COURTESY FILE PHOTO, King County Library System

COURTESY FILE PHOTO, King County Library System

Kent Panther Lake Library remains closed after vehicle damages structure

Driver also hit, injured transient man outside library in early Saturday morning crash

The Kent Panther Lake Library will remain closed until further notice after a driver crashed into the building and “caused significant structural damage.”

The single-vehicle crash occurred at about 2 a.m. Saturday, May 7 when a 37-year-old Kent man lost control of his vehicle and hit the west side of the building, 20500 108th Ave. SE, according to a May 9 email from Kent Police Assistant Chief Jarod Kasner.

“That is still under investigation, however, alcohol may be a contributing factor,” Kasner said when asked how the vehicle went out of control.

The vehicle also hit and injured a 44-year-old transient man that was outside the library when the collision occurred, Kasner said. Paramedics transported the driver and the man hit by the vehicle to local hospitals for further medical evaluation.

As of May 9, the driver had not been arrested, Kasner said.

“The vehicle impact caused significant structural damage,” said Sarah Thomas, public relations specialist for the King County Library System, in a May 9 email. “We are currently evaluating the extent of the damage.”

It’s uncertain when the library might reopen.

“We don’t have an estimated timeline for repairs or a reopening date at this time,” Thomas said.

The downtown Kent Library, 212 Second Ave. N., will serve as the backup for Kent Panther Lake Library patrons.

“We have temporarily cancelled holds at the Kent Panther Lake Library,” Thomas said. “If patrons selected Kent Panther Lake Library as their pickup location for holds, their materials will be sent to the Kent Library instead. The Kent Panther Lake Library book drop is also closed; we are working on installing a temporary one on location.”

This marks the second closure in the last five months of a Kent library. The downtown Kent Library reopened in April after closing for repairs in December due to damage from a fire.

For reopening updates, go to

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