Whittier Heights neighborhood group to host meeting about crime increase

Newly formed neighborhood group Whittier Heights Involved Neighbors (WHIN) has organized a community meeting to discuss the increase in crime in the area.

The meeting is open to all and will be held on Tuesday, November 18, at the Loyal Heights Community Center Room 2 (2101 NW 77th St) from 1:30 p.m. – 3 p.m.

The meeting will center around the rise in property crime in the Whittier Heights area which refers to now common occurrences such as burglary, car thefts and car prowls. Representatives from the SPD North Precinct and the City Council are set to attend the meeting in addition to numerous concerned residents and business owners.

Whittier Heights resident, block captain and member of WHIN, Gina Frank, reports that the meeting has been organized due to both the increase in property crime and the “unacceptably long” 911 response times.

“The increase in property crime coupled with the decrease in police presence/increased 911 response times is the situation which led to the formation of WHIN,” says Frank.

WHIN hopes to make significant progress during the meeting and aims to work with the SPD and the local community to make Whittier Heights a safer place.

“We hope to hear from the SPD North Precinct representatives about what is and can be done in response to this problem and to voice our concerns to City Council in the hopes that they can impact long term solutions,” says Frank.

As the My Ballard team reported in September, a memo was leaked in regards to the North Precinct being severely understaffed to investigate most burglary reports in our area.

The memo, which was leaked to KOMO 4 News, mentioned the dramatic difference between the current and previous levels of detective staff assigned to the North Precinct. The 14 detectives that were assigned to work burglary, theft and juvenile cases in our area has now dropped down to two plus an on-loan patrol officer despite burglary cases increasing to 1,500 a month.

WHIN are hoping to get answers from the SPD in regards to the significant understaffing levels and how they affect the increase of crime in the neighborhood.

If you are unable to attend the meeting and want to provide input Frank reminds locals to write and call City Council to express their concerns. “Locals can also take part in the block watch program and join WHIN if they reside in Whittier Heights,” says Frank.

To find out more about next Tuesday’s meeting or about the work of WHIN email whittierheights@gmail.com.

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