As man dies in Central District shooting, neighbors call for SPD to do more to quell spike in gun violence

(Image: SPD)

Neighbors are pushing for more to be done by police in the Central District following Friday’s murder of Marshall Bennett after the 38-year-old was gunned down at his 25th Ave S residence in continuing gang violence and what police say are personal vendettas driving an ongoing wave of shootings.

Bennett is being remembered by family and residents of the area who knew him as a neighbor and a man who had lived through serious run-ins with the law while paying a major price along the way. When he was convicted of drug charges in 2013 after being arrested with crack cocaine after a fight in a Capitol Hill alley, prosecutors said Bennett had already served more than a decade in jail for a 2001 robbery conviction. Bennett was sentenced to 13 more months in jail in the 2013 case. This summer, Bennett was released from jail in July after being jailed during another drug investigation, according to King County Superior Court records.

Friday’s homicide remains unsolved and detectives are asking for the public’s help in identifying a green sedan seen fleeing the area following the shooting. You can call (206) 233-5000 if you have any information that might help. Continue reading

No injuries but large police response after gunfire at 21st and Union

Thanks to Aubin Spitzer for the pictures from the scene (Image: Aubin Spitzer — Sparks Film Studios)

Another bout of gunfire left shell casings and bullet holes Wednesday night near 21st and Union.

There were no reported injuries and damage reports were limited to vehicles parked in the area in the incident first reported to police just after 8 PM Wednesday. According to East Precinct radio dispatches, callers reported around 10 shots along with two vehicles possibly involved in the incident and a possibly involved male fleeing the area on foot. Police describe the incident as shots fired from a moving vehicle.

Police closed the street in the area as officers looked for shell casings in the gutter, on sidewalks, and in the parking lot near the corner’s busy taco truck as customers and neighbors looked on. Police were also seen knocking on doors of residences in the area. The Seattle gang unit was called to the scene. Continue reading

SPD responds to ‘7 in 72 hours’ Central District gun incidents with increased presence, arrests

Following CHS’s report on a spate of gun violence in the Central District. a Seattle Police official said Thursday night the department is making progress quelling the uptick in shootings and has made arrests in connection with some of the recent incidents.

At Seattle University on Thursday, the monthly East Precinct Advisory Council (EastPAC) meeting was attended by a standing-room only crowd as anxious community members hoped to hear about SPD’s plans to stunt the recent spate of shootings in the Central District.

SPD Deputy Chief Marc Garth-Green announced that three arrests have been made in connection with the recent shootings. Continue reading

‘7 in 72 hours’ — burst of gun violence in the Central District — UPDATE

A spike of gun violence in Seattle including a burst around the Central District has residents asking city officials to do more to quell the outbreak.

Neighbors have tallied “7 in 72 hours” as they tracked gunfire incidents and shootings over social media after two people were shot in an apparent “road rage” assault at 22nd and Pine Wednesday night.

Six more would follow into the weekend including three more bouts of gunfire — near Midtown Center, 28th and Cherry, and 28th and Yesler — in the hours following the 22nd/Pine shooting and a drive-by shooting Friday just before 5 PM near 24th Ave S and Washington in which a teen was reportedly grazed on the backside by a bullet.  Continue reading

Lock it up — Seattle mayor puts forward ‘safe storage’ gun control legislation

Preventing the next school shooting might be at the heart of it but data show helping to prevent suicides could be an equally important outcome of new gun control legislation sent to the Seattle City Council this week by Mayor Jenny Durkan.

“The roots of gun violence are complex, but we know that unsecured, unsafely stored guns help fuel this crisis of violence because they are more likely to cause tragic accidents, fall into the wrong hands, or be used in suicides,” Durkan said in announcing the new legislation. “Requiring that gun owners safely store their guns can help make our communities safer places to live.”

The  legislation proposed by the former U.S. District Attorney would require “safe storage of firearms” and will increase “civil penalties and legal responsibility” for owners who don’t report stolen firearms within 24 hours as is already required by law. Continue reading

Student arrested for Seattle U shooting threat — UPDATE

In the hours after the nation began learning of yet another deadly school shooting, Seattle Police arrested a Seattle University student over an allegation the 21-year-old had made threats to shoot students and teachers and caused his classroom to flee last Friday at the campus on the southern edge of Capitol Hill. UPDATE: The suspect has been charged. Bryson Morgan faces a charge of felony harassment. More details in the update at the bottom of this report.

“It would be easy to kill everyone,” the suspect allegedly told another student during a field trip a week earlier as he also listed a long roster of illegal drugs he had used, according to the SPD report on the incident. Then, Friday morning just hours after news of the Texas shooting, the suspect reportedly arrived at class frustrated, nervous about the test the class was about to take, and angry that he had to watch “communist bullshit videos” as homework. Continue reading

Seattle’s March for Our Lives fills Pine from Cal Anderson to downtown with calls for gun control and kids ready to vote

Tens of thousands of students, friends, and family filled Cal Anderson and then proceeded to fill two miles of Pine from the park to downtown Saturday as the March for Our Lives protest put faces to the growing call for more to be done to address gun violence.

“We are infuriated,” student activist Asher said from the stage as the crowd listened to speeches and waited for the march to the Seattle Center to begin.

Activists from the student group Youth 4 Peace took the stage with long-stem roses, tossing them down to the ground while naming casualties of gun violence. “We are not afraid,” said Elijiah, 18 years old, from South Seattle. “Before you write any bills, before you make any decisions on guns, think about your children,” he said. “Think about your grandchildren and think about their children because whatever you write now will effect generations to come.”

Seattle area students rallied on Capitol Hill Saturday to march for gun law reform, drawing thousands of sign wielding supporters. Community members and students filled the park’s Bobby Morris sports field by 10:30 AM with temperatures in the mid forties but under fortunately dry skies to hear speeches from student activists, U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson. Voter registration efforts were underway throughout the crowd and a group of students symbolically registered to vote together on the stage, cheered on by thousands.

Naleah M. 15 – Spokane, Central Valley HS, “There was a school shooting in our district, it was put on lockdown. We shouldn’t have to worry about that while we are trying to learn.”

Yonathan D. – 17 – Lynnwood, Edmonds-Woodway HS, “I feel like coming here [will be] more impactful. It’s been 20yrs since Columbine, if we don’t do anything, who will?

Continue reading

What you need to know about Saturday’s March for Our Lives Seattle

Students outside Garfield High during the March 14th walkout

Kids are leading the procession but plenty of Washington dignitaries will be on hand Saturday as the March for Our Lives student-led protest march starts at Cal Anderson.

Senator Maria Cantwell and State Attorney General Bob Ferguson will be among the speakers at the march’s 10 AM start on Capitol Hill, organizers announced. They’ll be joined by student organizers including Rhiannon Rasaretnam of Maple Valley’s Tahoma High School. CHS spoke with Rasaretnam earlier about her group’s efforts as part of a nationwide day of student marches. “I feel like youth around the nation seeing that students can take the lead on this inspires them to increase their own role in their own community,” Rasaretnam said.

“It is time to keep our schools safe and adopt common sense gun reform,” Ferguson said in the announcement of his planned appearance. “Our youth are taking a leadership role to address gun violence. I’m proud to join the young voices who are Washington’s future leaders.”

March for Our Lives Seattle
When:
Saturday, March 24th, 10 AM. March expected to begin at 11 AM.
Where:
Starts at Cal Anderson before marching down pine to downtown and on to Key Arena
Getting there: Officials advise marchers use Capitol Hill Station and avoid trying to park in the area
Why: Student organizers are asking for “action on banning assault rifles, banning bump stocks nationally, raising the age for gun purchases from 18 to 21, ensuring school safety without use of firearms and calling on members of Congress and corporations to stop accepting support from or providing support for the NRA.”

Continue reading

Research, ERPO, and safe storage — Seattle makes a start at gun control reform

As her city prepares for Saturday’s student march for gun control, Mayor Jenny Durkan came to First Hill’s Harborview Medical Center Wednesday, the place many gun violence victims are rushed to from across the region, to announce a push for new legislation that would require safe storage of firearms and could hold gun owners liable who don’t lock up their weapons.

“We should not pretend for one second that the level of carnage in our country from guns is inevitable. We cannot allow it to become the new normal,” Durkan said. “Unsecured, unsafely stored firearms are more likely to be stolen, used in a suicide, accessed by children and teens and unintentionally fired.” Continue reading

Seattle Schools: Forget arming teachers, kids, let’s march against gun violence

The Seattle Public Schools board will vote on a resolution “calling on state and congressional leaders to take action to prevent any more students and educators from being the victims of a school shooting” and schools leadership will announce its “opposition to arming teachers as a school safety measure” at the SPS board meeting Wednesday night.

Seattle Public Schools is also throwing its support behind the March 24th March for Our Lives protest set to start at Cal Anderson before traveling through the streets to Seattle Center: Continue reading