Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

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Glenn Brooks
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Location: Woodinville, Washington

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by Glenn Brooks » Thu May 30, 2019 2:09 pm

Hello All,

I know many of us are dismayed by this theft. Also, many of us in the Seattle area and beyond, know the gentleman who owns the shop where this burglary occurred. Here below is a bit more info about the incident. There are some additional identifying characteristics of the loco floating around on Facebook - although I will have to go dig to find them.

The location of the burglary is an independent living facility in West Seattle, having a private, enclosed ground level parking area. One of our KLS members lives in the facility and has a machine shop inside the parking area. The loco had just been transported from Bellingham to this shop for a hydrotest, but normally resides in Bellingham. None of the club members I spoke with this week knows the loco or the guy up in Blaine who owns it. So it’s not apparently, at all well known in the Seattle area, and perhaps rarely if ever has been here, before the theft. Also, it’s interesting to me that the shop owner was down in Train Mountain this week, so not resident in the building.

All of which suggests these two dirt bag burglars had some, possibly extensive, inside knowledge regarding the timing and placement of the locomotive. Contrary to what one poster has alluded, these two thieves are not Honduran immigrant women and children asylum seekers rolling the loco out of Ken’s shop. They appear to be young white guys in new, trendy, camo outfits, wearing sneakers, who are quite comfortable pushing this loco, or similar loco’s, around on stands. AND they knew precisely that the engine was temporarily stored in West Seattle, and would fit into their pickup - either because their relatives live in the building,and they saw it when it was brought in, or, they somehow are connected to the owner’s train concession up in Blaine. In any event, these guys pretty clearly had inside knowledge about the location and availability of the locomotive. Interestingly, it appears they did not steal the tender or anything else - although the video clips I saw were an incomplete record.

For the moment, we all can help raise awareness by circulating the photos to local salvage yards, our personal social networks and friends, and the live steam community in our local areas. Somebody, somewhere will see this loco and hopefully, report it to the local police.

Glenn
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Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

Glenn Brooks
Posts: 1645
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 1:39 pm
Location: Woodinville, Washington

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by Glenn Brooks » Thu May 30, 2019 4:32 pm

Update: here are a couple of photos of the thieves in action, and their pickup. Hopefully one of the video stills will illuminate the license plate. A local FB poster commented the one on the right may be a slender woman, because of small hands and feet,( and generally thin torso). Notice they are possibly sharing a full camo suit - top on the thin one, knee length camo pants on the guy on the left.

GPB
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Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

rkcarguy
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Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 10:33 am
Location: Wa State

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by rkcarguy » Tue Jun 04, 2019 4:05 pm

I hope they are caught.
Truck looks like a dark colored extended cab F150?
I have heard of the concession up in Blaine but have not seen it, you think someone from the area up there was involved?
We have a decent sized group of "eastern Europeans" in the area that are good at making things disappear and seem to have a broad range of taste. Cars, boats, trailers, motorcycles, go karts(a family friend had half of his rental karts stolen), you name it.

Glenn Brooks
Posts: 1645
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 1:39 pm
Location: Woodinville, Washington

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by Glenn Brooks » Tue Jun 04, 2019 7:34 pm

Ryan, haven’t been caught yet. hard to say how they discovered the location. Loco was temporarily down in So. Seattle for a new boiler design. Never been here before, apparently. Last 30 years it was in the Blaine area. So how these two thieves knew it was here really limits the suspect pool to someone associated with the train, or the housing area where it was stolen, in my opinion. Might learn more tomorrow at the KLS breakfast meet up.

Glenn
Moderator - Grand Scale Forum

Motive power : 1902 A.S.Campbell 4-4-0 American - 12 5/8" gauge, 1955 Ottaway 4-4-0 American 12" gauge

Ahaha, Retirement: the good life - drifting endlessly on a Sea of projects....

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BAdams
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Location: Moreno Valley, CA

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by BAdams » Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:44 am

Hey Glenn,
Were there any updates to this robbery?

Brook

rkcarguy
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Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 10:33 am
Location: Wa State

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by rkcarguy » Tue Jul 02, 2019 2:36 pm

Seattle isn't even busting drug dealers that have less than a certain amount on them, so I'm not going to hold my breath as much as I'd like to see these thieves caught. It's sad because even if it was insured you can't just go to the nearest large scale train lot and get another one, years of work goes into building a steamer.

hoppercar
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Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by hoppercar » Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:56 pm

it never ceases to amaze me how much surveilance video, is always, blurry, shaky, grainy, out of focus, at the wrong angle, to light , to dark, and being just generally useless

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SteveM
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Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by SteveM » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:15 am

hoppercar wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:56 pm
it never ceases to amaze me how much surveilance video, is always, blurry, shaky, grainy, out of focus, at the wrong angle, to light , to dark, and being just generally useless
One problem is that many people mount the cameras up high so that nobody will steal the cameras.

A friend did that and all she can tell about the people that stole her car is that they were wearing hoodies. Can't even get a good height reference nor can she tell if they were men or women.

But her cameras are safe.

Steve

hoppercar
Posts: 195
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:09 pm

Re: Thieves caught on video stealing mini steam train in West Seattle

Post by hoppercar » Sun Jul 07, 2019 11:29 am

well that's good, the camera is safe..lol lol...at least you can but another camera....to bad, you can't get another locomotive that easily...I sure hope there caught soon.

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