News Blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf Neighborhood


August crime in and around Maple Leaf

August 28th, 2016 by Mike

A round-up of some burglaries, vehicle thefts and prowls, and mail theft as August comes to an end. (Shown in map at right.)

But first, from Seattle Police this week.

“After stealing $800 worth of cologne and pulling a knife on Northgate Mall security Tuesday, a 49-year-old man claimed he had swallowed heroin in an apparent—and ultimately unsuccessful—effort to get out of going to jail.

“Police were called to the mall around 8 p.m. after the suspect dashed out of a store with 10 bottles of cologne, valued at over $830, and tussled with security guards. He then brandished a knife and fled, but was arrested a short time later by SPD officers.”

Brad emails on Wednesday.

“Last night a friend and I came back from vacation. Her car was parked at my house (by Sacajawea) and she put her suitcase in between her car and another. She came inside for less than two minutes. Went back to her car and it was gone!

“There was nothing of real value to anybody (clothes, make up, gifts etc) but costly to replace. Hoping whoever stole it dumped it somewhere close. If anybody sees it can can they report it. Thanks.”

(Comments here STILL aren’t working, but you can report on our Facebook page.)

On Monday Damien emailed:

Before our family left for a week-long vacation, a brand new, dark grey 4 Runner was parked at the corner of Brooklyn Avenue and Northeast 82nd Street. When we got back, we noticed it had been hit by another vehicle. There is quite a lot of glass left behind from the offending vehicle’s headlight and blinker, and the 4 Runner has a damaged rear bumper.

Wondering if anyone is or knows the owner of the 4 Runner, it doesn’t look like it has moved in almost 2 weeks.

Over at Nextdoor Northgate/Maple Leaf are reports of:

* An attempted break-in at 15th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 100th Street.

* An actual break-in at 15th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 96th Street.

* Luggage theft at 17th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 94th Street.

* Stolen Subaru from Northgate.

* Mail theft along Eighth Avenue Northeast near Northeast 96th Street.

* An entire bank of mailboxes prowled on 12th Avenue Northeast between Northeast 102nd and 103rd streets.

* A hit-and-run damaging two cars along Eighth Avenue Northeast.
* Mail theft along Northeast 91st Street between 15th and 20th avenue northeast.

* Stolen mail found along Northeast 96th Street between 15th and 17th avenues northeast.

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Two neighbors report car prowls this week – roughly 30 vehicle crimes so far this month

October 24th, 2013 by Mike

This morning Karen reports that her car was broken into, probably while she was waiting for the Olympic View Elementary School bus.

They smashed the passenger side window and rifled through the glove compartment. They scored an incomplete library audiobook – “Cleopatra: A Life.”

They didn’t get the complete audiobook because one of the CDs was in the player. A small consolation.

This occurred at Northeast 94th Street and Eighth Avenue Northeast.

On Wednesday Donna emailed that her car was broken into on Northeast 102nd Street between 12th and 15th avenues northeast , “leaving quite a mess in their wake.

“They ultimately found nothing of value other than a $20 bill, which they took.”

Car prowls – where a vehicle is broken into but not stolen – are considered the most common crimes in the city. We haven’t reported on them since mid-May, but since the start of October there have been roughly 30 cars broken into or stolen entirely in the neighborhood, according to the police crime map.

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36 vehicles stolen or prowled since our last report

May 4th, 2013 by Mike

Zack emailed on Friday afternoon:

Just a heads up for any updates you do…. We had our car ransacked on Northeast 98th Street between 12th/15th avenues as well as our neighbor’s car.

They didn’t take anything from my car as I don’t keep anything of value in there and I leave the doors unlocked. They just went through the glove box and left everything piled on my driver side seat.

Since our last such update on March 11, the Seattle Police crime map shows right at 21 car prowls and 15 stolen vehicles in the Maple Leaf neighborhood.

Many occurred around Northgate.

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Eighth Ave. car prowler leaves GPS – somebody else's – behind

April 5th, 2012 by Mike

Here’s a new one.

Alisa emails this morning to say:

Tuesday night the Eighth Avenue Northeast car prowler returned.  We did not see him this time, however, in the process of rifling through our truck, he left a navigation system he presumably stole from someone else’s vehicle.

It’s a Garmin Nuvi, email us if it’s yours. Since we have long stopped leaving valuables in our vehicles, we are only out $0.75 spare change.

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Eighth Ave. car prowler leaves GPS – somebody else’s – behind

April 5th, 2012 by Mike

Here’s a new one.

Alisa emails this morning to say:

Tuesday night the Eighth Avenue Northeast car prowler returned.  We did not see him this time, however, in the process of rifling through our truck, he left a navigation system he presumably stole from someone else’s vehicle.

It’s a Garmin Nuvi, email us if it’s yours. Since we have long stopped leaving valuables in our vehicles, we are only out $0.75 spare change.

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Neighbor reports home burglary last night

January 28th, 2012 by Mike

Update Jan. 29: Several other residents have recently emailed us about break-ins at neighboring homes or businesses.

One reported that Olympic View Community Church, at Fifth Avenue Northeast and Northeast 95th Street, was broken into twice last weekend. The expanded police reports, now available, show several thousand dollars of damage and stolen electronics.

In addition, a week ago another resident at Roosevelt Way Northeast and Northeast 88th Street emailed:

My neighbor just came over to warn me that his apartment had been broken into on Friday. He’s unsure of what’s been taken at this point but the front door sustained damage. A police report was filed. The resident suspected it happened in the afternoon but piecing together details, we now believe the break-in happened sometime between 8 a.m. and possibly noon. I was home, as were several other people but we didn’t see or hear anything suspicious due to noise from expected maintenance work.


Sarah emailed overnight to report her home, on Northeast 90th Street near 15th Avenue Northeast, was broken into.

My husband and I were out for two-and-a-half hours between about 6:45 and 9:00 p.m. and came home to find our back door kicked in. They didn’t get much – looks like whoever it was never turned on the lights (also, our neighbors were home and never noticed this was happening).

Whoever it was grabbed some booze and personal electronics, and emptied our change jar (maybe $10?) while ransacking the bedroom. The police said it was a very juvenile burglary.

Thought everyone should know! Sigh. Off to clean up.

It’s too soon for Sarah’s burglary to show up on the police crime map, but here (above) is how it looks for the year to date. It includes a dozen home or commercial burglaries, plus stolen and prowled vehicles.

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How the car prowlers work (on N.E. 89th, between 3-4 a.m.) – and other places in the neighborhood

August 17th, 2011 by Mike

Update 2: Colin emails: “I live on Northeast 82nd Street, just east of Roosevelt.  Monday morning (8/15), I woke up at 5:15 a.m. and just happened to look outside, towards our cars parked on 82nd.

A 20-something guy was peering into the window of my wife’s car.  He started walking away, and I immediately called 911 to report a suspicious person peering into cars.  As luck would have it, while I was on the phone with 911, the guy *drove up*, double-parked next to my wife’s car, and started trying to pry into the trunk of my wife’s car.  We started making a ton of noise in an effort to scare him away; he got into his car and sped off before he had a chance to break into our car.  Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get his license plate #, but it was a silver Mazda CX7 with tinted windows.  My hat’s off to SPD – while they didn’t arrive in time to catch the guy, at least 4 squad cars responded to the call.

Update: James reports the car prowlers were back Tuesday night. “That’s two nights in a row.”

He said he’s talked with the cops, who said to get a license plate if possible but to not confront the prowlers.


James emails that since he’s started sleeping with the window open this summer, “I’ve been woken up numerous times by the same couple of car prowlers.”

He lives at Northeast 89th Street and 17th Avenue Northeast:

Their method is to drive west up 89th between 3:00 and 4:00 a.m. and check the door handles on every street-parked car, as well as those in driveways, to see if they’re unlocked.

The way I hear them coming is the telltale rev of the car as it drives a very short distance, then the series of clicks as one of them hops out and checks the door handles. They work fast, and usually by the time I get my glasses on and make it to the window they’re too far away for me to read the license plate (though I almost caught them last night–next time)!

We write about car crimes, either stolen vehicles or, as James is describing, car prowls, fairly regularly. A month ago more than a car a day were being hit in the neighborhood; that slacked off a bit by the end of July. The map shows stolen or prowled cars for roughly the past month – remember that each icon can represent more than one car.

James says he’s going to keep records to see if it’s always the same night of the week, and hopes other residents will watch out, too. “But folks living in the area should make sure their car doors are always locked. Also, if anyone has a security camera (or better yet, insomnia and a window facing 89th), we can totally catch these guys!”

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Thieves ramp up to pillaging more than a car a day in Maple Leaf

July 19th, 2011 by Mike

It’s been 10 days since readers alerted us to car thieves in the neighborhood. At that time we said auto break-ins or thefts happened more than once every other day since June 1.

Now we can make that more than a car EVERY day.

This afternoon Calvin emailed:

I’m one of at least two people who had their cars burglarized last night (July 18) on 8th Ave. Northeast. When a police officer came to investigate the burglary of my vehicle, another person arrived who stated their car had also been entered and had valuable items stolen.

In my case, one item was stolen.  The thieves attempted to steal the car stereo, but seem to have given up after damaging it.

In both cases, there were no apparent signs of entry.  Residents should take caution and avoid leaving cars unlocked or windows down, and not leave valuable items in their vehicles overnight.

We’ve attached the police crime map for cars over the last 10 days. (Calvin and Co. from last night aren’t on there yet.) As before, the solid cars are stolen cars; the ones with the white dot were broken into (car prowls).

How many crimes it shows here depends a bit on how you count and where exactly you think Maple Leaf is.

But if you look at the diamond formed by Northgate Way, Lake City Way, Banner Way and Interstate 5, the map shows seven stolen cars and six car prowls reported from July 9 to July 19. (Some of the icons represent more than one crime. For example, the solid car icon near Fifth Avenue Northeast and Northeast 86st Street represents three stolen vehicles.)

Add in Calvin’s report and you get a total of 15 cars stolen or broken into here over the last 10 days.

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