WHITE CENTER RESTAURANTS: Opening day for Brass Knuckle Bistro

March 6th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Food, restaurants, White Center news 1 Comment »

It’s opening day at Brass Knuckle Bistro, as we first noted last month, six months after introducing you to the West Seattle family behind the new eatery.

Check out the art:

Sandwiches are the BKB specialty, along with salads and sides. See the menu here. We spotted today’s samples:

Brass Knuckle Bistro is open 11 am-8 pm Tuesdays-Sundays, closed Mondays.

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FOLLOWUP: Double-murder suspect charged

March 5th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Double-murder suspect charged

Merle Buchanan is now charged in the January 6 double murder in White Center. We reported Saturday night on the arrest of the 26-year-old suspect, more than a month after the King County Sheriff’s Office announced he was being sought in the deadly double shooting.

(WCN photo, January 6th)
Today, the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office charged Buchanan with two counts of second-degree murder and one count of second-degree unlawful firearm possession. Charging documents say the victims, Paul Tapia and Jose Garcia, were co-workers, and that they arrived together at the Taradise Café just after midnight. Buchanan, a White Center resident, is described as a semi-regular who had been there about an hour by then. The court documents say surveillance video showed him talking with Tapia outside the bar, by his car, with Garcia nearby, and then showed the shooting around 1 am. The charging documents do not mention a motive. They do say Buchanan was identified via a trail that started with an AutoZone receipt found at the scene. He is in jail in lieu of $1.1 million bail, including $100,000 related to a domestic-violence protection order violation charge involving an incident with a former girlfriend hours before the shootings.

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VIDEO: North Highline Unincorporated Area Council gets gang briefing, encampment update

March 4th, 2018 Tracy Posted in North Highline UAC, White Center news 3 Comments »

(NHUAC March 1, 2018, meeting recorded as livestreamed by David Krause)

By Linda Ball
Reporting for White Center Now

Some good news about gang activity in White Center/Burien, according to Detective Joe Gagliardi with the King County Sheriff’s Office: Most of the trouble has settled down since what he said was an eight-month gang war in the area last year.

Det. Gagliardi addressed about 30 people Thursday night (March 1st) at the monthly meeting of the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council at NH Fire District headquarters. Gagliardi is the gang expert for KCSO and the head of its gang unit.

Most of us have the idea of what gangs are supposed to look like from what is depicted in movies, television, and mass media, he said. However, the reality is different because most of those images are dated. “Race doesn’t mean a thing – it’s about where you’re from and your neighborhood,” he said. In fact, the leader of the “Mexican Mafia” was white, he added. Gagliardi said gang members tend to have other things in common such as poverty, or abuse and neglect when they were children. Gang affiliation is often passed down through generations. Age is not a barrier either, because the younger they start, they’ll just go to juvenile detention for a short time, and be back on the street.

Although things have calmed down in White Center and Burien, that doesn’t mean gangs aren’t here. The two distinct sub-cultures in King County are L.A. and Chicago based gangs. (For their names and other details, watch Gagliardi’s presentation in the NHUAC video embedded above – he spoke right at the start of the meeting, until about 51 minutes into the video.) They all have their own distinctive colors, numbers, and sometimes symbols.

To recognize gang graffiti as opposed to taggers who consider their graffiti as art, he said it’s important to recognize that gang graffiti has a purpose. It’s not very artistic – for example, gangs do not use bubble letters, rather their tags are very linear, monochromatic, and meant to claim territory or issue a challenge.

Gang graffiti tells police which gangs are active in the area, which gangs are allies, which gangs are enemies and what areas they claim as their territory. “It’s an incredible intelligence source for us because it names active gang members,” he said. That’s because they usually include their street names in what is called a roll call. The other types of gang graffiti are for publicity, issuing a threat, expressing sympathy for a fallen member, political statements or simply to claim territory.

What he told those at the meeting was to NOT strike out a gang message and write your own graffiti next to it, because it is considered an act of disrespect and you could set yourself up for violent retaliation. Call the police when you see new graffiti, paint over it as soon as you can to deter recurrence, but not before the police come out – or at least before you take a photo of it yourself. If you believe it’s gang graffiti, be sure to call it in rather than reporting it online, he said.

Although the “artistic” taggers aren’t gang members, it’s still vandalism. They tend to go for high-visibility locations, like freeway overpasses so they can “share” their art. They’re the taggers responsible for vandalism via sticker, too. The good news, Gagliardi said, is that there has been no gang tagging recently in the area.

In Q&A, the detective was asked about gunfire along Myers Way last year. Was it gang-related? He said he had no specific information about it, but said that if and when gunfire/suspected gunfire happens – anywhere – call 911.

CAMP SECOND CHANCE: Josh Castle and Amy Friedman with the Low Income Housing Institute visited NHUAC with an update on Camp Second Chance, the City of Seattle-sanctioned encampment along Myers Way, just north of the city-county border. Presently, there are eight tiny houses on site, approximately 120 square feet, and LIHI has upgraded 10 tents that were in disrepair to sturdy shelter lodging tents. Castle said his vision was to eventually replace all the tents with tiny houses, which are built on skids so as to be easily moved. The tiny houses are not paid for by the city – Castle said it’s a community effort.

There are now about 50 residents in the drug-and-alcohol-free community. Electricity is available in the camp, and some of the tiny houses do have electricity so they have heat. Of course, the long-term solution to the homeless crisis is for people to transition into permanent housing, and Castle said about 300 people from the various city-sanctioned camps have made the move into permanent housing.

Also not tolerated in the camp is violence. Friedman, who serves as case manager at the camp, said she has never felt unsafe, as everyone in the community is very independent and enthusiastic about the community. Her job is to help residents find employment and other resources to help them get back on their feet. “I genuinely enjoy working with everyone at the camp,” Friedman said.

Not everyone is as enthusiastic about the camp, however. Neighbor Pat LeMoine, who has lived on Myers Way for more than 20 years, said the encampment is a “magnet” for trouble. LeMoine said in the past three years his neighborhood has become a “war zone.”

“What you guys are doing is traumatizing my lifestyle,” LeMoine said. “My neighborhood is in a state of terror.” He referenced the “landslide” of trash, visible from highway 509, from unauthorized campers nearby. He and his partner Carol Sivertz, have called 911 numerous times reporting gunfire, open drug use, and even a two-by-four left in his driveway used to smash into a neighbor’s vehicle. He said he was probably next, but he scared the perpetrator off.

Castle said the trash was not associated with the camp, with Friedman adding that the residents of Camp Second Chance are equally frustrated with the bad element nearby. It didn’t matter to LeMoine, who said he’d be happy to see the encampment go when its time is up.

CRIME AND SAFETY: KCSO Captain Rick Bridges and Storefront Deputy Bill Kennamer reported that resources were being spent in downtown White Center on the block of 16th Ave. SW that is home to several bars and restaurants where there has been some trouble, including the January double murder (for which a suspect was arrested a day after the meeting, as reported here).

DISABLED AMERICAN VETERANS: Another guest at the meeting talked about the DAV’s chapter located in West Seattle at 4857 Delridge Way SW, where they have monthly meetings, third Saturdays, 11 am. If you’re a veteran in need, check them out – here’s their website.

The North Highline Unincorporated Area Council meets first Thursdays most months, 7 pm at North Highline Fire District HQ. Check northhighlineuac.org for updates.

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CAMP SECOND CHANCE: City of Seattle sets meeting for comments on 2nd-year permit

March 4th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Myers Way, White Center news 1 Comment »

Just announced at the monthly Camp Second Chance Community Advisory Committee meeting: The City of Seattle is reviewing whether to renew the permit for the sanctioned encampment to remain at its site on the city-owned Myers Way Parcels for a second year, and as part of the renewal process, a community meeting is now set for 6:30 pm Tuesday, March 20th, at the Joint Training Facility (which is near the camp, 9401 Myers Way S.) If you can’t make it to the meeting, you can e-mail comments to homelessness@seattle.gov (write “Myers Way” in the subject line) and/or call 206-727-8496. The notice says comments will be accepted through April 5th.

Though the camp actually has been at the site for a year and a half (initially moving onto the Myers Way Parcels without authorization in summer 2016), its status as a city-sanctioned encampment didn’t officially start until March of last year, so that’s why the renewal discussion is happening now. We haven’t found the meeting announcement online yet but we photographed the flyer’s two pages – see them here and here.

Later tonight, we’ll publish our report on the rest of the meeting; the encampment also was discussed at this past Thursday’s North Highline Unincorporated Area Council meeting, and our report on that will be up soon too.

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FOLLOWUP: White Center double-murder suspect Merle Buchanan in jail

March 3rd, 2018 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 1 Comment »

We’ve been checking the King County Jail roster periodically to watch for the arrest of Merle Buchanan, who’s been wanted for weeks in connection with the double murder in White Center two months ago. Tonight, we found his name on the roster. The King County Sheriff’s Office announced on January 25th that they were looking for him, almost three weeks after the shooting deaths in downtown White Center. Buchanan, 26, was booked on Friday afternoon, according to the jail register, with bail set at $1.1 million – including $100,000 for a domestic-violence-related warrant. Court records show he is not yet charged in the shooting deaths.

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WHITE CENTER SCENE: On a log at The Bog

March 1st, 2018 Tracy Posted in White Center news, Wildlife 1 Comment »

Beautiful day at White Center’s bog – thanks to Gill Loring for sharing the photo of the waterfowl enjoying the almost-spring weather.

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Gang detective, encampment operator on March 1st agenda for North Highline Unincorporated Area Council

February 25th, 2018 Tracy Posted in North Highline UAC, White Center news Comments Off on Gang detective, encampment operator on March 1st agenda for North Highline Unincorporated Area Council

Next monthly meeting of this area’s community council, the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council, is on Thursday (March 1st) – here’s the announcement of what’s planned:

North Highline Unincorporated Area Council Meeting

When: Thursday, March 1, 2018 at 7 pm
Where: North Highline Fire Station at 1243 SW 112th Street in White Center
(Parking and Entrance are in the Back of the Station)

The Opportunity to Be Informed, Be Involved and Be Heard!

This month’s NHUAC meeting will include Detective Joe Gagliardi of the King County Sheriff’s Office. Detective Gagliardi is a highly regarded expert on gangs. Have you wondered whether the graffiti you’ve been seeing is gang related? Have you heard stories about local gang activity and crime? Don’t miss this rare opportunity to learn from the expert.

Captain Rick Bridges, KCSO’s new head of Operations for Precinct 4, and Deputy Bill Kennamer, White Center’s Storefront Deputy, will fill us in on other community concerns.

“DAV exists for veterans and their families. By fulfilling promises, we ensure America’s bravest sons and daughters are never forgotten.” North Highline community member Wendell Davis will introduce us to Disabled American Veterans and its local chapter on Delridge.

Also joining us will be Josh Castle of the Low Income Housing Institute. In 2013, LIHI partnered with Nickelsville to host and operate a homeless camp in Seattle. Today, LIHI manages several Seattle sites, including Camp 2nd Chance on Myers Way. Josh will share the latest news about our homeless neighbors living just over our border with Seattle.

Then… floor will be yours!

Knowledge is power. Learn, share and help make our community a better place.

March 1, 2018 at 7 pm – Bring a Neighbor!

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WHITE CENTER FOOD: Brass Knuckle Bistro sets opening date

February 23rd, 2018 Tracy Posted in Businesses, Food, restaurants, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER FOOD: Brass Knuckle Bistro sets opening date

It’s been almost six months since our first reports that Brass Knuckle Bistro was on the way to the former 3.14 Bakery space at 9602 16th SW. Now they’ve announced that March 6th will be the opening date, with a “friends and family” event this weekend for other local businesses. BKB will focus on sandwiches – you can preview the menu online. (Thanks to Gill for the tip!)

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FOLLOWUP: A Dog’s Dream now open in White Center

February 22nd, 2018 Tracy Posted in Businesses, Pets, White Center news Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: A Dog’s Dream now open in White Center

(Photo courtesy Gill Loring)

We first told you last month that A Dog’s Dream Natural Pet Supply was adding a White Center location. And now its doors are open. The announcement sent to WCN:

We are now open!

Our hours are 10-7, seven days a week.

We will be hosting a Grand Opening/12th anniversary weekend event March 3rd and 4th, where we will be offering 20% off all purchases at both stores.

The White Center store is at 9620 14th SW; the original location is at 5913 Airport Way S. in Georgetown.

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SNOW AFTERMATH: School changes for Thursday

February 22nd, 2018 Tracy Posted in Schools, Weather, White Center news Comments Off on SNOW AFTERMATH: School changes for Thursday


The snow has stopped, but what’s on the ground has stayed. School changes:

From Highline Public Schools:

Holy Family Bilingual School – 1 hour late. BASS available at 8, school starts at 9

Anything else we should know? Text or call our 24/7 hotline – 206-293-6302 – thanks!

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FOLLOWUP: Pedestrian hit by Metro bus in White Center

February 20th, 2018 Tracy Posted in King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Pedestrian hit by Metro bus in White Center

On Sunday, we reported on an incident that sent a pedestrian to the hospital after he was hit at 15th/100th. Few details were available at the time, but we have just obtained more information now from KCSO Sgt. Ryan Abbott:

It appears a 59-year-old male was struck by a 60’ long double articulated Metro bus which was southbound on 15 AVE SW approaching SW 100. The driver stopped at the Metro stop near the NW corner of the intersection. The victim was on the west sidewalk and stumbled off the sidewalk and into the path of the bus as it drove away. The right rear tires of the bus struck the victim and he sustained critical leg injuries.

The driver had no idea he had struck the pedestrian and the 40-50 passengers on the bus at the time also did not notice that the pedestrian was struck. The victim was transported to Harborview for treatment.

No information yet on how the victim is doing.

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WHITE CENTER WEATHER: Snow right now, and probably more later this week

February 20th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Weather, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER WEATHER: Snow right now, and probably more later this week

Been seeing some snow? The National Weather Service has sent out an alert about it – a “short-term forecast” alert:

… A very light dusting of snow on grassy or cold surfaces may occur, especially along the west side of Puget Sound from Bremerton to Hood Canal, south of Tacoma in Pierce county, and hilltops around the Seattle metro area. Most spots will just have passing flurries with no accumulation.

Even if this doesn’t amount to much, the longer-term forecast says we’re likely to see more, with multiple chances tomorrow through Saturday.

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Pedestrian hit by driver, 15th SW closed north of 100th for investigation

February 18th, 2018 Tracy Posted in King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news 1 Comment »

Thanks for the tips – 15th SW is blocked north of SW 100th because of a King County Sheriff’s Office crash investigation. Deputies at the scene include the special team that investigates serious incidents like this. They tell us a driver hit a male pedestrian, who was taken to Harborview Medical Center; no information on his condiion. They expect to be here investigating for a few more hours.

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POWER OUTAGE UPDATE: 4,100+ in White Center, Shorewood, and beyond

February 18th, 2018 Tracy Posted in utilities, White Center news 1 Comment »

3:16 PM: Seattle City Light says 4,100 homes and businesses are without power in White Center, Shorewood, and points south. No cause listed yet; the restoration estimate is 9 pm, but keep in mind that this is only an estimate – could be much sooner or much later.

3:50 PM: The outage map now attributes this outage to a tree.

4:22 PM: Looks like almost everyone is back on.

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About last night’s White Center attack

February 14th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news 7 Comments »

If you missed our coverage of last night’s White Center attack that injured an employee of Cascade Heights Veterinary Clinic, it’s on our partner site West Seattle Blog – we originally heard about the helicopter search from people on the city side of the line, so that’s where we started the story, and never got around to crossposting here. Meantime, if you want to talk with deputies about crime/safety concerns, Friday is the day for Coffee with a Cop at the White Center Starbucks (16th/100th), as noted here last week – 9 am to 11 am, just drop in when you can.

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FOLLOWUP: Highline Schools levy passing

February 13th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Election, Schools, White Center news Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Highline Schools levy passing

From Highline Public Schools:

It appears the Highline Public Schools levy measure will pass, with early results showing 57.67 percent voting in favor of renewal.

“I am grateful to voters for their support of our students and schools. Local funding for our schools is critical,” said Superintendent Susan Enfield. “It allows us to provide the quality education our community expects for our children, which goes beyond the minimum funded by the state.”

The levy bridges the gap between what the state funds and the education Highline provides students. The approved levy pays for critical needs, including teachers, staff, school nurses, safety and security officers, counselors, social workers, special education, Camp Waskowitz and athletics.

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ELECTION DAY: Don’t forget to get your ballot in!

February 13th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Education, Highline School District, White Center news Comments Off on ELECTION DAY: Don’t forget to get your ballot in!

It’s Tuesday – and that means it’s Election Day. Highline Public Schools has a levy replacement on the ballot, and you have until tonight to cast your vote – if you’re sending it in via postal mail, you’ll want to be sure it carries today’s postmark; if you are dropping it off in a ballot dropbox, get it to the one at White Center Library (1439 SW 107th) before 8 pm. Look for first-night results here around 8:15 pm. (Looking for levy info? Here’s how the district explains it.)

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UPDATE: Power outage blamed on vault fire

February 11th, 2018 Tracy Posted in fire, utilities, White Center news 2 Comments »

7:29 PM: Out of power? You’re far from alone. 3,000-plus customers in White Center and south West Seattle, because of a vault fire near 22nd/Roxbury. (And Roxbury is currently blocked by the Seattle Fire response.) We’re covering the outage on partner site West Seattle Bloggo here for the latest.

8:41 PM:
The City Light map shows just about everyone should be back on. If you’re not, please be sure they know – 206-684-3000.

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ROAD-CLOSURE ALERT: Work at 26th SW/SW 112th next week

February 9th, 2018 Tracy Posted in Traffic, Transportation, White Center news Comments Off on ROAD-CLOSURE ALERT: Work at 26th SW/SW 112th next week

Road alert from King County – drainage work will close 26th SW/SW 112th starting Monday morning and continuing until Friday afternoon. We will keep an eye on it in case it reopens early, of course.

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4 White Center-area organizations get King County grants

February 7th, 2018 Tracy Posted in King County, White Center news Comments Off on 4 White Center-area organizations get King County grants

Four organizations in unincorporated North Highline are receiving King County Community Service Area Grants, as just announced:

King County Executive Dow Constantine today announced 65 volunteer-led community events and projects that will be expanded in unincorporated communities with grants of up to $3,000 each.

The Community Service Area Grants will enhance projects and events, such as First Aid classes, local music events, salmon habitat restoration, emergency preparedness, purchase a refrigerator for a food bank, and more.

“Volunteer-driven projects that refurbish playgrounds and pools, restore forest trails, and add street lights make our communities safer, more vibrant, and better connected,” said Executive Constantine. “Our investments will catalyze the work led by volunteers so it benefits more people throughout King County.”

The community groups successfully competed for a total of $90,000 in grants, which range between $290 and $3,000 each. Community organizations are required to match at least one quarter of the total project costs. The projects must be accessible to all residents, regardless of race, income, or language spoken.

The local recipients (see the full countywide list here):

Sea Mar CHC – Wall mural 8 $ 1,750
Southwest Little League – Baseball equipment – bats – $ 1,000
White Center Community Development Association – White Center Spring Clean Event – $ 1,000
Whitewater Aquatics Management Pool motor – $ 2,250

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