Seattle's Queen Anne Neighborhood News Blog


QA crime: how you can get involved in crime prevention and community block watches

September 15th, 2009 by Thea

There have been a lot of car break-ins and robberies reported on Queen Anne recently. Today I received an email from one of our readers and new Queen Anne resident, Sheila, informing me that her car was broken into outside her home on 12th and Bertona after just a few weeks in the neighborhood. She writes,

I just recently moved into upper Queen Anne neighborhood earlier this month. I thought the neighborhood was quiet and safe. After only a few weeks in the area, we have already experienced a robbery. Our car was picked open and robbed of electronic gadgets, primarily our GPS system that was hidden from view inside our center console. This is quite disturbing to us as you might imagine. We thought we were moving into a safe neighborhood with friendly neighbors. What’s more disturbing is that the thieves could not have known that we kept our GPS inside the car without having watched us use it and hide it in there. One reason I think this is that we have not used our GPS system for a few days. Another reason we might suspect premeditated robbery is that there are many other cars that are parked along the street that our car was parked in, some of whom are much nicer and newer cars. Therefore, they must have known before hand to specifically target our car.

Another reader reported a similar incident in our forum yesterday. DMC writes that they had 2 vehicles broken into over the weekend on 14th Ave W (not sure of the exact location), and called on neighbors to keep their eyes open for suspicious activities.

There are numerous resources available for Queen Anne residents looking to get involved in crime prevention and community watch programs. Block Watch programs are organized through the Seattle Police Department. Queen Anne is part of the West Precinct, which also encompasses Magnolia, South Lake Union, Belltown, Pioneer Square, International District and the neighborhoods and core business district of Downtown (Waterfront, Seattle Center, Denny Triangle).

“There are hundreds of Block Watches on Queen Anne,” SPD Crime Prevention Coordinator Terrie Johnston said. “They go block by block, building by building.”

According to Johnston, community Block Watches are more successful when they’re kept small. Still there are so many already active on Queen Anne, interested residents may have the option of joining an existing group or starting their own.

Contact Terrie Johnston for more information at (206) 684-4741 or Johnston offers free residential home security assessments and personal public safety talks for Queen Anne, Magnolia, and the Downtown neighborhoods.

For a business public safety talk and more information on crime prevention for Queen Anne businesses, contact Fran Tello at (206) 684-4730 or

It’s all about working together to keep the community safe for everyone. Sheila writes,

This is very concerning to us. We do not want to be overrun by fear in our own community.

You can read up on Block Watches here, on the SPD website. Some tips for supporting your neighborhood community watch program: lock your windows and doors whenever you leave the house, turn on lights to front and back entryways at night (even when you’re not home), communicate frequently with your neighbors, and have a commitment to being concerned about your neighbor’s property as well as your own. You can find more tips here or contact the Queen Anne/Magnolia Neighborhood Service Center (located at 160 Roy Street, Suite 100) at (206) 684-4812 for more information on how to become involved in the Queen Anne community.

If anyone has witnessed any recent crime in the area, or is currently part of an active Queen Anne Block Watch program, please send us more information at, comment on this story or contribute to the discussion in our forum.

Update: Apartment break-ins have also been reported in Magnolia, by our sister site, Magnolia Voice.

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