North Highline Unincorporated Area Council meeting, report #1: Deputy Myers’ update

April 4th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office Comments Off

First of two reports with video from Thursday night’s North Highline Unincorporated Area Council meeting: Beefy briefing from KCSO Deputy BJ Myers. As he noted, three crimes in the White Center area made news since last month’s meeting, and he had updates on all three, as well some time to answer questions from those in attendance.

Two of the three cases have led to arrests – the shooting death of Ruben Castillo (though the suspect remains charged only with two gun crimes, not with the actual killing) and the corn-stand armed robbery that was followed by a Guardian One search. The third, the rape/beating along Roxbury, remains unsolved, but deputies continue searching; Myers said they believe the person they’re looking for goes by “Antoine.”

He also talked about a new “diversion” program about to be kicked off to get help for “low-level drug and prostitution offenders” in hopes they will break the re-offending cycle.

On Saturday, we’ll publish video from the main event of the night’s forum, taking on the topic of equity.

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Followup: White Center shooting suspect only charged with illegal gun possession so far

March 26th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

18-year-old Charles Moimoi, suspected of firing the shot that killed 17-year-old Ruben Castillo Jr. in White Center a week ago, is now charged with two gun crimes – but not charged, so far, in connection with the killing. King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office spokesperson Dan Donohoe says Moimoi is charged with two counts of unlawful firearm possession – having been convicted of burglary, he’s a felon, and not allowed to possess a gun. His bail is now half a million dollars and he’s scheduled for arraignment on April 9th; the homicide case, Donohoe says, remains under “ongoing investigation.” Court documents reaffirm what we reported on Monday – that he confessed to firing the shot that killed Ruben Castillo – and include other details we’ll add to this report.

ADDED: Court documents say Moimoi was found with a gun in his backpack when arrested two days after the shooting, “similar or the same” to the one fired at the car in which Castillo was riding, killing him, loaded with the same brand of ammunition as casings found at the scene. The day after the shooting, he failed to show up for a court hearing in connection with a burglary case in which he is charged. He also is charged in an attempted burglary, according to court documents, in which he led police on a high-speed chase they “terminated because it became unsafe.” That’s just part of his record, prosecutors say, and it’s their reasoning for requesting the half-million-dollar bail.

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Do you recognize him? Sheriff’s Office sketch of man who attacked, raped woman west of White Center

March 25th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off

King County Sheriff’s Office detectives hope that new sketch will help them find the man who beat and raped a woman just west of White Center, at 26th and Roxbury, on March 7th. Here is the latest from detectives:

On Friday, March 7th, just after midnight the victim was walking eastbound on the south side of Roxbury near 24th Ave. She was approached by a black male who asked her for a cigarette. The victim gave the man a cigarette when he suddenly dragged her to a nearby lot where he punched her repeatedly then sexually assaulted her.

After the assault the man fled, taking the victim’s purse with him. The purse was never located and may have been discarded nearby or possibly given to an associate of the suspect. The purse is very distinctive:

The attacker was described as a younger black male, early 20′s, about 5’9″, medium build, wearing a dark-colored hoodie and jeans. The suspect may have injuries to his hands due to the violent assault on the victim.

If you have information about this man or the missing purse, please call the King County Sheriff’s Office at 206-296-3311 (24 hours). You can also be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 and remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

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Followup: $1 million bail for suspect in White Center shooting death

March 24th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 3 Comments »

A judge has set bail at $1 million for the 18-year-old SeaTac man arrested Friday in connection with the Wednesday night shooting at 15th/Roxbury that killed 17-year-old Ruben Castillo of Burien. His bail hearing was Saturday; today, we received documents with a bit more information about what hapepned.

The time was listed as 9:51 pm last Wednesday. The victim was in the back seat of a Honda Accord with friends. They stopped at the Roxbury Texaco station. While fueling up, the driver noticed “a group of males” at a bus stop east of the gas station. “The males were looking at him and he commented to his friends in the car, including (the victim).” The report does not say what was “commented,” but goes on to say, the driver got back into the car and drove out, northbound on 15th and then east on Roxbury, “with intent to go to Alki.”

As the car passed the suspect at the bus stop, the suspect, the report says, “pulled a 9mm pistol from his back pocket, loaded a magazine, and fired three rounds at the vehicle as it drove away eastbound. One round passed through the tail light and trunk and through the seat back of the passenger-side back seat, and into (the victim’s) back.” Mr. Castillo realized he had been shot, and “began to scream”; his friend drove to the North Highline Fire District station, a mile or so away, “where medical aid was rendered” until the victim was rushed to Harborview Medical Center, where, the report says, he died in surgery. The report says the suspect admitted he “had the gun and fired the shot” that proved deadly; it also mentions the burglary case we noted in our story on the arrest, and a $25,000 warrant related to it, and the attached police report notes his tattoos, one of which is a well-known regional gang name. The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has until Wednesday to file charges.

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Followup: Suspect arrested in White Center shooting death, had been awaiting burglary trial

March 21st, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 2 Comments »

(Wednesday night WCN photo)
10:30 PM: Just in from the King County Sheriff’s Office:

At about 3:40 P.M. on March 21st, King County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes detectives arrested an 18-year-old Seatac man in connection with the shooting death of a 17 year old in White Center on March 19, 2014. The detectives are not seeking any other suspects; however, they are encouraging additional witnesses of the shooting to come forward and contact the King County Sheriff’s Office by calling (206) 296-3311.

ADDED 11:20 PM: Court and jail records show the suspect spent five days in the King County Jail last December for investigation of burglary; it appears burglary charges were filed last month. We won’t be able to get details of that case until tomorrow, as the online court records are offline for several hours this time each night.

ADDED 9:04 AM SATURDAY: Court records are available now, and they show the suspect was awaiting trial after being charged in February with an October burglary in the 12200 block of 14th S. in Burien. The court documents say his prints were found at the scene, and that he had a record with a burglary charge while he was still a juvenile (he turned 18 last July), as well as a pending theft case from earlier this year.

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Friends gather to remember 17-year-old White Center shooting victim

March 20th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 1 Comment »

Friends of the 17-year-old Burien boy shot and killed in White Center last night gathered tonight to remember him.

He was hit and killed by a bullet fired at the back of the car in which he was riding, according to investigators. No word of an arrest yet. Crimestoppers is offering a reward – reach them at 800-222-TIPS.

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Update: Roxbury closed for shooting investigation; teenager killed

March 19th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 3 Comments »

11:13 PM: We’re checking on the investigation that has SW Roxbury closed around 15th SW, according to a reader tip. King County Sheriff’s deputies are on the scene along with other law enforcers. Seattle Police had been investigating a report of shots fired on the city side an hour or so but there was no word of a victim. More as we get it.

11:29 PM: KING 5 reports one person was shot and is at Harborview.

12:13 AM: Just back from the scene. Roxbury is closed between 14th and 15th; deputies are in the street, looking for evidence. They confirm one person was shot.

No other official information so far.

5:48 AM: KING is now reporting that a 17-year-old boy was killed.

7:10 AM: KCSO spokesperson Sgt. Cindi West confirms this, saying that so far, it appears there was “some type of verbal altercation between a group of pedestrians and a group of males in a vehicle near Bartell’s at 15th/Roxbury. The suspect was with the group on foot. He fired rounds at the vehicle as it drove away. One round went through the car and struck a rear passenger. This 17 year-old victim later died at Harborview.”

11:11 AM: The full news release from KCSO:

A 17 year old Burien teen was shot and killed last night in White Center.

Police responded to the North Highline Fire Station in the 1200 block of SW 112th last night just after 10pm to a report of a teen shot in the back. When police arrived they learned that the victim and 3 others had been getting gas at a station near SW Roxbury and 15 Ave SW when they exchanged words with a group at a nearby bus stop.

As the group drove by the men near the bus stop one of the men opened fire, striking the vehicle and hitting the victim, who was seated in the rear passenger seat. The driver of the vehicle drove to the fire station to seek aid for the injured teen.

The victim, a Burien resident, was transported to Harborview Hospital where he died from his injuries. The suspect is described as a black male, approximately 6′, and was last seen wearing a gray hoodie.

If you have information about this crime please call the King County Sheriff’s Office at (206) 296-3311 (24 hours) or you may remain anonymous and be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-(800) 222-TIPS (8477)

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White Center Crime Watch: Seen this stolen car?

January 8th, 2014 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

Charmaine hopes you will be on the lookout for her stolen car, taken from outside her home near 4th SW and SW 106th:

My ’93 Honda Accord, beige in color, with license plate AGX7274 was stolen from my driveway in front of my house sometime between 12:30 AM and 3 PM (Tuesday).

Call 911 if you see it.

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Video: Can you help solve a murder? White Center shooting victim’s family speaks out

December 4th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off

(Also published on partner site West Seattle Blog)

In the blue cap and gown is Michael Delfin-Rodriguez, celebrating his graduation from New Start High School on the Evergreen campus, with his dad Sergio. Michael is the young man shot and killed the day before Thanksgiving, at 2nd SW and SW 108th, while he and his brother Saul were out for an early-early-morning walk to a store. This morning, members of Michael’s family were at the King County Sheriff’s Office headquarters downtown, meeting the media to make a public plea for help in finding his killer. Saul spoke for the family today:

Investigators have called this a case of mistaken identity – Michael and Saul were confronted by two people, believed to be teenage boys, who accused them of being members of a gang; they denied it, kept moving, then one of those boys pulled out a gun and fired, killing Michael. (added) Here’s video from the news conference:

If anyone saw anything or has heard any talk about it, there’s a Crime Stoppers reward in the case, and investigators are eager to hear from anyone with information that might help solve the murder. Crime Stoppers has multiple ways to report tips, including anonymously, or call KCSO at 206-296-3311.

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Update: Man shot dead in White Center; KCSO sends message to killer: ‘Turn yourself in’

November 27th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news 9 Comments »

4:50 PM: An update from KCSO on this morning’s deadly shooting:

The King County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the shooting and killing of a man in the White Center area … and is asking for the public’s help.

On 11/27/13 at about 2:15 AM, deputies were dispatched to the area of SW 108 St and 2nd Ave SW after a caller reported hearing at least one gunshot and said there was a man down in the middle of the street. Deputies arrived at the scene to find a young adult male lying in the street suffering from at least one gunshot wound. They attempted life-saving measures but the man was pronounced dead at the scene.

Detective Sergeant Tony McNabb said, “Two young men were walking along SW 108 St. minding their own business when they were confronted by the two suspects. The suspects accused the innocent victim and his friend of being in a rival gang to which they both denied. As the victim and his friend began walking away, one of the suspects pulled out a handgun and began firing at the two, hitting and killing one of them.”

Deputy Charlie Akers is asking for the public to “Put themselves in the shoes of this innocent young man’s family. As we are entering the holiday season, this family is grieving the senseless loss of this young man. If this was one of your loved ones, you would want answers, you would want justice. A young man has lost his life because he was mistaken to be in a gang.”. Deputy Akers added a message to the suspects: “You took the life of an innocent young man for no reason; turn yourself in.”

If you know anything about this senseless crime, please call 206-296-3311.

Earlier versions of the story are below:

Read the rest of this entry »

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Crime Watch: Break-in on 22nd SW

October 31st, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, Shorewood, White Center news Comments Off

Out of the WCN inbox, from Erin:

Just wanted to let folks know our house was broken into in the 11000 block of 22nd Ave SW (map) between the hours of 10-11 am (Tuesday). Garbage trucks probably rolled by while it was in progress; we’ve put in a call to see if they saw anything. Thief took a crowbar to a basement window; I’d like to just take a moment to remind everyone to put dowels in any sliding windows and keep a list of serial numbers…they were obviously looking for stuff that could be easily carried away and pawned.

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Update: Helicopter search in White Center; suspect found hours later

October 10th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, Helicopter, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news 3 Comments »

10:57 AM: Seeing the Guardian One helicopter over White Center – and/or units on the ground? According to the King County Sheriff’s Office, the helicopter is helping deputies search for a car prowler who stole a purse. No other details yet.

12:32 PM: Search ended unsuccessfully, says KCSO. We did get a photo of the KCSO helicopter and added it – just in case you’re not sure how to tell the difference between law enforcement and TV choppers.

3:58 PM: Just received this update from KCSO spokesperson Sgt. Cindi West: “The suspect from (this incident) was arrested near 102 and 8th SW after being spotted prowling cars in Steve Cox Park.”

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Crime updates and sex offender info @ North Highline Unincorporated Area Council’s public-safety forum

October 7th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, North Highline UAC, safety 3 Comments »

By Tracy Record
White Center Now editor

Another information-packed public-safety forum was presented by the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council last Thursday night at the NH Fire District HQ:

AREA CRIME UPDATE: Deputies BJ Myers and Mary Syson led the briefing. She works 2-10 pm and is usually one of two deputies in the area on swing shift, she said – “Write to your King County Councilmembers, we need more officers!” How many officers would be optimal? At least three at any given time, she said. There are always two on, though, any shift, around the clock. When she comes on shift, there are usually calls holding.

(Staffing concerns arose again when a transit deputy spoke saying that at times only six officers from that department are staffing the entire area served by Metro.)

Deputy Myers spoke of recent arrests involving burglary suspects on both sides of the city/county line – many charges filed, many more – detectives are bringing in victims to identify property and get it back to them. “It’s been great, we don’t always get to see the property returned to the people,” he said.

He then went on to show the September crime map. Nothing too much out of the ordinary, he said; crimes are coming down from a July peak, “pretty typical this time of the year as the weather gets cold, kids go back to school, fewer people out and about.”

Motor-vehicle thefts had something of a spike in July and August.

Theft trend that might surprise you: If you have an outdoor outlet in a publicly accessible place – you might consider finding a way to not have it accessible, because more and more such outlets are being used – to charge phones among other things – amounting to power theft that suddenly turns up on the victims’ bills.

“Have you seen a change (in crime, etc.) since Nickelsville moved out (of Highland Park)?” Deputy Myers was asked. His answer: “No.”

On the prevention front, advice from Deputy Syson: Home security is vital. Outdoor lighting, in particular – “criminals don’t like to be lit up.” Also, she echoed “follow your intuition – call us. Get a plate. Vehicle license plates are great – we can maybe figure out where they live. If you guys don’t call us, we don’t know there’s an issue going on in your neighborhood.”

SEX OFFENDERS: Detective Michael Luchau from the King County Sheriff’s Office Registered Sex Offender Unit – a subset of the Special Assault Unit – gave the featured presentation, which he said was basically what he presents to neighborhoods after Level 3 offenders move in – or used to; because of low attendance, they don’t always have meetings – they might just circulate the notice.

14 people are in the unit, including 9 detectives, and he’s one of them. He also went back to the offender-registration law’s roots – the 1988 Diane Ballasiotes case and the case of Helen Harlow‘s son, leading to the Community Protection Act. The national requirement dates back to 1996, following the kidnapping and killing of Megan Kanka in New Jersey two years earlier.

He also went through background of how long offenders are required to be registered – anywhere from 10 years to lifetime (the latter is mandatory for a Class A felony, which includes first- or second-degree rape and/or first-degree child molesting). Level one offenders are not required to register – unless they are “noncompliant” and that level usually means “no violent history, usually know their victims.” They are rated with various “tools” including police reports, court files, criminal history, pre-sentencing psychological reports.

What happens while they are in jail/prison can affect their classification too – Det. Luchau gave an example of someone “continuing to act out their deviancy.”

Notification about a homeless offender generally “depends on the risk level.”

*Almost 4000 sex offenders in King County right now, he said, and almost half are level 1 – the lowest risk level, while 323 are classified level 3, the highest.

There are 333 in this precinct, which also includes Burien, Vashon, and Skyway. 53 of them are in North Highline, 32 level 1, ten level 3.

20,315 sex offenders are in the state in all, and of them, the detective said, about 708 are in violation of the registration laws, and nobody knows where they are. But if they have registered and are following the rules, there are no other rules/guidelines they have to follow, at least one attendee was surprised to hear. But Det. Luchau stressed – you don’t need to be afraid of (most of) them, just be aware.

Being aware is vital – children are sexually assaulted in much higher numbers than you might expect, such as, one of every three girls has been assaulted by age 16. He also talked briefly about trusting instincts – don’t hesitate to report a suspicious person, maybe someone who seems to be at the park watching kids; be clear about your concerns so that police can at least check on them. Also – be sure you know a lot about anyone who would be caring for your child without supervision, and know a lot about the situation at a house your child is going to visit. “If you don’t feel comfortable with the situation, don’t send them (there)!” said the detective.

Are there halfway houses? asked NHUAC council member Liz Giba, noting that notifications seemed to include the same addresses for multiple offenders. “There are some group homes,” acknowledged the detective. And, he said, there are some group homes that try to pretend they’re not – sometimes by claiming to be “clean and sober” houses.

To find out more about sex offenders in your area, has the listings of level 2 and level 3 everywhere in the county – look for the link on the left sidebar. The lookup tool also enables you to sign up for e-mail alerts if a “published offender registers in your area.” It’ll give you more information on the offender’s background.

For the entire state, you can go to – all registered sex offenders in the state, level two and three.

There’s also the National Sex Offender Public Website.

Don’t ever assume you know how a sex offender looks – they come in all sizes, shapes, etc., he said.

“Why aren’t these people locked up for good?” Some are locked up tfn.

But he also warned that people should use the knowledge responsibly – the notification act could be canceled if it leads to many incidences of harassment, vigilantism, etc. – and authorities do not want to lose it as a tool.

So what happens when an offender gets out of prison/jail? Nobody’s holding that offender’s hand, as Luchau put it. And, as an audience question pointed out, failure to register may just be a misdemeanor. But in other cases, it could be a Class B felony, sending the offender back to prison for longer than their original sentence.

What if you look someone up – is there any chance they might still be on the map even if they are no longer in that neighborhood? Maybe, said the detective, so you’ll want to try alternate lookups to check on that person’s status, as many public records as you can find.

WHAT’S NEXT: According to NHUAC president Barbara Dobkin, the next public-safety forum probably won’t be until March, but they will continue monthly NHUAC meetings on first Thursdays.

Two community announcements:

WHITE CENTER KIWANIS: They’re selling See’s Candy bars for $2/bar, with more than $1 funding their service projects.

COALITION FOR DRUG FREE YOUTH: NHUAC councilmember Elizabeth Gordon says the coalition is circulating a survey on alcohol/drug use, and provided copies; they’re accepting filled-out surveys at her family business, Uncle Mike’s Superlicious Barbecue. The survey will be linked on the NHUAC website.

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Next NHUAC public-safety forum one week from tonight: Learn about registered sex offenders

September 26th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, North Highline UAC, safety, White Center news Comments Off

One week from tonight – the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council hopes to see you at its next public-safety forum:

Save the Date

Thursday, Oct 3
North Highline Fire Station
1243 112th Street, SW
(entrance in the back)

The North Highline Unincorporated Area Council is pleased to be hosting a Public Safety Forum

Want to know more about the King County Sex Offender Registry and Community Notification Program? Then plan on joining us for an informative presentation and discussion with Detective Michael Luchau of the King County Sheriff’s Department Sex Offender Unit.

Share your concerns regarding community safety with White Center Storefront Deputy, BJ Myers and Deputy William Kennamer of Metro Transit Police.

All are welcome!



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White Center Crime Watch: Stolen stroller

September 21st, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

It happened just this past hour in downtown WC, says a family that doesn’t want to be identified but hopes the thief will do the right thing:

Tonight around 7:15-7:30 pm, our family was eating at Proletariat Pizza in White Center. Our orange and brown BOB single stroller was stolen.

Our family is sad as we use it every day. If found, please return to Proletariat Pizza, they know how to contact us.

Highland Park Family

SUNDAY NIGHT UPDATE: The family and stroller are reunited – as explained in this comment on the West Seattle Blog version of this story.

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Suspect jailed in connection with White Center KeyBank robbery, and more

September 15th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

A man arrested in Oregon in connection with a bank robbery there is believed to be a serial robber – with his alleged crimes including the August 30th holdup at KeyBank on 17th SW in White Center. That’s according to multiple media reports out of Portland, including this one. Law enforcers were led to the suspect, according to the newest updates, because the 57-year-old man left his car keys behind and had to try to get away on foot. He is reported to have served time in prison for other robberies.

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Update: Deputies search for man who held up White Center KeyBank

August 30th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

3:49 PM: King County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Sgt. Cindi West says the KeyBank branch in the 9600 block of 17th SW has just been robbed. She also sent the photo you see above – if you see him (and/or know who he is), call 911. More details as we get them.

4:04 PM: KCSO says the robber was described as white, in his 40s, wearing a blue shirt and jeans; bank employees reported that he came in just before 3 pm, gave them a note, implied he had a weapon (though it wasn’t seen), and ran away with an undisclosed amount of money, last seen eastbound on 98th SW.

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Man shot outside White Center Taco Time

August 6th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

We are checking with the King County Sheriff’s Office to find out more, but for starters: Our partners at The Seattle Times report a man was shot outside White Center Taco Time this afternoon. There apparently was a significant police presence there at one time – but we drove by about 40 minutes ago, unaware of the incident, and noticed just one police car in the area. The Times says a man was shot in the leg, and that investigators were trying to find out who did it and why. We’ll add anything more we find out.

3:37 PM UPDATE: Just heard back from KCSO spokesperson Sgt. Cindi West. She says, “We received a call of a man shot in the area of 10000 blk of 16 Ave Sw. We arrived at the Taco Time and found a male who had been shot in the ankle area. We do not have a lot of information right now. We are not getting a lot of information from the victim.”

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Arrest after 2 months in indecent-exposure case aboard bus traveling White Center to West Seattle

August 1st, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 1 Comment »

From the Seattle Police SPD Blotter website, an arrest this week in an indecent-exposure case that happened aboard a Metro bus traveling from White Center to West Seattle almost two months ago:

It all started on June 3rd at approximately 7:15 p.m. when the 15-year-old female victim and the 26-year-old male suspect boarded a Metro bus in the area of 15th Avenue SW and SW 102nd Street.

The suspect sat down next to the victim across the aisle. The victim heard some strange noises coming from the suspect and she turned and looked in the suspect’s direction. The suspect exposed his genitals to the victim and began masturbating. The suspect then tried to solicit a date from the victim. The victim was able to photograph the suspect before he exited the bus in the 6000 block of 16th Avenue SW.

Seattle Police Sexual Assault Unit detectives initiated an investigation, positively identified the suspect and disseminated a “be on the lookout” bulletin for officers.

On July 31st at approximately 5:18 p.m. two King County Sheriff’s Office detectives spotted the suspect in the area of 15th Avenue SW and SW Roxbury. They detained the suspect and called Seattle Police.

Seattle Police patrol officers responded to the scene, took custody of the suspect and booked him into the King County Jail for Indecent Exposure.

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Update: 3 arrested in burglary bust, thanks to alert neighbor

July 24th, 2013 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off

1:05 PM: Thanks to Audrey for the tip about helicopter activity over the area. King Co. Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Sgt. Cindi West says deputies have detained suspects in a burglary near 4th and 107th. They were found to the south, in North Burien.

1:45 PM UPDATE: Just checked back with Sgt. West. She says the arrests were off 4th S. and S. 116th.

2:38 PM UPDATE: Sgt. West says the story gets even better: This all started when an alert neighbor called 911 after noticing something suspicious at a house at 4th S. and S. 107th. Multiple burglars kicked in the back door while the resident was at work; there were lookouts in another car, and that’s what the neighbor noticed. Just so happened a plainclothes detective in an unmarked car was in the area. He observed for a while, saw the burglars coming out of the house with “a pillowcase full of loot,” Sgt. West says, and followed them, radioing for backup. When the burglars realized they’d been spotted, four of them jumped out of the moving car. The one who was driving was caught fairly quickly; two others were arrested shortly thereafter, and two are still at large. Sgt. West says the loot included at least 10 guns and a safe that either hadn’t been locked or was somehow opened by the burglars.

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