Convicted arsonist dies of overdose in White Center

December 18th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on Convicted arsonist dies of overdose in White Center

A familiar name was on today’s list of deaths investigated by the King County Medical Examiner’s Office: Matthew Robert-David Hicks. The KCMEO says Hicks is the 38-year-old man who died at the Lotus/Little Caesar’s restaurant building at 10439 16th SW last Friday, and lists his cause of death as an accidental overdose including fentanyl and methamphetamine. Hicks is the man who pleaded guilty to the arson that destroyed the former Yarington’s Funeral Home site at 16th/107th, a few blocks from where he died. Court records show he was sentenced to 13 months in 2021, but had already served more than half that time. Then in February of last year, he was charged with assaulting a man, and found guilty last December, subsequently sentenced to 19 months, but again had already served more than half the time by then. We don’t know how long Hicks had been out of prison at the time of his death.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Bus-murder suspect Miguel Rivera Dominguez surrenders

November 6th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Bus-murder suspect Miguel Rivera Dominguez surrenders

(Also published on partner site West Seattle Blog)

(15th south of Roxbury, October 3)

The King County Sheriff’s Office has announced that 17-year-old White Center bus-murder suspect Miguel Rivera Dominguez is in custody. Here’s the entirety of the announcement:

This morning, November 6, 2023, at 9:55 AM, homicide suspect Miguel Rivera Dominguez turned himself into the King County Sheriff’s Office without incident. Rivera Dominguez was named as the suspect in the shooting of 21-year-old Marcel Da’jon Wagner, who was fatally shot while riding on a King County Metro Transit Bus in White Center on October 3rd.

We want to thank our neighboring law enforcement agencies and community members for their assistance, tips, and support during this extensive investigation. Together, we are working to make our community safer.

According to a tipster, he surrendered at the KCSO precinct in Burien, the city in which he had been residing. The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office charged Rivera Dominguez as an adult with first-degree murder last week, saying video from the bus suggested he shot and killed Wagner – who may have been asleep – without provocation or any sort of confrontation, without even saying a word. He’ll be held in lieu of $3 million bail.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: White Center bus murder suspect charged – but not yet in custody

November 1st, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: White Center bus murder suspect charged – but not yet in custody

He’s still not in custody, but the teenage suspect in last month’s murder aboard a Metro bus in White Center is now charged – as an adult.

The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office filed charges of first-degree murder and second-degree unlawful gun possession against 17-year-old Miguel R. Rivera Dominguez in the death of 21-year-old Marcell D. Wagner. And with that, an “active warrant” is out for Rivera Dominguez’s arrest, which would put him in jail with bail set at $3 million. The charging documents tell the story of what police and prosecutors believe happened – and for those who assumed there must have been some sort of dispute or confrontation between the two, apparently not: “Without any provocation, and in fact without having ever interacted with the victim at all, the defendant fired five rounds into the victim’s head and neck at point blank range. The defendant then fired two more shots through the door of the bus and fled to a location where he could change his clothing before returning home again.”

Investigators eventually identified Rivera Dominguez by tracing back to the Burien neighborhood where he and a friend had gotten on that bus. They learned he had once been reported as a runaway from his home there, and that he had been suspended from Highline High School for a fight during the last school year. Watching the bus’s on-board video of the shooting, detectives noted that the suspect’s friend appeared as shocked as the bus’s other 15 passengers when he pulled a gun and opened fire on the victim, who was described as possibly sleeping. The court documents say detectives eventually talked to the friend and he also told them he had no idea Rivera Dominguez was going to shoot someone, and that neither of them knew the victim, who had boarded the bus before they did, and was seated in the rear, where they also sat. Deputies found six casings on the bus and one outside. Rivera Dominguez was last seen at the Boys and Girls Club in Greenbridge shortly after the shooting, where he changed his clothes. If you have any information on Rivera Dominguez’s whereabouts, call 911.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: KCSO identifies, asks for help in finding White Center bus-shooting suspect

October 16th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: KCSO identifies, asks for help in finding White Center bus-shooting suspect

Two weeks after a 21-year-old man was shot and killed on a Metro bus at 15th/Roxbury, the King County Sheriff’s Office has identified a 17-year-old suspect and is releasing photos, asking for your help in finding him:

King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) Major Crimes Detectives are seeking the community’s help in locating the suspect of a homicide in White Center on October 3rd.

17-year-old Miguel Rivera Dominguez (pictured) has been identified as the suspect who fatally shot Marcel Da’jon Wagner, 21, on a Metro Bus earlier this month.

Rivera Dominguez has strong ties to the Burien area and is known to use public transportation or seek rides from others. It’s likely he will be wearing a mask to conceal his face while in public. Rivera Dominguez is believed to be armed and extremely dangerous.

Anyone with information on the suspect’s whereabouts can submit a tip by calling (206) 263-2090, via email at mcutips@kingcounty.gov, or anonymously via the P3Tips app. If located, call 911 immediately.

We asked KCSO for any additional descriptive information. They tell us he is 6′ tall, 170 pounds.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Clerk hit in mini-mart robbery

October 14th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news 3 Comments »

According to a bulletin broadcast by Seattle Police (though it’s a King County Sheriff’s Office case), the mini-mart at 15th/Roxbury was hit by a strong-arm robbery a short time ago, and the clerk needed medical attention after being punched in the face by one of the robbers. We don’t know whether this was a shoplift-turned-robbery (which would be defined as such by the use of violence) or a holdup. Five suspects described only as being in their teens and 20s got away in a “blue sedan”; a car of similar description took off after a hit-run crash shortly thereafter at 17th/Roxbury.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

FOLLOWUP: Bus-shooting victim identified

October 10th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Bus-shooting victim identified

(WCN photo, Monday: Memorial for bus-shooting victim)

“M.W.” are the initials spelled out at the memorial along 15th SW for the man shot to death aboard a Metro bus there one week ago tonight. When we photographed the memorial yesterday, we didn’t know what the initials stood for – but tonight we do. The King County Medical Examiner’s Office has identified the victim as 21-year-old Marcell D. Wagner, who died from “multiple gunshot wounds.” Still no word of an arrest; we’ll be checking again with the King County Sheriff’s Office tomorrow.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Man shot, killed on bus at 15th/Roxbury

October 3rd, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Man shot, killed on bus at 15th/Roxbury

(Added: WSB photo)

5:52 PM: A man is reported to have been killed in a shooting on a Metro bus on 15th SW just south of Roxbury. Seattle Police were the first on the scene so our coverage launched on partner site West Seattle Blog, but it’s in King County Sheriff’s Office jurisdiction, so they’re taking over the investigation. It was reported around 5:10 pm. The victim was described as “around 30 years old.” We haven’t heard anything else about exact circumstances; the bus was a RapidRide H Line headed for Westwood Village, our photo shows. Conflicting descriptions of the shooter have been broadcast so we don’t have anything for sure right now. If you’ve seen/heard a helicopter, that’s the shared TV chopper, not Guardian One. We’ll add anything more we find out; 15th SW is closed near the scene while the investigation continues.

6 PM: Now Guardian One is also over the scene.

10:08 PM: Here’s the KCSO news release, for the record (though it doesn’t say anything we haven’t already reported:

This evening (October 3rd) at approximately 5:10 pm, deputies from the King County Sheriff’s Office responded to the vicinity of SW Roxbury ST and 15th Ave SW for reports of a shooting that occurred on a Metro bus. Upon arrival, deputies discovered a single victim, who was unfortunately pronounced deceased at the scene.

Multiple specialized units, including Guardian 1 aerial support and a K9 Unit, responded to conduct a thorough search for the individuals involved. As of this moment, the search operation has concluded, and the suspect(s) in question remain at large.

The King County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Unit will be investigating.

11:20 PM: 15th has reopened, per a Metro advisory.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Cannabis shop crash-and-grab

September 19th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Cannabis shop crash-and-grab

Thanks to Zac for the tip and photo.

Zac noticed last night that the Mr. O.G. cannabis store at 9823 15th SW had the telltale boarded-up front. We checked with the King County Sheriff’s Office this morning. They say a vehicle was used to break into the shop early Monday and the burglars left the vehicle (no description given) behind.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH: Seen any of these stolen guitars and bikes?

August 24th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on CRIME WATCH: Seen any of these stolen guitars and bikes?

That security-camera image is from a theft in which Drew says he lost $10,000 worth of guitars and bicycles. It happened in his storage unit at 125 SW 112th and he’s hoping someone might spot some of the items. Here’s a full list – with more photos – of what was stolen, including contact info for Drew and for investigators, if you have any information.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Man shot at Steve Cox Memorial Park; gunfire near Roxbury Lanes but no injuries

August 6th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Man shot at Steve Cox Memorial Park; gunfire near Roxbury Lanes but no injuries

Two overnight incidents: Just after 1 am, a man was found at Steve Cox Memorial Park with a gunshot wound to the leg. He was taken to Harborview Medical Center. King County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Capt. Cory Stanton says the Major Crimes Unit is investigating. Meantime, we also asked about an incident on the North Highline Fire incident log suggesting a possible gunfire-related incident around 12:30 am near Roxbury Lanes. Capt. Stanton tells WCN, “Witnesses reported someone was seen shooting into the air. There are no reported injuries at this time. A suspect was located and booked into KCJ.”

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Store robbery

July 12th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Store robbery

A White Center store was held up this afternoon and an intensive search ensued for the robbers. We’ve been covering all this in real time on partner site West Seattle Blog because it came to our attention with the search centered on the city side of the line, but we eventually learned it had started with a White Center robbery: The Top to Bottom clothing store, 9651 15th SW, was robbed around 1:30 pm. KCSO says four people with guns were involved and got away with about $500 in merchandise. No injuries. Some of the stolen clothing was recovered in the West Seattle neighborhood a few blocks north where officers, deputies, and the Guardian One helicopter were searching for a while. Two possible suspects were detained but released for lack of evidence; this past half-hour, at least one other person was detained for questioning in White Center, but we don’t know yet how that worked out.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Parking-lot standoff

July 11th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: Parking-lot standoff

9:58 AM: King County Sheriff’s Deputies are getting assistance from Seattle Police in what’s basically a parking lot standoff just south of (corrected) Bartell Drugs at 15th/Roxbury. They told us at the scene that a man who’s in a parked vehicle was making threats toward passers-by and may be armed, so they’ve closed off 15th south of Roxbury. No other info so far; avoid the area.

10:01 AM: They’re reopening 15th, but 14th will be blocked south of Roxbury.

10:15 AM: Via Twitter, KCSO describes the suspect as experiencing a “mental-health crisis.”

12:29 PM: We’re back in the area to check. The lot is still taped off, with many police vehicles. 14th SW has reopened, so this situation is now confined to the parking lot.

3:59 PM: The person has been taken into custody since our last check in the area.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

FOLLOWUP: Plea bargain for drunk, speeding driver who killed 2 people in North Burien crash

July 4th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Burien, Crime, White Center news Comments Off on FOLLOWUP: Plea bargain for drunk, speeding driver who killed 2 people in North Burien crash

(Also published on partner site West Seattle Blog)

(WCN photo from April 2021 crash scene)

A South Delridge woman has pleaded guilty to two counts of vehicular homicide in the April 2021 crash (WCN coverage here) that killed an Arbor Heights couple in North Burien. Court documents say Irene Plancarte-Bustos, now 28, was driving drunk, going over 60 mph, with her 3-yeqr-old son in her car, when she slammed into the car carrying 35-year-old Lauren Dupuis-Perez and 38-year-old Kamel Dupuis-Perez. The impact pushed their car into the path of a pickup truck whose driver couldn’t stop before also hitting it, and orphaned the Dupuis-Perezes’ two children. After the crash on the Ambaum Boulevard “S” curve, Plancarte-Bustos drove north a short distance to the Rainbow Mini-Mart, where officers found her. She’s been in jail ever since. In the agreement, in addition to the vehicular-homicide pleas, she pleaded guilty to one gross-misdemeanor count of hit-and-run, while two felony hit-run counts were dropped. She has no record and as part of the plea bargain, prosecutors are recommending the low end of the standard sentencing range, 8 1/2 years plus an extra year for the “enhancement” of having a child in the car. The final sentencing decision will be up to King County Superior Court Judge Averil Rothrock on July 14th. Family and friends have created this website as a tribute to the victims, their work, and their legacy.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

UPDATE: King County Sheriff’s Office investigating White Center stabbing

June 26th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on UPDATE: King County Sheriff’s Office investigating White Center stabbing

11:05 AM: Big callout right now for King County Sheriff’s Deputies and medics for what’s reported as a stabbing at 15th and Roxbury. More details as we get them.

11:20 AM: Our crew at the scene reports this happened at the service station on the southwest corner of the intersection. The victim has been taken to Harborview Medical Center. A suspect is in custody (and currently on a stretcher).

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

UPDATE: Roxy’s Casino/Roxbury Lanes remains closed after triple shooting

May 29th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on UPDATE: Roxy’s Casino/Roxbury Lanes remains closed after triple shooting

As covered on our partner site West Seattle Blog starting late Saturday night, three people were shot at Roxy’s Casino. The casino and adjacent Roxbury Lanes plan to remain closed until Thursday as they continue dealing with the aftermath. WSB commenters say two of the victims are Roxy’s employees. While KCSO is saying very little about the shooting or the investigation, Harborview Medical Center says all three victims are still there, two men in critical condition, one woman in serious condition. No description or image of the shooter has been made public yet.

ADDED TUESDAY: One of the men has improved to serious condition, according to Harborview.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH: Helicopter over White Center after mini-mart holdup; car-wash assault

May 25th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, Helicopter, White Center news 2 Comments »

Two Crime Watch notes today:

HELICOPTER OVER WHITE CENTER: The King County Sheriff’s Office helicopter Guardian One has been circling for a while. We’re trying to find out why and will update when we know.

UPDATE: The mini-mart on the northwest corner of 16th/107th was robbed, we’ve confirmed at the scene. We’re told the robber(s) got away with about $150. The store remains open, as does the teriyaki restaurant next door. The helicopter has since moved on.

Meantime, a reader report of a recent incident:

CAR-WASH ASSAULT: This is from the victim’s mom:

I just wanted to make readers aware that there is risk of assault at the Car Palace car wash [10450 16th SW]. Two weeks ago, my 19-year old daughter was getting coins from the bill changer at the car wash. It was about 10 am.

She was groped from behind by a man who was about 5’5″ with dark hair. He was filming himself groping her with his camera. When she yelled, he took off running. She was so upset that she unwisely leapt into her car to follow him.

She followed him in her car to a nearby street where he hid under a bush. She then called her dad, who called the police. They saw the man enter a house nearby. They waited for 3 hours for the police, or in this case the sheriff, but no one came. There is currently just one car assigned to White Center.

Last night, the sheriff’s deputy came to interview my daughter. They cannot interview the suspect until the single deputy gets a partner for safety reasons.

At the very least, we’d like to warn other women that Car Palace may not be safe when you are alone, even in broad daylight on a busy street.

Incident # C23017252. We’re checking on the KCSO staffing situation, as they recently assigned a new “storefront deputy,” according to briefings at the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH: Charges filed in Top Hat gun, stolen-truck case

March 31st, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news 1 Comment »

(KCSO photos)</em>

The King County Sheriff’s Office says those guns were seized in a Top Hat case in which charges have just been filed. The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has charged 34-year-old Arthur Pessina with second-degree unlawful firearm possession and possession of a stolen vehicle. Charging documents say this all unfolded Tuesday at an apartment complex in the 11000 block of 1st Avenue SW. A deputy had gone there to investigate a threats report. That wasn’t panning out, but as the deputy prepared to leave, someone came up and told him about a backpack that had been dropped in front of one of the apartments. Inside was a semi-automatic pistol and three boxes of ammunition. Someone else told the deputy about video showing who left it there. The gun turned out to have been stolen in Kitsap County, and the deputy soon spotted the man shown on the video with it. Investigation also tied him to what turned out to be a stolen pickup truck – taken less than a week earlier from the Angle Lake transit station – in which 21 more guns were found.

The charging documents say that man was Pessina, and the deputy arrested him. He has a felony conviction and therefore can’t legally possess guns. The charging papers indicate the guns’ origins are still being investigated, so more charges might be possible in this case. For now, the jail register shows Pessina is being held in lieu of $150,000 bail, and also shows he has pending cases with charges including hit-run, eluding, and assault.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Shooting victim identified

March 7th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, White Center news Comments Off on CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Shooting victim identified

The King County Medical Examiner’s Office has released the name of the man shot to death in White Center on Sunday night. They identify him as 29-year-old Karel Juarez, and say he died of “multiple gunshot wounds.” He was found dead near 16th/107th around 10 pm Sunday. No word of any progress in the investigation so far.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: KCSO investigating deadly shooting

March 6th, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on WHITE CENTER CRIME WATCH: KCSO investigating deadly shooting

King County Sheriff’s Office detectives are investigating a deadly shooting. They tell WCN that someone called in to report gunfire just before 10 pm on 16th SW near SW 107th. Deputies arrived and found a man dead of a gunshot wound. A KCSO spokesperson says, “We do not have information on suspects at this time.” There was a report on Seattle Police frequencies that a “gray or red Honda” might have been associated with this shooting and was seen heading northbound. We’ll add anything more we find out.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

UPDATE: Shooting investigation in Greenbridge

February 1st, 2023 Tracy Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news Comments Off on UPDATE: Shooting investigation in Greenbridge

11:20 PM: Police and medics have responded to an apartment complex in the 9700 block of 8th Place SW in Greenbridge. We have few details aside that they’re seeking three shooting suspects. We’ll add anything more we find out.

12:06 PM THURSDAY: We followed up with KCSO. They say the 911 call came in around 11 pm: “Deputies arrived and located a male adult victim with gunshot injuries and was transported to Harborview Medical Center. It was reported there were possibly two suspects involved in this incident. Deputies conducted a search of the area along with K-9 but were unable to locate any suspects. This case is open and active, and no additional updates are available at this time.”

AddThis Social Bookmark Button