Roosevelt house fire being investigated as arson (PHOTOS)

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An early morning house fire in the Roosevelt neighborhood is being investigated as an arson.

From the Seattle Fire Department’s Fire Line:

[SFD crews were] dispatched at 2:09 am to a house near 8 Avenue NE and NE 72 Street for a report of a porch fire that extended to the roof. Firefighters quickly extinguished the visible flames but worked for about an hour aggressively digging out the hidden fire located in the attic void spaces. The home owner discovered the fire and was out of the building by the time firefighters arrived.

After the home was extinguished, fire investigators determined that the fire was intentionally set on the front porch, and the case was turned over to the Seattle Police Department’s Arson/Bomb Unit.

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Investigators also estimated $100,000 in damage to the house and its contents, with an additional $5,000 damage to the home next door where the siding had begun to melt.

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If you have any information which could aid detectives in their investigation, please call the SPD Arson/Bomb Unit at (206) 684-8980.

Todd Byers, in yellow, talks with neighbors as they  survey the damage to his home on the morning after the fire.

Todd Byers, in yellow, talks with neighbors as they survey the damage to his home on the morning after the fire.

Vehicle theft leads to hit and run, and ends with foot chase (UPDATES)

At approximately 12:40 PM on Tuesday, June 24, Seattle Police and Fire staff responded to a motor vehicle accident (MVA) call at 12th Avenue NE and NE 65th Street, next to the Roosevelt Light Rail Station construction site.

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What was unusual for this particular MVA was the large number of police vehicles near the collision site (at least nine, by our quick count). Turns out that this incident was a hit-and-run by a stolen vehicle, Seattle Police told us via twitter. A witness to the incident said that after the collision, the suspect fled south.

South of the collision area, on the east side of 12th Avenue NE (pictured above) medics were treating an adult male while officers looked on.

We’ll post more details below when we get them.

UPDATE (1:49 PM): We have confirmation by the SPD that the “suspect was detained by Seattle residents while officers arrived.”

UPDATE (Wednesday morning): Q13FOX had a story on the incident during their 11 PM newscast. You can read the summary and/or watch the video here.

UPDATE (Thursday morning): On the afternoon of the incident, we reached out on twitter on the off chance of contacting someone involved in the subduing of the suspect after he fled the stolen vehicle. A man named Shawn (last name withheld by request) replied, not only with his narrative of the events but a very thoughtful setting of his role that afternoon.

We have yet to see an official narrative of the incident from the Seattle Police Department, but the description of the event that Shawn has shared with us matches what other witnesses at the scene observed.

Here is the account, in Shawn’s words, from two separate emails received on Wednesday:

If you’d just like my recollection of events, I was overlooking the intersection there, on the NE corner of 2nd level of the Whole Foods shopping plaza.  I was on break from work at the time, when I heard a loud screech followed by a massive crunch of metal.

I hurried down the stairs located on the NE corner there and looked over to my left to see a car pretty much flipped into incoming traffic.  I began running toward the car to check on the victims when I realized that people were yelling STOP HIM at someone.

I looked over across the street and saw a young guy in a red T shirt and baggy jeans running down the opposite sidewalk.  I shouted, Hey you, stop, and he didn’t acknowledge me or the other people shouting similar things.

It was at that point I shouted at him again, Hey, you, stop right now, and started chasing after him.  I ran across the street and onto the opposite curb; he wasnt a great runner and I caught up to him near the SE corner of the Whole Foods on the opposite side of the street.  He actually tripped himself up mostly, and kind of ditched it into the bushes there along with his bag… I slid him off the bush and onto the ground and tried to get control of his arms.

At that point the level of rational thought I had put into this move was literally zero, and it was about then that he started getting really squirrelly with his left arm, trying to pull it away and use it as leverage or reach for something.  He actually did pull it completely out of my grasp at one point and it was all I could do to keep it pinned underneath him, afraid what he might try to pull out.

Fortunately that was the moment that the driver and another Good Samaritan ran up and helped get better control over him; I kept shouting at onlookers to call the cops not sure if any of them actually had or not.  I was very concerned about the well-being of the driver, who probably should not have been running after this guy after such a serious crash; he was being treated after I finished giving the cops a statement and I was glad to hear he ended up being pretty much ok.

It only took about 5 minutes or so for the cops to show up, by which time we were all wrapped up pretty good with the guy, who was resisting and shouting the whole time.  The cops knew who to go for right away (a small relief) and they pulled us apart and took him into custody.

That was about the point I realized I was probably going to be late back into work, and asked the cop after giving my contact info if he could write me a note for my supervisor.  He gave me his card, and said just give them this, if they have any problems at all, call me.

That was pretty much it.  Tbh I didn’t think about it at all, if I had, I probably would have done nothing.  But I was worried he might try to carjack someone or worse and it just kind of happened. :3

I didn’t even realize it was a stolen car at the time, I just saw him running from an accident that he caused and no one moving in the victims car.

[...]and I just don’t really want any undue attention for such a minor incident.

Ultimately, the only thing I’ve really taken away from this and other similar events is that sometimes we are at the right time and the right place, in life, to affect change or do the right thing.  And in those rare moments, it’s better to go with your gut reaction and act rather than forever wonder ‘what if’.  Being trapped in a box alone with that question can be a deadly curse.

I would just add that we each have far more power than we think, and I truly believe we are all responsible for making the world we live in into the world we’d imagine for ourselves and our loved ones.

On Tuesday afternoon, one man was booked into King County Jail for vehicle theft. We are watching for more documentation on the case (in King County District Court) and will continue to add updates here.

Eckstein student hucks a Luger, sends his school into lockdown

Around 9:30 AM this morning, Eckstein Middle School was briefly in “shelter-in-place” mode as a report of a student with a weapon was investigated by Seattle police officers. From the Seattle Police Department Blotter:

A 13-year old boy has been arrested after he stole a gun from his grandmother’s house sending a nearby school into “lockdown”.  Around 9:30 am on Wednesday May 7th a woman called to report that her 13-year old grandson had stolen a loaded antique German Luger and left the house.

Numerous officers responded to the area and quickly began searching for the teen in addition to putting Eckstein Middle School in “lockdown” out of an abundance of caution. Officers located the teen in a few minutes later and he was arrested. All school activity returned to normal. A witness helped officers locate the gun having seen the teen hide it in some bushes nearby.

The teen was booked into the King County Youth Service Center for Investigation of Theft.

An email by Eckstein Middle School Principal Sherri Kokx was sent to students’ parents and guardians around 2 PM explaining the events of the morning.

Car strikes local convenience store; driver injured

Just after 1:30 PM on Wednesday, April 16, Seattle Fire and Police units responded to a car-into-building call at the Wedgwood Mart (6236 35th Ave NE).

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A man in a silver Lexus had a seizure (per Seattle Fire PIO Sue Stangl), and ended up driving up over the sidewalk along 35th Ave NE and into the convenience store’s parking lot, coming to rest on the front sidewalk of the store and against a brick pillar.

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A witness who called 911 on the convenience store’s phone told us that the car struck a small tree in the parking strip before it struck the building. She also said that the shopkeeper was standing just to the left of the car’s final position and was nearly hit as well.

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The witness also said that first responders broke a window of the vehicle to gain access to the driver. The adult male driver was later removed from the vehicle, conscious and alert from our vantage point, and was taken to a nearby hospital in an AMR ambulance.

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Above, an officer stands nearby the vehicle as it is prepared to be towed out of the parking lot. Traffic nearby was impacted only briefly as the tow truck entered and exited the lot.

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After the damaged car was removed, it appeared as though very little damage was done to the convenience store.

Dennis and Judy Schulte Memorial Walk & Rally (PHOTOS)

On Monday, March 25, 2013, a family crossing NE 75th Street at 33rd Avenue NE was struck by a drunk driver. Grandparents Judy and Dennis Schulte were killed instantly. New mother Karina Ulriksen-Schulte and her ten-day-old baby boy, Elias, were both critically injured.

A year later, Karina and Elias, along with other family members, community members, safe streets advocates, and local community and state representatives returned to the site together. And then continued on to a rally for more action to prevent driving while intoxicated.

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The weather seemed to echo the emotions of the walkers: Blazing bright sunlight one moment — matching the smiles of those on the walk — followed by dark skies, heavy rains, and heavy hearts.

Our goal during the walk and rally was to capture as many images as we could. For more on the story of the walk and rally, we’ve collected links below:

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The starting point of the anniversary memorial walk was the same as it was almost a year ago: Top Pot Doughnuts, on the corner of NE 70th St and 35th Ave NE.

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Before joining the main group of walkers across the street, members of the Schulte family met with some of the staff of Fire Station 40. Their engine was one of the first emergency vehicles to arrive at the collision scene a year ago.

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Dan Schulte and one of the fire fighters of Station 40.

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Back over at Top Pot, local media had some time to talk to Dan Schulte before the walk.

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Here’s the same scene from another angle.

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Per Johnson of the Wedgwood Community Council speaks to the gathered walkers. Purple shirts were given to participants to wear during the walk and rally, and also to the other events during Safe Roads Awareness Week.

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Dan Schulte with his sister, Marilyn.

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Seattle Police Department officers prepare to guide those on the memorial walk down the route to the crash.

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Dan Schulte pushes his wife, Karina Ulriksen-Schulte, at the beginning of the memorial walk. Their son, Elias, is in the stroller on Karina’s right.

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Former Mayor Mike McGinn (center, with blue cap) at the start of the walk.

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State Representative Gerry Pollet (teal jacket, in front of yellow umbrella).

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Madi Carlson, Family Ride, walks her wheels and brood down NE 35th Avenue.

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The first round of heavy rain begins as the group nears the intersection of 35th Avenue NE and NE 75th Street. State Representative Jessyn Farrell (tan trenchcoat) walks with her two children.

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The group begins to cross the intersection of 35th Avenue NE and NE 75th Street. As they walk up the hill towards 33th Avenue NE, the walkers take the same route (west up NE 75th Street) as Mark Mullan did in his large black pick-up truck one year ago.

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Dan and Karina, and family.

 

At the NW corner of where 33rd Avenue NE meets NE 75th Street, the group pauses for a few moments, in silence. (We returned to the corner a few hours later to take the video above.)

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Schulte family members moving on after a pause at the crash site.

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One woman watches the family walk on as the main group of walkers continues to linger for a quiet moment at the site of the crash.

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Main group now moving toward the site of the rally on the lawn of nearly Eckstein Middle School.

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Battalion 6 Chief Mike Milam (white shirt, black tie) speaks with Fire Station 40 staff near the crash site. Chief Milam was also at the scene a year ago.

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News crews film the crowd and the memorial site while some Eckstein students look on.

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By the time the group arrives at the rally site, the rain was coming down hard.

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Ravenna-Bryant Community Association board member Sarah Swanberg.

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Dan Schulte thanks the first responders in attendance, and the crowd applauds.

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Karina Ulkisen-Schulte (center with brown cap) listens to husband Dan speak.

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Per Johnson (green), Cathy Tuttle (teal), and the crowd.

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SDOT’s Chief Traffic Engineer, Dongho Chang, was easy to spot in the crowd.

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Lacia Lynn Bailey keeps Judy’s Truffle dry at the rally. Lacia and a much smaller Judy’s Truffle were the last to speak with Judy, Dennis, Karina and Elias before they continued down 33rd Avenue NE to cross the street. She would also be one of the first people at the collision scene moments later.

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SDOT Traffic Safety Coordinator Jim Curtin stands under his yellow umbrella during downpour number three of the event.

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Sergeant Dave Fitzgerald of the Seattle Police Department, listening to speakers at the rally.

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Mayor McGinn (in red) stands next to Cathy Tuttle, executive director of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways.

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Virginia Gunby (burgundy coat), Transportation Chair of the Ravenna-Bryant Community Association, and her husband listen to rally speaker Darrin Grondel, Director of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

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State Senator David Frockt speaking at the rally. Courtney Popp, an attorney who volunteers with MADD, also spoke.

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Elias, having a snack.

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During a shift between pouring rain and pouring sunlight, we did get a rainbow near the crash site.

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Marilyn Schulte addresses the crowd, thanking neighborhood residents for their support of her family.

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After the rally concluded, Senator Frockt and a staffer (facing the camera) listened to Lacia Bailey describe the events of a year ago. Frockt’s own grandparents were killed in a collision by a suspected intoxicated driver in Tennessee.

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Natural flowers at the rally site.

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Hand-made flowers on Lacia’s fence across from the crash site.

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The afternoon before the walk and rally, Lacia invited the community to come paint her fence, just across the street from the crash site, with bright flowers and positive messages to “DRIVE SOBER.” Judy’s Truffle was on hand, offering suggestions and reprising her position last year of comfort goat to those who needed a nuzzle.

Shooting behind U-District Safeway (UPDATES)

Around 5:12 PM, Seattle Fire and Police responded to a shooting on the south side of the Safeway at Brooklyn Avenue NE and NE 50th Street in the University District.


View Shooting behind Safeway in U-District in a larger map

According to information heard over police scanner, some suspects fled the scene in a black Hyundai SUV, traveled through the Roosevelt neighborhood, and attempted to get onto I-5 northbound. The vehicle was spotted and stopped by multiple officers on I-5 just north of Lake City Way. A gun was recovered by officers from the SUV.

Another suspect may have fled the area by a Route 70 Metro bus, getting off on Eastlake near Hamlin.

We’re adding more info as we get it.

 

UPDATE (6:11 PM): The SPD Blotter has been updated with the following:

Seattle police took five people into custody Wednesday evening following a shooting in the University District, which left one man with serious injuries.
Just before 5:15 PM police received several reports of gunfire near NE 47th Street and Brooklyn Avenue NE.

When officers arrived at the scene, they found a man in his 30s with a single gunshot wound lying on the ground near an alleyway.

Medics transported the victim to Harborview Medical Center with serious injuries and officers began searching the area for several vehicles, which had fled the scene moments after the shooting.

Officers performed two high-risk stops—one on an SUV on Interstate 5 near Lake City and another on a vehicle near 85th and Aurora—and detained five people in connection with the shooting.

6:15 PM: Reports on the scanner of finding bullet damage to the nearby Chevron Station and at least one vehicle (van belonging to University Seafoods and Poultry).

6:38 PM: We’ve heard from a parent that University Child Development School (5062 9th Ave NE) was on lockdown during the incident.

6:43 PM: The Seattle Fire Department reports that the “[p]atient is 40yo male with single gunshot wound in critical condition at HMC.”

And the SPD Blotter post includes this update: “Police arrested the suspected gunman on I-5…and have detained two other people. The other individuals stopped by police have been identified and released, and detectives continue to investigate the incident.”

 

6:56 PM: The Daily of the University of Washington’s Joshua Bessex just shared another picture from the scene with even more bullet evidence:

Friday, April 4: The Seattle P-I has obtained the narrative from the incident and has written up the details here: “Felon fresh from prison shot man in U-District.” Robert E. Montgomery has been charged with first-degree assault and unlawful gun possession, and remains jailed on $150,000 bail.

Dozens of guns stolen from home near Roosevelt High School

A resident of the 6800 block of 15th Avenue NE, just northeast of Roosevelt High School, reported a robbery at his residence on Friday, January 10, while he was at work. Among the stolen items were “20-25 handguns and 20 rifles and shotguns.”


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In the police report narrative for the incident, the victim states that he left for work at 9 AM and returned around 2 PM and “found someone had gone through his house and stolen multiple items.” The victim had locked the house upon leaving in the morning, but had not set the alarm as he is in the process of moving. No forced entry into the house was found; however, the garage door can be opened by hand. This is how the victim believes the burglar both gained access and left.

Among the stolen items reported by the victim were near a dozen watches, cash in various places around the house as well as larger amounts in two small bags in the kitchen, and dozens of guns:

He said he had about 20-25 handguns and 20 rifles and shotguns. He could not name all the makes and models of the guns but said he would get them and send them in on a victim follow up. He stated that many of the handguns were from his Dad and Granddad and were from World War I and II. He said missing were a Colt .45, Webbly .357, Colt Huntsman .22, Luger, Walther, several Smith and Wesson to name a few. He stated he also had an AR-15 for one of the long guns. All the guns and handguns were in a closet in the bedroom or in drawers in a built in closet.

Also reported missing were 5-7 gym bags.

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Thank you to Michael Hawthorne of KOMO News for bringing this incident to our attention.

Bank robbery in Roosevelt (UPDATES)

Just after 4 PM on Thursday, January 2, the Seattle Police Department reported that a bank robbery had taken place in the 6400 block of Roosevelt Way NE.

SPD has not yet released the name of the bank where the robbery took place. But by our count, there are two banks in this area: The Wells Fargo branch inside the Roosevelt Square Whole Foods, and the Umpqua Bank branch on the NE corner of Roosevelt Way NE and NE 64th St. (The Umpqua Bank was previously robbed on March 28, 2012.)


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Anyone with information about this incident or who may know the identity or whereabouts of the suspect, please call 911 and refer to this incident. Anonymous tips are welcome.

We’ll update this post with more information when we have it.

UPDATE (4:47 PM): The SPD has released a photo taken of the suspect, taken from inside the Umpqua Bank (you can see the colored text of this location on the windows behind the suspect):

UPDATE (5:36 PM): The Seattle Police Department Blotter has a post up now about the robbery, which includes a couple more photos of the suspect.

Officer-involved collision in Roosevelt (PHOTOS, UPDATE)

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Looking west down NE 75th Street from Brooklyn Avenue NE toward the scene.

Shortly before 2 PM on Sunday, December 29, Seattle Fire Department units responded to a two-vehicle collision on NE 75th Street at 12th Avenue NE. A red sedan and a Seattle Police Department cruiser had collided and both come to rest near the northwest section of the intersection.

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Close-up of the collision scene, looking west on NE 75th Street.

According to Seattle Fire Department PIO Lt. Sue Stangl, all three people involved (one officer in the patrol car and two people in the red sedan) were transported to hospitals with minor injuries. The officer was transported to Harborview, which is standard procedure for the Seattle Police Department.

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Looking north down 12th Avenue NE.

Detours were in place to reroute traffic as investigators processed the scene, but at least some Metro bus routes were unaffected.

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Close-up of the two vehicles looking north down 12th Avenue NE.

UPDATE (8:58 PM): We heard from a resident close to the scene that NE 75th Street reopened to traffic just before 6 PM. And, prior to that, a neighbor brought the officers directing traffic some cookies.

Car veers off NE 75th St, 83-year-old driver injured (UPDATE)

Just after 11 AM on Tuesday, September 24, the Seattle Fire Department responded to a heavy rescue call on NE 75th Street just east of 26th Avenue NE.

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Seattle Post-Intelligencer photojournalist Josh Trujillo (left) takes a picture at the scene.

A vehicle was traveling *eastbound* [corrected] on NE 75th Street when it left the roadway, struck and disassembled a road sign (pictured above), and came to rest on a cement embankment on the side of a nearby home’s driveway.

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After leaving the roadway, the vehicle drove through parts of two yards before coming to rest on the embankment of a raised driveway.

The driver, an 83-year-old woman, was taken to Harborview Medical Center by Seattle Fire staff. She was transported in stable condition, said Seattle Fire.

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View looking dowhill (west) along NE 75th St at emergency and police vehicles at the scene.

Eastbound NE 75th Street was blocked for a time for emergency vehicles, after which Seattle Police officers directed traffic past the scene using the new left turn lane. The sidewalk on the south side was closed while police investigated the scene.

 

UPDATE (2:30 PM): A little more info from a Seattle Police Department Blotter post up just now:

Preliminary investigation indicates that an 83-year-old woman was driving her Honda Element eastbound on NE 75th Street.  Just after crossing 26thAvenue NE, for reasons yet to be determined, she left the roadway and drove over the south sidewalk, up an embankment and crashed into a house.

There were people inside the house at the time of the collision however, nobody inside the house was injured.

The driver of the Honda (and sole occupant of the vehicle) sustained serious injuries in the collision and was transported to Harborview Medical Center by fire department medics.

Traffic Collision Investigation Squad detectives responded to the scene and continue to actively investigate.

SPD estimates that NE 75th Street should be fully reopened around 3 PM today..