Snoqualmie-North Bend Police Chief Discusses Recent Criminal Incidents and Response Strategies

In the past few months, North Bend has had some high-profile crimes that have caught the attention of both the community and city officials. Here’s a summary of the incidents that have occurred:

  • November Incident: A Toyota Four Runner crashed into the Coach store at North Bend outlet mall, causing $20,000 in damage and $14,000 in lost merchandise. The culprits were not caught.
  • January 21 Incident: The Nike store at the outlet mall was broken into, with the front window smashed and merchandise stolen. The thieves remain unidentified.
  • January 26 Incident: A robbery at Snofalls Credit Union led to a high-speed chase and the arrest of two 15-year-olds.
  • January 31 Incident: A murder/suicide investigation is ongoing at the Arrive Apartments.
  • February 1 Incident: An attempted robbery at the Subway restaurant near QFC.  
  • February 2 Incident: Thieves smashed into a Shell station, stealing an ATM with a stolen Ford F250. Police identified the suspects with the help of the Snoqualmie Casino and Tribal police using facial recognition technology, capturing one, who was released 2.5 days later on his own recognizance.

During a city council meeting on February 6, Police Chief Brian Lynch addressed the community’s growing safety concerns, detailing these recent crimes and discussing steps forward.

“I have heard the concerns from the Councilmembers… they are the same concerns I have as a citizen of this neighborhood,” Lynch stated, emphasizing the external origin of most criminals involved in these incidents. He outlined that the issue of rising crime is not isolated to North Bend but is a statewide problem, with a noted increase in crimes against persons and property.

“It should be noted that all of these people are not from the Valley,” Chief Lynch said. These crimes are “not home-grown. Mostly, we see cars coming up Highway 18 from the south end of the County,” he continued. “This is not just a Valley problem. This is an everywhere-in-the-state-of-Washington problem,” Chief Lynch said.

Chief Lynch highlighted several strategies for combating future crimes, including:

  • Establishing a police station office at the Outlet Mall for increased visibility.
  • Re-deploying police resources for deterrence.
  • Installing Flock cameras at the outlet mall for vehicle tracking.
  • Advocating for legislative support through the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs.
  • Meeting with local businesses: Chief Lynch met with local businesses at a North Bend Downtown Foundation merchant meeting in 2023. He looks forward to continuing this form of outreach.

He encouraged both officials and citizens to voice their concerns about crime to state legislators, providing contact information for representatives. Here are a few simple ways to connect:

  • Contact 5th District Representative Lisa Callan via phone at (360) 786-7876
  • Contact 5th District Representative Senator Mark Mullet by email at mark.mullet@leg.wa.gov or by phone at (425) 213-4146
  • Contact 5th District Representative Bill Ramos by email at bill.ramos@leg.wa.gov, or by phone at (360) 786-7852
  • Contact 12th District Representative Keith Goehner by email at keith.goehner@leg.wa.gov, or by phone at (360) 786-7954
  • Contact 12th District Representative Senator Brad Hawkins by phone at (360) 786-7622
  • Contact 12th District Representative Mike Steele by email at mike.steele@leg.wa.gov, or by phone at (360) 786-7832

Chief Lynch’s presentation, which is available on the City’s Media Center webpage, underscores a comprehensive approach to addressing and preventing crime in North Bend, reflecting a community and law enforcement partnership in tackling this challenge.

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Comments

  • I would disagree with the claim that this is a “statewide” problem — it’s a King County problem. The criminals come from King County. The prosecutors, judges, and legislators who enable the criminals come from King County. And the mail-in votes that enable the prosecutors, judges, and legislators come from King County.

    It’s a King County problem, not a Washington State problem.

  • Yep. I don’t like crime either. Its horrible. However, King County has lower crime rates than a lot of other counties in the state.

    For example Pierce, Spokane, Skagit, and Whatcom counties all have higher rates of crime than King County.

    Here is a good non-biased site to gain insight. -The Washington Statistical Analysis Center is a clearinghouse for state data on crime and justice topics, brought together from many different agencies and reporting systems.
    https://sac.ofm.wa.gov/data

  • After stealing a truck, smashing a service station and stealing a ATM machine, he was released on his own cognizance. This is only one symptom of the whole problem. I bet that the owner of the stolen truck, the proprietor of the service station and the operator of the ATM didn’t get off scot free.

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