Lake Stevens residents worry about crime increase

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by MEG COYLE / KING 5 NEWS

Bio | Email | Follow: @MegCoyleKING

KING5.com

Posted on February 26, 2014 at 6:12 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 26 at 6:20 PM

An attempted robbery on Tuesday ended with a shooting and an arrest. Neighbors say the Lake Stevens house where it happened is no stranger to problems and there may be little law enforcement can do about it.

On a sun-soaked afternoon, it's easy to see why someone like Heather McIntosh would want to live in the neighborhood.

“We moved out here because it's quiet and peaceful,” she said.

But on Tuesday night a home down a dead end street, behind a gate, was the apparent target of robbers. Sheriff's deputies say two crooks pulled a gun on two men in a garage. One of the men pulled his gun and fired. One thief was wounded, the other got away.

“We just double check the doors double check the garage. Make sure everything's locked up," said neighbor Gary Maner.

Neighbors were already on alert.  A few months ago they received a flier warning of a string of recent break-ins, and blaming a so-called drug house down the road. Heather McIntosh was already on alert after a stranger came to her door.

“And then within 24 hours of that happening somebody had an armed robbery one street over,” she said.

“Well now my concerns are am I safe?” said Maner.

Police are concerned too. They've been called out to this property at least three times in five years. But even if Tuesday night's incident was drug related, it would be tough for police to seize the property.

Most known drug homes are rented. Prosecutors have to prove the home's owner is aware of the problem, which can be difficult to do. The law tough to enforce is forcing neighbors to fend for themselves.

“Hopefully it wouldn't happen again but with the increase of traffic and other questionable things you just never know,” said McIntosh.

“I hope it draws us closer to make us more of a community, we gotta take care of ourselves,” said Maner.

The people who live in the house in question do have drug convictions but police aren't saying if what happened Tuesday night was drug related.

The home's owners are both deceased. Their daughter has been living there for at least the past year.

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