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by Ethan Rothstein — June 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm 4,972 0

Police car lights(Updated at 5:30 p.m.) Retired U.S. Air Force Col. Robert Terrill, 92, has been identified as the man found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday.

Terrill, a Falls Church resident, was declared dead on the scene Friday morning in Section 64 of the cemetery, near the Columbarium Courts, according to a press release. He suffered what was reported by first responders to be a gunshot wound to his head.

Terrill’s wife, Helen Burgess Terrill, who died in 2009, was buried in Section 64. He described himself in a news article after her death as his wife’s “loving soul mate.”

“Although we have not completely ruled it out in order to conduct a complete and thorough investigation, we do not suspect foul play at this point in the investigation,” said Chris Grey, the spokesman for the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, which is the lead agency investigating the death. Officials said the incident is unprecedented for Arlington National Cemetery.

“The cemetery is not aware of an incident such as this previously happening in the cemetery,” said the press release.

Terrill reportedly served in World War II before being commissioned in 1946. According to an Air Force spokesman, he flew more than 8,000 hours as a command pilot before retiring from his last duty assignment at the Pentagon in 1968.

by ARLnow.com — June 20, 2014 at 10:45 am 9,002 0

Police car lights(Updated at 12:40 p.m.) Police are on the scene of a self-inflicted shooting at Arlington National Cemetery.

Initial reports suggest a man shot himself in the head with a shotgun around 10:20 a.m. Paramedics determined the man to be dead on the scene.

The shooting was reported to have happened near the Pentagon Monument in Section 64, within view of the Pentagon at the southeastern corner of the cemetery. The Pentagon Monument is where remains of the victims of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon were buried.

After the man was pronounced dead by medics, the scene was turned over law enforcement for an investigation.

Arlington National Cemetery issued the following press release about the incident Friday afternoon:

At approximately 10:00 a.m. today, first responders to include Military Police from Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Special Agents from the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command and Arlington County Police Department Officers, responded to reports of a single gunshot at Arlington National Cemetery in Section 64, near the Columbarium Courts. Upon arrival, a deceased male was discovered with a single gunshot wound.

“Although we have not completely ruled it out in order to conduct a complete and thorough investigation, we do not suspect foul play at this point in the investigation,” said Chris Grey, the spokesman for the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, the lead agency investigating the death.

All indications are this is a tragic and isolated incident and there is no threat to the public or those visiting Arlington National Cemetery. The cemetery remains open to visitors and families and graveside services are continuing as planned.

No further information will be released at this time to protect the integrity of the investigative process and until the deceased is positively identified and next of kin is officially notified.

If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide, help is a phone call away. Call CrisisLink at 703-527-4077.

by ARLnow.com — August 7, 2013 at 1:45 pm 17,818 0

(Updated at 3:10 p.m.) A woman has died after falling from the top of a building in Ballston.

Initial reports suggest that the individual, currently believed to be female, jumped from the top of the Randolph Towers apartment building, at 4001 9th Street N., and landed on a car parked in front of the 9th Street side of the building.

A witness tells ARLnow.com that a man was inside the vehicle when the woman landed on it. He was unhurt but ran out of the vehicle, distraught, we’re told. The vehicle has diplomatic license plates.

The woman left several bags on the roof of the building, according to police radio traffic. Police are investigating the incident as a probable suicide.

A man died after jumping or falling from Randolph Towers in April 2011.

If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide, help is a phone call away. Call CrisisLink at 703-527-4077.

by ARLnow.com — July 26, 2013 at 8:45 am 1,339 0

Freedom Park in Rosslyn

DJO Senior Hurt in Spanish Train Wreck — Christina Cordoba, a rising senior at Bishop O’Connell High School, is in stable condition with a broken leg after surviving a deadly train derailment in Spain. The derailment killed nearly 80 people, including Cordoba’s mother, Ana-Maria Cordoba, who worked for the Catholic Diocese of Arlington. Cordoba’s father, Philippe, was also injured and is in stable condition. [WTOP, CBS News]

Security Breach at DCA — Nearly two dozen deactivated security badges of former Reagan National Airport employees have not been turned back in, raising serious security concerns. Already, one former employee was arrested for using his deactivated badge to get onto an airplane, according to prosecutors. [NBC Washington]

Virginia Suicides Hit High Mark — Virginia residents are three times more likely to die from suicide than homicide, according to a new report that also found that suicides in the Commonwealth hit a 13-year high in 2011. [Associated Press]

GOP Chief Wants More Community Involvement — The Arlington County Republican Committee is not fielding a candidate for County Board, School Board or House of Delegates this year. Committee chairman Charles Hokanson says the party needs candidates that are deeply involved in the Arlington community if it wants to have a shot at winning a local race. [Sun Gazette]

Photo by Audrey Batcheller

by ARLnow.com — April 4, 2013 at 9:45 am 15,633 100 Comments

A man shot himself in the head outside Union Jack's in Ballston A man shot himself in the head outside Union Jack's in Ballston

(Updated at 10:35 a.m.) A 24-year-old Alexandria man shot himself outside Union Jack’s (671 N. Glebe Road) in Ballston last night.

The shooting happened around 1:00 a.m. According to police, the man was having “domestic dispute” with his girlfriend inside the restaurant. He then walked outside, took out a gun, fired several shots in the air, and then shot himself in the head, said Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.

About 30 people witnessed the shooting, Sternbeck said. At least one bystander attempted CPR.

The man was rushed to the hospital and is currently alive and on life support, in very critical condition. He was not pronounced dead, as earlier reported.

This was at least the second time this year that a major police incident happened at the restaurant. Union Jack’s was the scene of a brawl that resulted in two arrests in February.

Photos courtesy Misty Alvarez

by ARLnow.com — October 30, 2012 at 1:05 pm 8,735 0

A woman died this morning after jumping from the Columbia Pike bridge over Four Mile Run.

Several witnesses saw the woman jump, around 10:30 a.m. She landed on a paved section of the Four Mile Run Trail and was pronounced dead on the scene.

Arlington County Police are investigating the incident as a suicide. The woman was in her 30s and was known to have mental health problems, said police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.

If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide, help is a phone call away. Call CrisisLink at 703-527-4077.

by ARLnow.com — September 21, 2012 at 10:20 am 3,320 30 Comments

Suicide Thwarted at Metro Station — An alert Metro train operator helped to thwart a suicide attempt at the Reagan National Airport Metro station Thursday morning. Around 7:55 a.m., a man climbed down and laid on the southbound tracks. The operator of an approaching train saw the man and stopped the train in time. Transit police apprehended the man and took him to a local hospital. [Washington Examiner]

Park(ing) Day in Rosslyn – Today (Friday) is Park(ing) Day, a day where people worldwide transform parking spots into temporary public spaces. Artisphere in Rosslyn will again be participating. A giant shopping cart, created by artist J.P. Flick, will be placed near the corner of Wilson Blvd and Lynn Street. Passersby are encouraged to donate gently used professional attire by placing it in the cart. The clothes will go to a job placement program run by the Arlington Street People’s Assistance Network. [Artisphere]

Retired Educator Receives Community Award — Meg Tuccillo — who for 26 years served Arlington Public Schools as a teacher, a principal, and an assistant superintendent — has been named the 2012 recipient of the William T. Newman Jr. Spirit of Community Award. “The Board was impressed by Meg Tuccillo’s highly regarded dynamic and good-natured commitment to Arlington, both in her professional role as Assistant Superintendent of Arlington Public Schools and in her broad involvement in several nonprofit organizations serving children, families, the homeless and strengthening education and the arts,” said Julian Fore, president of the Arlington Community Foundation, which administers the award. [Sun Gazette]

Va. Flags Half Staff for State Supreme Court Justice — Virginia state flags have flown half staff this week in honor of former state Supreme Court Justice Henry H. Whiting, who died on Sept. 17. Whiting was a justice when the court first upheld the use of DNA evidence in Virginia. The DNA case in question originated in Arlington — the trial of Timothy Wilson Spencer for the 1987 rape and murder of 44-year-old Susan Tucker in her Arlington condominium.

by ARLnow.com — February 24, 2012 at 7:00 pm 3,637 0

 

Police were able to rescue a man who attempted to hang himself from a light pole tonight.

The incident happened in the area of Walter Reed Drive and S. Pollard Street, near the Ft. Barnard dog park. Police received a call just before 5:15 p.m. for a man sitting on a light pole — about 20 feet up — with a rope around his neck. As officers arrived on scene, the man jumped, according to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.

Sternbeck said the man came to rest about five feet off the ground. Officers worked quickly and managed to get the man down. He had a pulse when paramedics transported him to a local hospital, according to Sternbeck.

Police remained on scene to investigate the incident, Sternbeck said. The man’s current condition was not immediately available.

Courtesy photo. If you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide, help is a phone call away. Call CrisisLink at 703-527-4077.

by ARLnow.com — September 28, 2011 at 2:22 pm 1,559 7 Comments

Next week is national Mental Health Awareness Week and Arlington County is using the occasion to emphasize ways residents can help prevent suicide.

From 2005 to 2010 there were 102 suicide deaths in Arlington, according to the county’s Department of Human Services. During those six years, 71 percent of the deaths were among males, and most of those males were in their 30s or 40s.

Arlington’s average yearly suicide rate is 8.21 deaths per 100,000 residents. Though that rate is lower than the comparative national rate of 11.1 suicide deaths per 100,000 people (36,000 deaths in the U.S. per year), Arlington County is reminding residents that they can help prevent a tragedy by recognizing the following early warning signs of suicidal behavior.

  • Talk, threats or plans about hurting oneself, death or suicide
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Feeling uncontrolled rage or anger
  • Acting recklessly, seemingly without thinking
  • Feeling trapped
  • Increasing or excessive alcohol or drug use
  • Withdrawing from friends, family, society
  • Feeling anxious, agitated or unable to sleep
  • Dramatic mood swings
  • Feeling purposeless, with no reasons to live

If someone you know exhibits any of those signs, you’re encouraged to call the Arlington County Mental Health Emergency Service 24-hour hotline at 703-228-5160. If you yourself are having thoughts of suicide, seek help by calling CrisisLink at 703-527-4077 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

by ARLnow.com — October 21, 2010 at 10:40 am 1,593 20 Comments

Police are investigating a death on 2nd Street South in Alcova Heights this morning.

A passerby found a person shot to death in a car, police said. The car was parked on the side of the street, still running. Initial evidence points to suicide, we’re told.

2nd Street is closed to traffic between Glebe Road and South Oakland Street while police investigate the incident.

by ARLnow.com — July 21, 2010 at 7:51 am 1,461 0

“Someone call 911!” a woman shouted as glass rained down on a popular lunch spot at the base of a sleek Rosslyn office  building around 11:30 Tuesday morning. Up above, a man in the seventh floor had locked his office door from the inside and was furiously breaking a hole in one of the thick windows.

The man — white, mid-30s, balding, well-dressed — worked for Verizon, according to police and witness accounts. It’s not known why he wanted to take his life that day, nor why he chose to do so in a way that thoroughly traumatized the 10-15 people who witnessed it. The word around his office was that he was a quiet man who was divorced and had kids. On this particular day, people said, he was particularly quiet.

The office workers on their smoke and lunch breaks scattered as the glass fell. If it wasn’t for the glass, a witness said, the man could have easily landed on top of someone. Police arrived within seconds of the 911 call but it was too late. The man was on the ground, bleeding.

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by ARLnow.com — July 20, 2010 at 12:18 pm 3,331 47 Comments

See updated story here.

A man died after a seven story plunge from a broken window in a Rosslyn high-rise. Initial reports suggest it was a suicide.

The man landed on a brick courtyard outside of a cafe. A large crowd gathered as police placed a white sheet over the man’s body, which was surrounded by broken glass in clear view of witnesses.

The man was in his mid-30′s, according to Arlington police spokesperson Det. Crystal Nosal.

The building is located at 17th Street and North Nash Street.

Editor’s Note: Normally media outlets do not report on suicides. There are two exceptions: when it involves a public figure, or when it’s done in a high-profile, public area (such as a Metro station). In this case, the incident happened outside the front entrance to a large office building as people were heading out on their lunch break. There were a number of witnesses. Due to the public nature of the incident, we decided that it was of sufficient public interest to report.

IMPORTANT: The following photos (after the link) contain imagery that some readers may find disturbing.

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