GGW: Arlington Is Losing a Smart Growth Advocate — Chris Zimmerman’s announced departure from the Arlington County Board means the county is losing a true smart growth advocate, says Greater Greater Washington writer Canaan Merchant. “Whoever hopes to replace them will have big shoes to fill as Mr. Zimmerman’s influence will loom large in Arlington and greater Washington for years,” he writes. “Smart growth or public transportation advocates have their work cut out for them if they want to support a candidate in Arlington who is dedicated to those issues as much as Zimmerman has for the past 18 years.” [Greater Greater Washington]
New Building Tech Hinders Emergency Communication – The technology that’s helping to make new buildings stronger is playing havoc with police and fire department radios. Arlington County is trying to lead by example by requiring a special antenna system in all new county buildings. The system allows communication among first responders and dispatchers indoors in buildings where radios would otherwise not work. [WJLA]
Piola Introduces Unlimited Pizza Brunch — It your brunch plans would be enhanced by an unlimited supply of pizza, Piola in Rosslyn (1550 Wilson Blvd) now has a deal for you. On Saturday the restaurant is debuting a “‘No Limit’ Pizza Brunch,” with unlimited helpings of more than 10 different pizzas. Pitchers of sangria and sparkling drinks will also be offered. The brunch deal will run from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.
Former Arlington Police PIO Joins Alexandria — Crystal Nosal, the former Public Information Officer of the Arlington County Police Department, will be joining the Alexandria Police Department in the same role on Nov. 18. During her tenure as Arlington’s PIO, Nosal was a familiar face on local news broadcasts when a significant crime or accident happened in the county.
Someone smashed a police cruiser’s windshield in the Columbia Heights neighborhood last Thursday.
The incident happened around lunchtime. From this week’s Arlington County crime report:
VANDALISM, 10/24/13, 1000 block of S. Cleveland Street. Between 12:40 pm on October 24 to 1:00 pm October 24, a police cruiser’s windshield was shattered with a piece of concrete while parked on S. Cleveland Street. The investigation is ongoing.
Early this morning, a man with “bulging eyes” was seen masturbating in front of a Virginia Square apartment building.
INDECENT EXPOSURE, 10/31/13, 900 block of N. Pollard Street. On October 31 at 3:03am, a man was seen masturbating in front of an apartment building by the concierge. When police arrived, the man was gone. Officers searched the area, but were unable to locate the suspect. The suspect is described as a black or possibly Middle Eastern male in his 20’s – 30’s, “bulging eyes”, who was bald and possibly had facial hair. At the time of the incident the suspect was wearing a black coat.
The rest of this week’s crime report, after the jump.
Police say 20-year-old D.C. resident John Wiley and an unnamed juvenile male were arrested around 9:40 p.m. after they stole a bike from the station. One of the suspects had a set of wire cutters in a backpack, police said. Together, the suspects were charged with Grand Larceny and Possession of Burglarious Tools.
Arlington County Police have been cracking down on bike thefts recently, after declaring over the summer that such thefts were at an all-time high. Last week, the police department announced that a 42-year-old repeat offender named Michael Cullen had received a whopping 12-year jail sentence for a series of bike thefts.
@ArlingtonVaPD launched with its first tweet at 12:53 p.m., writing “The Arlington County Police Department is excited to launch the official dept twitter site!!! Follow us for the latest updates.”
In a press release, the police department said the Twitter account will “be a permanent tool for the department to share breaking news, stories, photos, crime tips and events.”
The account was launched in advance of this weekend’s Marine Corps Marathon, for which the Twitter account will provide updates.
A girl was raped in the Buckingham neighborhood last Thursday, according to this week’s Arlington County crime report.
A 35-year-old man was arrested for the crime and is known to the victim, cops say. Police are not releasing many details about the crime — like the victim’s age or the man’s relationship to the victim — saying such information would make it too easy to identify the victim.
From the crime report:
RAPE, 10/17/13, 300 block of N. Thomas Street. On October 17 at 11:10 am, a subject was taken into custody for the rape of a known juvenile victim. Carlos Diaz-Vincente, 35, of Arlington, VA, was arrested and charged with rape. He is being held on no bond.
The rest of this week’s crime report, after the jump. Named suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty.
Treasurer Makes Deal for iPark Refills — Arlington County Treasurer Frank O’Leary has struck deals to allow the county to refill iPark devices, while adding more devices to the cache that can be used to replace non-functioning units. The county paid $10,000 to the bankrupt manufacturer of the devices for the codes necessary to add value without additional authorization or payment to the company. The move comes about a month and a half after the company’s bankruptcy suddenly prevented the county from refilling the devices. [Sun Gazette]
Man Gets 10 Year Sentence for Custis Trail Robbery — A 23-year-old D.C. resident has received a 10 year sentence for a robbery on the Custis Trail that left a jogger with a head injury and lingering cognitive effects. The attacker and his 17-year-old brother, who’s expected to receive a 1.5 to 3 year sentence, were both arrested as they fled toward the Ballston Metro Station. The victim, a 55-year-old personal trainer, says he still suffers from headaches, nightmares and memory loss. [Washington Post]
Remembering Allison’s Tea House — From the 1920s to the 1950s, Allison’s Tea House, at 1301 S. Arlington Ridge Road, was “a coveted neighborhood restaurant… that had been visited by dignitaries including Amelia Earhart and Eleanor Roosevelt.” The restaurant’s iconic stone well house was preserved after the restaurant and its grounds were redeveloped into an apartment building in the 1960s. It still stands, and is used as storage for the apartment’s swimming pool. [Preservation Arlington]
ACPD Participating in Drug Take-Back Day — The Arlington County Police Department is participating in National Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday. From 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., at fire stations No. 1, 8 and 9, officers will collect expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. “The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked,” police say in a press release. [Arlington County]
Flickr pool photo by Wolfkann
Terminal A Revamp Underway at DCA — A $37 million renovation project at Reagan National Airport’s Terminal A is proceeding swiftly. The project isn’t adding a significant amount of extra space to the historic terminal, but it will make the existing space seem brighter and more open. Most of the work is expected to be complete by the holiday travel season. [Washington Post]
Pupatella Makes National Pizza Rankings — Bluemont’s Pupatella Neapolitan Pizzeria (5104 Wilson Blvd) serves one of the top 40 slices of pizza in the country, according to new rankings. Pupatella’s capricciosa pizza was ranked No. 36 on the list, as judged by the Daily Meal website. [Daily Mail]
Students Receive Scholarships at NAACP Banquet — Through a partnership with the Arlington NAACP, a new scholarship fund awarded $2,500/year college scholarships to four high-performing local students over the weekend. The scholarship fund allows the NAACP to “invest in our youth,” said the head of the Arlington branch of the organization. [Sun Gazette]
Beer and Wine Walks Return to Crystal City — Crystal City’s 1K wine and beer walks will return next month. The walks — which allow participants to sample various wines and beers while walking through Crystal City’s underground shopping center — will take place on Nov. 16 and 17. [Crystal City]
County Board Adopts Public Safety Radio Resolution — The Arlington County Board adopted a resolution yesterday (Tuesday) that calls on builders to install technology that allows better police and fire department communications in new buildings. Modern construction materials have made it difficult for first responders to receive radio signals in newer buildings. The Board’s non-binding resolution calls on builders to install in-building wireless systems to better transmit public radio signals. [Arlington County]
Disclosure: Crystal City BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser
Michael Cullen, of no fixed address, received a 12-year jail sentence for the thefts. He pleaded guilty to eight counts of grand larceny with the intent to sell, and one count of possession of burglarious tools. Cullen has the ability to suspend four years of his sentence if full restitution is paid to his victims.
“In Arlington, we have the ability to prosecute all types of cases,” said Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos. “Protecting the property of residents is of the utmost importance and thieves such as Michael Cullen will be prosecuted to the fullest.”
Because recent data compiled by the police department indicated bike thefts are at an all-time high, the Arlington County Police Department’s Burglary/Larceny Unit spearheaded a regional police cooperation to reduce the amount of bicycle thefts and to identify suspects. An increase in patrols and surveillance, along with hours of police detective work, led to a number of arrests.
Police say the following individuals have been arrested, in addition to Michael Cullen, as part of the regional bike theft crackdown:
- “Aldrick Johnson was observed on video attempting to break into an apartment building. Security called police and Mr. Johnson was apprehended. He pled guilty to possession of burglarious tools and burglary and received a sentence of four years with three years suspended.”
- “Ositafimma Emegbuism was Aldrick Johnson’s co-defendant. Mr. Emegbuism pled guilty to unlawful entry and received 6 months.”
- “John Sears was apprehended after a citizen observed him tampering with a bicycle inside of a parking garage. Police located Sears with a stolen bicycle in his possession not far from the incident. The bicycle had a cut cable lock and the rear tire was partially removed. Warrants for possession of burglarious tools, possession of drug paraphernalia, providing false ID to law enforcement, attempted grand larceny, destruction of property, and credit card theft were obtained.”
- “Irvin Coleman was identified as a suspect in multiple bike larcenies in Arlington, Fairfax, and Alexandria after pawning multiple bikes on separate occasions. Warrants were obtained for Coleman for his involvement in the theft/pawning of bicycles from Ballston Mall. Coleman avoided apprehension for some time but was eventually arrested. Coleman is currently held in Fairfax on no bond. His preliminary hearing for his Arlington charge, grand larceny with intent to sell, is currently set for October 24, 2013.”
- “Howard Montgomery was stopped after an officer observed him riding one bike while rolling a second beside him. He admitted that the bikes did not belong to him. After further investigation, it was determined that these bikes were stolen from a secured bike cage in an apartment building. Montgomery is to be indicted on charges of possession of burglarious tools, grand larceny and grand larceny with intent to sell.”
- “Five juveniles involved with bike thefts from Thomas Jefferson Middle School have been identified and adjudicated. A pre-sentence investigation was ordered for all suspects. Four of the defendants were sentenced. One juvenile is still pending.”
In some of the cases, the bicycles were recovered and returned to their rightful owners. Police continue to ask people to register their bikes for this very reason.
“We encourage people to register their bikes because if there is a bike recovered, then it’s not a long process to figure out who it belongs to,” said police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.
Cyclists can register bikes online, and will receive a registration decal to place on the bike. Owners should also take a photo of their bicycle and record the serial number and any distinguishing features it may have.
Anyone who has had a bicycle stolen or who notices suspicious behavior around bike racks should call the Arlington County Police Department non-emergency number at 703-558-2222.
A street fight in the Virginia Square area led to three arrests Monday night.
Police say three men in their 20s attacked another group of three men after they left a bar. From this week’s Arlington County crime report:
ASSAULT BY MOB, 10/14/13, 800 block of N. Pollard Street. On October 14 at 11:52pm, three male victims were assaulted in the street after they left a bar. Theodrose Encubahre, 22, of Arlington, VA; Adnan Naseer, 23, of Arlington, VA; and Amin Reza, 23, of Arlington, VA were all arrested for assault by mob and held without bail.
The rest of the crime report, after the jump. All named suspected are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
A middle-aged man was seen masturbating outside a salon in Clarendon this past Thursday evening.
The incident took place just after 7:00 p.m. on the 2700 block of Clarendon Blvd, near the Market Common Clarendon shopping center. Police were not able to locate the man after the incident was reported.
From the crime report:
INDECENT EXPOSURE, 10/10/13, 2700 block of N. Clarendon Boulevard. On October 10 at 7:07pm, a victim reported a suspect masturbating outside of a hair salon. The suspect is described as a white male, between 45 and 55 years of age, approximately 5’7” and about 150 pounds. The suspect had shoulder length brown hair, but was bald on the top of his head. At the time of the incident, he was wearing blue jeans, brown boots, a black belt, and a green jacket.
The incident happened near Ballston, just before 11:00 a.m. Saturday morning (Oct. 12). Arlington County Police say a 16-year-old boy was so upset about his mother’s refusal to let him use the tablet device, which is marketed by Amazon.com, that he struck her in the head with the pan.
The boy was charged with malicious wounding and destruction of property.
Image via Amazon
Update at 2:15 p.m. on October 17 – Because Congress came to an agreement last night that re-opened the government, both the Army Ten-Miler and the Marine Corps Marathon will proceed as originally planned.
The 10-Miler, which is scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 20, starts and finishes near the Pentagon in Arlington. Originally slated to cross the Memorial Bridge into D.C., the course has been altered so that the race will cover more distance in Arlington, thus avoiding National Park Service territory impacted by the shutdown.
Runners will now double back on Route 110, heading southbound before crossing the 14th Street HOV bridge into D.C., according Lt. Dave Green, of the Arlington County Police Department Special Operations Section, which coordinates road closures for large events.
Shaunteh Kelly, media relations coordinator for the race, could not immediately confirm the route changes when reached by ARLnow.com.
The situation is more dire for the Marine Corps Marathon, which is scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 27. The race may be postponed or canceled if Congress doesn’t act to reopen the government by the end of the week, we’re told exclusively.
“I don’t want to put people in panic mode, but if as of Friday evening the government is still closed, it’s probably not going to happen,” Lt. Green said of the race.
Green said police agencies are still “plowing ahead” on the assumption that the government shutdown will be lifted in time.
“As of right now all participating jurisdictions are moving forward as if it is going to take place,” he said.
Tami Faram, spokeswoman for the marathon, said that organizers were still planning for the race to go on. As reported by Runner’s World, Marine Corps Marathon staff is paid with non-appropriated funds, and thus not subject to furloughs.
“From our standpoint… we’re continuing to plan for Sunday, October 27,” said Faram.
“We’re waiting with everyone else,” she said of the shutdown. “We just don’t have a crystal ball.”
Faram would not confirm whether a cancellation or postponement is possible should the government remain shut down. She did note, however, that 60 percent of the race is run on National Park Service property.
According to Green, too much of the 26.2 mile race is on federal property to make changes in the route feasible. That includes the marathon’s iconic finish, at the Marine Corps War Memorial in Rosslyn.
The marathon has never been canceled in its 37 year history. The race was run last year despite Hurricane Sandy barreling down on the East Coast. The storm hit Washington after the race finished.
Update at 8:55 p.m. — The Marine Corps Marathon released a statement tonight via Facebook.
Since the government shutdown occurred, the Marine Corps Marathon continues its coordination with hopes of a conclusion in time to host the event without impact. Without a resolution to the government shutdown this week, the MCM as planned is in jeopardy of being cancelled.
While still considering and exploring all possible options, the MCM has targeted this Saturday, October 19 as the date to officially notify runners of the status of the event. It is sincerely the hope of everyone associated with the organization of this event that MCM participants can run as planned.
Flickr photo (bottom) by Wolfkann
(Updated on 10/14/13) Arlington police and the county’s bomb squad responded a possible pipe bomb in the Arlington Heights neighborhood Sunday afternoon.
Just before 3:00 p.m., an off-duty police officer was asked for directions by a driver in a vehicle with New York tags. The officer noticed drug paraphernalia in the vehicle and called in backup, according to a fire department official.
The car was stopped and the driver detained on the 100 block of S. Highland Street. Officers then noticed a pipe with two caps on each end in the back of the stopped vehicle, the official said. Believing that the device could be a pipe bomb, the street was shut down between Arlington Blvd and 2nd Street S. and the bomb squad was called in.
A robot was used to inspect the device, and a technician in heavy protective gear attempted to defuse it. After a second technician inspected the vehicle, the bomb squad performed a controlled detonation. The robot was dispatched again, after which it was determined the pipe was empty. The driver of the car was interviewed and now faces a drug charge.
Residents in the area were asked to shelter in place in their homes during the incident.
The alleged incident happened just before midnight on Monday, on the 4500 block of Four Mile Run Drive.
Police say a 24-year-old woman woke up to find her roommate, 31-year-old Allister Kennedy, over her. She tried to fight him off but he still managed to sexually assault her, according to ACPD spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.
From this week’s Arlington County crime report:
SEXUAL ASSAULT, 10/07/13, 4500 block of S. Four Mile Run Drive. At 11:50 pm on October 7, a female victim was sexually assaulted by a roommate. The subject entered the victim’s bedroom while she slept, pinned her down and sexually assaulted her. Allister Kennedy, 31, of Arlington, VA, was arrested and charged with animate object penetration. He is being held without bond.
The rest of the crime report, after the jump. All suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Photo courtesy ACPD
Last Friday afternoon, a man was spotted masturbating in a van near Shirlington while watching women walking by.
From this week’s Arlington County crime report.
OBSCENE SEXUAL DISPLAY, 09/27/13, 2600 block of S. Arlington Mill Drive. On September 27 at 3pm, a victim reported a male subject masturbating in a vehicle, while looking at females who were walking past. The subject is a heavyset black male. The vehicle was described as a blue Toyota minivan with Maryland plates.
The rest of the crime report, after the jump.