After a string of 21 dumpster fires in the Ballard area — including one on Phinney Ridge and another in Magnolia — the arsons have mysteriously stopped. The last fires were set on the weekend of January 6th, and Seattle Fire tells us there are no new cases since then. Investigators are mum on any […]
Update Tuesday AM: No new fires overnight. Earlier: The dumpster arsonist(s) may be taking the day off after a string of 21 fires — no new fires so far since last night — but the danger is still very real for Ballard and surrounding neighborhoods. This photo above of Sunday night’s fire behind the Hi […]
Update Monday morning: Looks like there were no new fires overnight. Seattle Fire has updated the map. There are 21 dumpster fires in total so far: Update Sunday night: Big response to 1537 NW 56th St. for a report of a fire in a 7-story apartment building. A few minutes later, all units but engine […]
Update: There were two more fires on Saturday, which we’ve updated here. Earlier: Fire and police investigators are looking into 13 dumpster fires that were intentionally set in Ballard over the last few days. The fires began on December 21st, and the most recent fire was reported this morning. Here’s the map, which Seattle Fire […]
After noticing several fires in abandoned buildings over the last few weeks, we contacted Seattle Fire investigators for a tally — and to learn what started them. There have been five fires across three locations in the Ballard area in November and December, according to investigators. All of the blazes were started by trespassers who […]
Kevin Todd Swalwell, the suspect arrested in the Greenwood arson cases has just been charged with setting multiple fires. PhinneyWood is going through the charging documents and posting a summary.
In court Saturday afternoon, a judge set $1 million bail for Kevin Todd Swalwell. According to the statement of probable cause (.pdf), Swalwell “was captured on surveillance video at 8516 Greenwood Ave. N at the time of a fire being set to the rear of the restaurant there that was determined to be arson. Suspect […]
This morning, 46-year-old Kevin Todd Swalwell was booked into the King County Jail on investigation of arson after being taken into custody several blocks away from a warehouse fire in Shoreline last night. Swalwell has a long history of arson. According to this Seattle Times article from 1995, he has convictions both in the 1990’s […]
Over 600 people packed a public meeting at Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church to hear the latest on a terrifying string of arsons in the Greenwood neighborhood. To underline the seriousness of the meeting, at one point the Fire Marshal briefed the crowd on how to evacuate in case the arsonist lit the church on fire. […]
Some folks in Ballard had a nasty wake-up call as firefighters responded to the apartment building at 6316 24th Ave. NW just after 6:30 a.m. Sunday. The small fire was quickly extinguished, and there was no obvious damage — although it sounded like the sprinklers may have gone off.