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May 17, 2013 at 10:16 PM
A 22-year-old man who fled deputies trying to arrest him on warrants Friday, was finally caught around 8:30 p.m., after he was sprayed with fire hoses, according to the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.
Vincent Nutter was wanted for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Earlier in the day, he had eluded arrest in the unincorporated area of Snohomish County called Clearview. Residents around the 7000 block of Interurban Avenue had been told to stay indoors while deputies searched for him.
Nutter managed to get away in a stolen car just before 6 p.m. He drove east, then ran into the woods, climbing 40 feet up a tree near the 7000 block of 184th Street Southeast.
When negotiations failed, personnel from Fire District 7 opened their hoses, and “after a few blasts of water, the suspect willingly agreed to climb down the tree,” said sheriff’s spokeswoman Shari Ireton.
Nutter was booked into jail on the warrants, and he may face additional charges after Friday’s pursuit.
Both Nutter and his 47-year-old father, Mark Nutter, are listed on the Washington’s Most Wanted website.
According to sheriff’s Capt. Ty Trenary. “Both are currently wanted for being felons in possession of firearms. Mark Nutter has been specifically targeted by the ATF (federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) because of his involvement with assault weapons, shotguns and other firearms.”
May 17, 2013 at 9:44 PM
For about 10 minutes, electricity went out in Seattle’s Eastlake area Friday night, according to Seattle City Light.
About 3,600 customers were affected between Interstate 5 and Lake Union. The cause will be investigated Monday, said spokesman Mark VanOss of Seattle City Light. The utility, which serves nearly 1 million people and businesses, posts outage information at this homepage.
May 17, 2013 at 4:36 PM
Pima Community College in Tucson, Ariz., has lured away Shoreline Community College’s president, Lee Lambert, effective July 1, both colleges announced Friday.
Pima is much larger than Shoreline, with six campuses serving 85,000 credit and non-credit students, Lambert said. He will be paid $290,000 a year in Arizona, compared with around $187,000 at Shoreline.
Lambert said his main motivation for the job change is “having a larger platform to drive the things I care about,” such as raising low math levels, and closing the “achievement gap” for lower-income or limited-English speaking students. Also, Lambert said he would help Pima develop its relatively new programs dealing with climate change, including solar and renewable power technologies.
Lambert also criticized the low level of state support and rising tuition in Washington, saying this state is reducing access to some would-be community college students. “They [Pima] have resources to do things, that we don’t have here in Washington,” he said.
Lambert, a 1992 Seattle University law graduate, was among four finalists to become chancellor in Arizona. Shoreline’s trustees had tried to keep him home. Pima is currently on two-year probation, from an accreditation board, for lapses in board oversight and financial management, as well as sexual harassment claims against a former chancellor. Lambert, 50, said he’s not fazed by that. “I love challenge. When you have an opportunity to go to the eighth-largest community college district in the country, challenges don’t get any larger than that.”
May 17, 2013 at 4:21 PM
UPDATE, 11 P.M. Everett police say that 40 year-old Jason M. Riley of Lake Stevens, was apprehended in the crawlspace below the house, after an eight-hour standoff. Riley will be booked into the Snohomish County Jail on burglary charges.
After a search, no grenade was found, and the residents have returned to their house, police say.
EARLIER POST | Everett police say they’re continuing to surround a suspected burglar late Friday in the 3800 block of Wetmore Avenue, where the man is inside a house and claims to have a grenade.
A neighbor called police at around 1:45 p.m. saying a home burglary was under way. When police arrived, the intruder went from outside back into the house, said police spokesman Aaron Snell. Police searched inside for 25 minutes, until the man, who was in the attic, said he had a grenade and was willing to use it.
Snell didn’t have confirmation whether the officers actually saw a grenade.
There are no hostages, and no major streets are blocked, said Snell.
Bomb-squad officers a SWAT team and firefighters have arrived. Negotiators are still trying to “establish verbal contact with the subject,” Snell said.
May 11, 2013 at 5:26 PM
A man in his 40s is being treated at Harborview Medical Center after a near-drowning off the shore of Gene Coulon Park in Renton on Saturday.
The man saw a 10-year-old boy jump off a dock into Lake Washington. The boy appeared to be struggling, and the man swam out in street clothes to help the boy, who made it to shore. The man didn’t.
Other bystanders hauled the man in, using a flotation ring at a lifeguard stand, said Battalion Chief John Lecoq of the Renton Fire Department. The injured man, who is not related to the boy, was still breathing and had a pulse when medics checked him, Lecoq said.
There were two other water rescues Saturday in southeast King County, Lecoq said: one in the Green River at Flaming Geyser State Park outside Auburn, and an overturned canoe in Panther Lake in Kent.
He added a safety warning about spring snow melt feeding icy water into rivers and lakes: “Hot temperatures and cold water can lead to dangerous conditions that people don’t recognize.” Whether frigid water caused the Coulon Park incident hasn’t been established, LeCoq said. There is no lifeguard at the park until June.
May 10, 2013 at 1:25 PM
Ken Rotta, whose parents died when the SUV he was driving was hit by a bus Monday in Kirkland, says reality is just beginning to sink in.
He says he’s been on ”a little bit of a roller coaster” emotionally, and has been viewing the tragedy through faith, that his parents are together in heaven.
“It’s hard to explain, all I can think is it was God’s timing for them to go. I haven’t really gone too far beyond that,” he said in a telephone interview Thursday.
Rotta was driving on the Northeast 128th Street overpass when a Sound Transit bus leaving Interstate 405 apparently went through a red light and struck the SUV’s right side. His parents, Robert Rotta, 76, and Elizabeth Rotta, 75, were killed. Ken Rotta suffered a broken rib in the crash.
The Rottas had just left the Kirkland home of Ken’s brother, Phil and his wife, Laura. They were on the overpass, heading toward a Denny’s restaurant in the Totem Lake shopping area.
“The light was green, I looked over the intersection, it looked fine. I was looking ahead to see how I was going to navigate our turn. Just as I was going through the intersection someone cried, ‘Look Out!’ ” said Ken Rotta.
He says he glanced to the right and saw “that big square” — the front of the bus. After the crash, a bystander gave him a phone to call 911, but he passed out during the call.
There are a few other gaps in his memory of what happened immediately after the impact, he said.
A Washington State Patrol investigation is expected to last two more weeks. The bus driver, Aleksander Rukhlin of Everett, is on paid administrative leave.
Rukhlin told troopers the brakes failed, and the WSP says Rukhlin showed no signs of being impaired. The bus passed a routine safety check a week before. Before the safety check, there had been a complaint that the bus pulled to the right, according to the log of the safety check.
Rotta says he hopes “the bus company and the driver are doing well. I know it’s a terrible emotional toll on these folks.”
A funeral for Rotta’s parents is scheduled for 2 p.m., June 1 at Westminster Chapel in Bellevue, 13646 N.E. 24th St., the family said.
May 9, 2013 at 3:15 PM
The Sound Transit bus in Monday night’s I-405 crash that left two people dead passed a routine safety inspection a week earlier, according to a maintenance log released by Sound Transit Thursday.
During a 30-minute test drive on May 1, a mechanic looked into a complaint the bus pulled right, but found that it “did not pull, and didn’t pull when braking,” he wrote. Also, the brake pads were all a quarter-inch thick, putting them above the minimum standard, the log says.
The bus driver, Aleksander Rukhlin of Everett, told troopers Monday night he believed the brakes failed when the bus hit an SUV driven by Ken Rotta and carrying his parents, Robert and Elizabeth Rotta of Bellevue. Both his parents died as a result of the crash and Ken Rotta was injured .
The bus, which was on the Route 535 run to Lynnwood, was traveling uphill at an exit at the Totem Lake Transit Center in Kirkland, where witnesses say it went through a red light and hit the right side of the SUV. The bus continued for another half mile on a ramp toward northbound I-405 after the impact.
Maintenance logs are just one piece of evidence in an investigation that will last at least two more weeks.
Washington State Patrol detectives will re-interview all 24 bus passengers, said Trooper Julie Judson. Then, the WSP will obtain a search warrant to gather video and any physical evidence from the bus, now parked in a storage yard in Bellevue. Technicians will then perform a half-day examination of brakes and other components, she said. A search warrant is standard procedure in such cases. Troopers initially said the bus driver wasn’t noticeably impaired, but a blood sample was taken as is customary after a transit crash.
The bus shows green-and-blue Sound Transit colors but is operated under contract by Community Transit, which contracts with First Transit for operations and maintenance.
Sound Transit said it released a First Transit log due to requests from news organizations, but noted, “Please do not interpret, or convey in any way to your viewers or readers, that our providing this document per your request reflects any conclusion whatsoever on the part of Sound Transit about the cause of this tragic accident. We will rely on the thorough Washington State Patrol investigation…”
Sound Transit and its operating contractors “maintain a rigorous preventative maintenance program on all fleet vehicles,” spokesman Bruce Gray emphasized.
This is the first fatality on Sound Transit’s ST Express bus network since service began in 1999, said Gray. Nationally, an average of 87 people a year died in transit bus incidents, of whom 30 victims were in other motor vehicles, according to the National Transit Database for 2008-12. By comparison, 32,367 persons were killed in other motor vehicles in 2011.
Here is the inspection report:
May 8, 2013 at 6:09 PM
Seattle is on the verge of a possible buying spree, to acquire cleaner lift trucks, parking-enforcement scooters, and other vehicles that emit less carbon.
Using shiny white vehicles as a backdrop, Mayor Mike McGinn on Wednesday announced a “Million Gallon Challenge” to avoid burning that amount of petroleum fuels between now and 2020. This would equate to a 42 percent reduction from what McGinn said is already America’s cleanest city fleet. Carbon dioxide is a cause of global warming that threatens to raise ocean levels 1 to 3 feet by 2100.
The city government’s output, and even that of 7 million Washingtonians, is a drop in the bucket globally. McGinn said he hopes Seattle’s actions will set an example for local businesses and for other cities. Mayors like to compete for such distinctions as “Number 1 green fleet,” he said.
- Seattle already has 14 new-generation lift trucks, for electric-line crews and traffic-signal installers. They use diesel only to drive then use conserved battery power from regenerative braking (like a hybrid car) to operate the lifts. Old-style trucks idle on diesel all day while crews work overhead.
- The city bought the first two “Firefly” brand electric vehicles for parking enforcers, and two others. Besides clean fuel, they include a bike-rack space so a second officer can ride along, then pedal through the target neighborhood writing citations.
- Software and tracking devices will be used to plan routes and track speeds of vehicles, to reduce fuel demand.
- More biodiesel, made of 20 percent waste vegetable oil, will be used.
As for jump-starting a market, King County Metro famously led the way by moving toward an all-hybrid fleet, placing a 500-bus order in 2007 with General Motors, Allison Transmission and New Flyer that helped to stimulate new manufacturing lines. And in Seattle, a city-funded natural-gas fueling station near South Park made it possible for garbage contractors to convert in 2009 from diesel to compressed natural-gas vehicles.
A big question mark is cost: Will taxpayers take a hit, or would fuel savings pencil out by offsetting the upfront price of cleaner rigs? Chris Wiley, city green fleet manager, said breaking even is a goal. The new-generation lift trucks can cost $300,000 — $50,000 more than standard ones, he said. The total initial cost for McGinn’s program hasn’t been established yet. The mayor would likely provide dollar figures in September in the preliminary 2014 budget, said Julie Moore, a city finance spokeswoman.
May 7, 2013 at 12:24 PM
Seattle’s “Mercer West” street project kicks into high gear 10 days from now, when Aurora Avenue North and eastbound Mercer Street will temporarily close to traffic.
The shutdown will let construction workers move equipment into place, and change the lane positions for a two-year project, which includes cutting apart and rebuilding the bridge over the Mercer underpass.
From 11 p.m. on Friday, May 17 until 5 a.m. on Monday, May 20:
- Highway 99 (Aurora) will close from Valley Street to the south end of the Battery Street Tunnel. Southbound through traffic will be detoured to I-5 at North 85th Street, though local drivers will be able to continue on Aurora toward Lake Union.
- Mercer Street will close from Fifth Avenue North to Dexter Avenue North. A detour near Seattle Center will take traffic from Fifth to Denny Way, then to Mercer via northbound Dexter.
- Sidewalks in the same area as the road closures will be closed.
Afterward, Mercer Street will have two eastbound lanes instead of the usual four, through the work zone – adding 5 to 10 minutes to driving time, city staff said Tuesday. A map of the changes can be found by clicking here.
The $95 million project will convert today’s eastbound-only Mercer to two-way traffic below Aurora, making it simpler for drivers to go from I-5 to Seattle Center or Interbay. Wide sidewalks and a bike lane will be constructed on Mercer, as well as three vehicle lanes each direction. The ability to go west on Mercer will also help drivers leaving the new Highway 99 tunnel, which will include an exit onto west Mercer, said Eric Tweit, a project manager for Seattle Department of Transportation. It’s expected to open in 2016.
May 7, 2013 at 11:59 AM
A couple riding in an SUV died Monday night when a Sound Transit bus struck their vehicle at an Interstate 405 exit in Kirkland, Washington State Patrol troopers said.
The SUV driver, Kendall L. Rotta, 51, survived the crash and is being treated at Harborview Medical Center.
The accident happened about 9:33 p.m. near Totem Lake Transit Center. The bus was exiting I-405 and apparently ran a red light. The SUV was traveling east on the Northeast 128th Street overpass, when the bus struck it on the passenger side.
Robert H. Rotta, 76, died at the scene, while his wife, Elizabeth E. Rotta, 75, passed away a few hours later at Harborview. Some bus riders had minor injuries, troopers said.
About 35 passengers were aboard the bus, a Route 535 running from Bellevue to Lynnwood. Several bus passengers called 911 to report the collision, and to say the bus had not immediately stopped after the collision. After the crash, at the crest of the uphill exit, the bus rolled downhill a half-mile, on a northbound ramp to I-405, troopers said.
The bus, a 2008 Gillig, is being inspected Tuesday by WSP investigators at a State Patrol storage yard in Bellevue. The bus driver, Aleksander Rukhlin, 54, of Everett, showed no signs of drug or alcohol impairment, but a blood sample was drawn as standard procedure, said WSP Trooper Julie Judson.
Sound Transit spokesman Geoff Patrick said the agency doesn’t yet know whether the bus brakes failed, as had been suggested by the driver. “We’re doing everything we can to support the investigation. Our hearts are with the victims, and we will follow the findings and take appropriate action, as what happened comes into better focus,” Patrick said. It was the first fatal collision involving a Sound Transit bus since the agency launched ST Express service in 1999, transit staff said.
The bus, like other Sound Transit routes originating in Snohomish County, is operated and maintained under contract by Community Transit, which subcontracts in this case with the company, First Transit.
The driver was interviewed Monday night by supervisors, and is now on paid administrative leave, said Martin Munguia, Community Transit spokesman.
Seattle Times staff reporter Brian M. Rosenthal and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
About The Today File
The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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