Neighbors frustrated after man shot and killed at Ravenna homeless camp

Seattle Police are searching for the person who shot and killed a man at a homeless camp in Seattle’s Ravenna neighborhood.

Police were called to a park in the 1400 block of Northeast Ravenna Blvd. around 5 a.m. Monday after a 31-year-old man was shot several times in the chest after leaving his tent.

People who live on either end of the Olga Park encampment say the park has a history of violence, and that it shouldn’t take someone dying for the city to take public safety seriously.

“This morning right after 5 a.m., we were awoken to gunshot wounds. My children are sleeping there, it’s just not OK anymore,” a woman told KIRO 7 reporter Lauren Donovan.

The murder happened right outside her 9-month-old and 3-year-old’s bedroom. Her husband witnessed the crime.

“He saw the shooter running up Ravenna Boulevard,” she said. “I realize this is one tiny green space in a big city, but to us, it feels like the city is not taking action quick enough.”

The woman said she’s been contacting the Seattle City Council, the mayor’s office and the Department of Human Resources, but there’s been little to no response.

“It’s time for us to find a new home. We can’t live in the city anymore,” she said. “I’d say in the past four weeks, it’s gotten increasingly worse. (There was) a large fire in the middle of April with propane tanks exploding.”

Neighbors across the street from the woman said tents began popping up at the start of the pandemic.

“It gives me so much stress coming home. I carry pepper spray just to check my mail,” said neighbor Ellen Diaz.

Diaz said she, too, has contacted the city.

“And we call and nothing happens. That should have been enough. The city is like this slow, lumbering machine and they’re having meetings ... meetings, where we’re having to live it every day,” said Diaz.

KIRO 7 also talked to campers living at Olga Park. They said that up until a few weeks ago, it was a peaceful place.

They’re hoping to relocate to a permanent shelter together.