UPDATE: Third Suspect arrested for Armed Robbery in Burien Tuesday night

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Photo of the scene outside the Pawn X-Change Tuesday night by Ralph Nichols.

by Ralph Nichols

UPDATE 2:45 p.m. 2/28/12: Sgt. Cindi West of the King County Sheriff’s Office reported via Twitter that a third suspect has been arrested in Tuesday night’s pawn shop robbery. He is a 19-year old man from South Park

PREVIOUSLY: Two suspects were in custody Tuesday evening (Feb. 28) after an armed robbery during which shots were fired at the Pawn X-Change, 15421 1st Ave. S., in Burien.

At least one other suspect escaped, according to King County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Sgt. Cindi West at 9:15 p.m. A fourth suspect may also be on the loose, but that is not confirmed.

Just before 10 p.m., a SWAT team entered the pawn shop and, after determining that no suspects were inside, freed three employees who had fled to a back room and locked themselves inside.

The incident began about 6:50 p.m. when the KCSO and Burien police received a 9-1-1 call from a witness who reported at least three suspects with handguns and wearing hoodies were walking into the Pawn X-Change.

Local deputies responded and were on the scene “almost immediately,” West said. “Multiple shots were fired” from inside the store “and at least two of our officers returned fire.”

When the suspects didn’t come out of the pawn shop and a hostage situation appeared possible, police officers from multiple jurisdictions rapidly responded to the scene from at least as far away as Shoreline.

[A personal note: This reporter observed what appeared to be about 20 police cars, perhaps more, along this stretch of 1st Ave. S. at about 7:30 p.m. At least one fire truck and several ambulances were waiting nearby.]

West said that at this time no law enforcement officers have been injured and the store employees are safe. The two suspects in custody were not injured either.

The B-Town Blog will post updates as events warrant.

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39 Responses to “UPDATE: Third Suspect arrested for Armed Robbery in Burien Tuesday night”
  1. Janet says:

    Good work Ralph on the camera phone and update. Looking for further news on BTB.

    • P says:

      I heard some people tried to rob the pawn shop….then started shooting at police. Hostages now. Waiting on swat team. (hearsay of course

  2. Ralph Nichols says:

    My estimate now is that as many as 20 police units from several jurisdictions are on the scene. A Burien Fire Department engine and 3 ambulances are stationed nearby. We have requested information from King County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Sgt. Cindi West as it becomes available.

  3. Sjones says:

    Ive never seen so many police… Everything is blocked off

  4. ura ven says:

    4th and 154th/155th has officers blocking side streets. traffic through 4th is ok. not a complete closure like last week’s car crash.

  5. Rueben says:

    At 2:50 I drove by the Social Security Admin building on 156th and there were 4 Homeland Security SUV’s on each end of the building, is this a related incidence? I was just told that those 4 SUV’s are still there.

  6. andrea says:

    My uncle works at a hair salon right on the corner there i called to make sure he was ok and he said police ran up there told him to shut all his lights off and lock himself inside …..wont let any one out of there!!!

  7. JJ says:

    I live on SW 154th. Heard shots fired right before 7:00 p.m. Many police on my street, including K-9. They’ve told us to stay inside!

  8. Diana W. says:

    I sincerely hope no innocent people have been injured! This is crazy! I am in White Center and I heard a bunch of officers heading to the scene. I hope this ends quickly.

  9. Ross says:

    Watching it happen from my balcony. Swat in camo getting into position.

  10. Kate says:

    The police had some really big guns visible

    • Kurt says:

      Hows it looking over there? Are the perp’s still inside? Hostages? Are they getting ready to storm the place? I’m just on the other side of Azteca.

  11. areyouserious says:

    Hoping everyone is ok. If I can say one thing about law enforcement, it’s that they don’t get their due respect. Yes, there are a handful of bad officers. Regardless, there are alot of good ones. Most people wouldn’t want to face an armed individual(s) in the dark let alone during the day. Thanks to all of them. I know they are spread thin right now.

  12. Chuck says:

    That shiat was crazzy!!!! Was at the stop light with daughter in the car when it all went down. Saw a policeman sneak up with lights off, park, then get out of his car with a good sized gun, a rifle of some sort, no sooner was he out of the car then pop, pop, pop pop poppopopppopopopopop massive amounts of gun fire, maybe not massive but it was more than a few, daughter and I both recal 10-15 shots. Everyone was sitting there like deer in head lights, not sure what to do. One thing went through my mind… stray bullets and the fact that I’d rather have a ticket than a bullet in my head, or the worst imaginable, a bullet in my daughters head. Told her to duck under the seat, put the pedal to the medal and we mad maxed it the hell outa there! The space between us and the gun shots was too little for me to accept. Sorry, don’t have any actual information.

  13. Danielle says:

    They have 1st Ave, 3rd and 4th blocked from 153rd to 156th. There are a bunch of people outside of the Pawn Shop on the side of the building lined up. There are officers with helmets on bearing guns everywhere in that area on 1st Ave. There are so many lights that it’s blinding and I am sure it is to a disadvantage especially to people driving around this mess. There were no officers down and it was not gang related as of 8:30pm.

    • areyouserious says:

      Not so worried about the lights right now….You should be able to see it from quite a ways off to take another route…all of those flashing lights mean stay away.

  14. Ross says:

    Heard a series of pops a few minutes ago. Guessing it was the cops,,,,,,,

  15. JJ says:

    Although the news stations are acting like this situation is contained, there are still a lot of policemen walking around on my street and they are all carrying big guns. Doesn’t look like it’s over yet to me.

  16. Ross says:

    Dogs and cops just walked out at a slow pace. Saw cops looking for casings on the ground
    Looks like mop up…..

  17. mike says:

    Is this ordeal over and the last suspect caught?

  18. Ross says:

    @ Mike. Yes I asked the officer an hour ago and confirmed it was over,,,,,,,

  19. Greg Duff says:

    The King County Sheriff’s Office did a great job in their immediate response to this dangerous situation. They were able to pull officers from all over the county without any delay.
    Thank you to the men and women from KSCO for a job well done.

  20. Eaton B. Verz says:

    I’m waiting for Joey to analyze this surge and report to us the cost of bringing in deputies from shoreline and the cost of the swat team. Glad they are available. Just curious tho…….

  21. atkmh says:

    Thank you to the quick thinking witness that took the time to call this in. A few more moments and things could have turned out very different. Thanks to the well trained units of KCSO for responding so quickly and bringing this situation to a successful end.

  22. Tom says:

    My guess is they had been training at the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Center in Normandy Park when the call came in.

    • Small correction… The Washington State Criminal Justice Training Center is in Burien!Burien goes all the way down to 192nd.I live right behind it and can hear the gun range in the summer. Nuthin like the smell of gun powder on a warm summer day.

      Joey Martinez

      • elizabeth2 says:

        Oh, please. Let us not nitpick the issue of the actual address, Joey. There are far more important and crucial matters on which you can comment more intelligently!

  23. Chris S says:

    Me and my wife saw it going down, I ran into store to tell employees to get out but was too late and ended up with a gun in my face! Thank god for fast police response and was caught in middle of shootout with cops…. I was chased when I ran..think he was trying to hit me with his gun, thank god they didn’t shoot!

  24. PJ says:

    Burien has some of the Best Police Officers in the State!!!

    And to all of you who think it could only happen in White Center think again and be thankful that we have some of the finest serving us in Burien.

    To Eaton: Burien contracts with the King County Sheriffs Department for situations such as this where SWAT would need to be called out, it is paid on a usage basis.

    • Eaton B. Verz says:

      I understand that. I was just wondering how much. I also believe we pay for each out of service area officers time. I know Joey has studied this extensively and was hoping he would tell us what the costs are..

      • Chris says:

        That’s incorrect. Since Burien contracts witht the KCSO, they (we) receive all the “extras” that go along with having the sheriff’s office provide service. That means if the contracted Burien units are out of service on other matters and/or need additional assitance from other KCSO units, that’s included in the contract for services. Patrol units from Burien respond to other adjacent areas–like unincorporated NH and Seatac (and others)–all the time and vise versa. There’s no additional cost.

        Now as far as the SWAT response goes, some of those SWAT guys/gals came in off-duty to help with this situation. Obviously they received extra overtime pay for this extra work. I’m sure OT costs are factored on a yearly basis/average and calculated into the city contract for services.

  25. jm says:

    what the heck, we need to get our neighborhoods back.

  26. Concerned citizen says:

    I hope this event doesn’t make white center Hesitate to annex into Burien, that would be terrible!

  27. areyouserious says:

    They were charged today. Bail was set and arraignment is on March 15th.

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