Category Archives: SPD

Would-Be Queen Anne Robber Left Trail of Clues for SPD

The news about the teenaged would-be robber on Queen Anne has been circulating the neighborhood for the past two weeks since the incident. Last week, the 17-year-old was charged as an adult with attempted first-degree robbery and first-degree assault.

On January 2nd around 1:30 a.m., 17-year-old Henry Hicks allegedly walked into the 7-Eleven at 1607 Queen Anne Ave N. He was masked to conceal his identity. According to reports, he pulled a gun and demanded that the store clerk fill Hicks’ backpack with cash. The clerk didn’t comply because he didn’t believe the weapon was real, and responded by throwing a plastic milk crate at Hicks, hitting his right hip. Hicks allegedly fired the gun and only just missed the clerk’s head before fleeing without any money.

Police responded with a K-9 team that discovered a mountain bike left behind in the alley behind the store, but the trail ran cold after a few blocks of searching.

Then, on January 3rd Hicks’ mother reported a burglary at their home, which is less than one mile from the convenience store. She told an officer that her son had found the gun cabinet in the basement open, and a revolver was missing. Since SPD found no signs of forced entry and no other missing items (including several other guns left in the cabinet), something seemed fishy. Hicks told the responding officer that he found the cabinet open after returning from a walk, which, according to charging papers suggested he had really gone to look for the gun he had dropped while fleeing from the 7-Eleven.

The responding officer to the home burglary talked with other officers who responded to the 7-Eleven incident, and a detective noted that Hicks’ description was similar to that of the would-be 7-Eleven robber. When SPD returned to Hicks’ home to question him, more details came out and eventually they served a search warrant which turned up the bike, clothing, shoes and backpack that matched surveillance at the 7-Eleven. A black .22 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver also matching the surveillance was later found in a front yard near the store, which happened to be registered to Hicks’ father.

Hicks was arrested and last week charged for these crimes.

SWAT Standoff with Robbery Suspect Closes Queen Anne Streets for Hours

UPDATED

Since early this morning, several Queen Anne streets have been closed due to a standoff between SWAT officers and a neighborhood resident. The standoff occurred after unsuccessful attempts to serve an arrest warrant to a robbery suspect. SPD initially tried to serve the warrant at about 6 a.m. this morning, but the suspect barricaded himself inside and refused to come out of the basement apartment at W Galer Street and 4th Avenue West. He also claimed to have a handgun.

The standoff ended after almost 9 hours, when SPD set off three flash-bangs. After sending in a camera to check on the suspect, a SWAT team entered the unit and found the suspect down with a gunshot wound. The extent of his injuries is unknown, but he was brought out on a gurney at approximately 2:20 p.m. and transported to Harborview Medical Center.

After the standoff began, SPD blocked off several streets around the home as negotiators attempted to convince the suspect to surrender. He allowed his adult son to leave the home at about 8 a.m., who exited the house without injury.

“In my sleep, I heard police say, ‘Come out with your hands up.’ I heard a grenade — an explosion. They (police) told me it was a stun grenade,” Antoaneta Georgieva, a neighbor who was awoken from the commotion, told the Seattle Times.

More than eight hours passed since SPD’s initial attempt to serve the warrant and arrest the suspect. Police used several flash-bangs and called to the suspect with a megaphone, and used neighbors’ apartments for vantage points to keep visual contact with the suspect.

This Q13 Fox has more information:

West Galer Street was closed between Third and Fifth Avenues West. Due to the street closures, several buses were rerouted. According to King County Metro, bus commuters were advised to use Route 13 or Route 1 instead of Route 2 to get downtown, and Route 29 had been diverted.

Featured photo source: Evan Bush for the Seattle Times.

Another Ride the Ducks Accident, This Time in Uptown Queen Anne

A Ride the Ducks vehicle collided with a car last Thursday, March 31st, 2016 near the Uptown QFC location in lower Queen Anne. Although no one was injured, the collision re-sparked scrutiny from state and city officials.

Investigations were started last September, after the fatal collision of a Ride the Ducks tour vehicle with a charter bus on Aurora Bridge, in which five North Seattle College students were killed and others were injured. Following the incident, the Seattle branch suspended tours for a few months, as they altered routes and added a second tour guide. Tours resumed in January of this year, but the controversy over whether the amphibious vehicle tours should remain in operation continues.

Last week’s collision occurred just before 3:15 p.m., when the Ride the Ducks truck attempted to make a left turn onto Fifth Avenue North at the same time as a red Toyota Camry – both coming from opposite directions. No one was injured in the collision. “All mechanical systems on the Duck operated normally, allowing it to stop quickly and avoid injury,” Annie Alley, a representative of the Seattle Ride the Ducks’ PR firm, wrote to the Seattle Times.

This comes after the Seattle Ride the Ducks has said it has taken or intends to take steps to boost safety. The company has admitted to safety violations numbering more than 460, and has agreed to settle a Washington State complaint for $222,000 in penalties.

Watch the King 5 news report here:

Update on the Queen Anne Patrol

Community members have voiced concerns about growing crime in the Queen Anne neighborhood, resorting to a plan to hire private security firm.

John Compatore, a former police officer from Oakland, is leading the charge. He recognizes the excessive burden placed on SPD, and their inability to provide the resources for response and presence that the neighborhood is asking for. At the same time, “This is only going to get worse if somebody doesn’t take control,” Compatore told KOMO News. “If somebody else doesn’t step up – we will.”

While there are concerns about drug issues, illegal parking, and trash dumping, the bigger concern for Queen Anne neighbors is property crimes: car prowls, burglaries, and theft of packages left on doorsteps.

To begin to combat these issues, neighbors met at Queen Anne Baptist Church on Thursday, January 14th to discuss hiring private Queen Anne patrol and security personnel. The Queen Anne Patrol website provided a summary of the meeting. Approximately 150 people attended, including Sergeant Kelly and Terry Johnston (SPD’s Crime Prevention Coordinator). While the preliminary meeting did not have a firm agreement or plan for reducing crime and/or hiring a private patrol, the issues are certainly widespread – about 75 percent of audience members reported having been victims of home burglaries.

Unfortunately, Compatore was ill and unable to attend and run the meeting. However, the organizer for the newly operational Magnolia Patrol, Joe Villarino, was at the meeting and offered some suggestions.

Evan Conklin, who provided the summary, stated that moving forward would likely require a non-profit corporation with funding, a board of directors made up of volunteers, and ongoing discussion. “In my opinion, it is going to cost between $250,000 – $500,000 a year to have a real patrol working full time here on the hill. Is it possible to have enough subscribers to pay that cost? If we can’t then is a part time patrol an option? If not, then are there other things we can do as a group (however many there are) that will have some level of effectiveness? (Maybe we can beef up the existing block watch program somehow to make it more effective),” he wrote in the summary.

To learn more about the Queen Anne Patrol, and to sign up to receive updates, visit the QAPatrol.org website.

Featured photo source: Pixabay.com