(Updated at 1:45 p.m.) A man suffered injuries that are reported to be life-threatening after an on-the-job accident in the Old Glebe neighborhood.
Police and medics were dispatched to a large, under-construction home on the 4600 block of N. Dittmar Road around 1 p.m. Initial reports suggest a worker was carrying a ladder when it made contact with power lines, electrocuting him.
The man is being rushed to a local hospital by Arlington County Fire Department medics.
Police are now investigating the accident. A Dominion power crew is also being requested to the scene.
(Updated at 4 p.m.) Portions of Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall were closed this afternoon after a suspicious package at one of the gates.
A witness described seeing a “large law enforcement response inside the base with crime scene tape and everything blocked off within a few hundred yards” of the Hatfield Gate, near the intersection of 2nd Street S. and Washington Blvd.
Around 2:30 p.m., a spokeswoman confirmed to ARLnow an “active situation” at the base.
“Hatfield Gate, the main gate at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall accessed of Washington Blvd., is closed at this time due to an incident at the gate,” said JBMHH Community Relations Officer Leah Rubalcaba. “Details of the incident are not in as it is an active situation. In the interim, traffic to the base is being diverted to Wright Gate and the Henderson Hall Gate.”
Via social media, the base announced that its medical clinic and exchange store, along with some roads, had been closed. ARLnow also hears that the child care center on the base was evacuated.
As a result, personnel on base are not able to traverse from the Myer side of the base to the Henderson Hall side of the base. Traffic is being diverted to Henderson Hall and Wright Gates. Please plan accordingly. We will provide updates as more information becomes available.
— JBM-HH (@JBMHH) June 3, 2021
Just before 4 p.m. the “all clear” was given.
“There was a suspicious package detected at the gate,” Rubalcaba said. “It was checked out and we just received the ‘all clear’ a few minutes ago. Hatfield Gate has re-opened and operations are back to normal.”
(Updated at 3:30 p.m.) Arlington County police and firefighters responded to a potentially serious motorcycle crash today in the Lyon Park neighborhood, south of Clarendon.
The crash was reported around 1:30 p.m. Friday at the intersection of 4th Street N. and N. Edgewood Street, in a residential neighborhood between Washington Blvd and the Lyon Park Community Center.
According to initial reports, a car and a motorcycle collided at the intersection, and the motorcycle rider suffered serious injuries. The car careened into a nearby yard after the collision.
The motorcycle rider was rushed to a local trauma center and was last reported to be in stable condition, according to Arlington County Fire Department spokesman Taylor Blunt. No other injuries were reported.
The intersection, like many in Arlington, is a two-way stop: traffic heading towards and from Washington Blvd has a stop sign, while traffic on N. Edgewood Street does not.
(Updated at 4:20 p.m.) Authorities are urging Arlington residents and others in the D.C. area to stay home today amid an extended bout of freezing rain.
Sidewalks and many roads are reported to be very slick. The ice is expected to build as the day goes on.
County and VDOT crews are out spreading salt, but even treated surfaces can become icy as rain falls amid sub-freezing surface temperatures. At least two bridges in the Courthouse area were closed due to slick conditions.
“Due to icy conditions the 10th Street bridge and Courthouse Rd bridge of Route 50 have been closed,” an Arlington Alert said at 9:30 a.m.
The earlier Winter Weather Advisory was upgraded to an Ice Storm Warning as of 2 p.m. Saturday. As of 3 p.m., the National Weather Service reported more than a tenth of an inch of ice accumulation in Arlington.
More from NWS:
156 PM EST SAT FEB 13 2021
…ICE STORM WARNING IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 AM EST SUNDAY…
* WHAT…TWO TO THREE TENTHS OF AN INCH OF SLEET AND FREEZING RAIN CAUSING SIGNIFICANT ICING IMPACTS.
* WHERE…THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, AND PORTIONS OF CENTRAL MARYLAND AND NORTHERN VIRGINIA.
* WHEN…UNTIL 7 AM EST SUNDAY.
* IMPACTS…DIFFICULT TRAVEL CONDITIONS.
* ADDITIONAL DETAILS…ROADWAYS ARE BECOMING VERY ICY AND DANGEROUS. AVOID ALL UNNECESSARY TRAVEL.
TRAVEL IS STRONGLY DISCOURAGED. IF YOU MUST TRAVEL, KEEP AN EXTRA FLASHLIGHT, FOOD AND WATER IN YOUR VEHICLE IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY. PREPARE FOR POSSIBLE POWER OUTAGES.
WHEN VENTURING OUTSIDE, WATCH YOUR FIRST FEW STEPS TAKEN ON STEPS, SIDEWALKS, AND DRIVEWAYS, WHICH COULD BE ICY AND SLIPPERY, INCREASING YOUR RISK OF A FALL AND INJURY.
Ice Storm Warnings have been expanded northwest to include Washington DC and surrounding areas. Expecting any wet and/or untreated surfaces to quickly become icy this evening as sun goes down. #DCwx #MDwx #VAwx #WVwx pic.twitter.com/UoMZaBG8yt
— NWS Baltimore-Washington (@NWS_BaltWash) February 13, 2021
In an email earlier this morning, VDOT said those who absolutely must travel should “use extreme caution.”
Significant icing is anticipated with the next wave of inclement weather. With prolonged freezing rain and low pavement temperatures expected through the day Saturday, VDOT strongly advises against nonessential travel. Those who must drive should closely monitor weather and road conditions, and use extreme caution. Even on treated roads, slick pavement will be possible. […]
Crews have positioned materials and equipment, and will apply treatment such as sand and salt as needed to icy patches and trouble spots to improve traction. Tree crews are ready to trim and remove branches weighed down or broken by ice, and to support utility companies on potential downed or entangled lines.
Numerous crashes have been reported around Arlington since this morning, including on treated roads. Virginia State Police say the VSP division that serves Arlington and other parts of Northern Virginia has responded to 83 crashes and 29 disabled vehicles as of 4 p.m.
“Virginia State Police continues to discourage Virginians from driving through Sunday (Feb. 14) due to extremely icy and treacherous conditions across much of Central, Southeastern and Northern Virginia,” a spokeswoman said via email.
More from social media:
3:35 pm: Seeing reports of some snow, even into the city lately. Mostly freezing rain and sleet locally but a bit of everything out there. Can see that nicely on high-resolution weather models. pic.twitter.com/NuIt2ubqtQ
— Capital Weather Gang (@capitalweather) February 13, 2021
Under an ice storm warning & the number of crashes in the area is increasing. Here are 2. One on I-395N express lanes under the SB Rt 1 ramp & a multi-vehicle crash on Beltway's OL just past Van Dorn. @WTOPtraffic @WTOP @ARLnowDOTcom @VaDOTNOVA @VSPPIO #vatraffic #traffic pic.twitter.com/UBECUBEPSj
— Dave Statter (@STATter911) February 13, 2021
— Steffi_S (@taquicoco) February 13, 2021
Crews continue to salt arterial and collector streets plus known problem areas. Rain in a wintry mix can lessen effectiveness so drive only if necessary. Use extreme caution approaching bridges and hills. #ArlWX https://t.co/J0yJcIDINc pic.twitter.com/Xot2X6wl56
— Arlington Department of Environmental Services (@ArlingtonDES) February 13, 2021
— Russell Imrie (@tweedyBard) February 13, 2021
Update at 1:50 p.m. — The missing man has been found along Army Navy Drive, near 28th Street S., according to police radio traffic. He was located as a result of ACPD’s Project Lifesaver technology.
Earlier: Arlington County police are looking for a missing senior in Crystal City, Pentagon City and other surrounding neighborhoods.
Police are using Project Lifesaver equipment in the search and are being assisted by the Fairfax County Police Department helicopter, according to scanner traffic. The Del Ray area of Alexandria is also being searched.
The man — who’s 5’10”, Hispanic and in his late 70s — went missing around noon, and is considered to be endangered.
He was “last seen wearing a black long sleeved shirt and a burgundy polo, khaki pants and a brown hat with a black rim… in the area of the 800 block of 23rd Street S.,” said an Arlington Alert text. “Anyone with any information please contact the Arlington County Emergency Communication Center at 703-558-2222.”
More from an Arlington County Police Department social media post:
Mr. Iraheta visited the Pentagon Centre at Pentagon City earlier today and is known to frequent the City of Alexandria. @FairfaxCountyPD helicopter is assisting with a search of the area.
Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact police.
— ArlingtonCountyPD (@ArlingtonVaPD) December 8, 2020
While students with disabilities are still set to return to classrooms next week, further return-to-school phases are now on hold.
Arlington Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Francisco Durán made the announcement in an email to families Tuesday evening.
“Currently, the health and safety metrics are not where they need to be to proceed with Level 2, Phase 1 Return on Nov. 12 for PreK, Kindergarten, and Career & Technical Education (CTE) students,” Durán wrote. “Compared to Level 1 [for students with disabilities], Level 2 brings a significantly larger group of staff and students into our buildings and classrooms, and that is why the metrics are set to a more rigorous standard.”
“To begin phasing in Level 2 students, we need to see further improvement in the metrics,” Durán continued. “We will continue to monitor the data at the end of this week and, in consultation with Public Health, will make a final determination about next steps for Level 2 by next week.”
Among the key metrics that APS is monitoring to determine when to advance to Level 2 of the return-to-school plan and beyond are the county’s rate of increase of coronavirus cases and teacher preferences for whether to return to in-person instruction.
The Case Incidence Rate per 100,000 people currently stands at 9.4, and advancing to Level 2 calls for it to be between 5-6. The latest teacher survey found that only 39% want to return, compared to the 70% or greater set as the criteria for Level 2.
(Level 2 includes PreK-5 and Career and Technical Education students. The criteria for Level 3, which would bring all other students who opt in back to classrooms two days per week, includes a Case Incidence Rate between 4-5 and a teacher preference for in-person instruction above 95%.)
The rate of new coronavirus cases in Arlington has been fluctuating over the past couple of weeks, at a higher level than September, but the county has not seen the kind of surge currently taking place elsewhere in the country.
Students with disabilities are still set to return a week from Wednesday, Durán said.
“Based on my review of the data and in consultation with Public Health, the current health and operational conditions allow for us to provide in-person learning support for Level 1 students with disabilities, beginning on November 4,” the superintendent wrote.
The full letter is below.
(Updated at 9:20 a.m.) Arlington County Police have announced an arrest following a double shooting along Columbia Pike early this morning.
Police said two adults were shot on the 3100 block of Columbia Pike and “are being treated for injuries that are considered non-life threatening.” Photos of the scene show numerous evidence markers and crime scene tape around the parking lot of Purple Lounge at 3111 Columbia Pike.
A helicopter was brought to “assist with the search and recovery of evidence in this case,” Arlington County Police said, adding that the “preliminary investigation indicates there is no ongoing threat to the community.”
Around 4:45 p.m. Sunday, police revealed more information about the shooting and announced that one of those shot has been charged in the shooting. He was shot by security guards and lightly wounded after opening fire on a crowd in the parking lot around 5 a.m., police said.
From a police press release:
The Arlington County Police Department’s Homicide/Robbery Unit is investigating a shooting that took place on Columbia Pike in the early morning hours of August 30, 2020.
At approximately 5:04 a.m., police were dispatched to the report of a shooting in the 3100 block of Columbia Pike. Upon arrival, officers located an adult male suffering from a gunshot wound. He was transported to an area hospital with injuries that are considered non-life threatening.
The preliminary investigation indicates security guards were clearing the parking lot of a business when the suspect drew a firearm and discharged towards the crowd. Two security guards, licensed by the Commonwealth and authorized to carry firearms, then returned fire. The suspect fired additional rounds before fleeing the scene in a vehicle prior to police arrival.
A lookout for the vehicle was broadcast. Responding officers located and stopped the vehicle at the intersection of 9th Street S. at Walter Reed Drive. The suspect was transported to an area hospital for treatment of a superficial wound. Once medically cleared, Yared Denbu, 33 of Dundalk, MD, was arrested and charged with Attempted Malicious Wounding, Use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Felony, and Reckless Handling of a Firearm. He is being held in Washington D.C. pending extradition to the Commonwealth of Virginia.
This appears to be an isolated incident between the parties and there is no known threat to the community related to this incident. This remains an active criminal investigation and anyone with information related to this incident is asked to contact the Arlington County Police Department’s Homicide/Robbery Unit at 703-228-4180 or [email protected] Information may also be provided anonymously through the Arlington County Crime Solvers hotline at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).
“The Arlington County Police Department has noted ongoing issues and violations at this establishment that have created a public disturbance and violate the conditions of the live entertainment use permit,” a county staff report said at the time.
Photos courtesy @lavvra/Twitter
(Updated at 11:35 a.m.) A man armed with a gun reportedly robbed the Sunoco at the corner of Washington Blvd and N. Glebe Road this morning.
The broad daylight robbery happened just before 9:45 a.m. Police are on scene and are currently searching for the suspect, who fled on foot.
No injuries have been reported.
Around 10:45 a.m., Arlington County police were notified of a robbery that just occurred at a gas station on the 6300 block of Leesburg Pike in Seven Corners, by a gun-wielding man with a similar description to that of the suspect in the Sunoco robbery.
@ARLnowDOTcom any idea what’s going on at corner of route 7 and 50 euro market gas station in 7 corners? Fairfax and Arlington police presence, closed down, helicopter circling.
— Mo (@momozig202) August 20, 2020
(Updated at 4 p.m.) Arlington County should change its logo and seal, the local branch of the NAACP says.
The civil rights group says the logo’s use of Arlington House — the former home of and a memorial to Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee — is “divisive and racist.”
Enslaved people were forced to build the Greek revival style mansion, which overlooks the Potomac and was the centerpiece of a plantation that utilized slave labor. Until it was seized during the Civil War, Arlington House had primarily been the home of descendents of George Washington. The house is now a National Memorial and part of Arlington National Cemetery.
Arlington House, the NAACP said in a letter to the editor this afternoon, is “a symbol of a slave labor camp.” The “racist plantation symbol” should be removed, as it “divides, rather than unites us,” the branch said.
The call to change the logo — which adorns the county flag, website, parks and other county-owned property — comes amid a national reckoning about race, sparked by the police killing of George Floyd and subsequent national protests.
Prior to the protests, the Confederate-inspired names of Jefferson Davis Highway and Washington-Lee High School were changed in Arlington. The county is also in the early stages of renaming Lee Highway.
In 2018, the County Board responded to a resident’s request for the logo to be redesigned by saying that the Board “will certainly give the matter more thought as budget and staff resources become available in future years.”
Reached for comment today, Arlington County Board Chair Libby Garvey said that the county has received numerous requests recently to change everything from the logo to the names of buildings, bridges and streets.
As for changing the logo, the county is “happy to consider it,” Garvey said, but only after a community engagement process — “a good solid conversation with everyone in Arlington.”
“When you take something away, you have to put something in its place,” Garvey said.
The letter to the editor was written by NAACP Arlington Branch President Julius Spain, Sr., as well as branch member Carolynn Kane and former Arlington School Board member Dr. Emma Violand-Sánchez. The full letter is below.
Arlington County’s most prominent symbol is its logo and seal. A symbol that is everywhere … on government correspondence, uniforms, buildings, vehicles, websites. A symbol of a slave labor camp. A symbol of the southern plantation economy designed to ensure White privilege and Black subjugation. A place that the National Park Service named, “Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial.” This is the symbol placed in the center of our flag. A divisive and racist branding of our diverse, usually progressive community. It is a symbol that divides, rather than unites us. Yet, despite community members bringing this problem to their attention, it appears that the County Board is uninterested in changing its logo. Instead the County proudly states in its manual that this symbol reflects its “values … identity … traditions;” and tells residents that there are “good sides” to this racist plantation symbol.
We ask, how can the County have courageous conversations on race, tackle the inequities in Arlington, heal the deep historical wounds here or enact its platform to address racial inequities when it will not confront and change its own symbol? If it refuses to acknowledge its own blindness to the logo’s meaning, it cannot. The County Board must end its embrace of this symbol of Black bondage, oppression and pain. The County’s Robert E. Lee Memorial logo, flag and seal needs to be “retired” and a new era of inclusiveness and equity ushered in immediately. We call on the County Board and County Manager to stop delaying, put this item on the Board’s Agenda, and vote. Now.
(Updated at 12:30 p.m.) A road was closed in Crystal City this morning due to a suspicious package investigation.
Police blocked off 26th Street S. between Crystal Drive and S. Clark Street, and are also working to block Crystal Drive.
The Arlington County Fire Department bomb squad responded to the scene to investigate the reported suspicious object, but ultimately officers from the Pentagon Force Protection Agency examined it and gave the all-clear, an ACFD spokesman said.
The area is home to a number of government and military offices.
(Updated at 4 p.m.) Arlington County workers power washed away Black Lives Matter chalk art in front of a home in the Boulevard Manor neighborhood this morning.
An outraged neighbor posted on social media about the removal of the chalk art, which featured words and phrases like “There comes a time when silence is betrayal,” “Justice 4 All,” “MLK,” and “BLM.” A portion of the art was on the county-owned sidewalk and road, while the rest was in the home’s driveway.
“I am both saddened and outraged. My friend and colleague at Ashlawn has had a formal complaint made about her daughter’s chalk art on the driveway, sidewalk and street in front of their home,” wrote Dana Crepeau. “I spoke with the Arlington County employees, who did not want to remove the chalk but were told they must. I asked permission to post their photos.”
“It appears the neighbor who called the county has previously taken it upon herself to erase other chalk drawings in support of Black Lives Matter,” Crepeau added. She noted that today (Friday) is Juneteenth, a day that celebrates the emancipation of the last enslaved persons during the Civil War, which just became a state holiday in Virginia.
“Do I understand correctly that the county forced Black employees to erase messages in support of Black Lives Matter on Juneteenth and apparently saw no problem with that?” asked a commenter on Crepeau’s Facebook post.
“Yes, you are understanding this correctly,” she replied.
The residents were not home when an ARLnow reporter knocked on the door shortly before noon. The mother of the girl whose art was erased — Yvaal Hampton, a second grade teacher at Ashlawn Elementary — said in an email sent to the neighborhood listserv that “today, I feel like an outsider.”
Dear Boulevard Manor,
When my family and I moved into the neighborhood about a year and a half ago we were welcomed by a few amazing neighbors and I thought “this is going to be great.” Well today, I feel like an outsider. With the on-going racial climate that we are in, my kids and I wanted to express some of our feelings and thoughts in chalk outside of our house. Not a novice idea, right? Well this morning I hear loud voices outside of my window, so I go outside to see what’s going on. There were three African American city workers outside power washing our chalk expressions/drawing away because a neighbor complained. I had a lot of emotions running through me, but then one of the gentlemen said “Miss I don’t really want to have to do this, but my boss told be that I have to do it.” Then I felt sad for them, they were forced to remove a Dr. King quote and children’s artwork because a neighbor felt someway about it (angry, threatened… who knows). If it were flowers and sunshine drawings would she have complained? Today, I feel like an outsider, but this outsider stands by her chalk messages “Justice for All”, “There comes a time when silence is betrayal.” Thank you Dr. King for your wise words. #BlackLivesMatter
ARLnow is still awaiting an official statement from Arlington County, which held a Juneteenth Peace Rally in front of county government headquarters in Courthouse this morning. (Update at 9:15 a.m.: The county issued an apology last night.)
Arlington County Board member Christian Dorsey told ARLnow that he is disturbed by the incident and awaiting more information on what happened. In the meantime, he offered an apology to the residents.
“We await a full understanding of the facts, but what is known at the moment disturbs us greatly,” Dorsey said. “It was a mistake to prioritize responding to this call during a pandemic where our workers should not be deployed unnecessarily. Furthermore, removal of the chalk art from a driveway apron, widely known to be the responsibility of the resident, was wrong.”