Residents say more police needed to combat rise in violent crime in south Seattle

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SEATTLE -- Violent crime seems to be on the rise in south Seattle and South King County. There were three shootings in less than 12 hours Thursday night. So far, no arrests have been made.

An 18-year-old was taken to the hospital in critical condition after an overnight shooting at 46th Avenue South and South Henderson Street.

Pat Marukami, a member of the South Seattle Crime Prevention Council, doesn’t believe it was a random act of violence.

“The police think that was probably a targeted shooting, because he was shot three times.”

Marukami isn’t surprised the police’s gang unit is now investigating. She says violent crime in her neighborhood is on the rise, and she thinks gangs are to blame.

“One of the problems down here in south Seattle is we don't have enough for our kids to do. There are limited resources, limited activities.”

A look at SeaStat, the police’s new crime statistics tool, shows an increase in street robberies in June. There have also been several reports of gunshots in south Seattle over the last week.

“It feels much worse, much more violent crime than we've had in the earlier part of this year,” says Marukami.

But it’s not just a Seattle problem.

Thursday night, there was also a shooting at a busy parking lot near the Southcenter Mall in Tukwila. In Kent, a man was injured in what appeared to be a drive-by shooting near the Home Depot.

Marukami says hearing about incidents like that has made her more cautious.

“Every time when I go out of the building at night, I kind of peek out at the pathway before I walk to my car.”

She says people should be more aware of their surroundings. That’s one way to prevent becoming a victim.

“A lot of the crimes are avoidable, like not leaving things visible inside your vehicle, not using electronics on the bus or light rail.”

But she says to really make our streets safer, more resources need to be dedicated.

“We still don't have enough police officers, because we need officers to not just patrol and arrest criminals. We need police out on the streets, engaging with people. We're not in any kind of a preventative mode, we're always in a reactionary mode because we are so strapped for officers.”

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    • The World is Ending

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  • datagod

    We do not have enough police officers because our citizenry exhibits the kind of judgement that lets opportunistic thugs walk away with $300,000 for resisting arrest, while chastising career officers for doing their job.

  • Wallus

    South Seattle already sucks up all extra SPD personnel and has gotten Federal help as well. The community needs to intervene and invest more in these troubled young people and the adult gang leaders need to all be in prison.

  • Mike

    Limited acivities? No too many fatherless black kids with no direction. Spare me the political correctness crap. This is so true, but few want to admit it.

  • Aubrey Debauchery

    The “kids” have plenty to do, shoplifting, stealing cars, and finding young girls to trick on 3rd and Pine. They are underage, so nothing happens to them. Their parents are either hard-working, or uncaring. Oblivious either way. The cultural differences also feed into much of this.. The fact that their minors, pretty much gives them free reign. Also, the passiveness and laziness of “phone-people” invites attention from thugs and also assures no witnesses. The police won’t do a thing, especially in this “post-Ferguson” environment, for fear of losing their jobs, or being labeled a racist. The Sheriff should deputize 30 or so Russian police under contract for one month, and these problems would end. That’s a tad unrealistic, but it would work.

  • warthog6

    I wonder why they can’t find anyone willing to be a cop these days? The blacks don’t want to enrage eachother, and the whites don’t want to be railroaded.

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