The property manager and a second victim, both unidentified, were stabbed at a high-rise building in Seattle’s Belltown neighborhood Wednesday morning, according to local radio station KOMO News.
The suspect, who until recently had lived in the building and was facing eviction, has been booked into King County Jail in connection to killing one person and injuring another.
After receiving a call about a person stabbing two people and refusing to leave by barricading herself in one of the apartments, mental health providers, crisis intervention officers and SWAT officers arrived at the building, located on the 2500 block of 4th Avenue and owned by Equity Properties.
Officers/HNT responding to the 2500 block of 4th Ave following a stabbing at an apartment building. At this time, one person reported injured. Officers in contact with the suspect inside the building. More information as it becomes available.
— Seattle Police Dept. (@SeattlePD) September 23, 2020
The victims are a 48-year-old man who died after being rushed to Harborview Medical Center for treatment and a 43-year-old woman who is currently in the same hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries. A resident of the tower told KOMO that one of the people injured was the property manager who had come to evict the suspect, although it is not immediately known which of the victims was killed.
Once the team of officers arrived, neighbors on the same floor were told to shelter in place while the rest of the building was directed to evacuate until the standoff was over. One neighbor told KOMO News that an eviction notice had been hanging on the apartment door for about a week around Labor Day.
Rent in the building ranges from $1,269 for a studio to well over $5,000 for a three-bedroom apartment.
An eviction moratorium is currently in effect due to the coronavirus pandemic in Seattle but some exceptions are made if public health and safety are in danger. It is not known how or whether the eviction fell into those categories but neighbors said that the notice had been hung on the door of the apartment and since removed.
September happens to be Realtor Safety Month, when agents and property managers are reminded to take certain precautions when dealing with strangers. These include having an alarm within easy access on one’s phone and not attending high-risk activities such as open houses and evictions alone (or, if doing so, letting a colleague know where you’ll be).