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Surveillance video captures violent Greenwood attack

A Greenwood business owner said that morale is low among police officers in Seattle. (AP)

A Greenwood business owner was shocked by what a surveillance video at his auto repair shop revealed.

Curtis Gehrke, the fourth-generation owner of Acme Auto Electric & Repair at Aurora Avenue and 90th Street, watched in horror as a group of people who appeared to be homeless beat up, robbed, and stabbed another man who was likely a transient just before 3 a.m. Saturday, right outside his shop.

“As they’re holding him down, a female comes running across the street, she has a knife in her hands … and she stabs him twice in the back,” Gehrke told KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson.

Police told Gehrke that the victim would survive and that they are in the process of identifying and locating the perpetrators.

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Gehrke said that there did not appear to be any motivation for the attack, but noted that the homeless people in the area “all carry some sort of weapon,” such as baseball bats and even machetes. Gehrke recognized a few of the people in the video as people he has seen on the streets nearby.

Acme Auto Electric & Repair has been in the family since 1944. Over the years, Gehrke said that he has seen many changes in Greenwood.

“It was a lot quieter when I was younger,” he said.

Now, however, he said that prostitution, open-air drug dealing and drug use are common sights — and that these crimes are never prosecuted. Gehrke said that when he told one trespasser to get off of his property, she taunted that the police wouldn’t do anything about it.

He blames the changing face of Greenwood on the city government, which he said is just “enabling the problem.”

“I am not happy with the city leadership — it doesn’t seem like they care,” Gehrke said. “The only thing they care about is finding ways to get more money out of us to throw money at a problem that isn’t being solved.”

The problem, he said, is that the city is not allowing police officers to take care of crime.

“The officers that I talk to, morale is low, because they have no support from anybody,” he said. “The city is more interested in jamming good officers up with complaints and making examples of them than they are in rewarding the officers for their good work.”

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