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Chase, carjacking and mass airbag theft reported during weekend of vehicular mayhem in Arlington

Police car speeding to a call at night (staff photo)

Thieves did not take the Independence Day holiday off, keeping Arlington police busy this past weekend.

It was a long weekend of vehicular mayhem across the county. In one of the earlier incidents, nearly three dozen vehicles — all Hondas and Acuras — had their airbags stolen overnight Saturday into Sunday in various neighborhoods, including the Rosslyn and Pentagon City areas.

From an Arlington County Police Department crime report:

LARCENY FROM AUTO (Series), 2022-07030018, 1300 block of Fort Myer Drive/1300 block of N. Ode Street/1200 block of S. Nash Street/1100-1300 block of S. Arlington Ridge Road/1600 block of 28th Street S./1100 block of Arlington Boulevard/1500 block of Arlington Boulevard/1600 block of S. Joyce Street/900 block of 15th Street S./Army Navy Drive at S. Lang Street/1300 block of Arlington Ridge Road. At approximately 1:15 a.m. on July 3, police were dispatched to the 1300 block of Fort Myer Drive for the report of a suspicious vehicle. Upon arrival, it was determined the victim heard her vehicle’s alarm sounding and upon looking outside, observed a white van or SUV stopped next to her vehicle. The suspect vehicle then fled the scene. Upon investigating, the victim observed her vehicle’s window smashed but nothing was reported stolen. Officers canvassed the area and located three additional vehicles with broken windows and airbags stolen. During the course of the day, police received additional reports of larcenies from auto in the County. The investigation determined an additional 34 vehicles had their windows smashed and airbags stolen overnight. All vehicles were Honda and Acura models. There is no suspect(s) description. The investigation is ongoing.

On 5 p.m. on the Fourth of July, police chased a car driven by a suspect wanted for felonies in Maryland.

The pursuit started in the Pentagon City mall parking garage when the car allegedly ran into two police cruisers and through the parking gate. It was halted when the driver continued onto an I-395 ramp going the wrong way, but the vehicle was later found and the suspect — who remains at large — was identified and charged.

From ACPD:

ELUDING (Significant), 2022-07040145, 800 block of Army Navy Drive. At approximately 5:00 p.m. on July 4, officers conducting extra checks in a parking garage observed a parked, unoccupied vehicle registered to a suspect wanted for felony offenses out of Anne Arundel County, MD. Officers attempted to take the suspect into custody when he returned to the vehicle but he was non-compliant and refused to follow the commands of officers. The suspect then fled the scene at a high rate of speed, striking two cruisers and causing minor damage and breaking the arm of the gate to the garage. Officers initiated a vehicle pursuit and the suspect continued to driver erratically before exiting I-395 on a one-way ramp going the wrong direction at which time the vehicle pursuit was terminated. A perimeter was established and the area was searched by ACPD and Virginia State Police with the assistance of U.S. Park Police and Metropolitan Police Department helicopters. Alexandria Police Department subsequently located the unoccupied suspect vehicle near the intersection of Route 1 and Franklin Street. Warrants for Felony Eluding, Assault on Law Enforcement (x2), Felony Destruction of Property and Misdemeanor Destruction of Property were obtained for the suspect. The investigation is ongoing.

Then, early Tuesday morning, a pizza delivery driver was carjacked in the Arlington Mill neighborhood, just north of Columbia Pike, by two people with guns and ski masks. They were not found despite a helicopter search of the area.

CARJACKING, 2022-07050020, 800 block of S. Greenbrier Street. At approximately 3:12 a.m. on July 5, police were dispatched to the report of an armed robbery. Upon arrival, it was determined that the victim was delivering pizza when the two unknown suspects, who were wearing black ski masks, approached him. The suspects displayed firearms, threatened him and demanded he give them his personal belongings including the keys to his vehicle. The suspects then fled the scene in the victim’s vehicle. A police helicopter searched the area for the suspect and stolen vehicle yielding negative results. The vehicle is described as a 2013 Black Hyundai Elantra with Virginia tags UFD1506. There are no descriptions of the suspects. The investigation is ongoing.

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The Arlington-Aachen High School exchange is returning this summer and currently accepting applicants.

The sister-city partnership started in 1993 by the Arlington Sister Cities Association, which seeks to promote Arlington’s international profile through a variety of exchanges in education, commerce, culture and the arts. The exchange, scheduled June 17th to July 4th, includes a two-week homestay in Aachen plus three days in Berlin. Knowledge of the German language is not required for the trip.

Former participants have this to say:

_”The Aachen exchange was an eye-opening experience where I was fully immersed in the life of a German student. I loved biking through the countryside to Belgium, having gelato and picnics in the town square, and hanging out with my German host student’s friends. My first time out of the country, the Aachen exchange taught me to keep an open mind, because you never know what could be a life changing experience.” – Kelly M._

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Submit your own Announcement here.

Learn about the new assessment of Arlington’s urban tree canopy and the many ecological and social benefits trees provide. Staff from the Green Infrastructure Center (GIC) will share study results and compare canopy cover for different areas of Arlington.The webinar will include assessments of ecosystem services such as stormwater mitigation, air quality, carbon uptake, and urban heat islands. For background on Arlington trees see the “Tree Benefits: Growing Arlington’s Urban Forest” presentation at http://www.gicinc.org/PDFs/Presentation_TreeBenefits_Arlington.pdf.

Please register in advance to assure your place at the webinar, https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/29543206508863839.

About the Arlington County Civic Federation: The Arlington County Civic Federation (“ACCF”) is a not-for-profit corporation which provides a forum for civic groups to discuss, debate, inform, advocate and provide oversight on important community issues, on a non-partisan basis. Its members include over ninety civic groups representing a broad cross-section of the community. Communications, resolutions and feedback are regularly provided to the Arlington County Government.

The next meeting is on Tuesday, February 21,2023 at 7 pm. This meeting is open to the public and will be hybrid, in-person and virtually through Zoom. Part of the agenda will be a discussion and vote on a resolution “To Restore Public Confidence in Arlington County’s Governance”. For more information on ACCF and this meeting, go to https://www.civfed.org/.

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Submit your own Announcement here.

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