LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Recent Rash Of Burglaries In Gregory Heights?

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Hi there,

I live in the Gregory Heights neighborhood. Recently, there have been a number of break-ins within the area that I have become aware of. Most recently (one on 5/24 and one on 5/25), two of my close neighbors homes were broken into. Have you guys heard anything from anyone else on this? The whole area is keeping a close eye and signs have been posted around the area with regards to the recent burglaries and asking everyone to be more aware and call on ANYTHING suspicious. But I want to do everything in my power to get the word out about this so that we can hopefully deter whomever is responsible – or hopefully do anything in our power to get this person/people caught.

I do not know the exact number of homes that have been broken into but I do know that it’s been several just within the past couple of weeks. All of the break ins are ocurring during the morning/early afternoon. Items being stolen are laptops, cameras, jewlery – smaller items that can be placed into pockets or up a shirt. One of the houses contained a large safe that the person/people tried to get into and ended up breaking a number of other items in the household trying to get access to the safe by breaking the items against it. Luckily, they were not able to get the safe open.

These signs are posted throughout Gregory Heights, and seem to be encouraging residents to "get out your guns" in both English and Spanish.

There are a lot of people on edge right now because of this and my hope would be that given the Police know of the recent activity, they would be conducting additional ride-bys in the area if possible.

I personally have not spoken to the police. I have spoken with several neighbors and we’ve all agreed to watch each other’s house as well as just keep an eye out in general (more so than we had been) and keep each other informed (I must say the past two days I feel like looking out the windows and scanning the street is all I do anymore when I’m home). We’re all pretty close with each other. Nothing formal has been setup though – at least not yet. Although our neighbors down the street from us did post a number of signs within the Gregory Heights area advising everyone to be alert and call the police for anything at all that looks or sounds suspicious. I would imagine as we run into each other within the days ahead, this will be the priority subject.

I know my husband and I have taken measures within our home to remove anything of value in case it happens to us. Certainly, we can not remove the bigger items (TV, furniture, etc) – but anything of value with regards to cameras, video recorders, laptops, paperwork, jewelry, etc. is no longer in our home.  While I am not a big fan of us having to do this, I would prefer know that these items are safe rather than leave it all to chance.

Thank you for your time!

Best Regards,
Sara S.

We forwarded this on to Burien Police Chief Scott Kimerer, who responded with this email:


We will get back to you as soon as we can do some analysis. It would be difficult to answer your question without knowing what the issue is.

We also need to check with officers and detectives to see what they may have been doing. We will get back to you soon.

– Chief K

We’re interested to hear from our Readers who live in/near Gregory Heights:

  • Have you noticed any suspicious activity in your neighborhood?
  • Do you think posting warning signs will help deter thefts?
  • Does proclaiming “get out your guns” help, or hurt the cause?

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Have something you’d like to say? Then email us your “Letter to the Editor” by clicking here. Be sure to include your real name and a way to contact you, and, pending our review, we’ll most likely post it. Otherwise, feel free to leave a Comment below…]

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21 Responses to “LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Recent Rash Of Burglaries In Gregory Heights?”
  1. Coverofnight says:

    People….DON’T be afraid to call 911 if you see something, no, make that ANYTHING that may be suspicious. The police won’t investigate unless they’re made aware of your concerns. If enough calls come in from an area, they’ll step up patrols. Don’t let these criminal losers ruin our neighborhoods. Also, listen for the dogs if your neighborhood has them. They’ll bark an alert if a stranger is around. Unfortunately, too many people want to silence these animals for their own selfish peace-of-mind when the protection they offer through barking goes beyond the dog’s own yard. As for getting your guns out; whoa, be careful with that one! Better check the RCW’s as to what you can and cannot do relative to their use.

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  2. Keith says:

    I got hit back in September. It wouldn’t surprise me that it is the same wastes of human life that are still doing this. I have no faith in our local law enforcement.

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  3. Michael says:

    My previous home was broken in to twice. The first time I felt horribly violated and wanted to take extreme steps to safeguard my residence. It’s a natural reaction I think. The second time I lamented the loss of a few items and took a few common sense actions to increase my personal security (better locks on the doors, double checking windows, not leaving valuables out where they can be easily seen, etc)

    Regarding firearms, I’m a gun owner myself, but I believe in responsible ownership. Defending yourself if you believe you or someone else is in immediate danger of physical harm is one thing, turning your neighborhood into an armed camp of vigilantes is something else entirely. I recommend Dan Workman’s Washington State Gun Rights and Responsibilities to anyone who owns a firearm or is contemplating purchasing one.

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    • Steve says:

      I live a few houses down from the person that posted these signs. And I agree 100%. They are not saying be a vigilante. That would constitute going out and finding criminals. The sign says dont be affraid to protect your property. Two completley diffrent things. What has this country come to. That we need to worry about what we can and cant do to someone that *breaks* into your house. Very sad. Go ahead call the police so they can slap the robber on the wrist and give them a fine that they can pay with the money they got forom another house they robbed.

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  4. Shari says:

    I wonder if the Chief would be willing to help residents by providing:

    –Information about what has occurred and who/what we should be keeping an eye out for (are there descriptions of cars & people? are there patterns to the activity that would help us respond most effectively? etc)

    –Tips for organizing effective neighborhood watch programs that have the support of law enforcement (for example: how we can organize and implement a neighborhood watch in the most effective way, and how we can make sure that important information is communicated in a timely way between neighborhood groups and between neighborhood groups and law enforcement).

    Maybe some local law enforcement members would be willing to hold a community meeting and help us with this?

    We have seen some patterns of cars in the area that raised our suspicions last week before we had even heard about the burglaries…cars driving up one block and down another, stopping a few times per block to pull over briefly and then drive further; cars speeding away from our house when we come home from work and, when followed, go on a completely random course (north, west, north again, south) suggesting evasion. But with all the houses for sale in GH, we tended to chalk it up to people exploring the area for real estate purposes. Maybe not a valid assumption?

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  5. Jack says:

    People have been on alert here in Seahurst after a recent burglary at a neighbor’s home in daylight. Everyone needs to be more watchful and not afraid to report possible crime. Let possible criminals see you observing them if you see them driving around aimlessly or parked on a street for long periods.

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  6. Erik says:

    Where in Seahurst was the breakin? Gunshots,robbery and possible child abductions(a letter was sent home with my daughter from Gregory Heights Elementary a few weeks ago about a man trying to lure some children in the neighborhood). The King county Sheriff really needs to step it up in our neighborhoods. More Burien Sheriff cars are in Skyway and White Center than Burien these days.

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  7. Erik says:


    ” It would be difficult to answer your question without knowing what the issue is.”

    Ummmm….. Hello! Homes are bring broken into. I think THAT is the issue. Sad state of affairs when people now have to hide their property in their own homes.

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  8. Susie says:

    I live in Gregory Heights and our house was broken into almost two years ago. They kicked a hole in the front door and reached in and unlocked the door, they took both plasma tv’s right off the wall, damaging furniture in the process, they ransacked the house, took all the X-box games and systems, and they also took our safe out of the house. It was not fun. It happened in broad day light.

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  9. Rainycity says:

    When was the last time you visited the K.C.P. website?
    They have a lot of that information on it and myself,
    well, I would have no problem with shooting the bastards
    if I caught them in my home.
    Matter of fact, I dream about it..*lol*
    I kind of like Michaels idea of a neighborhood of armed vigilanties,,*heh-heh*

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  10. Greg Duff says:

    I live just inside the newly annexed North Burien area. We have had a few breakins on our street (Occidental Ave. South) in the last couple of months. We organized our neighborhood and now we all have each others email addresses and phone numbers and we call each other if anything looks suspicious. We asked Sgt. McLauchlan from the King County Sheriffs Office (Burien) to come and speak to us and he came out and gave a presentation to about 30 of our neighbors on how to make our homes safer.
    Our motto is “Let’s watch each others backs”.
    Don’t stand around and be victims. Get involved. Organize your neighborhood. Get to know your neighbors. Have a night out for crime party in August.
    Let’s take back our nighborhoods from the bad guys. If you want to know how to organize your neighborhood, let me know or ask Chief Kimmerer or Sgt McLauchlan.

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  11. Chris says:

    Check out the KCSO reports page for activity in your area. FYI, the “N4” area is Gregory Heights and Three Tree Point, and the “N1” area is generally the greater Seahurst area. When you do you search, readjust the data parameters to see crime stats starting from the first of the year. Here’s the link:


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  12. Chris says:

    Since the beginning of the year, there have been 25 residential burglaries (including attempted burglaries) in the N4 area. This includes the Seahurst, Gregory Heights and Three Tree Point areas. My previous post showed the N1 as Seahurst, but misread the map (d’oh!).

    Also, there were 54 calls for suspicious circumstances, and 47 area check requests. Area Checks can be for just about anything, and is somewhat of a step below “Suspicious Circumstances.”

    Just so you all know, my neighbor here in Seahurst was buglarized in the middle of the day. His house is right on a corner, with few trees or brush, and right at an intersection with a four-way stop. While the robbers were doing there thing (with a truck and car in his circular driveway), the neighbor across the street watched it all happen and DID NOTHING!

    The neighbor who was actively viewing this, thought they might have been “workers” doing work on the house. When asked about it later, he did admit that it seemed “odd”.

    So the point of the story is: CALL 911 if you see something suspicious! We know our neighborhoods, we all should know most people and neighbors in our respective areas, and most know when something “doesn’t seem right.” Don’t feel bad about calling 911 to report something that you just know is out of the ordinary, and don’t worry about feeling like a nosey neighbor. Do yourself and your neighbors a favor and be proactive about these things.

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  13. Carol says:

    I have noticed on my walks during the day and evening that it is very easy to tell if no one is home. The houses look empty. On dark days there are no lights on inside. There are no cars in driveways. If when leaving people left a light on in various rooms on different days. Took the bus to work and left a car in the driveway it would make the homes less inviting to break ins.

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  14. Shari says:

    Some of the people who have posted have given some helpful specifics about times of day, vehicles, etc… even more of that specific kind of “what and who to look for and what kinds of behaviors in particular to watch for” kind of info would really be helpful to me and add a lot to the general statistics available online.

    With people’s work schedules and all of the things that keep us scattered, it might be really helpful if law enforcement could be proactive and try to inform us and hear from the broader community by convening a community meeting… They could share what they know with us in one place, in person, so that we can ask questions of them, share what we know with them and with each other, and do it all at the same time and in the same (non-virtual) place. That might really help law enforcement help us as well as help us assist them by telling us some things to focus on germane to this particular situation.

    While I haven’t seen any law enforcement vehicles going by our house the last two days, a KOMO news SUV has gone by twice in the last few minutes.

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  15. Jack says:

    I so appreciate the B-Town Blog. A big thank you to the people who created and maintain it everyday. The West Seattle Blog has a Twitter section that is pretty amazing to read when something is going down over there. It would be helpful if we could do the same here in Burien. Of course, Burien is not as large or dense in population as West Seattle, but it still would be great way to keep up with the happenings.

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  16. Erik says:

    Just saw on KOMO’s website they have done a piece on this problem. It was on the news last night.
    Has Scott Kimerer ever got back to on you question? Or does he still not know what the issue is?

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    • Erik says:

      ughhh it’s early…… I meant to say “Has Scott Kimmerer ever got back to you on your question?

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  17. sara says:


    According to the the King County Sheiff’s office, there is no issue. They advise that the number of burglaries does not indicate a jump in crime in the area. So it is on all of us within the GH area to keep an eye out for each other. Which is fine by me. I’m more than happy to do what it takes to ensure my property as well as the property of my neighbors is kept safe. Hopefully we see a decrease in the burglaries but I guess only time will tell. I’m not sure what would in fact constitute a jump in crime – to me, eight burglaries in the same area would – three of which were within a block of each other. I just heard that one of the homes, the burglar actually cut the power to bypass the alarm. Very scary! I thank the Lee’s for their proactive approach and am happy to know that I have neighbors that are looking out for themselves and others.

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