'Pimps fighting over turf': Concerned neighbor attributes Aurora drive-by to sex crimes

Residents and business owners in North Seattle caught themselves in the crossfire of escalating violence. Thursday night, shots rang out on Aurora Avenue, leaving behind a trail of shell casings and a seriously injured victim. As concerns mount, a resident is shedding light on the growing dangers that have plagued the area.

He wanted to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, but said, "It’s gotten ridiculous; the city needs to do something about this before more people get hurt. In the last three years, it's gotten ridiculous, and in the last year, it's become insane." 

The concerned neighbor has been living in the area since 2007. He shared home surveillance footage capturing the chilling reality of a recent drive-by shooting.

"I call to report gunshots at least once a week. This is the second time this week that there have been gunshots," the 47-year-old said. 

He expressed his frustration as he recounted the increasing incidents of violence, including a running gun battle with automatic weapons last October. 

As uneasy as he may feel, there’s a nonchalant tone in his voice. No longer stunned by the chaos surrounding his home.

"Wow, it's another day off Aurora because that's what it's become," he said. 

In response to the escalating violence, he has taken matters into his own hands. He said he's invested over $2500 in upgrading home security, reflecting the desperate measures taken to safeguard against the ongoing threat.

"I want to get out as soon as possible because the city's not doing anything about it and I now fear for myself," he said. 

He no longer feels safe living in the community, especially after his surveillance revealed a burst of gunfire as what appears to be sex workers scatter for cover. 


Community group addresses concerns of sex work on Aurora Avenue

North Seattle’s Aurora Avenue is known to many as a corridor for sex trafficking, sex work and crime. While the visibility of people selling sex on the street has decreased, its presence is still known.

"It is the pimps fighting over turf," he said, emphasizing the dangerous dynamics at play. "When they closed down the hotel motels just north of 125th that helped for a little bit, maybe two weeks, and it was right back to where it was."

Video depicts a quick succession of gunfire after a white car makes a right turn-off 101 Street, followed by a black car. Instantly, you can see muzzle flashes coming from both the driver and passenger sides. 

It’s like fireworks. The group runs for cover as the bullets hit the street. 

Officers found the street littered with shell casings, but at first, they didn’t find a victim. Later on, a 28-year-old man showed up at the hospital who police say was being driven by a woman. He had been badly hurt.

The neighbor says the situation has escalated to the point where he stopped inviting friends over and won't have his nieces or nephews over anymore.

He shared more video from February of a shooting heard in the middle of the night. Cameras also captured a woman slashing car tires followed by more gunfire.

While Thursday night's shooting remains under investigation, the resident claims to have shared videos with the Seattle Police Department. 

If you have any information, you're urged to come forward and contact the Violent Crimes Tip Line at 206-233-5000.