. On May 3rd police were called to an apartment complex on 23rd near Denny to investigate a burglary that had occurred sometime in the previous few days. When they arrived, the victim reported that someone had taken clothing and tools worth approximately $3100 from a communal storage area in the building. Although the building is secured the storage area is not. Police did not search for fingerprints because so many people have access to the storage area, but asked the building manager to determine if the event had been captured by surveillance cameras.
3. Sometime between May 5th and May 12th someone tried to break into a garden storage shed at a residence on Lake Washington Blvd. near E. Madison. When they returned home after a week’s absence, the residents found that the lock on the shed had been damaged to the extent that they could no longer open the door. Because the burglar was unable to gain entry, nothing was taken from the shed.
4. During the morning of May 7 a burglar broke into a basement residence on Howell near 29th by climbing through an unlocked window. After ransacking the rooms, the burglar stole cash and items worth approximately $1000. The police found various personal items in the residence that the burglar apparently left behind, and submitted them to the police lab for possible fingerprints. The burglar also prowled a vehicle in the driveway at the residence, and while doing so left behind self-incriminating jail release paperwork.
5. On May 11th police were called to an apartment complex on 23rd near Denny to investigate damage to several locks on doors at the complex. Although able to gain entry through the front door, the burglar was apparently unable to open any other doors. Police asked the building manager to determine if video footage from security cameras recorded the burglar’s activity.
6. Sometime during the daylight hours of May 17 a burglar broke into a storage unit connected to an apartment on 20th near Pike. The burglar took two pieces of luggage worth approximately $500. The victim did notify police of the incident until May 24th because until then he had not noticed that anything was missing from his storage unit.
7. Sometime between May 17 and May 27 a burglar stole five bicycles worth approximately $10,000 from a storage unit in a residential building on E. 25th near Denny. During that period, a contractor had been working on the building and had left the front door ajar. The burglar apparently entered the building while the door was unlocked.
On May 9th police were called to the grocery store on Madison and 22nd to investigate an armed robbery. When they arrived a clerk at the store told them that a “chronic shoplifter” at the store had threatened to shoot him when he tried to prevent the shoplifter from taking a bottle of Suja from the store. Although no one saw a weapon during the incident, both the clerk and the store manager advised the police that they were “willing to be the victim of a robbery” [i.e. willing to testify against the shoplifter – Ed.] The police advised them to provide video footage of the incident and to call 911 when they saw the shoplifter/robber again.
Car prowls and vehicle theft in Madison Valley during April dropped from the 25 incidents in March to 12, driving the overall number of incidents reported to the police down to 56. Reported burglaries dropped from eleven to nine, but there were three reported robberies.
1. On April 9 at 7AM a burglar, described as a white female in her late 20s or early 30s with sandy brown hair, gained entry to an apartment building on 20th near Madison. Once inside she also gained entry into locked storage areas inside the building. The building manager was unable to determine whether anything had been taken during the burglary, but was able to provide the police with video footage of the event.
2. On April 10 between noon and 2 PM someone kicked open the front door of a residence on 25th near Mercer and rummaged through the house. Although there were valuables in plain sight in the home, the burglar apparently took nothing. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
3. Police were called to a pharmacy on Madison near 22nd at 5:20 PM on April 15 to investigate a burglary that had just occurred. When they arrived, the pharmacist told them that a man had jumped over the counter into the secure area of the pharmacy and stolen several bottles of medicine. The burglar and an accomplice then quickly fled. Police obtained a video tape of the incident that had been recorded by security cameras.
4. Sometime between April 15 and 17 someone broke into an apartment complex under construction on 24th near Denny. The burglar tried to break into a storage area in the complex with a pry bar, but was unsuccessful. The burglar also broke into a construction trailer at the back of the complex, but at the time of the police report it was unclear whether anything had been taken from the trailer. Police were not notified of the burglary until April 21, so police did not search for fingerprints because many people had been in the area between the time of the burglary and the arrival of the police.
5. During the afternoon of April 19 a burglar broke into a residence on 21st near Republican by smashing open a basement window. Once inside, the burglar took electronic equipment and jewelry worth at least $1000. The burglary was discovered when a resident returned home around 4:00 PM, but the police were not notified until 10:30 that evening.
6. On April 20 police were called to investigate a possible burglary at an apartment building on 24th near Howell. When they arrived, a resident told them that he had found the door of the building’s storage area open and that several of the storage compartments inside the area had been forcibly opened. Police were unable to determine whether anything had been stolen from the compartments, however.
7. Shortly after 6 PM on April 25th police were called to a building in the 2100 block of E. Madison to investigate a burglary in progress. When they arrived, the complainant told them that upon hearing strange noises she investigated and found that someone had cut the lock on a gate outside a shed. When she investigated further she found someone standing outside the shed with a bag containing items taken from the shed. When she yelled at the burglar, he dropped the bag and fled.
8. On April 26 the manager of an apartment building on Madison near 19th observed a woman gaining entry via the building’s call box. Once inside, the woman, described as a white female aged 25–40 with blond hair, entered one of the building’s restrooms where she remained for a while before leaving the building. Soon after one of the building’s employees found an empty package that was addressed to a nearby apartment complex. The manager told the police that she believes the woman has been gaining access to apartment buildings through entry codes that are not secure. The police subsequently learned that the woman had been frequently seen around an abandoned house in the neighborhood. The apartment building manager gave the police photos of the woman that had been taken by security cameras.
9. Late at night on April 29 a burglar entered an apartment building on 24th Ave. E. near Denny and stole packages from a mail area. The apartment manager supplied police with a video of an unknown white male entering the building and taking the packages.
The three robberies included one that began as a shoplifting incident, but ended up being an armed robbery.
1. Shortly after midnight on April 14 police responded to a report of an armed robbery at the grocery store on 22nd and Madison. When they arrived, an employee told them that a man had threatened him with a knife and then stolen approximately $300 from his cash register. After grabbing the money, the robber fled south from the store. Curiously, the robber is a well-known customer at the store and had even applied for a job there. As a result, the store has information about the robber that the police will be able to use apprehend him. The police also obtained video footage of the robbery.
2. On April 25th at around 11 PM a clerk at the grocery store on Madison and 22nd was threatened with a fire extinguisher by a shoplifter trying to take items from the store. The shoplifter, who thereby committed armed robbery, is known by employees of the store and police were given video footage of the incident.
3. Early in the morning of April 28, there was a reported strong arm robbery on 26th Ave. E. near John. The victim told police that he had had personal items taken during a physical altercation with an acquaintance that occurred after they had been drinking with friends. The victim refused medical assistance.
Reports of car prowls and vehicle theft in Madison Valley surged from 11 in February to 25 in March, a substantial contribution to the increase in the total number of incidents between February (40) and March (63). During this period burglaries also climbed from six to eleven, although most of the most of those reported in March apparently did not result in the theft of personal belongings.
1. Sometime during the night of March 2–3 someone entered an apartment complex construction site on 20th near Madison through an unlocked window. Workers who came to the site on the morning of March 3 found tools and other items strewn about, but apparently the only item stolen was a large TV slated to be used in staging. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
2. Police were called to a business on Madison near Lake Washington Blvd. at around 9:30 AM on March 4 to investigate a sounding alarm. When they arrived the owner of the business told them that a man had set off the alarm by forcing a door open. There were witnesses to the incident and the would-be burglar was identified.
3. Shortly after noon on March 7 a woman working in an office room in her brother’s residence on 19th near Republican observed an intruder, described as white woman with blond hair in a ponytail and wearing a black knee-length coat with a hood, inside the back porch of the home rummaging through bags containing her brother’s clothes. When the woman rapped on her window, the intruder grabbed a few items and left the residence at which point the woman went into the alley and yelled that she was going to call the police. The intruder then dropped the items she had taken and fled. When they arrived at the scene, police found no one matching the description of the intruder in the neighborhood.
4. On March 9 at approximately 4 PM a woman returning home heard noises in her apartment as she entered. When she got inside she found that someone had been rummaging through the apartment. Neighbors had noticed a strangely parked vehicle shortly earlier, and gave police a detailed description of it. In addition, security cameras recorded the burglar. At the time of the police report there was no indication that anything had been taken from the apartment.
5. Also on March 9 a resident of a home on 21st near Mercer reported an apparent attempted burglary. Someone had tampered with a window on the north side of his home and forced it out of place while doing so.
6. When two residents of a home on E. Thomas near 29th stepped outside the back door for a smoke at 9 PM on March 16 they found a man trying to force open the basement door. The residents yelled at the would-be intruder who then left the scene. The residents could not describe the man when the police arrived.
7. Sometime between March 17 and March 24 someone was able to enter a room that contained a master key box at an apartment building on Denny near 25th. The burglar broke open the key box and took keys to eleven apartments in the building. Police did not find fingerprints at the scene.
8. On March 21st police were called to a residence on 32nd near Pike to investigate a burglary. When they arrived, the resident told them that when she returned home that day she found that her front door open and that her vehicle was missing. Further investigation revealed that someone had entered her home by breaking a first-floor window. Once inside the burglar stole various items not specified in the police report, and also apparently handled various objects, including a vodka bottle. The objects were sent to the police lab to determine if they bore usable fingerprints.
9. Sometime during the night of March 23–24 a burglar entered a building under construction on E. 21st Ave. near John and stole wire worth approximately $400. The burglar, who apparently entered through an unlocked window, did not steal tools at the site. The police found no fingerprints.
10. Also during the night of March 23–24 a burglar broke into a coffee shop on Union near 23rd and stole $300 from a bank bag and a cash register. A resident of the building containing the coffee shop found the cash register in a stairwell of the building but police could find no fingerprints on it or on other surfaces in the coffee shop. Police contacted the owner of the building to determine if surveillance cameras on the premises recorded the incident.
11. At approximately noon on March 31 police responded to an alarm at a residence on 31st near John. When they arrived, they found that basement windows at the residence had been smashed, but the would-be burglar(s) had apparently been frightened away by the alarm.
Two robberies and an aggravated assault were also reported during March.
On March 2 at 5:30 PM police were called to 21st Ave E. and Galer St. to investigate a robbery. When they arrived the victim, who had been doing landscaping work at that location, told them that while he was preparing to leave the job, two men had taken a leaf blower and a chainsaw, worth approximately $250 from the back of his truck. When the landscaper approached one of the men to recover his equipment, the man kicked him in the chest to keep him away. At that point, the landscaper retired to the cab of his truck to call 911 and the robbers sped away in a beige or silver Chevy Suburban. The landscaper declined medical attention and told police that he wouldn’t press charges and just wanted his tools back.
On March 24 at 10 AM a male and female, known to be chronic shoplifters, tried to shoplift items from the grocery store on Madison near 22nd. When employees blocked their exit from the west door of the store the female, who was carrying one of the store’s plastic shopping baskets, shoved it into one employee’s chest and the pair turned to go toward the northwest exit of the store. When they were again blocked at that exit they retreated back into the store and started down the stairs leading to the store’s parking garage. The employees caught up with them at the bottom of the stairs at which time the shoplifters physically assaulted the employees. The employees were able to recover the items taken by the shoplifters, however, and the shoplifters fled through the parking garage. Surveillance cameras recorded the incident.
At around 10:45 AM on March 28 police were called to 23rd and Madison to investigate a vehicular assault. When they arrived, the victim reported that he had been passed and cut off by a maroon Ford pickup truck a few blocks north on 23rd. When both vehicles stopped for the stop light at 23rd and Madison, the driver of the pickup started calling the victim names, at which point the victim left his car to confront the other driver. The other driver brandished a knife at the victim and in response the victim yelled to him to come out without the knife and “fight like a man.” When the light changed, however, the pickup truck driver drove ahead and in doing so tore the driver’s side door off the victim’s car and injured the victim. The pickup then fled south on 23rd.
Incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during February remained at the relatively low level we have experienced during the past several months. Of the 40 incidents reported only about one quarter were car prowls or vehicle thefts, but this decline was balanced by increases in theft and property damage/graffiti. Six burglaries were reported in February.
1. Sometime between 9:30 and noon on Feb. 2 a burglar gained entry to a third-floor apartment on E. Olive near 23rd and stole three rings valued at approximately $10,500. The police found no fingerprints and although the apartment was locked at the time, there was no evidence of a forced entry. The resident told police, however, that it is easy to open the locked door to his apartment with a credit card.
2. On Feb. 6 at 4:26 AM police responded to a report of a burglary at a restaurant on Madison near Lake Washington Blvd. When they arrived, an employee told them that someone had smashed a glass door leading to the restaurant's office. There was no evidence that anything had been taken, however, and two safes next to office door were intact. No fingerprints were found at the scene.
3. At around 9:20 AM on Feb. 9 neighbors across the alley from a residence on 21st Ave. E. near Mercer noticed a man who appeared to be disoriented and who was talking to himself in the alleyway. Because the man, described as a thin white male around 50 years old with brown hair and a beard, was wearing shorts during a heavy downpour, one of the neighbors called 911, but when units arrived he had left the scene, apparently heading west on Mercer. When the resident of the home on 21st learned of the incident, she found that her backyard storage unit, which was unlocked at the time, had been burglarized. When her neighbors described the man who had been in the alley, she realized that he was probably the same person who had been arrested for stealing her Yamaha scooter last August. The police report notes that that person was due to be sentenced for the previous offense on Feb. 24. It also notes that the scooter had been damaged in the present incident, possibly in retaliation for the earlier arrest.
4. During the morning of Feb. 18 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on Union near 30th Ave., but the police have not released a description of this incident.
5. Police were called to a building on Denny near 25th on Feb. 25 to investigate a burglary that had occurred sometime in the previous couple of days. The victim reported that someone had entered the building's secure storage area and taken two bicycles worth approximately $1200. The bikes’ front wheels had been locked to a bike rack in the storage area, but the burglar was able to take the bikes after removing their front wheels. No fingerprints were found at the scene.
6. On Feb. 26 police were called to a house on 26th near Denny to investigate a burglary. Once there they found that the house had recently been sold by its previous owner, who was in the process of moving to a new location. A neighbor had notified the previous owner on Feb. 23 that several people had been seen exiting the house that day. When the previous owner returned to the house on the 26th to remove the remainder of his possessions, he found that basement windows had been broken and that there were signs that someone else had occupied the house. However, the previous owner reported that nothing seemed to be missing from the house.
During February, there was also an incident that began as a shoplift but ended as a robbery.
Around 10 P.M. on Feb. 6 a clerk at the liquor store on Union near 23rd observed a man putting five liquor bottles inside his coat. After being confronted by the clerk, the man defied him and headed for the door. Three bottles fell out of the man's coat when he reached the door and when the clerk grabbed the man's coat outside the store he was able to recover the other two bottles. At that point, the man threatened to shoot the clerk and fled from the scene. Police found multiple fingerprints on the bottles and the store is well covered by security cameras.
There were 48 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during January, one more than in December and on par with recent monthly totals. Although there were no robberies or aggravated assaults, attempted and completed burglaries increased to a total of eleven. However, apparently only four of the eleven burglaries resulted in property being stolen.
1. Sometime between Dec. 12 2016 and Jan. 12 2017 someone broke into a storage room at an apartment building on Denny Way near 24th and stole a bicycle and sleeping bags worth approximately $2500. The owner called the police after discovering the burglary, and although they found no fingerprints they did take into evidence a pocket knife that had apparently been used to remove the hinges from the door of the storage room.
2. Police were called to an apartment building on 20th near John on Jan. 4 to investigate an attempted burglary that occurred at approximately 3 AM that morning. When they arrived, a resident showed them a video recording of a white male wearing black clothing prying open the front door of the building and attempting, but failing, to pry open the mailboxes in the lobby. The man then fled the building, apparently without taking anything. The police found no usable fingerprints at the scene.
3. On Jan. 9 police were called to an apartment building on Union near 24th by a resident who reported that her laptop had been stolen. She told the police that during the afternoon of Jan. 8 someone must have entered her apartment and taken the laptop, worth approximately $1000, during a time when she was moving her possessions between apartments on different floors of the building.
4. Also on Jan. 9 someone stole a valuable raincoat from an atrium in an apartment building on 20th near Mercer. Because a work crew had temporarily removed an access door to the building, the police speculate that a burglar may have entered while the work was going on. The apartment building does not have a video surveillance system.
5. At approximately 1:15 PM on Jan. 12 an alarm was tripped by someone who was exiting an apartment on John near 21st. When the resident returned home to investigate he found that a burglar had thrown a rock through the kitchen window and climbed upon a recycling bin to enter through the window. The burglar ransacked the apartment but apparently took nothing except a plastic bag containing the ashes of the resident's deceased wife, which were stored in a container in the bedroom closet. The resident speculated that perhaps the burglar mistook the ashes for a narcotic in powder form. Police found no usable fingerprints at the scene but did forward objects that the burglar handled to the police lab for further study.
6. On Jan. 13 at around 1 AM police were called to a restaurant on 19th near Mercer to investigate a possible burglary in process. When they arrived, they found that someone had smashed the glass portion of the restaurant's front door but they found no one present when they searched the building. After being called to the scene and doing a search of the restaurant, the manager reported that nothing seemed to be missing. The police found no fingerprints at the scene.
7. On Jan. 16 police were called to a residential treatment center on Madison near 28th in connection with an attempted burglary. When they arrived, they learned that a witness had found one of the residents in another resident's room with the apparent object of stealing something. Further inquiry revealed that the offender has a history of entering other residents’ rooms even though she has been warned to stop doing it. A manager of the facility told police that although the offender would not be evicted on the basis of this incident, the police had been called so that the attempted burglary could be officially documented.
8. On Jan. 19 police were called to an apartment building, apparently the same building as in incident 2 above, to investigate another attempted burglary. Once again someone had pried open the front door and this time the mailboxes had also been pried open. At the time of the police report it was unknown if the burglar had taken anything from the mailboxes, and there is no mention of video footage in the police report.
9. Police were called to a nightclub on Union near 23rd around midnight on Jan. 17 to investigate a possible assault. When they arrived, an employee reported that a customer who had earlier been asked to leave the premises had returned and threatened him with a beer bottle. The employee also told the police that he feared for his safety because he had had a physical altercation with the customer in the past. The would-be assailant is being charged with both harassment and burglary.
10. On January 20 at 4 PM police were called to a home on 24th Ave. E. near Highland to investigate a burglary that occurred earlier that day. A resident told police that he had left the home locked and secure at 7:55 AM that day and that when he returned he found that it had been ransacked. The burglar broke in through the front door of the house and a surveillance camera recorded an unknown male knocking at the door around noon that day. Police found fingerprints on the front door and on a laptop inside of the home. The police report does not list any stolen objects and places a value of only one dollar on the loss due to the burglary.
11. On Jan. 31 at 4 AM police responded to an alarm at a specialty store on Union near 23rd. When they arrived, they found that the front door of the business had been pried open and that although it appeared that burglars had entered the store, there was no one present when the police arrived. Nothing appeared to have been taken during the burglary and a later examination of video footage of the incident showed that four masked people had entered, frantically searched the store, and then had left after about two minutes, apparently without taking anything. No fingerprints were found in the store and damage to the front door was estimated at $1500.
This morning residents walking along the business core discovered acts of vandalism that occurred during the night. Several planters on East Madison Street between 27th and 29th were overturned, two ceramic pots in front of Jae’s Bistro broken, a large wine barrel planter in front of Voilà! upended, plants in front of Jarbo pulled out, and planter boxes in front of Avenue Properties overturned.
Fortunately, there were no break-ins. By early evening most of the mess had been cleaned up by merchants.
Valerie at Jarbo showed me the shrubs pulled out of the planter boxes in front of her store. She graciously planted these during the neighborhood Spring Clean last year.
Still some cleanup to do in front of Voilà!, but the barrel has been righted.
While chatting with Jae about last night’s activities, I noticed the graffiti on the fence between Jae’s and the dry cleaner had been painted in the past few days. Thank you, Jae, for taking care of the graffiti!
The first four months of 2016 saw relatively high numbers of Madison Valley incidents being reported to the police; nearly 70 per month. After that, however, the monthly numbers fell to around 45 per month. December continued along this pattern, with 47 incidents. As usual, reports of car prowls and vehicle theft constituted the largest category, and although car prowls were down a bit from November, vehicle thefts were up. Five burglaries were reported in December.
1. On Dec. 1 between 4 and 7 PM a burglar entered the garage of a home on 28th near Mercer and stole a bicycle worth approximately $2000. There was no evidence of forced entry to either the garage or the home, and although the burglar left a small flashlight at the scene, the police found no fingerprints on it or on other surfaces in the garage.
2. Shortly after 5 AM on Dec. 2 police responded to an alarm at a convenience market near E. Madison and 29th. When they arrived, they found that the doors of the market had been broken down and that there were marks on the floor indicating that something had been dragged from the store. Further examination of the premises showed that the cash registers in the store had not been tampered with, but that it appeared that an ATM had been torn from its moorings on the floor and dragged from the building. At 5:25 AM the police at the scene learned that an ATM had just been found in an alley in the 2800 block of E. Harvard Ave. Around 7 AM police returned to the store at the owner’s request and viewed a video of the burglary that had been recorded by a security camera. The video showed that at 5 AM a white van had pulled up in front of the store and that two men then unsuccessfully tried to force the doors open. At this point the van rammed the doors open and the two men entered, pushed over the ATM, and dragged it into the van. The van, apparently driven by a third person, then drove away. The owner of the store identified the ATM found in the Harvard Ave. alley as the one that had been in the store and opened it with a key he had been using for that ATM. The burglars apparently were unable to open the ATM because the police report indicates a loss of only one dollar as a result of the burglary whereas the ATM contained a substantial sum.
3. Sometime during Dec. 11–12 a burglar broke into the basement of a home on E. 24th near Ward. The home is being remodeled and the resident was ill and bedridden during the time of the break in. The burglar rummaged through the basement, which was being used as a storage area during the remodeling, and stole a custom bicycle.
4. On Dec. 15 between 8 AM and 10 PM a burglar broke into a home on Washington Place E. near Ward by smashing a back-door window and reaching through and unlocking the door. The burglar then ransacked the house and stole jewelry of undisclosed value, $2000 in cash, and spare keys to the owner’s car. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
5. On Dec. 16 sometime between noon and 4 PM someone took a package containing personal documents from the secure lobby of an apartment complex on 23rd near Howell. There was no evidence that the burglar forcibly entered the lobby, but video footage of the incident was not available at the time of the police report.
Finally, there was a robbery in December.
On Dec. 20 at about 6:30 PM a robber, described as a white male around 25 years old and 5′11″ tall, grabbed a backpack and a wallet from a woman exiting the Safeway store at 22nd and Madison. The woman snatched the backpack back, and in doing so spilled its contents on to the floor of the store, but the robber retained the wallet and ran out of the store heading east on Madison. Two other people at the scene chased the robber, but were unable to catch him. The victim was injured when she fell while attempting to grab the backpack from the robber. The incident was recorded on the store’s security cameras.
During November 46 incidents in Madison Valley were reported to the police, down a bit from October's total of 54. Burglaries also declined in number slightly, but small increases in robbery and aggravated assault balanced that decline.
1. Around midnight on Nov. 4 a resident of one unit in a duplex on 20th near Olive was awakened by noises coming from his kitchen. When he went to the kitchen he found two people who had apparently just entered through the back door. The two quickly retreated to a deck outside of the kitchen when the resident shouted at them, and while there they apologized and told him that they thought the duplex was unoccupied. When the resident asked them what they had taken, they said that they had not had time to take anything and then fled. The resident called the police and when they arrived they unsuccessfully searched neighborhood for the burglars. An inspection revealed that the burglars had removed a glass pane from next to the rear door and then reached in to unlock the door.
2. During the morning of Nov. 8 burglars gained entry to the parking garage of a building on Madison near 29th and stole items worth approximately $2000 from cars parked in the garage. Security cameras recorded the burglars, described as a white male about 6′ tall and a female about 5′3″, as they entered the building and the garage. The burglars apparently knew how to open the Knox box containing keys to the building because there were no signs that the Knox box had been tampered with. Police did not search for fingerprints because the video tapes showed that the burglars wore gloves.
3. At around 1 AM on Nov. 9 the resident of an apartment on 21st near John was awakened by noises, and when he got up to investigate he heard someone leave the apartment through the back door. Before leaving, the burglars(s) took a laptop worth approximately $900 that had been left on a table near the back door. Police found that the back entrance to the apartment was not secure and that there were no surfaces in the area that were suitable for fingerprints.
4. Sometime during the early afternoon of Nov. 12 a burglar entered a residence on 21st near Madison through a sliding window in a bathroom. Once inside the burglar found a set of keys belonging to one of residents and used them to steal that resident’s car. The burglar apparently intended to take two laptops as well, but ended up leaving them after deciding to take the car. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
5. On Nov. 14. a resident of an apartment building on 19th near Republican notified police that her storage unit in the building had been burglarized. She reported that she had last been in the storage unit on Nov. 8, and that since then someone had broken into it and stolen boxes filled with backpacks and polo shirts and also a case of wine. After discovering the burglary, the victim found that other storage units had been broken into and also found one of her bottles of wine in the parking lot. The police report does not give information about the losses suffered by other residents of the building.
6. On Nov. 15 at 4 AM police responded to an alarm that had been triggered at a business on Madison near 28th. When they arrived, they found that someone had tried but failed to break in through the front door of the business. The alarm apparently frightened the would-be burglar(s) away.
7. Sometime during the night of Nov. 27-28 a burglar entered a restaurant on Madison near 28th and took $200 from a cash register. The owner told the police that the restaurant had been locked at closing time the previous night, but there were no signs of a forced entry. Police found no fingerprints at the scene but the owner told them that it was possible that a surveillance camera recorded the event.
At approximately 5 PM on Nov. 6 a young male riding home on his skateboard near 23rd and Pine was hit in the back of his head and knocked over by group of teenage males who had been watching him. The teenagers then took his skateboard and fled. When the police arrived, they searched for the assailants and although they found suspects who matched the sketchy description given by the victim, the victim told them that the suspects were not the people who robbed him. Later the victim’s skateboard was found abandoned on 25th Ave.
Police were called to a residence on 24th Ave. E. near Harrison at about 5 AM on Nov. 3 to investigate an aggravated assault that occurred earlier that morning. Upon arriving they learned that a woman, who apparently had been staying at the residence for several days even though she had been told to leave, had earlier used a crowbar to smash the windows of a car that another woman living at the house had borrowed. When the second woman confronted the first, the latter told her to stay away and got into a black SUV. At this point to woman who had borrowed the car whose windows had been smashed tried to keep the woman in the SUV from leaving the scene. The woman in the SUV drove away anyway, striking the complainant in the process. The police report notes that the complainant did not appear to have been injured by the vehicular assault, and that she declined medical assistance.
On Nov. 14th at about 10:30 PM police were called to the Arboretum to investigate an aggravated assault that had just occurred close to the intersection of Lake Washington Blvd. and E. Arboretum Dr. When they arrived, witnesses told the police that they had seen a man hit another man on the back on the head with a pipe. After a little searching the police found two victims tending to their wounds in the men’s bathroom at the Washington Park play field. The victims told the police that they did not know their assailant, but that he had claimed that he knew them and proceeded to pepper spray them and then hit one of them on the head with a rock hammer. The assailant then fled north toward the Arboretum’s Visitor Center. The police searched unsuccessfully for the assailant and the victims were taken to the UW Medical Center after being examined by a unit from the Fire Department.
There were 54 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during October, an increase to more typical levels after four months of abnormally low totals. As usual, increases in car prowls and vehicular theft drove the change from previous months, but the number of burglaries also increased.
1. During the early afternoon of Oct. 1 a burglar entered a home on 22nd near Roy through an unlocked front door. At the time of the burglary the residents had taken their newly born daughter to a medical appointment and two grandparents had taken the household dog for a short walk. Police suspect that the burglar had been observing the home in anticipation of a burglary opportunity. The burglar stole two iPads and two laptop computers. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
2. Sometime between 7 AM and 6 PM on Oct. 3 a burglar broke into a storage unit at a residence on 23rd near Olive and stole a Windows PC. Police found no usable fingerprints in the unit.
3. During the night of Oct. 4–5, someone entered the unlocked garage of a house on 21st Ave. E. near Prospect and stole an orange Schwinn bicycle. The burglar also took other items from the garage and bundled them in a large blanket, but left the bundled items in the alleyway. There were no fingerprints at the scene.
4. Also during the night of Oct. 4–5 someone broke into a detached garage of a house on 20th Ave. E. near Prospect and stole a bicycle and a pair of skiing boots. When they discovered the break in, the residents found another bicycle next to the garage that was apparently left by the burglar. Although the police report for this incident does not specify the type of bicycle left by the burglar, it appears that it was the orange Schwinn that was taken during the burglary described above (the two garages are on the same alleyway). The police found no fingerprints.
5. Sometime between 2 PM and 4:30 PM on Oct 6 a burglar broke into a house on 26th near Mercer through a rear deck door and stole electronic equipment and a movie projector. The same house was burglarized in September. Painters who were working at a house across the street reported that they had seen a white male with black hair and a beard knock at the front door and then walk to the back of the house. Police found fingerprints in the house.
6. At approximately 1:30 AM on Oct. 7 two burglars broke into a restaurant on E. Madison near Lake Washington Blvd. Once inside, the burglars attempted but failed to open a drop-box safe and then left. Security cameras yielded a poor quality record of the burglary, showing only that the two burglars were male, with one being white and the other being black. Police did not attempt to find fingerprints on the safe because it had been handled by employees since the burglary.
7. During the night of Oct. 9–10 someone broke into a business on Aloha near 19th by breaking a glass door. The burglar stole a desktop computer worth approximately $3000. Police found no fingerprints.
8. On Oct. 10 police were called to investigate a burglary at the residence that had reported a garage burglary several days earlier (burglary #3 above). The owner reported that she had been away from home the past couple of days and that when she returned she found that someone had broken into her house through a window. The burglar left muddy footprints throughout the home as he searched for items to take. The police report does not report the items taken or their value nor does it specify whether there was a search for fingerprints.
9. Sometime during Oct. 17–18 someone broke into a shed at a residence on 20th near Republican and stole two mountain bikes worth approximately $650.
Finally, on Oct. 24 at around 7:30 AM police were called to 19th and Pine to investigate a report of an aggravated assault. When they arrived a fire department squad was already there and the victim had been told that he should go to a hospital and have a foot injury examined. The victim was generally unresponsive when the police questioned him about what had happened, but eventually he gave details about the assault that did not match his physical injuries. The victim also refused emergency transportation to a medical facility, stating that he would instead take a bus.
September was the fourth consecutive month during which there were relatively few Madison Valley crimes reported to the police, and of the 39 incidents reported, approximately half were car prowls. Our car prowl numbers during the past few months have been reduced from what they would have otherwise been by the activities connected with the construction of the multi-use trail in the Arboretum. During a typical summer month there are usually three or four car prowls reported each month in the Arboretum, compared to an average of only one per month this summer.
Unlike August, there were no reported serious crimes against persons during September. There were, however, seven attempted or completed burglaries.
1. On Sept. 1 at around 5 P.M. someone broke a kitchen window of a residence on 30th Ave. E. near John and set off a home alarm system. When police arrived they found no evidence than anyone had gained entry. The owner was contacted and told to inform the police if she found that any of her belongings were missing.
2. Sometime during the night of Sept. 1–2 a burglar broke into the detached garage of a home on 22nd Ave. E. near Highland and stole two expensive bicycles and personal belongings that were in unlocked cars inside of the garage. The value of the stolen items was approximately $7000 and police found no fingerprints at the scene.
3. Sometime during Sept. 3–5, someone broke into the bicycle storage unit of an apartment building on Union near 24th and stole two bikes. At the time of the police report possible videos of the burglary taken by security cameras were not available.
4. On Sept. 12 police were called to a home on 32nd Ave. E. near Thomas to investigate a burglary that had occurred while the residents were away during the previous weekend. The burglar apparently entered the home through an unlocked back door and stole laptops and jewelry. Police were unable to find fingerprints.
5. On Sept. 19 at approximately 9 P.M. police responded after a home alarm had been triggered at a residence near 20th and Galer. When they arrived they found that someone had entered the home by prying off the screen and entering through a second floor window accessible via a balcony. The burglar rummaged through a bedroom on the first floor of the residence and set off the alarm when exiting through the front door. The owner was out of town at the time and thus the police report contains no information about what was stolen. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
6. Sometime between 12:30 and 4:30 P.M. on Sept. 27 a burglar broke into a home on 26th Ave. E. near Mercer and ransacked several rooms in the house. The burglar stole cash and electronic equipment worth approximately $3,500 but curiously did not take other valuables that were in plain sight. For example, the burglar had obviously handled a wallet containing $400 but took none of the money it contained. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
7. At approximately 4 P.M. on Sept 27 juveniles wearing school backpacks gained access to the mail room of an apartment building on Union near 24th. Video cameras recorded them opening and stealing items from the packages. Although the police found no fingerprints, the video tapes enabled officers to identify two of the juveniles.
SeattleU is currently conducting their citywide 2016 Seattle Public Safety Survey. The goal of the survey is to gather public safety and security concerns from those who live and/or work in Seattle. The final report will be used by the Seattle Police Department to assist them with making our neighborhoods safer. The survey is accessible from now through November 30th in አማርኛ (Amharic), 中文 (Chinese), English, 한국어 (Korean), Soomaali (Somali), Español (Spanish), and Việt Tiếng (Vietnamese). A printable copy of the survey is posted on our website to share with those without online access.
Please forward this email, share on social media and otherwise tell your friends, family, co-workers and community members about the survey.
EastPAC thanks Seattle U, the Community Oriented Policing Services Office, the Seattle Police Foundation, and the Seattle Police Department for working to prioritize the communities concerns via this survey and the micro community police plan program.
As always, if you have questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to reply to this message or contact us at info@EastPAC.org.
There were 37 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during August, a relatively low monthly total. However, serious crimes against persons, including a homicide, an aggravated assault and two armed robberies were more prevalent than usual.
On the morning of Aug. 2 police were called to a residence on E. Arthur Pl. near 29th by a passerby who noticed an open front door and what appeared to be a dead body inside the home. The police have reported that the victim was 51-year-old Trina Bolar and that she died of gunshot wounds. The police are withholding further details as part of their investigation of the incident.
On Aug 21 at 2 PM police driving west on Union in a patrol car that automatically checks license plates were alerted that a stolen car traveling east had just passed them. They then reversed direction to search for the car but were unable to find it. Shortly afterward another police unit in the area found it parked on MLK near Thomas and noted that it was unoccupied. The police then placed it under surveillance in hopes that the car thief would return. When he did so a bit later two patrol cars converged on him and officers told him to raise his hands. Instead of obeying, however, the car thief fled east on Thomas and disappeared. After a short search, officers found him in the back yard of a residence in the 300 block of 29th Ave. E. and ordered him to get on the ground. The car thief refused, however, and an altercation with police officers ensued in which the car thief tried to take an officer’s weapon and succeeded in getting an ammunition clip. After subduing the car thief, the police handcuffed him and called the fire department for help in assessing his injuries, after which he was sent under guard to Harborview and eventually booked into King County Jail. In addition to car theft and aggravated assault, the thief will be charged with several other offenses associated with the incident.
At approximately 8:30 PM on Aug. 22 a customer at a convenience store on Union near 21st ran out of the store with two packs of beer without paying for them. When an employee started to chase the thief a witness warned him that the thief might be carrying a gun. The employee continued to chase the thief southbound on 21st, however, and when he caught up with him the thief threatened him with what looked like a metallic object and thus became an armed robber. The employee then ran back to the store and called the police. Security cameras in the store recorded the theft, and the witness, who is a security guard at a nearby business, told the police that he had frequently seen the robber in that neighborhood.
In the late morning of Aug. 27 police were called to the supermarket on 22nd and Madison to investigate a robbery. A little earlier a store employee who was restocking a liquor cabinet found two men taking bottles from the cabinet and apparently putting them into a backpack. When employee grabbed the backpack, one of the men fled while the other told the employee to return it. The employee refused to return it, so the man threatened him with a screwdriver. At that point the employee ran away and the man with the screwdriver left the store. This incident was recorded by security cameras as was the fact that the first man had left the store with a stolen pack of beer. After the two men left, the employee searched the backpack and found liquor stolen from the cabinet and personal property that identifies the man who threatened the store employee.
Finally, there were five burglaries reported in Madison Valley during August.
1. On Aug. 10 police were called to a residence on E. 21st near Roy to investigate a burglary that occurred earlier in the month while its occupant was away. The resident’s niece, who was checking on the home during her aunt’s absence, found that the front door had been kicked open and that someone had ransacked the house. After calling the police, the niece found that the burglar took fur coats and crystal ware. The niece also told police that in mid-July her aunt had invited a man who had been driving around the neighborhood, and who is described as being white and in his late 20s, into her home for a couple of hours and during that time she told him that she would be away during early August. After he left the aunt found that he had stolen items while he was there and she reported the theft to the police. Police found no fingerprints during their investigation of the burglary.
2. On Aug. 12 the owner of a home on 24th near Howell reported that her home had been burglarized sometime during Aug. 10–11. Upon returning home on the 11th, the owner had found that someone had searched through drawers and closets, but had apparently taken nothing. Two old bicycles were stolen from the back yard however.
3. On Aug. 13 someone took a bicycle worth approximately $500 from the garage of a home on 27th Ave. E near John. During that day the owner had been unpacking boxes in the garage and had left the garage door open as he went back and forth between the garage and his residence.
4. Sometime during the night of Aug. 14–15 a burglar entered a rental residence on 24th Ave. E near Roy. The owner reported that the burglar stole numerous power tools that he was using during a remodeling of the residence. The police found no fingerprints.
5. Sometime during Aug. 12–22, a burglar stole a laptop and heirloom jewelry worth approximately $70,000 from a residence on 24th near Harrison. The owners, who were away on vacation, were renting their home through Airbnb during the period, and they also had tenants living in their basement and in a detached building. Although the owner’s bedroom and bathroom were supposed to be off limits to those with access to the residence, the burglar entered them and found the jewelry even though it was stored in a hiding place. The owners were unable to identify any suspects and because so many people had access to the residence the police did not search for fingerprints.
In less than a minute, an experienced car prowler can break into a parked vehicle.
A note from Captain Paul McDonagh: “Don’t leave things visible inside the vehicle no matter what the time of day or how long you will be away. This includes removing/hiding the charger cords so thieves don’t think the phone/GPS/tablet is tucked under the seat. My quick review of recent car prowls (car break-ins) showed visible items inside the passenger areas when the car was broken into.”
IF YOUR VEHICLE IS BROKEN INTO
File a report by calling the non-emergency number at 206-625-5011, or file one online. When filing a report online or over the phone you do not need to remain at the scene. If you choose to call the non-emergency line, simply ask to report a crime and, if it meets the criteria, the call taker will forward you to an officer who will take your report over the phone. The officer will provide you with a case number. If the crime is still in progress or it is an emergency situation, call 9-1-1 immediately!
There were 44 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during July, more than double the June total. Because the June total was so low, however, the July total only made it into the “low-normal” monthly range. Readers of this series will not be surprised to learn that July’s increase was mostly due to a rebound in car prowls and vehicle theft, which together made up almost half of the July total. There was a burglary and two robbery incidents during July, one of which started as a shoplifting incident.
On July 5 police were called to a restaurant on E. 19th near Roy to investigate a robbery that had taken place around 1 AM on July 4. After entering the building through an unlocked door, the robber entered an office area on the second floor and stole a laptop. Video footage of the burglary enabled a supervisor at the restaurant to provisionally identify the robber as a former employee who had been demoted and fired for performance and attendance problems. The supervisor suspects that the robber stole the laptop because records documenting her firing were contained on that laptop. The manager also indicated that the fired employee had been dating a current employee, and that he believes that the later may have cooperated in the burglary. Police subsequently found that the suspected robber and the current employee currently have the same address and phone number.
On July 9 at about 3:30 AM police were called to 27th and E. Madison to investigate an attempted robbery. When they arrived they found a highly intoxicated victim who told them that a would be robber had thrown a rock at him and then hit him with either a baseball bat or a guitar in an attempt to take his wallet. Although the victim gave different accounts of the incident, police believe that the robber asked the victim for “weed” and became angry when the victim didn’t have any. The victim was unable to identify the robber, but told the police that he thinks the robber is from the Capitol Hill area. The victim was transported to Harborview for treatment of injuries to his left hand and arm.
On July 16 shortly after 8 PM police responded to a shoplifting report at the supermarket on 22nd and Madison. When they arrived, an assistant manager told them that she had observed a shoplifter, described as a black male in his late 20s or early 30s approximately 5′10″ and weighing about 200 lbs., fill a blue/green tote bag with about $1000 worth of merchandise. When he attempted to leave the store without paying for the merchandise, the assistant manager confronted him and asked if he was going to pay for it. The shoplifter told her that he had a receipt, but the assistant manager stated that she didn’t believe him and followed him as he exited the store heading south on 22nd. As she did this, the shoplifter turned around and told her that if she continued to follow her, he would kill her. At this point the assistant manager stopped following him and his offense changed from shoplifting to robbery. Security cameras at the store recorded the incident.
Like many in the neighborhood, I heard the sirens of police racing to Madison Park last week. To learn what was happening, we logged into the live broadcast of the Seattle police scanner.
For over an hour we listened to the reports come in. We followed along as the divers and the row boat were deployed in an effort to find a suspected drowning victim. Thankfully, there was no victim and no one was hurt.
Photo by Matthew Zalewski
Should you ever want to hear what’s happening in the city go here:
Seattle Police Scanner
Also, the Seattle Fire Department maintains a real-time dispatch log on the web that you can view any time to see what’s going on.
Seattle Fire Realtime 911
The police and fire department asks that you not visit an active crime or fire scene.
A link to the full story regarding the suspected drowning victim, found safe in his home, is here:
Presumed Madison Park drowning victim found safe at home.
A homicide on East Arthur Place is being investigated, but details are sparse at this time. The Capitol Hill blog has the story to date:
UPDATE: The Times reports that a woman was shot in her home.
UPDATE 2: Background on the victim:
There were only 17 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during June, an incredibly low number. It is unusual for a monthly total to fall below 40, so June’s low total is quite surprising. Reports of car prowls almost disappeared, with only one report in June compared to a monthly average in the high teens. Have victims of this type of crime have stopped reporting it to the police? In addition, other kinds of incidents such as property damage/graffiti, petty theft and shoplifting, were also infrequent during June. There were, however, a fairly typical number of burglaries reported during June.
1. Sometime during the night of June 2–3 a burglar entered an apartment complex on E. Madison near 24th through a door that had been taped so that the latch bolt would be inoperative. Once inside the burglar entered an unlocked apartment that was being remodeled and stole $7000 worth of tools and building supplies. Police found fingerprints on a counter top inside the apartment.
2. On June 8 police were called to a house on E. Thomas near MLK to investigate a burglary that occurred sometime in the previous week. The current resident told police that someone had entered the house and stolen a blue Soma Smoothie bicycle worth approximately $700. The resident also told police that she suspects a man who she has found in the house previously when it was unlocked, and who had been in the neighborhood during the past few days. The resident gave the suspect’s name to the police and noted that he has a reputation for bicycle theft.
3. On June 9 police were called to a community center on E. 19th near Aloha to investigate a burglary. A worker at the center told them that someone had ransacked a storage room and then stolen $120 in cash that had been hidden in two places in the center. The worker noted that the two cash storage places are fairly common knowledge among those who attend and work at the center, and that a third, known only to herself and the owner, had been untouched.
4. Sometime during June 21st someone entered the kitchen of a house on E. 20th near Aloha through an unlocked door and stole two iPads. The owners learned of the theft the next day when one of them received an email asking for his Apple ID so that the data on one of the iPads could be cleared. At first the owner thought the email was a prank, but when he asked his wife to check, she found that their iPads were missing, at which point the owners notified the police about the burglary. The person who sent the email subsequently told the owner that he had purchased the iPad from someone who listed it on offerup.com, and he told the owners that he would return the iPad and cooperate with the police in apprehending the burglar, described as a short white male in his early 20s with close set eyes and blond hair.
5. On June 24 police were called to a residential complex on Union near 24th to investigate an attempted burglary that had occurred sometime on June 22. The owner of one of the units in the complex had found that the screens on the west side of his unit were damaged in what looked like an attempt to break into the unit. During their investigation police noted that other screens in the complex had also been damaged and found fingerprints on them.
There were only 47 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during May, and as usual the decline from previous monthly totals was due to a smaller number of car prowls. There were eight completed or attempted burglaries and an armed robbery reported during May.
1. At about 3 AM on May 7 a highly intoxicated male wearing only shorts entered a condominium on 26th near Olive and woke the two residents. When one of them yelled at him to leave, he yelled back that it was his house and that he wanted her to leave. When she threatened to call the police he grabbed unsuccessfully at her phone, at which point both residents pushed him into a bathroom and then fled to their respective bedrooms and locked the doors. When the police arrived shortly afterward they heard sounds of things being smashed coming from the second floor of the building and found that the front door had been barricaded from the inside. The residents then emerged from their bedrooms and removed the items blocking the front door so that the police could enter. When the police went upstairs the intruder surrendered and was taken into custody. The intruder caused approximately $1500 worth of damage in the residence. When they questioned him, the police learned that the intruder had consumed a large bottle of vodka and believed that he was in Vancouver, B.C.
2. During the early morning of May 12 a burglar gained entry to a storage area at an apartment building on 20th near Republican and stole two bicycles worth approximately $16,000. The police were notified that evening and they found fingerprints at the scene.
3. Sometime during the evening of May 13 a burglar entered a business on Madison near 23rd through an unlocked back door and stole an employee’s backpack. The employee did not notify the police until he had returned to his home in the early hours of May 14.
4. On May 18 at about 10 AM a burglar attempted to enter a residence on 25th near Union by entering through a window covered by blackout curtains. His attempt was unsuccessful, however, because while reaching through the curtains he touched the head of a resident who was asleep on the other side. The burglar fled when he realized that there was someone on the inside of the house, and the resident saw him running north across his neighbor’s back yard when he opened the curtains. When the police arrived, they put a tracking dog on the burglar’s scent, and the dog led them to a bus stop serving southbound buses on MLK. The police found fingerprints on the window through which the burglar attempted to enter the house.
5. Also on May 18 at around 1 PM the landlord of a vacant residence on 24th near Highland found five people in the home. He told the people to leave and then quickly left himself. When he returned later in the day, he found that the burglars, described as three white men and two white women all in their 20s, had stolen power tools worth approximately $300.
6. Police were called to a vacant residence on 22nd near John on May 20 to investigate a break-in at a detached shed on the property. A real estate agent who was acting on behalf of the property owners found a woman in the shed on May 15, and after being told a suspicious story about why she was there, told her to leave. The agent then installed a padlock on the shed. On May 18 the agent returned to find that the padlock had been broken and that there was a sleeping bag inside. On May 19 the agent returned and found food, sleeping bags and backpacks in the shed. The agent informed the owners that there were squatters in the shed, but the owners declined to notify the police because they did not want homeless people to lose their property. On May 20 the agent found that the padlock had been completely removed from the shed and that there were numerous personal items inside, at which point the agent decided to call the police. The police collected the various items that the squatters had left behind and submitted them to the SPD property unit.
7. Also on May 20 police were called to an apartment building on 20th near Republican to investigate the burglary of a storage area. The burglar gained entry to the storage area, which is located beneath the apartments, by removing a venting panel in a door. Items worth approximately $4500 belonging to the occupants of three apartments in the building were taken but no fingerprints were found.
8. On May 24 at about 10:30 AM a burglar broke into a home on 19th near Harrison through a rear window and stole electronic and gaming equipment worth about $1000. The police were notified later in the day and found fingerprints on the window.
On May 6 at about 11:30 PM two men brandishing handguns and wearing ski masks and hoodies robbed a convenience store near Madison and 29th. Upon entering the store they demanded the money from the cash register and pointed their guns at the store attendant. The attendant opened the register and while one of the robbers took money from it the other shoved the attendant and hit him in the mouth with his handgun. When the attendant fled to the back of the store one of the robbers fired his gun, alerting a witness who was getting into her car across the street. As they left the store the robbers told the witness to “get down” and then fled east on E. Arthur Place. The robbers took approximately $1500 and the store attendant suffered four broken teeth and a lacerated upper lip. The incident was recorded on the store’s security camera.
The Madison Park Community Council invites you to the second of a two-part series: Safety, Community and Neighborhoods in 2016 featuring Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole.
Chief Kathleen O'Toole was sworn in as Chief of the Seattle Police Department on June 23rd, 2014. Chief O'Toole is a career police officer and lawyer who has earned an international reputation for her principled leadership and reform strategies.
In 2012, Ms. O’Toole completed a six-year term as Chief Inspector of the Gardia Síochána Inspectorate, an oversight body responsible for bringing reform, best practice and accountability to the 17,000 member Irish National Police Service.
Prior to serving in Ireland, Ms. O’Toole rose through the ranks of local and state policing in the United States. During her police career, she was assigned to numerous patrol, investigative, undercover, supervisory and management positions. She served as Superintendent (Chief) of the Metropolitan District Commission Police and Lieutenant Colonel overseeing Special Operations in the Massachusetts State Police. She was later appointed Massachusetts Secretary of Public Safety (1994) and Boston Police Commissioner (2004).
Wednesday, June 15
7:00 to 8:30 p.m.
1630 43rd Avenue East
The number of incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during April dropped from March’s total of 71 to 57. As is often the case, the change was entirely driven by a change in the number of car prowls, which fell from 38 to 24. There were five burglaries, and once again one of them resulted when a car prowler found a garage door opener in an unlocked vehicle.
1. On April 13 police were called to a residence on 22nd near Madison to investigate a burglary at an attached garage that had been left open during the previous night. The burglars took a bicycle and digital gaming equipment and apparently left no fingerprints.
2. On April 17 at approximately 5 AM two burglars broke into the lobby of an apartment complex on 19th near Mercer and stole several packages from the mailbox area. The burglars, described as an adult and a child wearing gloves and dressed to hide their identities, were recorded by a surveillance camera. Although they were not called until 11 AM, police carried out an unsuccessful search of the neighborhood for suspects matching the descriptions of the burglars.
3. At around 1:30 AM on April 25 residents of a home on 21st near Aloha were awoken by noises coming from the ground floor of their house. When they got up to investigate they saw light from flashlights downstairs and then saw two burglars exit from their front door. After calling the police they found that the burglars had entered by breaking the window of a side door and unlocking it. The burglars stole credit cards from a purse, but apparently had too little time to take anything else. The police found no fingerprints.
4. Sometime during the night of April 28–29 a burglar broke into a home under construction on 24th near Pine by breaking open the locked front door. The burglar stole approximately $2200 worth of tools. There were no surfaces suitable for taking fingerprints.
5. Also during the night of April 28–29 a burglar gained entry to a garage on 20th near Denny by using a garage door opener obtained from a car prowl at that location. The burglar, who apparently was riding a bicycle, stole a bicycle worth $1100 from the garage and left his own bike at the scene. The police found no fingerprints in the garage and none on the burglar’s bike, which had been left out in the rain.
In addition to the April burglaries, the police department has released a description of a burglary that occurred earlier this year. At about 3 PM on Feb. 22 a burglar entered a residence on E. Helen near 24th through an unlocked window. When he unlocked the front door to let an accomplice inside, however, an alarm sounded and both fled south on Turner Way. Two witnesses were alerted by the alarm and one of them took a photograph of the burglars with her cell phone. She then returned to her nearby home, got into her car, and drove southbound on 23rd in search of them. She found them near 23rd and John, and took another photo of them as they crossed Madison on 25th . Meanwhile, a resident of the burglarized home returned home and found that the front door was open and that a laptop was missing. The police arrived shortly after 3:20 and the witness who had followed the burglars showed them her photos. The police then mounted a major search operation for the burglars and at around 4 PM detained one near 25th and E. Howell and at around 4:45 found the other hiding in a hot tub at a residence near 25th and Denny. After he had been arrested, the police found that the latter burglar had arrest warrants out for vehicle theft. Both burglars were booked into the King County Jail.
Finally, there was an incident classified as an armed robbery during April.
On April 5 at about 7 PM a man walked into the Safeway at Madison and 22nd and loaded a grocery cart with six containers of laundry detergent. After he took the cart out of the store without paying for its contents, two store employees confronted him, but the man claimed that he didn’t know what they were talking about and that he was doing nothing wrong. At that point one of the employees noticed that the man was concealing a jackknife behind his back and the two employs broke contact with him to prevent an escalation of the confrontation. Before leaving the robber, however, one of the employees took a picture of him with a cell phone. In addition, surveillance cameras in the store recorded the event. When they arrived at the scene police searched the neighborhood but could not find the robber.
On May 6th, at 10:30 pm, two black males each armed with a handgun and wearing masks and gloves, entered the Village Mart in the 2800 block of East Madison Street. They demanded money from the clerk. The clerk was pistol-whipped in the mouth and knocked to the floor. One of the suspects fired a round into the floor of the store.
The clerk sustained injuries during the encounter and was treated at the scene by Seattle Fire. The suspects fled the store on foot before officers arrived. Despite an extensive area search, the suspects were not located. Robbery Unit detectives responded and processed the scene.
The video at the link is from inside the store that evening. Anyone with information about the suspects is asked to call the Robbery Unit at (206) 684-5535. See the security video here: http://bit.ly/1VS4MhG
This text was re-posted from the SPD article at the link above.
After a seven-month run of double digit monthly burglary totals, March saw a return to a more typical total of five. The decline in burglaries, and a few other types of reported crimes, was offset by a surge in car prowls (38 reported incidents), however, so that the overall total of reported crimes was one more than February’s total of seventy. In fact, one of those car prowls was a key element in the fourth burglary described below.
1. During the morning of March 2, just after the residents had left for a short vacation, a burglar broke into a home on E. Valley near 26th by breaking a dining room window and then unlatching it. While entering, the burglar apparently suffered a cut because blood was found at various locations around the inside of the home. The burglar took jewelry, an iPad, passports, credit cards and personal checks, and started using the credit cards shortly after leaving the home. The residents called the police when they returned home on March 6, and when one of the officers arrived he realized that he had found one of the stolen credit cards at the scene of another burglary that he had investigated two days earlier. The police have a suspect for that burglary and have a video of her using a stolen credit card for a purchase at a art supply store on March 4. The police have submitted blood samples and possible fingerprints as evidence in the case.
2. Sometime while its occupants were sleeping during the early morning hours of March 6, a burglar broke into a home on Galer near 22nd by prying open a basement window. The burglar rummaged through the kitchen and stole approximately $300 in cash from a wallet and some jars containing allowance money. The police found fingerprints at the scene.
3. During the morning of March 15, someone entered the unlocked office of a business in a commercial building on Madison near 28th while the business owner was temporarily away, and stole a laptop computer. Police were not notified about the burglary until the following day and therefore did not search for fingerprints because the office had had several clients in it since the burglary.
4. Sometime during the night of March 21-22 someone used a garage door opener that was left in an unlocked car in a driveway on 26th near Mercer to gain entrance to the residence there. Once inside, the burglar took a bicycle and wet suits from the garage area, and a laptop and a wallet containing credit cards and $300 in cash from the kitchen area adjacent to the garage. The victim, who was asleep in an upstairs bedroom, was not awakened by the burglar’s activities. The police found no fingerprints at the scene, but the burglar left a bag containing clothing and shoes in the garage.
5. On March 28 police were called to an apartment building on Madison near 25th to investigate a burglary that had occurred on March 16. Someone had broken into the locked storage area of the apartment complex and stolen approximately $1800 worth of tools and surveillance equipment. The police did not search for fingerprints because of the time lapse between the burglary and when it was reported to the police.
In addition to the burglaries, there were two robberies in Madison Valley during March.
1. On March 9th at 11:30 PM a woman parked her car near 21st and Union and walked to a nearby food truck. On her way back to her car she was approached from behind by a male who placed a hard object, which she thinks was a gun, at the back of her head and told her to give him her money. The woman told the robber that she had no money, but he searched her and found $640 in one of her inside coat pockets. After taking the money the robber told the woman not to turn around and fled north on 21st. The woman did not contact the police about the robbery until March 12 and could not provide a description of her assailant.
2. On March 15 at about 10:30 AM a 76-year old women who was arriving to attend an activity session for seniors being held at the Miller Community Center was knocked to the ground by a robber who seized her purse from behind. When she got up to see her assailant she recognized him as the occupant of a lime green van that had been parked in a disability parking space that she had passed when she was walking from her car to the community center. After taking her purse, which contained a cell phone, identification and credit cards, the robber ran back to his van and drove north on 19th Ave. E. The victim described the robber as a black male, aged 20 to 25, of medium build, with short hair and dressed in black. The victim was not able to see the license place of the robber’s van.
February’s police report total for Madison Valley was similar to January’s, close to 70. Once again, incidents involving car prowl and vehicle theft were the most prevalent and burglaries remained in the double digits (10). However, we had a respite from reported crimes against persons such as aggravated assault and robbery.
1. During the early morning hours of Feb. 1 someone gained entry to a package storage area in an apartment building on 19th near Denny and took the packages being stored there. Residents later found the opened packages in a stairwell of the building and reported losses of approximately $270. The apartment building had suffered a similar burglary a year ago and subsequently installed surveillance cameras. A video of the burglary was not available at the time of the police report.
2. On Feb. 4 police were called to a residence on Union near 26th at 11:30 PM to investigate a burglary that had occurred while the resident was at work. The burglar smashed open a sliding glass door to gain entry and stole a digital camera and a laptop. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
3. Sometime between 10:30 AM and 5:30 PM on Feb. 5 a burglar entered an apartment on 23rd near Denny through an unlocked bedroom window. Although not all of the residents had assessed their losses at the time of the police report, items valued at least $1000 as well as personal documents were stolen. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
4. On Feb. 7 someone smashed open a window on a garage at a residence on 22nd near Denny. Because the window was made of frosted glass, the would-be burglar did not know that there was a stacked washer/dryer just inside the window that prevented easy access. The obstacle apparently caused the burglar to give up trying to enter the garage and the owner found nothing missing.
5. On Feb. 8 at about 2 AM police were called to an apartment building on 25th near Denny by a woman who heard someone tampering with the screen on her bedroom window. When she went to the window she found man who told her that his grandmother lived in the building and that he was trying to get into her apartment. The man fled when the woman told him that she was going to call the police. Police searched the area after they arrived but did not find a suspect.
6. On Feb 12 a resident on Pine near 25th reported a burglary that had occurred on Feb. 11. She told them that earlier that morning she found that the screens for several of her windows had been removed and that the screen for her bedroom window had been cut. Upon investigating further, she found that someone had stolen a cell phone and some clothing from packages that had been delivered earlier on the 11th. Because she returned home late in the evening on the 11th the resident did not notice the missing screens at that time, and police were unable to find fingerprints on the screens because of the heavy rains during the night.
7. On Feb. 22 police were called to a residence on Madison near 32nd to investigate a burglary that had just occurred. A woman who was house sitting for a relative returned from a brief errand at 12:20 PM and saw the burglar exiting the home, After being observed. the burglar, described as a black male in his 20s about 5′ 7″ tall and wearing a blue hoodie, fled west through an alley near 32nd and Ward. Police searched the area but were unable to find the burglar, who apparently entered the home through a back window. Police recovered some of the items that the burglar was in the process of taking and found finger prints on them.
8. On Feb. 22 there was a non-forced burglary at a residence on Helen near 24th. The incident involved additional violations, but the police have not posted a description of it yet.
9. Also on Feb. 22 a burglar broke into an apartment building on 19th near Denny by “hot-wiring” the electronic entry system. Once inside, the burglar broke into an apartment in the building and stole two Music Man guitars, guitar equipment and a laptop. The victim had been posting a sales listing for some used guitars on Craigslist during the past few months, and gave the police the name of a person who wanted to buy a guitar which was not for sale but was stolen during the burglary. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
10. On Feb. 23 at around 10:15 PM the owner of a home on E. Washington Place was awakened by loud noises coming from his back door. When he went to the back of his house to investigate he found that someone had tried to force the door open with some kind of prying tool. The burglar must have been frightened away because the owner saw no one. When the police arrived they could find no suspects in the neighborhood nor any evidence of further damage. Police sent a light bulb that the burglar had loosened in its socket above the back door to the police lab for possible fingerprints.
January saw the continuation of the high level of burglaries in Madison Valley that began last August, when the level jumped from 4 or 5 per month into the double digits. The twelve burglaries in January matched the monthly average since the beginning of August. Meanwhile, vehicle-related crime reports, chiefly car prowl thefts, rebounded from the low levels of the past few months to more a more typical number, resulting in a forty percent increase in the total number of police reports (70) over December's 50.
1. Sometime during the afternoon of Jan. 4 a burglar broke into an apartment on E. 20th near Denny by cutting the screen and sliding a kitchen window open. Once inside, the burglar searched through the house and took car keys, a credit card, jewelry and cash. The burglar did not take other valuable items, such as a laptop, however. Police did not find usable fingerprints around the window or in the apartment.
2. On Jan. 4 someone took a UPS package from a secure area in an apartment building on 23rd near John. There was no evidence of forcible entry to the area, nor did the building's owner see anything suspicious when he viewed tapes from surveillance cameras on the outside of the building. The package contained clothing worth $190. Police were not called to investigate the incident until Jan. 14.
3 On Jan. 5 at 8:30 PM police were called to E. Prospect St. near 20th by a resident who had caught two suspects getting into an unlocked car in his garage. The suspects fled, but when the police searched the area they found that someone had gained entry to a nearby house by throwing a brick through a window in the back door. The owner, who was at work at the time, returned home when the police notified her and found that the burglar(s) had taken laptops and jewelry worth approximately $3,600. As the police were leaving the scene, they learned that two suspects who may have been involved in the burglary and the car invasion had just been arrested in a stolen car down the street from the burglary.
4. On Jan. 16 at about 3 PM a would-be burglar set off an alarm at a residence on 23rd near Prospect by breaking a window pane in the back door of the residence. The alarm apparently frightened the culprit away, however, because when the security company representative and the police arrived no one was present and the back door was still locked.
5. Sometime during the period between Jan. 13 and Jan. 18, a burglar broke into a shed in the back yard of a residence on 31st near Union. The owner, who had been out of town, reported that the burglar took bicycles, camping equipment and tools worth a total of about $5,000. Police found no fingerprints.
6. On Jan. 22 at about 4:30 PM police were called to a home on Harrison near 29th to investigate a burglary that had occurred earlier that day. When they arrived the owners told them that they had left their home at 9:30 that morning, and that their son's girlfriend was the only one in the house when they left. The girlfriend, who was sleeping in the lower level of the home during much of the day, left at about 3PM and activated the alarm system when she left. When the owners returned at 4 PM they found that a glass panel in a French door at the back of the home had been smashed and that a burglar had taken jewelry, digital equipment and cash worth a total of about $11,600. When the owners returned they found the alarm system still activated, implying that the burglary occurred while the girlfriend was asleep in the lower level of the house. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
7. Sometime between 1:30 and 6:30 PM on Jan. 24 a burglar entered a home on 20th near Mercer through an unlocked bathroom window at the back (east) side of the house. After taking items worth approximately $2,800, including a necklace and a laptop computer, the burglar left through a back door. There were no suitable surfaces for taking fingerprints at the scene.
8. On Jan. 27 between 9:30 and 11 AM a burglar entered an apartment building on 23rd near Denny through an unlocked security door and pried open a door to one of the apartments. After gaining entry to the apartment, the burglar stole a laptop and cash worth a total of approximately $1,500. There were no fingerprints at the scene.
9. During the night of Jan. 27–28 a burglar entered a restaurant near 19th and Aloha by smashing open a bathroom window at the rear of the building where it is located. Once inside, the burglar kicked open the door of the restaurant's office and stole approximately $1,500 in cash. The police found partial finger prints in the office and noted in their report that video cameras at the rear of the building may have recorded the burglar's entry and exit.
10. During the afternoon of Jan. 28 police received a report of an attempted burglary at a home on 26th near Denny. While taking a shower after an afternoon run, the homeowner heard a loud noise. When he ran downstairs to investigate he found that the glass pane of his rear door had been shattered and observed two young black males, one tall and thin the other short and stocky, in his back yard. When they saw the resident they fled and the resident called the police. The police found no fingerprints.
11. Sometime between 8:30 AM and 3 PM on Jan. 29, a burglar entered an apartment on Union near 27th by crawling through an unlocked bedroom window on the first floor. After ransacking the apartment the burglar took items worth approximately $1,600, including cash and two digital tablets. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
12. On Jan. 31 at about 5:30 PM police were called to a residence on Union near 27th by a resident who had just returned from a vacation. When he arrived, he found things amiss and the window pane of the basement door at the back of the house smashed open. Because his roommate had been in the house earlier in the day, he concluded that the burglary must have happened since the roommate's departure. Items worth approximately $4,700 were stolen, including $3,150 in cash. The police found no fingerprints.
Also during January, there was an armed assault and a robbery in Madison Valley.
1. On Jan. 1 at about 2:45 police were notified of gunfire near the intersection of Union and MLK. When they arrived at the scene a witness told them that gunfire had been exchanged between two SUVs traveling west on Union at high speed. Shortly afterward a victim with a wound in his left forearm was dropped off at a location redacted from the police report by a SUV matching the description of one of the vehicles involved in the shooting incident. When the police interviewed the shooting victim he claimed no knowledge of the chase on Union and had no idea of who had shot him. Police found five shell casings at the intersection of Union and MLK.
2. On Jan. 5 at about 4 PM a woman called the police to report that the previous day she had been a victim of a car jacking near 25th and Union. The woman told the police that while she was putting a car seat into her car's trunk, an assailant had pushed her torso into the trunk and told her that if she didn't give him the keys to her car he would hurt her. After she dropped the keys to the ground the assailant picked them up and drove off with the car. The woman also told the police that although she had seen the assailant a few times in the neighborhood, she wasn't acquainted with him. Further investigation by the police revealed that the woman had reported the incident to the police the previous day and had identified her assailant, who is known to the police as a gang member.
During December Madison Valley burglaries (14) and car prowl thefts (14) remained close to their November levels. There were three crimes against persons, including an armed robbery committed by a person with a concealed-carry gun permit. Other crimes declined a bit however, so that the overall number for December was approximately 50, similar to November’s total.
The Police Department has markedly improved its posting of reports major crimes, and this month we have details for 13 of the 14 burglaries.
1. On Dec. 4 at 5:15 PM a resident of a home on 26th near Denny called the police to report that upon returning home he had seen a light on and a male, described as about 5′11″ with dark hair and a backpack, inside his front door. When the police arrived shortly thereafter, they found the burglar gone and a glass door in the basement smashed open. The burglar took items worth approximately $12,000, including watches and a laptop. The police found fingerprints in the home.
2. Sometime during Dec. 5 or 6 someone removed the screens to three windows of a home on 32nd near Howell. The would-be burglar failed to get the windows open, however, and was unable to take anything from the home. Police found that fingerprints at the scene were too smeared to be useful.
3. In the early afternoon of Dec. 6 a would-be burglar attempted to enter a home on Republican near 30th by smashing a window pane in the back door. Smashing the glass, however, set off an alarm system that apparently scared the burglar away. A neighbor reported seeing three suspicious-looking young males in the neighborhood at the time, but police found no evidence that they were involved.
4. On Dec. 7 at 1:30 PM police were called to a residence on Olive near 27th to investigate a burglary in progress. On entering the house, the resident saw a burglar in the kitchen, yelled at him, and then left the house to call the police. The burglar, described as a young black male about 5′10″ tall and wearing a black hoodie and a white shirt, ran from the back of the home when confronted by the resident. When the police arrived they searched the house and concluded that the burglar had probably entered via an unlocked window. The burglar stole jewelry, but was apparently frightened away just as he was about to take a laptop and an iPad. The police found fingerprints at the scene.
5. On Dec. 12 around 1 PM four males wearing hoodies and covering their faces entered the back yard behind a business on Union near 24th from an alleyway. After they moved to the front of the business, one of them threw a rock at the door in an attempt to smash its pane. When the rock damaged, but failed to break the pane, three of the intruders fled back to the alley, but the fourth threw another rock at the door. When that rock also failed to break the pane he fled east on Union. All of this was recorded by security cameras on the building, and the tapes have been turned over to the police. The business owner believes that local youth are involved. The rocks caused about $2000 in damage to the front door.
6. During the night of Dec. 13 – 14 someone tried to enter a coffee shop on Madison near 29th by prying locks on a door to the shop. The burglar was unsuccessful, however, and police found no fingerprints.
7. Sometime between 11 PM on Dec. 16 and 8 AM on the 17th, a burglar unsuccessfully tried to force open the front door of a business on Madison near 29th but then found an unlocked window at the northeast corner of the building. Once in, the burglar forced open a safe and took approximately $840. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
8. Police were called to a home on 21st near Aloha on Dec. 17 to investigate a burglary that had occurred sometime in the afternoon or early evening of that day. An employee of the home’s owner reported that when she arrived at the home at about 8:30 PM the back door was unlocked and things appeared to have been moved around. The employee also determined that a person who was taking care of cats in the home had locked the back door when she left the home at about 2:30 that day. Police found that the burglar had disturbed several rooms in the house, and that a bathroom window on the main floor was open. Because the owner was out of town police were unable to determine what, if anything, the burglar took. The police found no fingerprints in the home.
9. On Dec. 18 police tracking a vehicle that had been stolen from a Renton address were directed to a house on Pine near 26th. There they saw a man and woman remove items from the stolen car and walk into the back yard behind the house. When police knocked at the house’s front door no one answered. Shortly afterward, the current resident of the house, which is owned by her grandmother, arrived and suggested that the female suspect was probably another of the owner’s granddaughters. The other granddaughter has a history of car theft and also has been forbidden to be in the grandmother’s house. After obtaining permission to search the basement of the house, the police eventually found both the man and woman hiding behind a mound of dirt in a crawl space. Both were read their Miranda rights and taken into custody. When the police talked to the house’s owner, she confirmed that her granddaughter was banned from her home and asked that she be charged with burglary.
10. Sometime between Dec. 24 and Dec. 28 while the residents were away, a burglar entered a home on 22nd near John through an unlocked window and stole items worth approximately $3000. Although there were marks around the window that the burglar entered, police infer that the burglar wore gloves because they found no usable fingerprints.
11. Sometime between Dec. 24 and Dec. 31 a burglar broke into a residence on 22nd near Madison by removing a screen and opening an unlocked window. The residence, which is currently occupied by eight renters, was unoccupied during that period because of the holidays. The burglar took a camera and jewelry worth approximately $1800 from the room of the renter who contacted the police, but the total amount taken was unknown when the police report was written. The police found no usable fingerprints.
12. At around noon on Dec. 25 there was a non-forced entry burglary at a home on 30th near Pine, but police have not posted a more detailed description of it.
13. Sometime between noon on Dec. 26 and 5:30 PM on the 27th, someone entered an apartment on 23rd near John and stole $15,000 worth of clothing, digital equipment, and cash. Police could find no signs of a forced entry into the apartment, and also found no fingerprints. However, there is a possibility that security cameras recorded the burglar(s) entrance.
14. On Dec. 29 residents who returned to their home on 24th near Howell after spending the afternoon and early evening downtown found that someone had used unsecured windows next to their back door to unlock the door and enter the residence. The burglar(s) took cash and digital equipment worth approximately $1700. Police found fingerprints on the windows by the back door.
Finally, it appears that arrests have or will be made in all of December’s crimes against persons.
1. On Dec. 15 a man used a credit card to buy a beer at the gas station at 23rd and Union but left before the transaction had been electronically approved. When the purchase was denied, an employee followed the man and asked that he pay for the beer or return it. At that point the man opened the beer and drank some of it. When the employee tried to grab the beer, the man punched him in the face and fled. The employee hailed a passing police car to report the incident and shortly afterward the police took the robber into custody. At the police station the police determined that the robber was highly intoxicated and recommended that he spend the night at a sobering center. Because the employee did not want to press charges, the robber was released after spending the night at the center.
2. On Dec. 22 at about 1:45 PM a rider on a southbound bus had his iPhone snatched from his hand by another rider who was getting off the bus at the 23rd and Aloha bus stop. The victim and a witness followed the robber off the bus, and when the robber slipped and fell, the victim grabbed his left hand and asked him to return the iPhone. Instead of doing so the robber showed the victim and the witness that he had a handgun, causing them to back away. As the robber fled east on Valley, the other rider photographed him and then called 911. Shortly after the police arrived they were informed that another police unit had apprehended a suspect at 29th and Valley, and when the victim and witness were taken to that location they identified him as the robber. After the police arrested the suspect, they searched him and found the victim’s iPhone and the robber’s handgun. Shortly afterward the police learned that the robber has a concealed carry weapons permit that is valid through 2019. The police report expresses concern that the robber continues to have a valid permit because (1) he has been arrested for a strong arm robbery at 25th and Madison and (2) on 9/26/2015 he had had a handgun confiscated for public safety concerns after he passed out while intoxicated at 10th and Pine. He later retrieved this weapon from the police, and it was the same handgun that he used in the armed robbery in December.
3. On Dec. 14 at around 5:30 PM a bicyclist commuting south on 19th near Madison was threatened by a woman driving a yellow Chevrolet Spark. The driver, who was unknown to the bicyclist, yelled angrily at him and tried to force him off the street. The driver continued to harass the bicyclist until they approached Union, at which point the bicyclist was able to squeeze past several cars waiting to cross the street. The driver, however, passed the cars on the left and caught up with the bicyclist in the intersection. The bicyclist then yelled at the driver to leave him alone and tried to leave the scene. The driver then drove into the back of the bicycle knocking the bicyclist to the ground. After the driver sped away south on 19th the bicyclist contacted the police, and after they arrived witnesses corroborated the bicyclist’s story and gave the police the car’s license plate number.
There were 53 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during November, about the same as October's total. The number of reported burglaries jumped to 15 however, and was only one fewer than the number of car prowls. That is noteworthy because during most months car prowl theft substantially outnumbers any other kind of crime in Madison Valley that is reported to the police. In contrast, there were no robberies or aggravated assaults reported during November.
Police have posted descriptions of nine of the fifteen burglaries.
1. On Nov. 2 at 7:30 PM police were called to a townhouse on 22nd near Madison to investigate a forced-entry burglary that occurred earlier that day. When they arrived, the resident told them that someone had entered through a bottom floor window and had proceeded to rummage through the home, stealing video gaming equipment, two gold rings and a credit card. The resident also reported that the credit card had just been used to make purchases at a nearby gas station. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
2. During the night of Nov. 4-5, a burglar broke into a specialty store on Madison near 29th, but no description is available.
3. On Nov. 4 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on 24th near Denny but no description is available.
4. On Nov. 5 a burglar broke into a home on 26th near John but no description is available.
5. On Nov. 7 sometime between 10:30 AM and 2 PM someone broke into a house on 24th near Olive by smashing a dining room window. After dumping the contents of several drawers, the burglar took cash, jewelry, camera equipment and other items worth approximately $10,000. Police found fingerprints on objects that had been moved during the burglary.
6. Sometime during the day on Nov. 11th, a burglar entered a home on 23rd near Howell through an unlocked basement window and after ransacking the home stole computer equipment worth $1900. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
7. On Nov. 12 Police were called to a residence on 26th Ave. E near Thomas to investigate a non-forced entry burglary that occurred earlier in the day. The burglar took a safe that was kept in a closet and a pile of credit cards, but ignored jewelry, electronics and other valuable items.
8. In the afternoon or early evening of Nov. 14 there was a forced-entry burglary at a home on 30th near Denny. The burglar was apparently looking for cash because expensive items in the home were not taken. A little over $1000 was taken and there was $260 in damage to the home. The police submitted items that may bear fingerprints to the crime lab.
9. Sometime during the weekend of Nov. 14 -15 someone broke into a building site on 19th near John and stole just-installed wiring worth $500. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
10. On Nov. 16 police were called to a residence on 25th near Howell to investigate an attempted burglary that had occurred around 3 PM. When they arrived a resident told them that a webcam in the home had recorded someone looking into a side window as if to break in, but that a barking dog had apparently thwarted the would be burglar. Police talked to a witness who had viewed the video and identified the suspect as having entered a white Ford van which subsequently drove south on 25th. The witness gave the license number of the van to the police, who found that it was registered to an address in Everett.
11. At 4:30 PM on Nov. 16 police were called to a residence on 19th near John to investigate a burglary in progress. Upon arriving home, a resident observed that lights were on, and upon entering heard someone run out the back door. The resident then ran to the side of the home and while the burglar passed by him, made a video recording. When the burglar got to the front of the house, he dropped a backpack in the driveway, jogged across 19th, and headed south to E. Thomas St. The victim found that the backpack contained an iPad and a jar of coins that had been taken from his residence. When the police arrived they found that the burglar had entered the residence by throwing a rock through a sliding glass door near the kitchen and had ransacked the bedrooms in the house. In a subsequent search of the neighborhood that was assisted by a K-9 unit, the police were unable to find anyone matching the description of the suspect, but the victim provided the video of the burglar that he had made when the burglar passed him.
12. On Nov. 16 there was an attempted forced-entry burglary on 27th near Pine but no description is available.
13. On Nov. 18 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence in a condo complex on Madison near 29th. The burglar(s) apparently was able to enter the complex without using force, but had to use a prying tool to enter the victim's unit. Once in, the burglar stole jewelry worth approximately $2500 but neglected other items. A video of a possible suspect taken when he was in lobby of the complex has been given to the police.
14. On Nov. 26 there was a unforced-entry burglary at a residence on 22nd near Aloha but no description is available.
15. On Nov. 29 at around 3PM there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on 25th near Highland but no description is available.
[Editor's note: The author has inquired about the recent lack of incident descriptions but has not received a reply.]
There were 58 incidents in Madison Valley that were reported to the police during October, up from 49 in September. This increase was due to modest increases in vehicle theft and property damage/graffiti. The number of burglaries was higher than average for the third straight month and there was an aggravated assault and two robberies.
There were ten burglaries reported during October, but the police have posted detailed descriptions of only five of them.
1. Sometime between the mornings of Oct. 7 and 8 a burglar stole packages from the mail room at an apartment building on 19th near Mercer. The mail room is visible through the front door of the building and when open its contents are visible from the sidewalk in front of the building. The stolen packages contained $30,000 worth of medical equipment and two scarves. There is a security camera in the area but its contents were not immediately available to the police.
2. On Oct. 9 there was a forced entry burglary at a residence on 27th near Pine but no description has been posted.
3. Sometime during the night of Oct. 13–14 a burglar entered a construction site on Union near 23rd and stole twelve rolls of copper wire and other construction materials worth approximately $1300. The burglar, who apparently climbed over the fence surrounding the construction area, caused no damage and left no evidence behind.
4. Shortly after noon on Oct. 17 there was a burglary at the Safeway at Madison and 22nd, but the police have not posted a description of this event.
5. On Oct. 19 at around 11 PM there was a non-forced entry burglary at a residence on 19th near Prospect, but no description has been posted.
6. On Oct. 20 at around 4 AM there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on 19th near Prospect, but no description has been posted.
7. On Oct. 22 there was a non-forced entry burglary at a garage associated with a nonresidential building on Republican near 22nd, but no description has been posted.
8. Sometime between 8 AM and 5:30 PM on Oct. 22 a burglar entered a home on 24th near Howell by throwing a rock through a window next to the front door. The burglar took $80 in cash, and computer and gaming equipment worth approximately $750. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
9. Also on Oct. 22, police were called to a residence on 24th near Thomas at 9 PM to investigate an apparent burglary as evidenced by a window that had been smashed open. After notifying the resident, police searched the home and found fingerprints on a door handle. When the resident arrived he found that a violin worth $100 had been taken.
10. On Oct. 23 there was a non-forced entry burglary at a nonresidential location on 31st near Harrison, but no description has been posted.
There was also an aggravated assault, an armed robbery, and an incident that may be classified as an armed robbery during October.
1. At around 9 AM on Oct. 15 a man was threatened by another man who called him a faggot and threatened him with a cane at the bus stop on Madison near MLK. After taking a picture of his assailant, the victim walked away and the assailant boarded a bus and left the area. The victim reported that the same person had threatened him at the same location with a knife last May. A witness gave police information about the assailant's identity.
2. On Oct. 18th at about 6:30 PM an there was an armed robbery at a restaurant on Madison near MLK, but no detailed description has been posted.
3. On Oct. 23rd at about noon police were called to Madison and MLK to investigate a reported armed robbery. There they learned that the incident had started earlier at 4th and Pike where a couple had left a phone at a bus stop when they boarded a bus. When the couple returned to the original bus stop the phone was missing, so they activated a “find my cell phone” tracker and found that the phone was eastbound on Madison. Following the phone, the couple eventually traced it to a building on Madison near MLK, and upon entering the building they activated a “pinging” feature of the phone that made it clear that it was in the possession of a suspect who was meeting his case worker there. When confronted, the suspect demanded a finder's fee for the phone, but the victims refused to pay. After the case worker unsuccessfully tried to get the suspect to return the phone, the suspect left the building and walked southbound on MLK. One of the victims started following the suspect, at which point the suspect yelled “stop following me cracker,” approached him aggressively, and started swinging a cane at him. The follower maintained his distance but kept following the suspect, however, and after a short time the suspect removed the phone from its carrying case and smashed it to the ground. At that point the follower retrieved the phone and brought it back to the building on Madison. Meanwhile, the other member of the couple called the police and told them about the incident. She also informed them that the phone's carrying case contained her credit cards and cash as well as the phone. By the time the police arrived and had been informed of the goings on, the suspect had boarded a bus westbound on Madison. After further inquiry, the police learned that the suspect is from Iowa, has a record of arrests for harassment, and that he currently has a voucher to stay at a motel in Tukwilla. At the time of the police report the victims had not decided what kind of charges they would press against the suspect.
During last night or early morning, Nov. 4th or 5th, time unknown, there was break-in at Ascona Chocolat Suisse, 2914 East Madison. The break-in was through the double-paned glass door, which was shattered.
Stolen were the cash register, a small amount of cash and computer equipment. No candy, which was in the display cases, was stolen. Seattle Police responded about 7:00 am. The shop did not have an alarm system.
During September, burglaries in Madison Valley dropped to nine from their August level of fourteen, but because the levels of other kinds of crime remained roughly the same, the overall number of police reports dipped only slightly to 49. Car prowl theft returned to the Arboretum in September and accounted for about a third of the Madison Valley reports of that crime.
As was true in August, the police have not posted descriptions of several of the nine September burglaries. Also, there was an interesting incident at the Safeway store in which a shoplifting incident turned out to be a burglary.
1. On Sept. 1 there was a unforced-entry burglary at a home on 24th near Howell.
2. On Sept. 4 at about 9:50 AM police were called to a home on 26th Ave. near Howell to investigate an attempted burglary that had just occurred. When they arrived, a resident told the police that she had been sleeping but was awakened when she heard her bedroom door open. When the intruder entered her bedroom she yelled at him, at which point he left the room, ran out of the house, and ran northward in the alley west of the house. Another resident was on the second floor when this occurred and gave chase to the intruder but was unable to find him. The burglar apparently took nothing from the home before running away, and police were unable to find suspects in the neighborhood.
3. On Sept. 8 a forced-entry burglary occurred at home on 29th Ave. near Pine.
4. During the morning of Sept. 11 a burglar used a ladder stored behind a residence on Pike near 25th to remove an air conditioner from a bedroom window. The burglar then stole jewelry, bicycles, computers and a handgun, in total worth approximately $17,000, from the home. Police found no usable fingerprints at the scene.
5. On Sept 14 an unforced-entry burglary occurred at a home on 30th Ave. near Howell.
6. On Sept. 23 police were called to a residence on 31st Ave. E. near John to investigate a burglary that had taken place during the previous weekend while the resident was away from home. When she returned, the resident noticed that items in her home had been moved during her absence, and she subsequently discovered that six coats, worth approximately $800, were missing. The resident told police that she suspects that her son, who has a drug problem and a key to her home, was the burglar.
7. Sometime during the night of Sept. 23-24 a burglar entered an unlocked garage on the alley between 29th and 30th near Pike and stole tools and bicycles worth approximately $2400. No usable fingerprints were found on the door through which the burglar entered the garage.
8. During the morning of Sept. 24 police were called to an apartment building on 24th Ave. E. near Denny to investigate the burglary of a storage unit in a secured area of the building. The burglar pried open the door of the storage unit and removed items from it. The person who rents the storage unit is on a long trip out of the country, however, so the police and other residents were unable to determine what had been taken. Police found no fingerprints.
9. On Sept. 25 at 9 PM police were called to the Safeway store on Madison and 22nd to deal with two shoplifters who had just been apprehended by store employees after attempting to steal merchandise. One of the shoplifters was known by the “loss prevention officer” at the store to have been arrested for shoplifting at other stores and, as a result, to have been banned from entering any Safeway store in the Puget Sound area. As a result, that shoplifter was arrested for burglary. The other shoplifter received a trespassing warning.
There were two robbery reports during September, one of which appears to involve extreme action on the part of an apartment owner/manager.
1. On Sept. 17 just before 8 PM a robber, described only as a black male, assaulted another man at 22nd and Union and took his shoes and cell phone. The robbery was witnessed by plain cloths detectives who reported the robbery to police headquarters. The robber fled before a squad car arrived and apparently no one noticed which way they fled. The victim told the uniformed policeman that he did not know the robber, but refused to answer any other questions. The victim then left the scene apparently unhurt.
2. On Sept. 23 at around 8:30 PM police were called to an address on 25th near Howell to investigate a fight involving several people. When the police arrived they located a man at 24th and Howell who told them that he had been the victim of a home invasion. The victim told the police that he was living in an apartment on 25th near Howell, but two days earlier had been notified by his landlord that he had to vacate it. He was still in the apartment on Sept. 23 when two men and a woman, apparently relatives of the owner or manager of the apartment, came to his door and demanded that he leave the apartment and turn over the keys. When he refused, the males broke a window and came into the apartment armed with a metal baseball bat, at which time the victim fled. The males gave chase and caught up with him at 24th and Howell where they started beating him with the baseball bat. They then forced the victim to give them his pants, which contained the keys to the apartment, and then left to go back to the apartment. After hearing the victim's story, which was corroborated by a witness who at the time was returning home from the nearby YMCA, the police went to the apartment and found the victim's pants but no one in the apartment. The victim was then taken to Harborview for treatment of his injuries.
There were 52 incidents in Madison Valley reported to the police during August, an increase over the July total of 40 that was largely due to a spike of 14 residential burglaries. For unknown reasons, however, the police have not posted descriptions that go beyond their dates and locations for a majority of these burglaries. This is also true for the single robbery reported in August. Vehicle and car prowl thefts remained at “normal” levels even though there were no car prowls reported in the Arboretum.
1. On Aug. 3 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on 25th near Howell.
2. On Aug. 4 at 3 PM a resident of a home on 23rd near Roy heard banging noises on the north side of his house while he was in an upstairs room. After crossing to the side of the house where the noises came from, he leaned out of a window and asked the person attempting to enter his home whether he “needed any help,” at which point the would be burglar briefly hesitated, then left through the back yard and ran south down the alley. Police were unable to find usable fingerprints in the vicinity of the door that the burglar was trying to force open and were unable to find the suspect during a search of the area.
3. On Aug. 4 there was another forced entry burglary at a residence on 21st near Mercer.
4. Also on Aug. 4, a resident of a home on E. John near MLK who was working at home found a stranger in his kitchen at around 4 PM. The burglar, described as a black male in his late teens or early twenties, ran from the home through an unlocked side door after the resident yelled at him. After a short chase the resident lost sight of the burglar, who hadn't had time to steal anything.
5. On Aug. 10 a resident of a home on 22nd near near Pine reported to police that while he had been away during the day someone had broken into a small studio building in his back yard and stolen a laptop computer. The police believe that the burglar was wearing gloves because no fingerprints were found around the window that the burglar opened to gain entry.
6. Sometime between 8 and 10 AM on August 11 a burglar entered a home on Valley near 28th and stole two iPads, two laptop computers and a desktop computer. The police concluded that the burglar wore gloves because disturbed areas in the home did not yield fingerprints. The burglar apparently left through the front door because it was unlocked when the resident returned home but was locked when she left earlier in the morning.
7. On Aug. 13 there was a forced entry residential burglary on E. 26th near John.
8. On Aug. 14 police were called to a residence on 32nd near Union to investigate a burglary that had taken place during the previous night or early morning. The burglar, who apparently entered a garage while it was unlocked, stole two bicycles worth approximately $1400. Police were unable to find fingerprints at the scene.
9 & 10. Also on Aug 14 there was a forced entry residential burglary on Union near MLK and another on Mercer near 25th.
11. On Aug. 22 police were called to a condo on 25th near Denny by residents who reported that sometime while they were away between 4 PM and 11 PM a burglar had smashed open a window of their residence and stolen items valued at approximately $5400.
12. On Aug. 25 there was a unforced-entry residential burglary on Madison near 24th.
13. On Aug. 26 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on Madison near 29th.
14. On Aug. 28 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on Howell near MLK.
Finally, on Aug. 8 at little after noon there was a robbery on Madison near 23rd.
Please plan to attend the next EastPAC meeting, this Thursday, September 24th.
We will expand existing and develop new actionable plans on how to respond to the increase in shootings and shots fired calls. Your attendance is important; As the weather cools, we expect to see a downturn in incidents, but if we we lose our focus, we will be back to square one in the spring.
Additionally, we will have a SeaStat update, identifying trends in our community, how we compare to the rest of Seattle and how the police department is responding to those trends and our concerns. We will hear about some recent positive developments related to the increase in gun violence.
When: September 24th, 2015, 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Where: Seattle University, Chardin Hall, room 142, 1020 East Jefferson
Driven by a substantial drop in car prowls and auto thefts, the number of crimes reported to police in Madison Valley dropped to a level (40 incidents) similar to the early months of 2015. There were six burglaries, however, which is a common monthly total.
1. Sometime between the afternoon of July 2 and the morning of July 3 a burglar entered a home on 30th near Henderson that is being remodeled. The burglar stole tools worth approximately $4000, but left no fingerprints.
2. During the night of July 12 – 13 a burglar entered an apartment on Union near 27th by breaking a window near the front door of the unit. The burglar stole computer equipment worth approximately $3000, motorcycle clothing, and jewelry of undetermined value. Police found no fingerprints.
3. On July 15 at 9:15 AM police were notified that an alarm had been tripped at a home on E. Galer near 25th. When they arrived at the scene, a resident told them that nothing had been taken, but that a screen had been removed from a window. The burglar apparently was frightened away when the alarm sounded. The police found no fingerprints in the vicinity of the window.
4. On July 17 between 11 AM and 1 PM someone entered a home on 30th near Olive through an unlocked back window. The burglar stole an iPhone, approximately $500 in cash, and other items. The police found fingerprints around the window through which the burglar entered.
5. Sometime between July 15 and July 19 while the residents were away from home, a burglar smashed open a window of a home on E. Aloha near 20th and stole approximately $3000 worth of computer equipment, wallets and handbags, personal identification documents, and skiing equipment. The burglar left via the back door of the home and the police found fingerprints on the door handle.
6. Around midnight on July 21 there was a non-forcible entry burglary at an address on 25th near Howell, but the police have not posted a description of it.
Finally, there was a robbery on the edge of Madison Valley during July.
On July 11 at about 8 PM police received a report of a robbery that had just occurred on Union near 25th. The victim, who was taken to Swedish Hospital, told the officers that she had been walking along Union when a black male, about 5' 8” tall, 30 years old and with a possible limp, passed her on the sidewalk and then turned around and pepper sprayed her in the face. He then grabbed her smart phone from her hand and fled west on Union. Police subsequently searched the area of the robbery but found no suspects.
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After three months of substantially fewer Madison Valley incidents being reported to the police, June saw a return to a more typical number, 56. The increase over May’s total of 43 incidents was due to increases in car prowls and vehicle thefts, which grew from 16 to 25, and burglaries, which grew from 3 to 7 incidents.
1. On June 2 at 8 PM police were called to investigate a burglary that occurred sometime earlier in the day at an apartment on 21st Ave. E near John. The burglar unlocked the front door by removing the screen of an adjacent window that had been left open for ventilation, and then ransacked several drawers in the apartment, taking a laptop and other items not enumerated in the police report.
2. Sometime between 8 AM and 1 PM on June 5 a bicycle worth $1000 was stolen from the fenced patio of an apartment on 24th Ave. near Howell. The burglar apparently jumped over the patio fence and removed the unsecured bicycle from a hook outside the apartment.
3. On June 9 there was a forced-entry burglary at a residence on 25th Ave. near Union, but the police have not released a description of this incident.
4. Sometime during the afternoon of June 10 a burglar entered a residence on Pine near 26th by climbing through a window that had been left open because of the heat. When the residents returned around 5 PM, they noticed that their indoor cat was outside the house and found that their laptops and other computer equipment had been taken. Although other valuable items were not taken by the burglar, the items stolen were worth approximately $2500.
5. On June 20 at 3:08 AM a burglar tripped an alarm at a restaurant on Madison near 28th by throwing a rock through the glass of a French door at the rear of the restaurant. When the police arrived they found nothing amiss other than the damaged door, and an employee subsequently failed to find that anything valuable was missing.
6. On June 22 at around 10:30 PM police were called to a residence on 26th Ave. E near John to investigate an attempted burglary. The burglar broke a window of the home, but found that it was too small to permit entry. The burglar then attempted to enter a nearby residence, but only succeeded in breaking a crank on a window he hoped to open.
7. On June 29th in the late afternoon police were called to a home on 25th near Olive to investigate a burglary that occurred earlier that day. The residents reported that although they had locked the doors to the house when they left in the morning, someone had entered through an unlocked window on the second floor and stolen a laptop worth approximately $1600.
8. Finally, on June 23rd, around 1 AM an armed robbery occurred on 19th Ave. E near Republican St. A woman who was out walking at that time was accosted by a robber described as a white or hispanic male about 5’ 6” tall and wearing a black hoodie. The robber threatened her with a handgun and told her to give him her purse. After giving him her purse, the victim asked the robber to allow her to keep her phone. The robber did so, and after he left the victim called the police. During a search of the area the police found the black hoodie.
There were 43 incidents reported to the police in Madison Valley during May, up from April but still substantially lower than the months in late 2014 and early 2015. Most of the increase over April was due to a rebound in car prowl theft and vehicle theft to more typical levels (16 incidents in May compared to 5 in April). There were three burglaries, a robbery, and an assault against a policeman during May.
1. During the afternoon of May 23rd there was forcible-entry burglary at a residence on 22nd Ave. E. near John, but the police have not posted a description of that incident.
2. On May 31 at about 7:45 PM police responded to a call reporting a non-forcible entry burglary at a residence on 23rd near Pine. The victims reported that the burglar had entered the residence sometime earlier in the day and stolen an iPad, a laptop, a backpack and a box containing items worth approximately $50. The police report does not mention whether the officers sought fingerprints at the scene.
3. During the night of May 31 – June 1 a burglar gained entry to a business on Madison near 28th without using forcible means. The burglar stole a cash register containing about $200 in cash, a cash bag containing about $160, an iPad, and the hard disk of the business's security system. The police report suggests that the burglary may have been an inside job, and learned from the business owner that he had dismissed an employee a couple of months earlier for theft.
4. On May 5 at about around noon police were called to the Post Office at 23rd and Union to deal with a disturbance caused by a heavily intoxicated man. After the police decided to arrest him for trespassing, they handcuffed him and started to pat him down, at which point the man head-butted one of the officers in the face. When the police were putting him into a patrol car to take him away, the man assaulted the officer again. The police report states that the man kicked at the door and roof of the patrol car as he was being taken to the East Precinct Police Station.
5. On May 30 at about 1:30 AM a cab driver called 911 to report that he had been robbed. Earlier he picked up a couple who were intoxicated at a bar and took them to the corner of 21st and Olive. When the couple left the cab without paying the $10 charge, the driver asked them to pay but the male told him to “go home” and threatened to kill him. After arriving at the scene the police searched for the couple but were unable to find them.
There were 31 incidents reported to the police in Madison Valley during April, substantially lower than March, and only about half the monthly average reported in the several months before March. There were relatively few car prowls and vehicle thefts during April, but other frequent types of crime such as property damage/graffiti and theft were also rare. However, there were four burglaries during April, and a strong arm robbery.
1. On Tuesday, April 7 at 6:40 AM police responded to reports of an alarm sounding at marijuana distribution outlet on Madison near 23rd. When they arrived, they found that a glass panel in the front door of the business had been smashed open and that a burglar had entered the business through it. The police could not determine whether anything had been taken, although they did find a marijuana food item on the floor inside the front door. The owner of the business later reported that he had viewed a video recording of the burglary and that the burglar, whom he described as a male wearing a bandanna and a hoodie, had taken only one food item before leaving. The burglar left no fingerprints.
2. On Thursday, April 9 at about 4:30 PM residents of an apartment on Madison near 29th called police to report a burglary that had occurred sometime earlier that day. The burglar(s) kicked open the front door of the apartment and and searched both floors of the apartment, greatly upsetting the apartment’s canine resident in the process. Items worth approximately $2500 were stolen, including credit cards in a backpack left in an office near the front door. Neighbors did not report hearing the break in, but police found possible fingerprints in an upstairs bedroom.
3. Sometime during the night of April 22–23, a burglar gained entry to a business on Madison near 28th by prying open a key lock-box. The burglar stole approximately $500 from a cash drawer, a laptop computer, and five women’s workout shirts from the business’s retail display area. Police found fingerprints at the scene, and the owners of the shop have given the police names of possible perpetrators.
4. On Thursday, April 23 between noon and 12:30 someone kicked in the front door of a residence on John St. near MLK. When one of the residents returned home and saw the door, she called the police. The residents searched the home and found that a few items had been stolen, but what the items were and their value are not given in the police report. Police did not find fingerprints in the home.
Finally, on Monday, April 20 a resident of a building on 23rd near Denny called police around 5:45 PM to report that she had just been a victim of a strong arm robbery. The woman had parked her car on the P1 level of the building’s parking garage and hurried into the room outside an elevator when she saw her assailant, who was emerging from the stairway from the P2 level of the garage, notice her purse and start walking toward her. The robber was able to get through the door between the elevator room and the parking garage, however, and proceeded to shove her into a corner and demand that she hand over her belongings. The woman tried to fight off the robber, but he took her purse and fled into the stairway outside the elevator room. The woman’s purse contained her passport, credit cards, and a laptop worth approximately $650. There is a security camera in the elevator room where the robbery took place, and the manager of the building told the police that a tape of the robbery would be available on April 21.
On Tuesday, May 13 at 2:30 PM three female residents and volunteers working in the Harrison Ridge Greenbelt were assaulted by stranger. He approached smiling with a friendly greeting. Suddenly, he looked enraged and struck one of us with two fists on the side of the head, knocking her to the ground. He looked at the two standing gardeners with malice and raised fists but abruptly turned and walked away.
He was a white male, mid 30’s and a bit unkempt.
Medics and police were summoned by 911. They both arrived promptly, were efficient and kind. The injured woman was treated at the scene and released home.
With our description, the police were able to locate and apprehend the man within the hour. We identified him and he was arrested.
The Parks Dept. and the police will sweep the Greenbelt on Thursday, May 15 to search for any sign of an encampment. We don’t expect anything but are using all caution to ensure our safety.
We cannot praise the fire fighters/ medics or police enough. They were truly wonderful.
Although our community is very safe, occasionally an incident such as this one will happen. This post is to remind everyone to use good judgment and safety awareness while out and about.
Police received reports of 46 incidents in Madison Valley during March, about 25 percent fewer than had been reported in recent months. This drop was largely due to a drop in reported car prowls and vehicle thefts, which had been averaging around 27 incidents per month but dropped to 15 during March. In contrast, the number of burglaries during March was similar to the numbers in previous months.
1. On Friday, March 6 someone entered an unlocked residence on 30th Ave. near Pike during the daytime while its residents were away. The burglar apparently entered and left through the front door and took approximately $2000 worth of computer and entertainment equipment. Next door neighbors did not notice anything suspicious during the day and the police were unable to find any place in the residence where usable fingerprints might be taken.
2. On Tuesday, March 10 police were called to a commercial building on Madison near 31st by an occupant who noticed while opening for the day that a ground floor window had been smashed open during the night. The burglar searched through the office containing the smashed window, but ignored various valuable items and apparently took only a box of chocolates worth approximately $25. The police found no fingerprints in the office and there was no evidence that the burglar had entered other offices in the building.
3. On Friday, March 13 police were called to an apartment building on E 23rd Ave. near Aloha by residents who reported that someone had stolen a TV from their apartment sometime between midnight and 3:30 AM while they away from home. There were two guests sleeping in the apartment during the burglary, but neither were awakened by the burglar(s). The police report notes that the apartment was unlocked during the burglary, and that they found no usable fingerprints at the scene.
4. On Friday, March 20 police were notified about an attempted forcible-entry burglary at a specialty store on Madison near 27th that occurred at about 2 AM that morning. Although the burglary was unsuccessful, the police have not subsequently given a detailed description of the incident.
5. On Sunday, March 22 at about 6 AM police were called to a commercial building on Madison near 31st to investigate a possible burglary there. Police found that the the building’s emergency fire exit was unlocked and ajar, and that someone had forced open a door leading from the fire exit to a group of offices on the second floor of the building. The burglar then broke down the door to one of the offices on the second floor and proceeded to rummage through the office. Police found an empty beer carton in the office and an two empty hard apple cider bottles, but at the time the police report was filed it was not clear that anything had been stolen. The cider bottles and some tools presumably used in breaking into the office were submitted to the police lab to determine if they had usable fingerprints.
6. On Monday, March 25 at approximately 11 AM a burglar broke into a residence on 20th Ave. E. near Prospect by smashing a patio door at the rear of the home. Smashing the door apparently set off an alarm, which police responded to, but because the address associated with the alarm was incorrect, the police were unable to follow up. Later a neighbor phoned and told the police that an alarm had been ringing for some time and gave the police the correct address. When the police arrived at about 12:30 the owner showed them that the burglar had taken a large amount of jewelry and an iPad from the bedroom, but had ignored valuables in other rooms of the house. Although the owner didn’t have specific information about the value of the items taken, he estimated that it could be around $10,000 - $12,000. Police found no fingerprints.
Finally, on Tuesday, March 10 police were called to a store on Union near 24th by a worker who reported that a robber had entered the store, told her that he had a gun, and that she should give him all of the cash in the store, which amounted to about $200. After a description of the robber had been broadcast to police units in the vicinity, police found a person fitting that description at 24th and Cherry and detained him. When the witness identified him as the robber, the police searched him and found approximately $200 in cash. After being interviewed by the Robbery Unit, the suspect was booked into the King County Jail.
To the East Precinct Community:
Many of you have heard of Chief O’Toole’s unfortunate decision to transfer our outstanding East Precinct Captain Pierre Davis to the Southwest Precinct. In my many years of volunteering in community-police partnership initiatives, I have not experienced another commander that is such a good fit for our community as is Captain Pierre Davis. Pierre works very well with everyone, he has brought much added value to our community. After four transfers of Captains in the recent past, we were hoping that we would not be subject to yet another transfer.
Below is an excerpt of the several emails and letters I wrote to Chief O’Toole, Deputy Chief Best, and Assistant Chief Wilske to encourage them not to transfer Capt. Davis:
“A multitude of long-term, ongoing problems have been resolved under Captain Davis’ watch:
“Successfully negotiating a safety plan with the owner of the Midtown property on 23rd and Union to mitigate criminal activity.
“Successfully influencing Waid’s nightclub to surrender their liquor license after years of late night noise, shootings, drug dealing and other criminal activities, forcing the neighbors to sell and abandon their homes.
“Successfully serving warrants on the house at 27th and Spring, the location of nearly 20 years of drive-by shootings, drug dealing and other serious criminal activity that has been a source of fear and worry to the neighborhood.
“Successfully working with and gaining the trust of the Pike/Pine nightclub community to implement a safety plan that is ongoing and will reduce strong armed robberies and hate crimes.
“Pierre grew up in the Central Area, knows our community and works well with our diverse citizens. People trust him. We are experiencing difficult times in the East Precinct, for example, racial and cultural inequity, hate crimes against LGBTQ citizens, biased policing, sky-high rents and ongoing gun violence. Criminal activity requires tough police response, other issues such as racism, classism, poverty, and substance abuse issues need a leader with diplomacy, sensitivity, and understanding of the root cause of these individuals’ behavior.
“Captain Pierre Davis has been outstanding in demonstrating all of these requirements. The East Precinct has had far too many command staff changes before Captain Davis arrived 13 months ago.
“That said, I hope to continue to volunteer in police-community partnerships and strongly believe you will keep Captain Davis in our East Precinct. Thank you in advance for your support!”
Sadly, I wasn’t successful in persuading the SPD Command Staff to respond to our community wishes to keep Captain Davis.
If you would like to comment on Captain Davis, please email:
[Editor’s Note] We contacted Chief O’Toole about the reason for the transfer. While expressing personal and professional support for Captain Davis, she cited “complicated HR and legal issues” that could not be discussed publicly. “Please know that I agonize over difficult decisions like this,” O’Toole wrote, “but feel I made the right one after weighing all the factors. I know Chief Wilske is making every effort to make the transition as smooth as possible. We really want to bring continuity to precinct leadership throughout the City.”
The author is the Chair of the East Precinct Advisory Council
There were 60 Madison Valley incidents reported to the police during February, almost the same as the number for January (58 incidents). As usual, car-prowl theft and vehicular theft (26 incidents) constituted the largest category of the reports, but property damage/graffiti reports (9 incidents) maintained their spot in second place. There were also 6 burglaries reported during February.
1. On Monday, Feb. 9, sometime between 8 AM and 7:45 PM a burglar entered a home on 26th Ave. E. between Madison and Mercer by smashing a patio door at the back of the house. The burglar then ransacked the house, taking a laptop, change from a change container, a black hoodie and, presumably, other items that are not listed in the police report. Although the residents were away, a large and protective dog was in a kennel in the home at the time, but its presence apparently did not hinder the burglar. The police found fingerprints at the scene.
2. On Wednesday, Feb. 11, there was a non-forcible entry burglary at a residence on 19th near Denny, but the police have not filed a detailed description of the incident.
3. On Friday, Feb. 13 at around 3 AM police were called to a residence on 25th between Olive and Howell to investigate a burglary that had occurred sometime after noon on Feb. 12. After searching to make sure that no one was present in the residence, the police and the victim found that a burglar had gained entry by smashing open a sliding glass door at the back of the building. The police report states that approximately $2600 worth of property was stolen, and that the police found fingerprints.
4. On Saturday, Feb. 14 a resident of an apartment building on 21st near Madison called police to report an attempted burglary of his unit. At around 9:00 AM that day a resident of a neighboring apartment observed a white male and white female attempting to force open a door connecting the the victim’s apartment to the apartment building’s laundry room. The witness recognized the woman as another resident in the building and asked them what they were doing. After the male told her that they were not trying to break into the victim’s apartment, the witness told them that they had better leave and informed the owner of the apartment they were trying to break into, who then called the police. The witness told police that the woman involved in the burglary and her associates were known drug users and “tweakers,” and that there was a lot of traffic in and out of the woman’s apartment. No one answered when the police went to the woman’s apartment to see if she was present.
5. On Saturday, Feb. 14, at approximately 2 PM a resident of a home on Pine near MLK heard a loud noise while showering in an upstairs bathroom. He quickly ran downstairs, found that a dining room window had been smashed, observed a white male dressed in a black hoodie and wearing a black knit cap and a backpack running out of his yard, and then called the police. Shortly after they arrived, the police noticed a person fitting the description on the corner of Union and MLK and detained him. After he was positively identified by the resident as the person whom he had seen running from his yard, the police booked the suspect into the King County Jail.
6. Sometime during the night of Feb. 17–18 someone broke into an apartment building on 23rd near Howell and then stole a bicycle from the building’s bike room. The apartment building is a new one and has video cameras, but whether the cameras were functional at the time of the burglary is unknown.
There were also a completed and an attempted robbery during February.
1. On Tuesday, February 10 at around 9:45 PM a robber with a semiautomatic handgun passed a note to an employee of a specialty store on Madison near 23rd threatening to shoot her in the face if she did not let him into the store. After she let him in, he stole approximately $11,000 worth of merchandise and cash and fled east on Madison. The robber, who apparently lives in Auburn, is known to employees at the store and the robbery was captured on video surveillance cameras. Although the police were unable to locate the robber at the time, it seems likely that he will be apprehended.
2. On Saturday, Feb. 28 at around 9:30 PM a man entered a fast food establishment on Madison near 22nd and told the worker on duty that he was homeless. Apparently homeless people frequently come to the restaurant in the hope of earning money doing odd jobs. In this case, however, the man tried to take the restaurant’s tip jar, but was prevented from doing so by the worker, who told him that she had a knife behind the counter. The man then told her that he could still harm her and that he knew that she was alone in the restaurant. The worker then picked up a phone and told the man that she was calling 911, at which point the man left the restaurant and fled west on Madison. Although the police were unable to locate the would be robber after they arrived, good quality pictures of the robber were recorded by the restaurant’s video cameras.
There were 58 Madison Valley incidents reported to the police during January 2015, almost the same as the number for January 2014 (60 incidents). As usual, car-prowl theft and vehicular theft (28 incidents) constituted the largest category of the reports, but there was also a spike in property damage/graffiti reports (9 incidents). There were also 6 burglaries reported during January.
1. On Jan. 9, police were called to a home on 30th Ave. near Denny to investigate a burglary that had occurred earlier that day. The burglar entered by smashing a window and then stole approximately $4000 worth of items, including a tablet computer and video gaming equipment. The resident who notified the police told them that she suspected that a neighbor, who had previously burglarized the home, was responsible and that she might have evidence from surveillance cameras in the home. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
2. Also on Jan. 9 someone entered a residence on 23rd Ave. near Olive through an unsecured garage and took a bag containing electronic equipment, including a laptop, from an upper story bedroom. No fingerprints were found at the scene.
3. On Jan. 12, sometime between 11 AM and 9 PM, a burglar broke into a residence on Madison between 26th and 27th by breaking a ground floor sliding glass door. The burglar stole $80 in cash and an unspecified number of laptops. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
4. Also on Jan. 12 the owner of a business on Mercer near 19th called police to report that a burglar forced open a window of his business and had stolen computer equipment worth approximately $3600. Police found possible fingerprints on the window.
5. During the afternoon or evening of Jan. 18 someone smashed open the bedroom window of an apartment on 27th near Pine. When the tenant returned to the apartment at around 10 PM, she found the smashed window and some damage to a wall. However, she could find no evidence that the burglar had searched her apartment or that anything had been taken from it. The police were unable to find fingerprints.
6. Sometime during January there was apparently a burglary at a location on John St. near 20th Ave. E., but the police have given no other information about it.
Finally, two robberies were reported during January, but the police have released no information about either of them beyond when and where they occurred. The first was at a location on 22nd Ave near Denny at 11 P. M. on Jan. 23, and the second was on John St. near 29th Ave. E. on Jan. 31 around noon.
There was a Madison Valley burglary about once a week during 2014, but the burglary rate varied greatly during the year.
Forty seven residential burglaries in Madison Valley were reported to the police during 2014. As a rate, this is slightly less than one per week and 3.9 per month. However, there was great variation around this overall rate. For example, February, April and August each had only one residential burglary, while there were eight in May and nine in November. During 2014 there was no clear seasonality in burglaries; high burglary months were preceded and followed by low to medium burglary months.
The Madison Valley burglary rate for 2014 was about the same as it was in 2013.
For the ten months that I covered Madison Valley police reports in 2013 there were 37 residential burglaries, a rate of 3.7 per month. Thus, the rate for 2014 was probably not much different than it was in 2013.
What was the likelihood that a household was burglarized during 2014?
In principle, one could easily calculate the likelihood that a Madison Valley residence was burglarized during 2014 by dividing 47 by the number of households in Madison Valley. However because the area we think of as Madison Valley encompasses parts of several census tracts, I cannot determine the number of households in our area. I therefore examined only the data for King County census tract number 77, which comprises the heart of Madison Valley (with approximate boundaries of Roy and Union on the north and south and 23rd and 31st on the west and east). According to the 2010 Census and recent American Community Survey figures, there are roughly 2100 households in Census Tract 77, and during 2014 there were 29 residential burglaries in that tract. So the likelihood that an individual household in Tract 77 was burglarized in 2014 was approximately 1.4 percent (29/2100), or about 1 out of 72.
Only about half of the 2014 residential burglaries involved forcible entry.
Of the 47 residential burglaries during 2014, just under half (47 percent) involved forcible entry. Thus, in slightly more than half of the reported burglaries the burglar(s) entered through an unlocked door, window, or garage. This suggests that many 2014 residential burglaries in our area were opportunistic rather than planned. If so, the 2014 residential burglary rate would have been substantially lower if people had been more careful in keeping their residences securely locked when they were absent.
Are some parts of Madison Valley more prone to residential burglary than others?
The accompanying map shows the approximate locations of the residential burglaries during 2014, indicating whether each was a forcible-entry burglary (red) or not (green). There appears to be no clear difference between forcible entry and non-forcible entry burglaries as far as their spatial distributions are concerned, and both appear to be more frequent south of E. Madison than north of it. However, the greater burglary prevalence south of Madison during 2014 may be due to higher residential densities or to random variation rather than to any greater likelihood that an individual household will be burglarized there. Determining which of these alternatives is correct will require more time and more detailed data than those currently available.
During December Madison Valley was the scene of 64 incidents reported to the police, down slightly from November’s total but still well above the monthly average for 2014. Thirty of the incidents were car-prowl thefts, almost double the November total, but no vehicle thefts were reported. The police reports give descriptions of six burglaries during December.
1. On Dec. 1 at around 2 PM a burglar set off an alarm in a home on Harrison near 31st by smashing a window in the front door and unlocking the door. When the owner returned home around 3 PM she found that the burglar had taken a laptop from an office in the residence and a pile of change from a bedroom. She also found that the burglar had left a half-full can of Coca Cola, which the police took in evidence to search for possible fingerprints.
2. On Dec. 11 at 1:30 AM two burglars attempted to enter a specialty store on Union near 24th by smashing open a glass pane in the business’s front door. When they smashed the glass they set off an alarm and video cameras, causing the burglars to flee the scene. The video recording was not good enough to yield descriptions of the burglars, however, and the police K-9 unit was unable to locate any suspects.
3. During the night of Dec. 17-18 someone gained entry to offices in a commercial building on Madison near MLK and stole video equipment worth $500. Because there were no indications of forced entry, the police believe that the burglar(s) had keys to the building. When the business owner tried to notify the police of the burglary on Dec. 18, she was told that the police department’s call load was high and asked to call again on the 19th. When the police arrived to investigate on the 19th, they decided not to look for fingerprints because there were no printable surfaces in the vicinity of the missing equipment and because too much time had elapsed since the burglary.
4. At around 5 PM on Dec. 20, a burglar set off an alarm in a residence on Republican near 30th Ave. E. by kicking in the back door. When the owners returned about an hour later, they found that many lights had been turned on and that many drawers in their residence had been opened. The burglar stole camera equipment and jewelry worth approximately $4700. Police found no fingerprints in the home.
5. A woman called the police on Dec. 26 to report that in the previous few days there had been a forcible-entry burglary at her father’s residence on 23rd near Howell. The burglar(s) smashed open a window on the first floor of the home and then searched for valuables. Because the father was away on vacation, the daughter was unable to specify exactly what had been taken, but police were able to recover fingerprints on a jewelry box.
6. On Dec. 29 at 10:30 PM police responded to a report of a burglary at a residence on 26th near Pine. When they arrived the victim told them that upon arriving home about an hour earlier the back door was open and that it appeared someone had broken into the house through a window on the first floor. The police report states that the burglar(s) stole close to $12,000 worth of property, but does not give details about what was stolen.
Police also received reports of one robbery and one aggravated assault during December.
1. A woman called 911 around 9:30 AM on Dec. 3 to report that she had been punched in the face by an acquaintance who had taken her ID and a credit card. When the police arrived she told them that she and the acquaintance had shared a bottle of vodka during the night in a residence on 19th near Thomas, but that around 7:30 in the morning she discovered that her cards were missing. When she accused the acquaintance of taking them, he punched her twice in the face and left the residence where they had spent the night drinking. After following him to his car and threatening to call the police, the victim returned to the residence and fell asleep. When she woke, she called to determine the balance on the credit card and found that $300 had been spent that morning, whereupon she called 911. The victim told the police that she only knew the robber’s first name and that he lives somewhere in Federal Way.
2. Around 9:30 AM on Dec. 5 two men who were playing ping pong at a location on 19th near John started fighting during their match. The Fire Department medical unit was called and when it arrived the men told told a story about having fallen down during the match. When the police arrived, however, they admitted that they had had a fight. Both suffered injuries and one was taken to Swedish Hospital. Although there were no witnesses to the altercation, staff at the facility where they were playing reported that the two frequently argued during their ping pong games, but that their arguments had not previously escalated into fighting.
Additional information can be found at the SPD’s police reports website.
There were 69 Madison Valley incidents reported to the police in November, substantially higher than monthly average for the year so far. Car prowl and vehicle thefts were once again the most numerous kind of incident and increased a bit compared to previous months, but burglaries, with twelve reports during November, showed the biggest jump in prevalence.
1. During the night of Nov. 9–10 someone smashed in the glass front door of a business on Union near 20th and stole approximately $600 in cash and computer equipment. Although there are surveillance cameras on the building, the business owner did not know whether they were functioning at the time of the burglary. No fingerprints were found at the scene.
2. While investigating the above burglary during the morning of Nov. 10, police discovered that there had been another forcible-entry burglary during the previous night at a specialty store on Union near 24th. The burglar apparently took only a tablet computer, and no fingerprints were found.
3. Police were called on Nov. 10th to investigate a burglary on 29th Ave. E. near Denny that occurred during the late afternoon of that day. The burglar apparently broke into the house via a window or door in the basement and then stole $400 worth of items, including jewelry and a watch.
4. Also on Nov. 10, and at about the same time, a burglar entered a residence on 24th near Union by forcing open a rear window. The burglar stole $500 worth of digital devices, tip money and 1/8 oz. of marijuana, but left no fingerprints.
5. On Nov. 13 police were called to a residence in the 2900 block of E. Madison to investigate a burglary that occurred sometime between 11 AM and 11:45 PM that day. The burglar apparently entered through an unlocked kitchen window and then stole approximately $1700 worth of property. Police found no fingerprints at the scene.
6. Sometime between 7PM and 9PM on Nov. 14 a burglar gained entry to a home on Roy St. near 26th by unfastening the screws holding the mail slot in place and then reaching inside to unlock the deadbolt of the adjacent door. The police report does not list the items stolen, which had an approximate value of $500, but does report that several stolen purses were recovered in a neighbor’s driveway, and that the neighbor also found a screwdriver and knife that the burglar apparently used in gaining access to the home. The police have submitted these tools to the Police Department’s Evidence Unit to search for possible fingerprints.
7. On Nov. 16 police were called to a townhouse on 24th near Union to investigate a possible burglary. The owner, who was out of the country, had asked a friend to periodically check the residence, and on the 16th the friend called the police when he found the home in disarray. The police found that an intruder had entered the home by smashing a sliding glass door in the rear of the building and also found evidence that the intruder had been living in the home for a while. Although the friend believed that the burglar had taken a flat screen TV from the home, he and the police were unable to determine if any thing else was missing, or indeed whether some of the items in the house belonged to the intruder. Police found fingerprints in the home and also interviewed neighbors, one of whom reported seeing an unfamiliar man leaving the area with a blue plastic bag earlier in the day.
8. On Nov. 17 two residents of a building on 21st near Denny reported that between Nov. 15 and 17 someone had broken into their storage closet at the front of the unit and stolen approximately $600 worth of camping equipment. The police found no fingerprints.
9. Also on Nov. 17 a burglar attempted to enter the same residence on 24th near Union that was burglarized on Nov. 10. The burglar attempted to pry open the same window used in the previous burglary, but failed to get it open. Although the burglar failed to gain entry, the police were able to find fingerprints and believe that the same person was involved in both incidents.
10. Sometime during the day on Nov. 17, a burglar pried open a bedroom window at the back of a residence on 32nd Ave. near Thomas and stole camera equipment and a gaming console. Although the home was occupied by a large dog, the burglar succeeded in confining the dog in the kitchen during the burglary.
11. On Nov. 23 residents who had been out of town over the weekend returned to their home on 27th near Howell around 11 PM to find the front door unlocked, kitchen cabinets open, and other signs that someone had been present while they were away. After calling the police and waiting until they determined that one else was present, the residents found that various items, including computer and entertainment equipment, liquor, cash, passports and cameras were missing. They also determined that the burglar had entered by forcing open a sliding glass door at the rear of the residence. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
12. There was a non-forcible entry burglary on Nov. 25 at a business on Madison near 31st St., but the police have not posted a detailed description of this event.
There was also one robbery and one attempted robbery during November.
1. On Nov. 9, at approximately 9:30 PM, a woman and two men approached a customer at a gas station at the corner of 23rd and Union and told him to hand over his car keys. After threatening the victim with a knife, one of the males punched the him in the shoulder, ripped his keys from his hand, and then used the keys to hit him in the eye. After they left with his keys, the victim tried to call 911 from a public phone at the gas station, but it was out of order. According to the victim, a clerk from the gas station then came outside but refused to call 911 and told him to leave the premises. After being taken home by an acquaintance, the victim went to Harborview Hospital the next morning because his eye was swollen shut. Unfortunately, the victim could not give a detailed description of his assailants. The manager of the gas station told the police that the station was monitored by a video camera, but was unable to give the police the video record. (It would seem that there is more to this incident than the information contained in the police report.)
2. On Nov. 14 an employee at the Safeway store at 22nd and Madison noticed a man, whom she had seen a few minutes earlier filling his shopping cart with laundry supplies, pass by the cash registers without paying and carrying a full backpack. When she followed and tried to grab his backpack, the man shoved her away and then attempted to punch her. Seeing the altercation, another employee rushed over and grabbed the backpack, which tore open and spilled out six bottles of laundry supplies. The shoplifter/robber then fled without the backpack and was last seen heading north on 19th Ave. Store surveillance cameras recorded the incident and on the basis of the camera footage and a name in a Bible that was also contained in the backpack, police have tentatively identified a suspect.
Additional information can be found at the SPD’s police reports website.
There were 46 incidents reported to the police in October, down a bit from September’s total of 50. As usual the single largest category was car prowl theft, with 14 reports, and there were three cases of vehicle theft and one license plate theft.
There were two robberies during October.
1. On Oct. 22 at around 1 PM, there was an armed robbery in the 1800 block of 23rd Ave. The police have not posted a detailed description of this incident.
2. On Oct. 27 shortly after 3 PM, a resident of an apartment building at 22nd and Madison was approached by a robber while in the secured parking area of the building. The robber demanded that she give him her money and grabbed her wallet from her hands. Finding that there was little money in the wallet, he then grabbed her iPhone and told her to give him its PIN number. The robber also grabbed at a package that the victim was carrying and then fled to an elevator at the NW corner of the garage. The victim ran to an elevator at the other side of the parking area and, upon reaching her apartment, called a friend who reported the incident to the police. While waiting for the police to arrive, the victim was able to trace the location of her iPhone first to the 400 block of 23rd Ave., and then to the corner of 14th and Yesler. The phone was later found at 14th and Yesler, but with a broken screen. Although there are several surveillance cameras in the parking area, they had been disabled because the building was being renovated.
Four burglaries were reported in October.
1. Police received a report of a non-forced entry burglary at a residence on Ward St. near 26th at 9 PM on Oct. 4. A detailed description of this incident is not available on the Police Reports website.
2. On Oct. 16 police were notified of a burglary at a residence on 19th near Harrison that occurred sometime between 7 AM and 4 PM that day. The burglar(s) rummaged through cabinets and drawers and stole jewelry, clothing and accessories, a laptop, and $400 in cash. The resident and the police were unable to determine how the burglar gained entry, but security cameras monitor the complex in which the residence is located.
3. On Oct. 22 sometime between 1 AM and 5 AM, a burglar broke into a restaurant near 24th and Union by smashing several windows. The burglar stole between $300 and $400 from a cash register in the restaurant, but the police were unable to find any fingerprints.
4. A resident of a ground-floor apartment on 23rd near Pine called the police on Oct. 12 to report that someone had stolen his TV and gaming equipment during the previous night. The burglar entered through an unlocked bedroom window. The police found no fingerprints at the scene.
Additional information can be found at the SPD’s police reports website.
There were 42 incidents reported to the police during August, down from the 56 incidents reported in July. Most of the difference between the two months stemmed from a decrease in vehicle-related crime reports; there were 19 such reports in August compared to 31 in July.
Two completed robberies and an attempted robbery were reported in August.
1. On Aug. 5 at about 2:30 AM a woman who was walking home near 27th and E. John was shoved from behind by someone who then ripped her backpack off her shoulder. The backpack contained her wallet, credit cards, iPhone, and house keys. The woman described the robber as a black male about 5' 8" tall. The police drove her home and made certain that there was no one in her residence.
2. On Aug. 13 at approximately 10:30 PM a woman who was sitting on a bench in Prentis Frazier Park was approached by two unknown males. One of them pointed a handgun at her and told her “give me you stuff.” The woman began to scream, and the robber told her to stop screaming or he would shoot her. After the woman gave the robbers her backpack and phone they fled south on 24th and about half a block away got into a dark 4-door sedan. The police were unable to find any sign of the vehicle during a search of the general area.
3. On Aug. 16 at around 1:30 AM two women who were walking home along 23rd near Union, noticed a white male dressed in a grey hoodie and wearing a bandana over his face approaching them from behind. As he drew near, the man pointed a gun at the women and said something they were unable to understand. Both women then sprinted north on 23 and soon arrived at their home, which is a short distance from 23rd and Union. Neither looked backward as they ran north, and the police were unable to find the gunman when they later searched the area.
There were two burglaries reported during August.
1. During the night of Aug. 2–3 someone kicked in the back door of a restaurant in the 2700 block of E. Madison and stole 15 bottles of wine from the bar display. The police found no fingerprints at the scene.
2. On Aug. 16 police were called to a residence near 25th and Denny at approximately 3 AM. There they found the caller in the back yard, and she reported that a little earlier a white male, about 5' 3", around 30 years old and with shoulder-length reddish blond hair entered her bedroom while she was unpacking clothes and made a lewd remark to her. She then ran outside the house and called the police. The intruder apparently left her residence without taking anything, and police were unable to find any one matching the description given by the woman during subsequent searches of the surrounding area.
There were 56 crimes in Madison Valley reported to the police during July. As has often been the case, vehicle-related incidents composed the majority of the crime reports: during July there were fifteen cases of vehicle theft, fifteen cases of car prowl theft, and one case of license plate theft.
There was one armed robbery and one aggravated assault during July.
On July 13 at around 3 AM a woman who had been dropped off by taxi near 20th and Madison was approached by two black males who demanded that she give them her purse and cell phone. At first she resisted but when one of the robbers pointed a handgun at her and grabbed her phone, she threw her purse at him and ran from the scene. The victim told the police that she did not notice anything distinctive about either of the robbers because the incident happened so quickly.
On July 30 police received a call reporting a prowler in the neighborhood of 31st and Madison. On arriving the police spotted the prowler and arrested him for trespassing. The police subsequently learned that previously that day a business owner in the neighborhood observed a man attempting to force an entry into his building. When the owner told him to leave the man refused and pulled a rock out of his pocket. Believing that he was going to be assaulted, the owner told the man that he was going to call the police, at which point the man left the scene. The police report notes that the prowler they arrested for trespassing matched the description of the person that the owner confronted earlier.
Finally, there was one attempted and one completed burglary reported during July.
On July 9 owners of a home on 20th Ave. near Pike who had had renters during the previous month returned to find that two laptops and a record collection were missing. The owners did not meet the renters, who live in a foreign country. The owners and the police were unable to determine whether the renters had taken the missing items, or whether someone had entered the house while no one was present. The owners estimated the stolen items to be worth approximately $1200.
On July 22 a resident on 25th Ave E near Helen St. observed a middle-aged male peering into his house. After observing him circle around his property in what appeared to be preparation for a break in, the resident shouted at him and then the suspect quickly walked away. The resident was able to take a picture of the suspect with his cell phone, however, and gave the picture to the police. The police were unable to obtain usable fingerprints at the scene.
There were 57 crimes in Madison Valley reported to the police during April. This was down a bit from March, but was still above the long-run average of about 35 cases per month. April also saw the first homicide since I started doing the monthly crime report in March 2013. Strangely, this homicide is not included among the crimes given in the police reports data even though it was widely reported in the local news media. At about 2:30 AM on April 19th police received numerous 911 calls reporting gunfire in the vicinity of 22nd and Union. When they arrived they found a victim who had been shot in the chest. The victim subsequently died after being taken to Harborview Medical Center. The victim was later identified as a 24-year-old with a lengthy criminal history and an affiliation with the Central District gang Deuce 8.
In addition to the homicide, on April 3 at noon there was a potentially violent altercation between two men at the bus stop at 19th and Thomas. A witness left the scene after notifying the police that one of the men had brandished a knife. When the police arrived the two men were still present and they reported that they had a long-standing feud with each other over a woman. The police took the instigator of the altercation into custody and later charged him with harassment.
There were five burglaries reported during April, only one of which was a residential burglary.
1. Sometime during the night of April 1st a burglar gained entry to a restaurant in the 3100 block of E. Madison by smashing a window in the front of the building. The burglar apparently cut himself while climbing through the broken window and left blood spots and possible finger prints at the scene. An employee reported that nothing appeared to have been taken by the burglar.
2. During the night of April 14 a burglar gained entry to a specialty store near MLK and Madison by breaking the front window. Approximately $2,600 of merchandise was stolen, but police were unable to find any fingerprints.
3. Police were alerted to a possible break-in occurring at a business complex near 28th and Madison at 11:15 PM on April 15. When they arrived they found that the rear door to business had been smashed open but found no one on the premises. The person who contacted the police described the burglar as a white male about 25 years old. When the business owner arrived she determined that approximately $4000 worth of merchandise had been taken. The police were unable to find fingerprints at the scene.
4. On April 16 someone stole two bags from just inside the entry of a residence near 20th and Denny. The owner reported that she had left the bags unattended while she went to pick up another bag from her car. The stolen bags contained over $800 worth of merchandise.
5. Sometime between 5 PM on April 26 and 8 AM on the 28th, a burglar broke open the back door of a specialty shop near 19th and Aloha. The burglar then ransacked the business and stole approximately $30,000 worth of merchandise while causing an additional $2000 worth of property damage. The police report does not mention whether they found any fingerprints.
As is frequently the case, vehicle-related crime was the most numerous type last month, with fifteen reported car prowls, six vehicle thefts and four cases of license plate theft. There were six reports of identity theft, down substantially from March’s high of 23.
A little over 30 incidents in our neighborhood were reported to the Seattle Police last month. Seven were car prowl thefts (signified on the map by green tiles with an auto containing a hole), four of which occurred in the Arboretum (some of the symbols on the map represent multiple occurrences). Four more incidents involved some type of monetary fraud or theft (green tiles with a dollar sign), including credit card theft, forgery, and identity theft.
There were three cases of threat or harassment (red tiles with an exclamation point) three of property damage or graffiti (green tiles with spray paint can) and, more seriously, three break-ins or burglaries (green tiles with eight-pointed star).
1. During the early evening of March 2 someone entered a home close to 26th and Union through an unlocked back door. The intruder stole various items not listed in the police report and left before the owners returned home.
2. On March 8 a neighbor reported that the front door of a rental house on 24th Ave. had been kicked open. The police searched the house and concluded that whoever kicked open the front door had probably left through the back of the house. When notified, the tenants discovered that the intruder(s) had taken some laptops and a video game console.
3. Sometime between March 18th and March 20th someone broke into a basement storage room of a specialty store on Union Street. Apparently nothing was taken from the storage room, although the intruder left a blanket in the room and vomit on the floor.
Also among the more serious incidents during March were a mugging (red tile with eye mask) on Pike St. close to 25th Ave. on March 25 (a detailed police report on this incident is not available), a non-aggravated assault (red tile with fist) close to 23rd and Madison on March 22nd, and a firearms discharge (blue tile with revolver) on March 30th.
A glance at the police reports map shows three main locations for incidents in our neighborhood, the Arboretum (car prowls), Union St. (both property crimes and crimes against persons) and Madison St. (ditto). Like Madison Park and Montlake, our neighborhood had relatively little crime compared to neighborhoods to our south, east, and north (U district). You can see this, as well as gaining additional information on the March police reports, by visiting the SPD’s police reports website. Up-to-date information for April is also available there.
After a spike during the previous month, February 2014 saw a return to a more normal level in the number of reports to the police of crime in Madison Valley. As usual, incidents related to vehicles, including car prowl theft (8 cases), vehicle theft (6 cases) and license plate theft (1 case), constituted the largest proportion of the total number of police reports (36 cases). February also saw a rare arrest for drug possession in Madison Valley; on Feb. 13at 4:50 AM someone was arrested for cocaine possession on Madison near 20th. And surprisingly, there was only one incident during the month that the police judged serious enough to warrant a detailed incident description.
On Feb. 10 police were called to a home near 23rd and John by a resident who reported that he had been burglarized during the previous day. The resident also told the police that he had had his wallet and keys stolen from him during a robbery earlier that day and that he discovered the burglary upon returning home. It appears that the robbery didn’t occur in Madison Valley because there were no robberies reported here during February. Because there were no signs of forced entry, the victim and police concluded that the burglar(s) used the keys taken in the robbery to gain entrance to the home. The police report does not list the belongings stolen during the burglary.
The first month of 2014 brought a substantial increase in the number of Madison Valley incidents reported to the police, and the increase was due to a spike in car prowl theft. Numerically, car prowls accounted for 21 of the 60 incidents reported during January and 12 of these car prowls occurred in or adjacent to the Arboretum (the parking lot just north of the intersection of Lake Washington Blvd. and E. Interlaken Blvd alone accounted 8 of those incidents). There were also 6 reported vehicle thefts and one case of license plate theft.
In addition to all of the vehicle related crime during January, there were four burglaries.
1. On Jan. 6 at approximately 2 PM police were called to a residence on 22nd near Pike by a woman who reported that she had heard a voice in her basement and after calling out “who’s that in my house?” heard a door close. She then witnessed a man carrying two backpacks leaving her yard. The police subsequently located a suspect who had two backpacks (and also a glass pipe in his jacket). After the resident identified him as the burglar, he was informed of his Miranda rights and booked into the King Co. jail.
2. Residents of a two unit building on 23rd near Aloha called the police on Jan. 9 to report that someone had recently stolen four bicycles from a storage area in the basement of the building. As there were no signs of forced entry to the storage area, the victims and the police concluded that someone who had previous or current access to the building probably had stolen the bicycles.
3. On Jan. 17 a burglary occurred at a home on 27th between Pine and Pike sometime between 3:30 AM and noon while the resident was at work. Taking advantage of an unlocked window, the burglar entered the home and stole a laptop from the den. The burglar was in the process of taking a television from the bedroom when he was apparently frightened away by an unknown event. The burglar then left the house through the front door. Police were not able to find usable fingerprints at the scene.
4. Police responded on Jan. 27 at about 12:30 PM to a report of a burglary in progress at a home on 32nd Ave. E near Highland Dr. The neighbor who had called confronted the burglar as he left the home and noticed that he had a plastic bag full of objects. The burglar then fled east and jumped over a fence into Broadmoor. When conducting an area search, the police learned that the burglar had been seen in a Broadmoor resident’s back yard and they also located a plastic bag, which contained a necklace, various cards, and non-valuable papers. The police then notified the residents of the burglarized home, but had not heard from them by the time the police report was filed. No finger prints were found on the contents of the plastic bag or the window through which the burglar had entered the home.
Finally there was a serious assault and a robbery during January.
1. On Jan. 25 at approximately 1 AM a woman who was sitting at a bus stop near 27th and Union was assaulted by a male acquaintance who apparently was very intoxicated. She reported that after throwing objects her, he struck her above the eye with an object that may have been her cane and then ran southbound on 27th. Although the woman knew only her assailant’s first name, she gave a detailed physical description that led police to identify a likely suspect who lives in the neighborhood and has an SPD felony warrant and a history of gang involvement. The woman was treated at the scene by the Seattle Fire Department and then transported to a medical facility for treatment.
2. On Jan. 30 police received a call from a woman who reported that at about 2 PM two men approached her from behind and snatched the phone she was carrying while she was walking north on 23rd near Denny. She pursued them as they fled south on 23 and then east on Olive, until at 25th they got into a tan vehicle and drove away. The victim reported that her phone case contained credit cards and other items. The police canvassed the area through which the robbers had fled, but were unable to find any evidence or witnesses.
December brings long nights, colder temperatures, and the holiday spirit(s). Can you predict how these forces affect crimes reported to the police during December? Remember that most of the crimes reported to the police in Madison Valley involve automobiles. These include stealing cars, breaking into them to remove valuables, and stealing license plates.
As usual, vehicle related reports to the police topped the list once again in Dec. but they remained at November’s low level, probably due to the cold. As a result, Dec. also continued the low Nov. level of police reports (about 30 during the month). Burglary topped the list of non-vehicular crimes in our neighborhood during December. Specifically:
1. During the night of Nov. 30 – Dec. 1, someone entered the open garage of a home on 22nd between Highland and Galer and stole a bag of golf clubs.
2. On Dec. 11 police received a report of a non-forcible entry burglary on Galer between 22nd and 23rd Avenues, but the police department has not yet posted a description of the incident.
3. On Dec. 19 a resident of a tent city on 22nd near Pike notified police that someone had entered her tent and stolen $14 and some personal effects.
4. During the morning of Dec. 20 three burglars forced open the front door of a condominium on 20th near John and proceeded to force open mailboxes in the lobby. After removing mail, the burglars left. Although the event was recorded on a surveillance camera, the burglars wore clothing that concealed their personal characteristics.
5. Sometime between Dec. 20 and Dec. 26, while the resident was out of town, a burglar entered a home on 19th near Denny via an open window and stole a briefcase. The briefcase, which contained personal items including a passport, was later found in a neighborhood trash can and taken to the SPD East Precinct Building. The police returned the briefcase to the resident and apparently nothing of value had been taken from it.
There were also two robberies during Dec. Remember that robbery is defined by the use of force or the threat of force. Nowadays, showing a hand gun defines an event as robbery, even if it happens in your home. Usually, however, robberies occur outside of buildings.
1. On Dec. 6 at approximately 8 PM robbers grabbed a new iPhone from the hands of a bus rider who had just exited from a bus at 23rd and Union. When the victim asked that the iPhone be returned, one of the robbers threatened him with a handgun and then the robbers, described as four black males in their 20s and one juvenile, fled south on 23rd. The victim then walked home where he met a friend who accompanied him to the Northgate area where they played in a soccer game. The victim did not call the police to report the robbery until after he returned home around midnight.
2. On Dec. 24 at about 4 AM a resident of a home on 26th Ave. E. near Denny was awakened by a woman who knocked at her door and told her that her car had broken down and that she needed to use the resident’s phone. Upon opening the door, the woman and three men forced their way into the home. All wore handkerchiefs to cover the bottoms of their faces, and one of the males brandished a handgun and instructed the resident to sit down on the couch. He then asked her “where is (name deleted)?” and she responded that she didn’t know anyone by that name. Meanwhile, the other robbers went though the house, removed a pillow case full of the resident’s belongings, and then they all fled in a car. At the time of the police report the resident was unsure of what belongings had been taken.
Finally, there were four shoplifting incidents reported by the grocery store at 22nd and Madison.
The number of police reports in Madison Valley fell from its high of nearly sixty in October back to a more normal figure in the low thirties during November. The reduction reflected substantial declines in the types of crime most prevalent in October, especially theft involving vehicles. On the other hand, burglaries and robberies were little changed from October. There were seven burglary reports during November.
1. On Nov. 3 at about 1:30 AM someone smashed two large display windows on the northwest side of a supermarket on 22nd and Madison and stole 20 bottles of liquor from the display. Surveillance cameras in the store did not cover the area. A resident of the building reported that a little earlier he had seen two men wearing dark clothing and face masks in the area.
2. On Nov. 9 at about 11 PM police were called to an address on Union between 24th and 25th to investigate a burglary. When they arrived, the owner of nearby business told them that a group of about 8 teenage boys had broken into a vacant house next door. When he heard the noise of doors being broken down, he went outside, and upon seeing the boys, yelled that he was calling the police, at which point they fled south on 24th. Police were unable to contact the owner of the vacant home and were therefore unable to determine if anything had been stolen. The person reporting the incident told the police that he did not know, nor would be able to identify the boys, and the police found no identifying information at the site.
3. On Nov. 12 police were called to a home on 30th Ave. E. between John and Denny to investigate a burglary which had occurred on Veterans Day. The resident reported that sometime during one of her two absences from home that day, someone had stolen her laptop. During her first absence, which only lasted ½ hour, her daughter had been at home. Before her second absence, which lasted a little over 5 hours, she had set the alarm and locked all doors. Upon returning from the second absence she found the alarm still set and the doors still locked, but noticed that her laptop was missing. Upon questioning by both the victim and police, the daughter denied any knowledge about how the laptop had been stolen.
4. Sometime during the early evening of Nov. 13 a burglar smashed open a window of a residence on 30th Ave. near Pine and stole credit cards, a checkbook and a valuable pocket watch. The police did not find fingerprints at the scene.
5. On Nov. 14 there was a forced entry burglary at a residence on Aloha St. between 20th and 21st, but the police have not given a description of the event.
6. On Nov. 24 at about 4:30 police responded to an alarm call from a specialty business near 28th and Madison. There they found that someone had broken through the back door of the business. When the business owner arrived it was found that the burglar(s) had stolen items worth about $2800, including a safe containing $250 and approximately 10 purses that had been on display. The police report notes that there are cameras covering the areas around the business, but does not state whether any images of the event were recorded.
7. On Nov. 30 there was a burglary at a residence on 22nd between Highland and Galer that did not involve forcible entry. The police have not issued a description of this burglary.
Finally, there were two robbery reports during November and the police apprehended the perpetrator of one of them.
1. On Nov. 19 at 9 PM a man who was walking north near 21st and Union was accosted by two young men who had left a group of about six men to cross to his side of the street. After asking for a cigarette, and then a dollar, the two men started punching him and knocked him to the ground. Then they took his wallet, which contained $13 and three credit cards. The victim suffered a swollen eye and a broken nose. The police were unable to find the assailants.
2. On Nov. 21 at around 4 PM police received a report of a cell phone robbery at Olive and 22nd Ave. Arriving at 19th and Pine, an officer noticed a person who matched the description of the robber and asked to speak to him. The officer noted that the suspect had an iPhone and when she asked if it was his, he responded that it was. When the officer asked him what the phone number was, the suspect told her that he had to leave. The officer then told him that she had to make sure that he had not been involved in a recent cell phone robbery before he could leave, and then escorted him to her patrol car. Upon arriving at the car the suspect broke away from the officer and fled south on 19th, east on Union, and then north on 20th, where other officers arriving on the scene took him into custody. The victim subsequently identified him as her assailant and he was later booked into the King County jail.
At approximately 4:00 am, Sunday, November 24th, FURY WOMEN'S CONSIGNMENT was robbed. Thieves broke in through the back door. They stole our safe which contained a small amount of cash, and a few designer purses that were displayed on a shelf. As far as we can tell, nothing else was taken. We suspect that they were customers who knew exactly what they were looking for. When they broke in, the alarm sounded; our alarm company was alerted; and police responded.
The number of police reports in Madison Valley during the month of October increased to nearly sixty, far higher than in previous months. Fifteen of the reports involved car prowl theft, a number that is double the usual monthly total of six or seven. There were also two cases of vehicle theft, ten additional miscellaneous theft reports, and five shoplifting reports at a business in the 2200 block of E. Madison.
During October there were seven burglaries in Madison Valley.
1. During the night of Oct. 12–13 there was a burglary at a restaurant in the 2800 block of E. Madison. The burglar(s) used a key from a lockbox to gain entry and removed a safe containing computer equipment, approximately $550 in cash, and personal information about regular customers.
2. During the night of Oct. 17–18 someone pried the lock off a storage room door in the garage area of a condominium on 20th Ave. near John St. and stole a laptop, cash, and credit card receipts from the owner’s business. The value of the laptop and cash was close to $1000.
3. Sometime during the night of Oct. 18–19 someone broke into a business in the 3100 block of E. Madison by smashing a glass panel in the front of the business. The burglar stole ten to fifteen thousand dollars worth of merchandise and various business records. The police found fingerprints at the scene.
4. On Oct. 22 between 6:30 and 9:30 PM someone entered a home on 22nd Ave. near John while the owners were away. The burglar took a drawer containing jewelry and an iPad. The police found the drawer in the back yard of the residence, but it had been mostly emptied. No fingerprints were found.
5. On Oct. 27 between 10 AM and noon a burglar entered a home on E. John St. near 21st Ave. while the residents were attending church. After breaking windows to gain entry, the burglar stole a laptop computer, several expensive handbags, gift cards, and cash. Police recovered fingerprints and the police report notes that the residence has been burglarized four times since 2009.
6. Sometime between 8 PM and midnight on Oct. 31 a burglar broke into a home on 21st Ave. near Pike while the owners were away. After smashing windows at the home, the burglar took computer equipment, cameras, a purse and a box of checks. The police report makes no mention of finding any fingerprints.
7. During the night of Oct. 31–Nov. 1 a burglar broke into a specialty store in the 2700 block of E. Madison St. by forcing the rear door open. The burglar removed computer equipment and many clothing items. The police report gives no estimate of the value of the stolen items, and the police were unable to find usable fingerprints.
Three strong-arm robberies were reported during October.
1. On Oct. 5 around 7 PM a woman reported that while standing on the corner of 22nd Ave. and E. Union and talking to friends, a man about 6 feet tall grabbed her iPhone and ran east on Union. She did not pursue the robber because she was afraid that he was carrying a weapon.
2. On Oct. 13 at about 7 PM a woman walking west at Union and 23rd was accosted by a man on a bicycle who grabbed her arm and demanded that she hand over her purse and cell phone. At first she resisted, but upon realizing that that the robber had an accomplice, she complied. The robbers fled the scene and the victim reported the incident to a Metro driver. The victim reported that the bicycle rider had an unusual accent suggesting that English is not his native language.
3. In a puzzling incident on Oct. 23, police were notified around 10 PM that a man with a bloody face was lying in the intersection of 28th and E. Helen. Upon arriving they found the man, who appeared to be intoxicated and who told them that over an hour earlier he had been accosted by three black males as he was walking from 1st and Cherry to a destination in the 3000 block of E. Cherry. He reported that they had knocked him to the ground and taken $30 from his wallet before fleeing eastward into the arboretum. The report does not state how the victim and his assailants arrived at a location so far from his walking route on Cherry St. The Seattle Fire Department treated the victim for facial cuts and bruises and transported him to Harborview Medical Center.
Finally, on Oct. 4 at midnight police were called to 22nd Ave. and E. Mercer St. to investigate reports of a large fight there. Upon arriving they witnessed several people fleeing the area, but were able to talk to witnesses and victims of the fight. Apparently there had been a large party in a nearby house that had erupted into a fight after one of the partiers took umbrage about being bumped while dancing. Two people tried to break up the fight but were themselves assaulted by others using brass knuckles. The fighting then moved into the street, where hand guns were fired. Police found six shell casings from two handguns at the corner of 22nd and Mercer, but apparently no one suffered gunshot wounds. Those hurt during the fighting either were treated for minor injuries by the police or refused treatment.
The total number of police reports in Madison Valley fell back from its August high of 40 to the usual level in the mid thirties. In September, however, there was an increase in the number of reports involving vehicles, this category being made up of car theft (7 incidents) and car prowls (3 incidents, of which 2 occurred in the Arboretum). There were no robbery or assault reports during the month, but five burglaries were reported.
1. On Sept. 10 between 8 and 9 AM, someone smashed the glass front door of a business space near 23rd and John. Upon entering the business space police found two broken coin operated candy machines and much disarray. After contacting the building’s owner, police learned that the previous tenant of the space was in the process of moving out and the new tenant was moving in. The owner was unable to provide contact information for either tenant, however, and the police were therefore unable to determine if any loss had occurred beyond the smashed front door and the broken candy machines.
2. On Sept. 14 a resident on 26th Ave. E. between John and Denny reported that a burglar had entered his home sometime during the previous three weeks while he was out of town and had taken a gun, car keys and a credit card. The victim reported that a neighbor, who had subsequently moved away, told him that he had heard a disturbance and called the police, but a check of police records showed no such call. The victim also reported that part of the time he was away a friend had been living in his home. The victim was unable to provide the gun’s serial number. The police report notes that the victim seemed confused about elements of his story, which made it difficult to determine what actually happened.
3. On Sept. 22 residents of home on 21st Ave. between Olive and Pine reported that they had been burglarized while they were on vacation. Upon returning home they found that someone had broken through a front window and rummaged through the house, taking several laptops, a digital camera, a gaming system and cash. They also reported that a professional cleaner had been at the house on Sept. 19 and had not noticed anything amiss. Police found fingerprints on the inside of the broken window.
4. During the morning of Sept. 23 someone gained entry to a house on 30th Ave. near Pine by throwing a brick through the glass portion of a side door. The resident reported that nothing seemed to be missing however, and police found no fingerprints.
5. Also on Sept. 23 someone forced open the back door of a house on 29th Ave. near Pike sometime between 7 AM and 4 PM. Although the police report does not list the items that were stolen, it notes that the owner’s TV was recovered nearby. Police found fingerprints at the scene.
Fighting graffiti just went digital. The City of Seattle has developed an app called “Find It, Fix it” that allows users to report graffiti via their smartphones.
With Find It, Fix It, reporting an issue is as easy as snapping a photo with your phone, adding some details, and tapping Submit. The app’s “drag and drop” map feature or the phone’s own technology can be used to pinpoint the location. The report is automatically routed to the appropriate department for response.
In addition to graffiti, you can also report abandoned vehicles, potholes, parking enforcement, and make other inquiries.
What happens once you’ve submitted a photo?
Submissions are entered into the city’s Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) system, and departments responsible for providing that specific service will manage and track requests. The City of Seattle began using the CRM system in December 2011, and cautions that there may be some initial delays in response time as city departments adjust to any increase in service requests.
The City anticipates adding other request types in the future and welcomes feedback on the app and ideas for additional features. Users should choose the Find It, Fix It app’s “other inquiry” category – found under the “New Request” icon – to submit feedback.
There were approximately forty incidents reported to the police during August, a higher number than in previous months. Most of the increase involved what the police consider minor crimes: shoplifting, graffiti/property damage, car prowl theft, etc. The police reports give detailed accounts of only four kinds of incidents: burglaries, robberies, aggravated assaults and homicides. Thankfully, no homicides have been reported since we started summarizing Madison Valley police reports (March 2013) and only a few aggravated assaults. Burglaries and robberies have been more common. There were five burglaries in Madison Valley during August.
1. Sometime between 7 and 11 PM on Aug. 5 two apartments in a building on 19th Ave between Aloha and Prospect were burglarized. The burglar(s) damaged a door and its frame, but the police report does not include information about the tenants’ losses.
2. On August 7 between 10 and 11:30 PM a burglar entered a home on 21st Ave. between Olive and Pine through an unlocked front door. The occupants were visiting a neighbor at the time, and when they returned home they found that cell phones, a laptop computer and a wallet were missing. The laptop had a tracking feature and the last address it gave was an apartment building in Kent.
3. Also during the night of Aug. 7-8 someone broke open the front door of a house in the same neighborhood (21st Ave. close to Pike). The next morning a neighbor reported the break in to the police but was unable to tell whether anything had been taken. As of the time of the police report, investigators had been unable to contact the occupants of the residence.
4. During the afternoon of Aug. 22, a burglar entered a house on 24th Ave between Olive and Pine via an open window and stole computer equipment worth approximately $2200. Police officers found fingerprints at the scene.
5. During the night of Aug 23-24 a burglar smashed open the front door of an office on E. Madison near 31st Ave. and ransacked the office. No fingerprints were found and the police report does not specify the number or value of the items that were taken.
During August there were also two robberies, both in the same general neighborhood, both in the early morning, and both involving the theft of cell phones. Readers of the Madison Valley police reports will note the similarity of these robberies to an incident in late July in the same area.
1. On Aug. 16, a little after 1AM, a robber grabbed a pedestrian who was carrying a cell phone and walking south on 19th Ave. near John. The robber pressed a pistol against the victim’s ear, and demanded that he hand over the phone. After taking the phone the robber ran north on 19th to Thomas and then turned east. The victim described the robber as a black male, approximately 5’4” tall and weighing about 145 lbs. Police located a suspect a little later, but the victim told them that the suspect was not the person who robbed him.
2. On Aug. 20, at approximately 12:45 AM, a bicyclist riding North on 23rd Ave. near John stopped to call a friend on his cell phone. He was then approached from the rear by a robber who placed an object on the back of his head and demanded the victim’s phone. The victim asked “Are you joking?” at which point the robber pushed him to the ground and took his phone. The robber fled north on 23rd and then west on Thomas. After being summoned a half hour later, police conducted an unsuccessful search for the robber.
A new feature of the crime reports map that the Seattle Police Department provides is a “number of incidents” tile. This simplifies the map a bit, but also makes it more difficult to see the specific incidents. You will notice, for example, the large number of crime reports at 22nd and Madison. These are mostly shoplifting incidents. Also, the police reports for August do not include the well-publicized arson that occurred at 23rd and Union on August 12.
Crimes in Madison Valley reported to the police during July were up a bit from their June level, returning to a level (approximately 30 incidents) we experienced in earlier months of this year. As in June, car prowl theft (3 incidents) was lower than in earlier months and surprisingly none occurred in the Arboretum. In contrast, there were 9 incidents of property damage/graffiti, a number much higher than in June. Four burglaries were reported during July:
1. Sometime between July 2 and July 15, a burglar broke into a home on 26th Ave. near Lee while the owner was out of town. After smashing through a glass paneled back door, the burglar ransacked the house for valuables. Police were able to recover fingerprints from the scene.
2. On July 21 someone smashed in the front glass door of a business in the 2900 block of E. Madison St. and stole two credit card scanners and a numeric PIN pad. Police found no evidence that might help to identify the thief.
3. Sometime on July 25 between 5 and 9 PM a burglar entered an unlocked apartment on 20th Ave. near Madison and stole approximately $1800 in cash and money orders. Police found no evidence at the scene.
4. On July 29 someone broke into a house on 31st Ave between Pike and Pine. A detailed police report on this burglary is not available.
There was one attempted and one completed robbery during July:
1. On July 5, close to midnight, officers responded to a report of gunshots on E. Thomas St. near 26th Ave. While searching the scene, officers found a victim with a minor gunshot wound who told them that his assailant had pulled out a gun and demanded his wallet. Although the victim tried to give him the wallet, the assailant shot the victim and fled. While responding to the gunfire report, police noted a suspicious Ford SUV driving at high speed at 19th and Thomas, and after taking the victim’s testimony began a successful search for it. The victim did not identify either occupant of the SUV as his assailant, however.
2. On July 23, a little after 7 PM, a young woman was waiting for a northbound bus on 23rd St. near John when a male approached her and asked her to check on when the next bus was coming. As she was taking out her smart phone to do this, he pushed her to the ground and grabbed her phone. After fleeing north to Thomas St, the assailant fled west on Thomas. A bus arrived shortly after the robbery and took the victim to the University of Washington Medical Center for possible treatment. After interviewing the victim there, the police returned to the area of the crime but were unable to find the robber.
Among the other crimes reported to the police during July were two incidents of harassment, two auto thefts, one bike theft and a case of shoplifting. The remaining reports concerned theft and fraud not serious enough to produce detailed police reports.
Fewer crimes in Madison Valley were reported to the police during June than in previous months. In May, for example, there were approximately 35 crime reports but in June there were only about 25. As in May, the number of car prowl thefts remained low (only two reported incidents in June), and reports of property damage/graffiti almost disappeared (2 incidents). Harassment reports were more frequent than any other type of type of incident, but there were only four such cases. There were three burglaries during the month, and in none were police able to find fingerprints or other evidence.
1. Sometime during the night of June 5–6 someone stole a valuable racing bicycle (Trek Madone 5) and a 19-inch flat screen television/DVD combination from an unlocked garage off of 19th Ave near Roy.
2. On June 7 around 11:30 AM an intruder entered an unlocked office on 19th Ave. near Republican and stole a valuable item not specified in the police report.
3. On June 11 sometime between 4 and 9 PM someone stole two Mary Kay cosmetic suitcases containing approximately $1400 worth of cosmetics from an unlocked garage on 24th Ave. near Mercer.
In addition, there were two reports of auto theft, one non-injury assault near Union and 23rd Ave. and an arrest for possession of methamphetamine near Madison and MLK. Let’s hope that the near absence of crimes against persons during June continues for the rest of the summer.
Vandals spray-painted graffiti on business property and public spaces last night. The damage reverses the volunteer efforts and $2,500 spent by the Merchants Association on last month’s Spring Cleaning, a project to remove previous graffiti.
April's article on the Madison Valley Spring Clean can be viewed here: http://madisonvalley.org/news/madison-valley-spring-cleaning.html
The number of crimes reported to the police increased from around 30 in March and April to the mid-30s in May. Perhaps as a result of the heightened police patrols in the Arboretum, car prowl theft (4 incidents) was no longer the most numerous type of report. Instead, property damage/graffiti (7 incidents) took over first place, almost doubling from its March–April levels. In addition to 4 reports of stolen vehicles, there were 4 burglaries during May.
1. On May 14 a burglar broke into a home on 19th Ave. near Highland Dr. while the owner was briefly away and stole computer equipment and tools. The intruder left behind a crow bar used to force open the back door of the house, but police were unable to find fingerprints on it.
2. Sometime during the night of May 15–16 two businesses in the 2800 block of Madison were burglarized. The burglar(s) entered by smashing a front window and stole cash, merchandise and a laptop computer.
3. On May 23 a burglar pried open a window in the back of a house on 19th Ave. near Aloha and stole computer equipment and cameras while the owner was away. The police could find no fingerprints.
4. During the night of May 26–27 someone pried open the side door of a home under construction near 26th Ave. and Helen and stole several power tools. Police found no evidence that could identify the burglar(s).
May also witnessed 4 assault/robbery reports.
1. On May 11 shortly after midnight police were called to the home of a person who claimed to have been assaulted and robbed by two assailants who had been following him home from a party at 20th Ave. and E. Cherry St. In the neighborhood of 20th and Union the assailants allegedly pushed the victim down and took his wallet and backpack. Unfortunately, the victim was too intoxicated to give a description of the assailants or to explain how they were able to take his wallet and backpack. The victim refused medical assistance.
2. On May 15 at approximately 10:30 PM a robber attempted to steal several bottles of champagne from the liquor store at 23rd and Union. When the robber attempted to leave the store with the bottles, the clerk told him that if he didn’t give the bottles back he would summon the police. The robber refused and claimed to have a handgun. Outside the store the clerk again told the robber to return the bottles at which point the robber punched him in the mouth and fled. After arriving at the scene around 10:45 the police made an unsuccessful search for the robber.
3. On May 27 at around 10:30 PM the police were called to 21st Ave. near Olive St. to assist a person who feared assault by someone who was following him north on 21st. After the potential assailant threatened to kill the victim with a broken wine bottle, the victim hid in the back yard of a friend’s house and had the friend call the police. The police then made an area search for the assailant but were unable to find him.
4. Around 10:30 PM on May 31 an assailant unsuccessfully tried to steal a laptop computer from a pedestrian on Madison near 25th. After the assailant headed west on Madison, the victim called 911, and when the police arrived he gave a description of the assailant. Soon afterward other officers spotted a person matching the description near 19th and Madison and placed him under arrest after the victim identified him as the assailant.
Harassments and minor thefts made up the bulk of the remaining incidents reported to the police during May. Police reports are underestimates of such activity because many incidents are not reported to the police.
The number of incidents reported to the police for Madison Valley was approximately the same in April as in March—about 30 cases—but there were more serious incidents than in March. Once again car prowl theft was the leading type of offense (6 reports). This summer the Seattle Police will be stepping up their patrols in the Arboretum/Japanese Garden area to combat the car prowl problem there.
There were four residential break-ins in our neighborhood during April.
1. Sometime during the day on April 3rd, an intruder broke down the front door of a residence in the 2500 block of E. Madison, and stole approximately $1500 in cash and jewelry. Police were able to recover fingerprints left by the burglar.
2. On April 16, a resident in the 900 block of E. 24th Ave reported that someone had stolen several items from his unlocked truck parked on the street and had also entered his house and stolen additional items. The total loss was estimated at around $5,500.
3. During the late afternoon or early evening of the 21st someone forced open the front door of a residence in the 1700 block of 29th Ave. and stole computer equipment and credit cards.
4. On April 30th someone broke into a home in the 2900 block of E. Thomas St. The intruder caused property damage, but the police report does not mention anything having been taken.
Two cases of aggravated assault were reported in April.
1. On the 23rd around noon, members of rival gangs had a fight on the soccer field next to Miller School. Three people were hurt in the fight. At least one of the participants used brass knuckles, and one person brandished a handgun. As a result of the handgun, the school was placed on lockdown. Those injured in the fight refused medical attention.
2. On the 24th, two men who had “worked a job” during the morning and who had been drinking during the afternoon, got into a fight about money. During the fight one of the men repeatedly stabbed the other with a BBQ fork, sufficiently injuring him that he had to be taken to the ER at Swedish hospital.
There were two muggings during April.
1. During the evening of April 1st a boy walking home from a soccer practice was accosted near Pike and MLK by two unknown teenaged boys, one of whom brandished a switch blade knife. The assailants took two backpacks that the boy was carrying and fled south on MLK. The backpacks contained approximately $500 worth of clothing, soccer equipment, books and a cell phone.
2. Around 10 P.M. on the 18th two men brandishing handguns robbed a woman walking in the 1700 block of 24th Ave. After taking her phone and purse, they fled north and the victim called the police. While interviewing the victim, the police learned of a cell phone robbery in the 300 block of 22nd Ave E. that apparently involved two men of the same description, and left to search that area. Being unable to find the assailants there, they resumed interviewing the victim and then learned that two men had been detained by the police after another robbery in the University district. They drove the victim to that location, and she identified the two men as being her assailants.
Among the other incidents reported to the police during April were four cases of harassment, four of property damage/graffiti, three cases of theft or shoplifting, and two license plate thefts.
Longer days and warmer temperatures typically bring higher levels of crime, so we can expect the number of incidents reported to the police to increase in the next few months.
This month we introduce a new feature, a monthly crime report by Madison Valley resident Lowell Hargens, former UW professor of sociology specializing in the statistical analysis of data. We’re grateful to have his expertise and want to thank him for volunteering.
A little over 30 incidents in our neighborhood were reported to the Seattle Police last month. Seven were car prowl thefts (signified on the map by green tiles with an auto containing a hole), four of which occurred in the Arboretum (some of the symbols on the map represent multiple occurrences). Four more incidents involved some type of monetary fraud or theft (green tiles with a dollar sign), including credit card theft, forgery, and identity theft.
There were three cases of threat or harassment (red tiles with an exclamation point) three of property damage or graffiti (green tiles with spray paint can) and, more seriously, three break-ins or burglaries (green tiles with eight-pointed star).
1. During the early evening of March 2 someone entered a home close to 26th and Union through an unlocked back door. The intruder stole various items not listed in the police report and left before the owners returned home.
2. On March 8 a neighbor reported that the front door of a rental house on 24th Ave. had been kicked open. The police searched the house and concluded that whoever kicked open the front door had probably left through the back of the house. When notified, the tenants discovered that the intruder(s) had taken some laptops and a video game console.
3. Sometime between March 18th and March 20th someone broke into a basement storage room of a specialty store on Union Street. Apparently nothing was taken from the storage room, although the intruder left a blanket in the room and vomit on the floor.
Also among the more serious incidents during March were a mugging (red tile with eye mask) on Pike St. close to 25th Ave. on March 25 (a detailed police report on this incident is not available), a non-aggravated assault (red tile with fist) close to 23rd and Madison on March 22nd, and a firearms discharge (blue tile with revolver) on March 30th.
A glance at the police reports map shows three main locations for incidents in our neighborhood, the Arboretum (car prowls), Union St. (both property crimes and crimes against persons) and Madison St. (ditto). Like Madison Park and Montlake, our neighborhood had relatively little crime compared to neighborhoods to our south, east, and north (U district). You can see this, as well as gaining additional information on the March police reports, by visiting the SPD’s police reports website.
Up-to-date information for April is also available there.