Police: Child dies after thrown from parked van in Madison Valley collision

Police believe a young child was playing inside a family van parked in front of a Madison Valley home when the three-year-old was thrown from the vehicle and killed Sunday afternoon after its was struck by a driver in a FedEx delivery truck.

Police say they and Seattle Fire were called to the scene just off MLK just before 4:45 PM and found a young child believed to be around 3 years old who had suffered a major head injury in the crash. The responders attempted CPR but the child died at the scene, SPD says.

SPD detectives believe the driver of the FedEx truck struck the parked van the child had been playing in.

“When the collision occurred the child was thrown from the vehicle,” the SPD brief on the terrible incident reads.

A neighbor said the large delivery-style van was regularly parked in front of the house. It could be seen pushed partially into a driveway Sunday following the crash, its sliding door still open as Seattle Police and Seattle Fire waited at the scene.

Police say a drug recognition expert tested the FedEx driver but did not find signs of impairment.


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Quick arrest after man stabbed in Madison Valley

Seattle Police took one person into custody after a man was stabbed in the back outside the Bailey-Boushay House care facility at E Madison and MLK early Thursday.

Seattle Fire and SPD were called to the scene around 6:15 AM to the reported stabbing by a known individual. The victim was treated at the scene outside the facility and rushed to the hospital. We don’t have further details on the victim’s condition.

Police located the suspect at his tent in a nearby park where he was taken into custody without incident.

In case revived by true crime show, man accused of murder in 2015 death of Devan Schmidt pleads not guilty

Schmidt’s friends and family watched via videoconference due to COVID-19 restrictions

The man accused of murdering Devan Schmidt pleaded not guilty Thursday morning in an emotion-packed hearing that comes more than five years after the 29-year-old woman’s death.

Eric Sims was taken into custody and charged with second degree murder late last month in a sudden whirlwind of activity in the case after the 47-year-old agreed to provide a sample that investigators say matched DNA found on the victim.

CHS reported on Schmidt’s death and inconclusive findings from the medical examiner that left her case in a sad limbo for years as her family pushed for the investigation and justice.

Thursday morning, Sims cried out and tried to leave King County Superior Court Judge Patrick Oishi’s courtroom as Schmidt’s sister made a statement against a bid to lower Sims’ bail from $2 million to $50,000. Addressing the courtroom via video as an advocate carried her laptop near the bench so Judge Oishi could better see and hear, “Please keep Mr. Sims here,” Lia Kendall said, “so that I, my mother, and my children can just sleep a little more comfortably tonight.” Continue reading

Five years later, arrest made in Devan Schmidt case — UPDATE: MURDER CHARGE

Devan Schmidt

Devan Schmidt

Police have arrested a man suspected in the 2015 death of Devan Schmidt.

The 47-year-old was booked into King County Jail Thursday afternoon as part of a homicide investigation, according to jail records.

The suspect has not yet been charged. Bail was denied.

Five years ago this month, the 29-year-old Schmidt was found dead in the Madison Valley home she shared with roommates. The medical examiner said circumstances around her death were “concerning for homicidal violence,” and asphyxia “could not be ruled out.” The county investigator also noted “superficial blunt force injuries” to Schmidt’s head, torso, and limbs, but authorities were ultimately unable to determine a cause and manner of death. Schmidt’s family said drugs found in her system complicated the investigation.

Derrick Levasseur, the host of a true crime series that featured Schmidt’s death last year with cooperation of the victim’s family and local investigators including SPD Detective James Cooper, announced the arrest Thursday night: Continue reading

Cafe to become Love + Flour as Essential Bakery exits Madison Valley

(Image: CHS)

The dreaded paper sign in the window has gone up at the Essential Bakery Cafe in Madison Valley but in this case, the message is not about a closure on E Madison.

Or, at least, it won’t be a long one.

The Seattle baking company has sold its cafe to a new owner who is ready to keep the comfortable hangout full of soups and sandwiches, baked treats, and fresh Essential bread.

“We’re just looking to keep our little family here,” Jenny Finau told CHS Wednesday afternoon. Continue reading

Selector Records adds new stop on Hill-proximate vinyl tour

(Image: Audrey Frigon for CHS)

(Image: Audrey Frigon for CHS)

By Audrey Frigon, CHS Fall Intern

In the digital age of music streaming, vinyl records just won’t die. With record sales reaching their highest revenue level since 1988, Capitol Hill and the nearby have sustained a few shops that have survived long enough to cash in on the resurgence. And sometimes, something new comes along.

Selector Records and Apparel opened earlier this month off the beaten track on E Madison.

After eleven years DJing in Hawaii, Seattle native Sherman Crawford moved back home with the goal of opening a record store business. “I always had a dream of having a record store and that opportunity fell into my lap with this building,” he said. This building, located on 23rd and Madison, previously housed Looters Records. Crawford stumbled upon the store and moved in upstairs. When the record store closed, Crawford took over.

A music lover his whole life, Crawford first began collecting records and cassettes when he was eight years old. But the real beginning of his music addiction came in 1992 when he attended a rave and discovered the world of underground techno and dance music. “I was enthralled by the energy of the music and became obsessed,” Crawford said. As his fascination and love of the music grew, so did his record collection.

That music became the inspiration for his store. “When I came back from Hawaii I saw a void. There were no other stores focusing on underground techno music, especially new releases, and I wanted to fill that void,” said Crawford. Continue reading

Still no winners in Madison Valley PCC mixed-use battle

Seattle YIMBYs are still basking in the fuzzy afterglow of victory in the expansion of the city’s Mandatory Housing Affordability plan and upzoning in its densest neighborhoods. But there is one District 3 front in the city’s war over development where neither side is ready to declare a winner even though it seems the battles could finally be over.

In late February, the Seattle Hearing Examiner ruled in favor of developer Velmeir Companies that its plans for a six-story, mixed-use apartment building, anchored by a new PCC grocery store in the heart of Madison Valley were in line with the State Environmental Policy Act. Community group Save Madison Valley had asked the examiner to reverse design review approval and the city’s determination on the project’s environmental impact and require the development to undergo new rounds of costly, time consuming review,

But officials at Velmeir aren’t ready to celebrate a groundbreaking. Continue reading

‘Single family home neighborhood’ — the Madison Valley PCC mixed-use battle

An $85 filing fee — and lots of billable hours — is holding up a Madison Valley mixed-use apartments and PCC grocery project but the long, drawn out Seattle process to develop the property might finally be set to move forward.

Conflict between a community group attempting to use the State Environmental Policy Act as a defensive blanket and developer Velmeir Companies will come to a head by December as the city’s Hearing Examiner is slated to make a decision on an appeal against the project.

Save Madison Valley, a group aimed at maintaining the area as a “single family home neighborhood,” has been working, it says, to ensure that Velmeir commits to mitigating the environmental impacts of its 82-unit, mixed-use six-story development at 2925 E Madison.

The project passed through the first stage of the design review process finally in January 2017 after a relatively rare three sessions in front of the board. The design from Meng Strazzara was fully signed off on last September — but the project isn’t yet close to breaking ground.

Save Madison Valley is asking the Hearing Examiner to reverse the design review decision and the city’s determination on the project’s environmental impact and require the development to undergo new rounds of costly, time consuming review. It’s a strategy cut from similar cloth to the legal fight holding up Seattle’s Mandatory Housing Affordability program that has cost the city plenty in legal fees — and maybe 717 affordable apartment units.

But Velmeir may not have to wait for December to move forward. Continue reading

Speaking of Seattle transit bumps, officials sorting Madison Bus Rapid Transit trolley problem

While we’re taking a spin as the Capitol Hill Transit Blog, the area’s next big transit investment is facing a major barrier to acquiring its much needed $60 million federal grant. It’s not Donald Trump. And it’s not this E Madison gay bar.

The Seattle Transit Blog broke the news last week — the Seattle Department of Transportation and King County Metro have been sideswiped by a collision of international trade barriers, the unique design of Madison “Bus Rapid Transit,” and the corridor’s challenging grade and are scrambling to find a bus design capable of meeting the $120 million project’s needs and plans for electric trolley coaches:

Continue reading

Worker dies after forklift flips at Madison Valley construction site — UPDATE

A worker at a construction site died Monday morning, apparently crushed when a forklift unloading materials from a waiting truck flipped on the sloping pavement of E John at 26th.

Seattle Fire and police flooded the area around 26th and John around 10:45 AM for a heavy rescue response but the worker died at the scene. Continue reading