Matthew Humphrey never thought of himself as the cut-and-run type.
Now, the owner of Steeler Barber on North Seattle’s Ballard Avenue and another in the city’s Roosevelt/Ravenna neighborhood, says repeat vandals and burglars with no relief from city officials “is pushing me closer to my limit.”
Just two weeks ago, Humphrey was on The Dori Monson Show speaking out on behalf of Ballard business owners who have been targeted by “drug-addicted, mentally ill campers.” His Ballard business has been hit at least four times in the past few months; 17 other businesses within a couple block radius of him have been broken into, as well.
On Monday, Humphrey’s second salon on Roosevelt Way was also broken in to.
“There’s nowhere for me to turn,” says Humphrey, who is looking at a broken window and stolen computer in the most recent case. Business insurance could cover this, he says, but a claim could cost him insurance cancellation.
“This is pushing me closer to my limit,” Humphrey says. “A climate of fear hangs over everyone when this happens. Getting mad about it doesn’t seem to do any good.”
After Humphrey’s interview with Dori two weeks ago, listeners reached out to Dori to ask why the business owner doesn’t recruit a couple of buddies, sleep on cots in the shops, and catch the perps themselves.
The owner of two pet German Shepherds, Humphrey told Dori, “My back is up against the wall.” When things get this bad, he says, “it forces you to have to defend yourself.”
Listen to Dori’s interview with Matthew Humphrey to hear what is next for beleaguered barber.
Listen to the Dori Monson Show weekday afternoons from noon – 3 p.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.