‘Neighbors outraged’: Driver pulls onto Ballard sidewalk to escape police

SEATTLE — Outraged Ballard neighbors say this is the last straw, a car up on a sidewalk to escape police.

They want the city of Seattle to do something about these RVs they say are a blight on their neighborhood.  This slow-moving Seattle police chase happened just after 5:30 Saturday night.

The driver went up on the sidewalk in the 6700 block of Cleopatra Place Northwest to get away.

It was all caught on surveillance camera.  The neighbors believe the vehicle came from an encampment a block away.

That is what has them so upset.  They say they have been living for years with those RVs on the next block.  This time it came to their sidewalk,  right here.

“The police had tried to stop the man and opened the door and then he took off,” said Jo Kaden, who has lived in the neighborhood 26 years.

Her surveillance camera captured the driver’s novel escape route on narrow Cleopatra Place Northwest.

“Got onto our driveway right here,” she said, “went down the sidewalk. And we are assuming he went off the grass and continued the rest of the way down the street.”

She says a neighbor on 8th Avenue Northwest had called 9-1-1 because someone in the red car was in a knife fight near the RVs that have been a sore subject here for years.  Now this has happened.

“There are several children that live on this street,” Kaden said. “Our neighbor right here has a two-year-old, pregnant with another baby. There are other children up and down this street. And it just astonishes me.”

She says their complaints have largely fallen on deaf ears.

“We have called the police,” said Kaden. “We’ve done find-it-fix-it to try to get something about the rvs on the back.  And nothing has happened.

Lara Davis has lived in her house since 1997.  She says this is what the customers of her hair salon see each time they come.

She says she has cameras.  “Yeah, you have to,” Davis said. “People are always creeping around the back yard.  Like I have light motion sensors.  And I have to have alarm systems.

Those who live in these RVs say they are alarmed -- by what they contend is the sometimes violent response from neighbors and they have the damage to prove it.

“We’re not trying to be on anybody’s bad side,” said one man, who did not want to give his name. “But we’re not trying to be on, getting the damage either like that.”

“Someone could have very easily gotten hurt,” said his friend. “They even shot at our friend’s car.”

The RV dwellers we talked to said they plan to move Sunday night.  After all, they must move every 72 hours or be ticketed.  But they say 8th Avenue Northwest is their location of choice.