Day of anti-police protests planned with marches on Capitol Hill’s East Precinct — UPDATE

2010's October 22nd events followed the killing of JT Williams by an SPD officer that summer and marked the start of a busy few years for anti-police protests around Capitol Hill

2010’s October 22nd protests followed the killing of JT Williams by an SPD officer that summer and marked the start of a busy few years for anti-police protests around Capitol Hill. After years busy with Occupy Seattle, anarchist and anti-cop rally activity around the Hill, 2014 has been a relatively quiet period for protest. (Image: CHS)

UPDATE 4:18 PM: A group of about 30 protesters marched from Garfield with chants of “Hands up, don’t shoot” and “Being black is not a crime” before assembling in front of the East Precinct around 4 PM. “We the community will police the police,” one speaker said, addressing the crowd and the group of police officers assigned to the protest. Streets in the area were partially closed but the rally has been peaceful and there have been no arrests.

Original report: The heartiest of activist souls will take to the drenched streets of Seattle’s Central District and Capitol Hill Wednesday afternoon and into the evening as part of protests against “police brutality and harassment of youth of color in Seattle.” The Garfield High School Black Student Union’s March for Ferguson begins at the 23rd Ave school at 3:30 PM. Organizers tell CHS the plan is to march to SPD’s East Precinct headquarters at 12th and Pine. Meanwhile, the annual October 22nd anti-police rally and march will again gather at Seattle Central starting at 5 PM and also is planned to include a march on the East Precinct.

In a statement sent to CHS by the group’s vice president, the Black Student Union organizers are asking participants to congregate “in front of SPD East Precinct to assert our rejection of the police force here and nationwide” —

Some are under the impression that Seattle is some sort of liberal Utopia where police brutality does not exist, despite the fact that the Seattle Police Department was under the investigation of the United States Department of Justice within the last three years for excessive force and concerns of discriminatory policing. The Department of Justice Findings Letter stated
“This perception is rooted in a number of factors, including negative street encounters, recent well-publicized videos of force being used against people of color, incidents of overt discrimination, and concerns that the pattern of excessive force disproportionately affects minorities.”

“We are using this march to call attention to the mass amounts of police brutality that happen in our country every day,” Black Student Union vice president Issa George said in a statement emailed to media.

The full BSU statement is below. Continue reading

Metrix Create:Space celebrates five years of DIY tech on the Hill

"Soldering is easy" (Image: Metrix)

“Soldering is easy” (Image: Metrix)

(Image: Metrix)

(Image: Metrix)

Most of the year you can walk the north end of Broadway barely hearing a peep from Metrix Create:Space – a DIY haven for robotic tinkering — outside of the occasional churning of machines and project chatter but last Friday  the business celebrated its fifth anniversary of being with a rambunctious crowd of makers, geeks and the people who love them filling the subterranean space.

Illuminated with green laser tubes — and free booze — the crowd included Boeing and Google employees, the DIY techs, students and a couple of noobs.

“I’ve met a lot of really great people… seeing them through a portion of their life, being a part of that is the most rewarding thing,” owner Matt Westervelt said. Over the past five years he’s seen a shift from clientele simply exploring, to those utilizing the space as a work station while at the same time promoting exploration and learning. Continue reading

Tea Republik getting ready to blend in on Broadway

(Images: Tea Republik)

With the light rail connection to the University District right around the block and set to open by early 2016, Broadway and John’s cafe connection to places familiar to the University of Washington crowd will also get a boost before the end of the year.

The signs have gone up for Tea Republik in the 200 block of Broadway E just a block from the coming soon Capitol Hill Station.

Owner Jeffry Kurniawan confirmed the hoped-for December opening with CHS. He and business partner Anton Lim will be opening their second Tea Republik to join the original University Way NE location which opened in 2012 and got a full makeover in early 2013.

The cafe is known for its hangout vibe and “fusion” approach to tea. Continue reading

Paul Allen wants to show you movies about the economy tonight on Capitol Hill — for free

(Image: We the Economy)

(Image: We the Economy)

Capitol Hill’s only remaining chain movie theater and Paul Allen’s Vulcan Productions — yes, he makes movies, too — are teaming up for a free screening Monday night of a new short film collection about making money in America and the state of the nation’s economy. Produced by Allen’s film company and Morgan Spurlock, short film collection We the Economy screens for free at E Roy’s Landmark Harvard Exit and in brick and mortar theaters across the country Monday night, October 20th, before being released — also for free — as an online series. You can reserve your ticket for Monday’s 7 PM showing or hope to grab one at the box office at 807 E Roy. Continue reading

Capitol Hill crowd-funded solar project ready for sign-ups

Capitol Hill Project Details Single site project 25.92 kW Made-in Washington Itek modules & inverters A "ballasted" system on the flat roof of the Holiday Apartments, located at 1001 E. John Street on Capitol Hill After system ownership passes to CHH, the electricity it generates will lower the operating costs for the Holiday Apartments and other CHH properties, directly benefitting low-income tenants.

Capitol Hill Project Details
Single site project
25.92 kW
Made-in Washington Itek modules & inverters
A “ballasted” system on the flat roof of the Holiday Apartments, located at 1001 E. John Street on Capitol Hill
After system ownership passes to CHH, the electricity it generates will lower the operating costs for the Holiday Apartments and other CHH properties, directly benefitting low-income tenants.

That Capitol Hill Ecodistrict project we told you about to create crowd-funded solar generation?

Capitol Hill Housing recently solidified plans to install community funded solar panels at its Holiday Apartments property at 10th and E John by the end of October.

It’s ready for you:

Seattle City Light has two projects in which customers can participate in the fall of 2014. Each has a limited number of units, and the paybacks are very similar, so whichever you choose (or if you choose both!) you’ll be helping bring new, clean, renewable energy to our electric grid while benefitting both yourself and an organization that is dedicated to conservation, sustainability and community. As with our previous Community Solar projects, the upfront costs will be paid by Seattle City Light, but ultimately the cost of the project will be paid for by customers who enroll in the program and participate by buying one or more solar units. These customers will in turn be paid back as they receive Washington State production incentives and City Light “virtual net metering” payments that currently total $1.16 per kilowatt hour of electricity generated by a community solar project. As City Light’s rates rise (very slightly) over time, the total payment will also rise as that increased rate is reflected in your payment.

City Light customers can sign up here to buy a unit here:

Starting at $150, anyone with a Seattle City Light account can participate in the Capitol Hill Community Solar program. Made possible by the state’s Renewable Energy Cost Recovery Incentive Payment Program, participants will receive reimbursement for their contribution as a credit on their electric bills through June 2020. Those credits should pay back the cost of a participant’s original investment and then some.

SPD looking for more victims of downtown groping suspect

Police say they are looking for additional victims after a woman’s social media campaign against an alleged groper who she says assaulted her downtown pushed SPD detectives to step up their investigation and take the man into custody. Here’s SPD’s call for help tracking down more victims:

Department of Corrections (DOC) officers recognized the man in the victim’s photo as a level 3 sex offender, and contacted SPD investigators. DOC officers booked the man into the King County Jail Wednesday for violating the terms of his community supervision. Continue reading

Alleged Broadway Grill hacker now charged with stealing and selling 2 million credit card numbers

Screen Shot 2014-10-09 at 6.14.42 PMThe Russian man charged with stealing credit card numbers from the now shuttered Broadway Grill is now accused of stealing up to 2 million credit card numbers far beyond Seattle and leading a large international hacking syndicate, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

On Tuesday a federal grand jury in Seattle returned a “second superseding” indictment on Roman Seleznev, charging him with an additional 11 counts related to hacking, stealing credit card information, and selling the numbers through “carding” sites.

UPDATE: Seleznev pleaded not guilty to the new charges. A trial date was scheduled for November.

In a press release, Seattle’s acting U.S. Attorney Annette Hayes said Seleznev was a leader in the international marketplace of stolen credit card numbers and even created a website to teach others how to do it. New information examined by the grand jury showed Seleznev was operating his criminal scheme right until he was apprehended in Russia, according to the press release.

Seleznev allegedly used severs around the world to conduct his operations and sold credit card numbers through the website “” In a separate indictment in Nevada, Seleznev faces racketeering charges.

Seleznev was indicted in Seattle in 2011 but wasn’t taken into custody until July 5th. DOJ representatives wouldn’t say how the suspect was ultimately captured or how he ended up in Guam, his first stop in U.S. territory. The arrest of Seleznev, the son of a member of Russia’s Duma, set off international protest as his home nation called his seizure a kidnapping part of a string of disputes with the U.S. over cybercrime.

According to the 2011 indictment, Seleznev’s hack of the Broadway Grill point of sale system resulted in at least $1.7 million in losses to banks and credit card companies. Seleznev’s charges include five counts of bank fraud, eight counts of intentionally causing damage to a protected computer, eight counts of obtaining information from a protected computer, one count of possession of unauthorized access devices, and two counts of trafficking those devices. He also faces five counts of aggravated identity theft.

Piece by piece, Broadway’s Red Wall is finally coming down

We've been through a lot with this guy (Image: CHS)

We’ve been through a lot with this guy (Image: CHS)

More than five years after the demolitions that kicked off the massive project, the Capitol Hill Sound Transit light rail station is entering its final months of construction. As the station rises between John and Denny on Broadway, the various murals and art installations that have decorated the exterior of the surrounding plywood “Red Wall” are slowly coming down piece by piece.

(Image: CHS)

(Image: CHS)

Continue reading

Washington’s Most Wanted? Show on hunt for Capitol Hill tagger

LOLCAM 20141006_005100_2 (2)The TV program Washington’s Most Wanted is leading the hunt for this Boylston Ave tagging suspect caught on surveillance video early Monday morning:

Justin Christie was in bed when the motion sensor on his surveillance camera set off an alert on his phone.

“As soon as I saw it, I jumped to the door and wanted to scare him away at least, but by the time the alert came through, he had already finished; he was pretty quick,” said Christie.

What the suspect left behind will cost the Home Owners Association between $300 and $500 to remove.

“I respect street art. I don’t think this is street art,” said Christie.

The video was provided to police who passed it on to the show’s producer who, in turn, shared it with us. The producer tells us police are looking for tips to help identify the tagging bandit. “[T]he tagging subculture responsible for millions of dollars in damage every year,” the show reports. You can call 1-800-222-TIPS with information or SPD directly at (206) 625-5011.

2014 Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival: 51 features, 112 shorts, 3 Capitol Hill screens

10689714_880557738622356_5567813280795476381_nAfter a celebratory grand re-opening weekend, SIFF Cinema Egyptian gets down to business this week as the centerpiece of Capitol Hill venues hosting the 2014 Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival.

Poster art for webThursday, the 19th annual edition of the festival and first-year fest director Kathleen Mullen welcome Greg Louganis to kick off 11 days of LGTBQ-focused cinema with an Egyptian screening of Back on Board, a documentary about the life and legacy of the Olympic champion diver.

In addition to gay and lesbian stars and subject matter, the festival continues to seek out the work of great LGTBQ filmmakers. “The films this year are outstanding with much of our strongest work from female and queer directors,” Three Dollar Bill Cinema director Jason Plourde said in a statement about the Capitol Hill-based group’s annual festival.

Overall, this year’s SLGFF includes 51 features and 112 shorts representing 32 countries, including 30 “Northwest premieres,” 5 West Coast premieres, and a world premiere. Venues include the Egyptian, Northwest Film Forum, Harvard Exit and Pacific Place. Ticket prices vary. A full festival pass will run you $225. You can see the full schedule and buy your passes here.

You can learn more at

Arson detectives look for help in investigation of fire in E John B&B slated for demolition

The old B&B houses are being torn down this week (Image: @pepper_mental via Twitter)

The old B&B houses were slated for demolition and are being torn down this week (Image: @pepper_mental via Twitter)

With little evidence and limited witness information to go on, Seattle Police’s arson and bomb squad detectives have asked for help from the public about the fire started inside a former E John bed and breakfast just days from demolition.

Last week’s early Friday morning fire damaged one of a set of old twin houses in the 1100 block of E John that were slated to be torn down to make way for a new apartment project with 47 “small & efficient residential units.”

The demolition began Tuesday.

There were no injuries in the fire and the blaze damaged only a structure slated to be destroyed. But police are asking anybody who may have seen “people running from the home just before the blaze started” to call detectives at (206) 684-8980.

While it is possible the fire was set intentionally, other causes of fires in vacant structures in the area have been improvised electrical set-ups, cooking or fires for warmth, and smoking or drug use. UPDATE 10/9/2014: SPD says there is currently no evidence that indicates the fire was intentionally set.

Filmmakers seek foxtrotting extras for Broadway Dance Steps shoot

A community-funded film about “why Seattle is a great city for entrepreneurs and creatives” is looking for extras to appear in a clip featuring Broadway’s most iconic and most fiercely copyright-protected public art. Your qualifications? You like to dance:

(Image: We Make Seattle)

(Image: We Make Seattle)

We’re filming this Thursday on Cap Hill and need some extras. This is your chance to be in the film.

This shoot is to capture the sidewalk dance sculptures on Broadway. They’re legendary symbols of creativity in Seattle and we finally got official permission to film them.

What we need are folks willing to have some fun, trying to figure out how to do the steps on camera. It’s easy, no dance skills are required (though if you have some that’s cool too), just a fun attitude.

In 2011, CHS reported on the settlement of a lawsuit over the Broadway Dance Steps involving a photographer whose work ended up on a stock photo site and the artist who created the inlaid brass footprints, Jack Mackie.

We Make Seattle is described as a short film that will “show the world how great Seattle is for creatives and entrepreneurs who have big ideas and the passion to invest in them.” It is produced by Bryan Zug and Adam Baggett of Bootstrapper Studios. It is directed by Seattle author Scott Berkun.

The project gets underway at 5:45 PM Thursday — the same night as Capitol Hill’s October art walk. You can learn more and let the filmmakers know your availability here.

Broadway Market is for sale, home to QFC and Urban Outfitters

8444039163_d4da170492Conditions are probably as ripe as they’ve ever been for long time Capitol Hill property owners to cash-in big. The Washington D.C.-based owner of the Broadway Market is putting the marquee commercial property up for sale for a possible 400% significant return on investment, reports the Puget Sound Business Journal.

A Seattle representative from property owner Madison Marquette said he could not confirm anything regarding a sale. Madison Marquette is a commercial real estate company that owns mall properties across the U.S.

The 110,000 square foot Broadway Market is anchored by QFC, Urban Outfitters, and Gold’s Gym, as well as 30 residential units and an underground parking garage for 223 vehicles. Longtimers Broadway Shoe Repair also calls the building home as do BECU and Wells Fargo.

PSBJ reports the Broadway property, located between E Republican and E Harrison, was valued in the newsletter Real Estate Alert for $50 million. That’s four times *three times and change *more than the $15 million Madison Marquette paid for the market in 1999.

With the U-Link light rail slated to start running by 2016, the market’s proximity to Capitol Hill Station should make it an even more attractive investment — though development planned around the station will add thousands of additional square feet of retail space to Broadway.

In 2011 Madison Marquette partnered with an investment firm to re-capitalize the space under a joint venture agreement. Earlier this year Madison Marquette purchased downtown’s Pacific Place mall.

The 110,000 square foot market has been a cornerstone of north Broadway culture since it opened in the 1920s. Over the years the market has gone through several iterations and redevelopments. In the 1980s and 1990s the market was home to dozens of merchant stalls that helped make Broadway the commercial heart of Capitol Hill. As Broadway declined in the late 1990s, many of those businesses left. In 2004 Fred Meyer vacated the building and QFC took over the primary market space.