62°Light Drizzle

by ARLnow.com — March 23, 2016 at 9:45 am 0

Duck goes fishing in a pond (Flickr pool photo by Dennis Dimick)

Washington Blvd Trail Design Approved — The Penrose Neighborhood Association voted to endorse a new design for Phase II of the county’s Washington Blvd Trail project. The trail was originally supposed to be built a few years ago, but residents objected to the loss of trees the trail’s path would have necessitated. [Greater Greater Washington]

Anti-Gun Store Car Towed — Opponents of the planned Lyon Park gun store say the store’s landlord ordered a car towed from the parking lot because it was covered in anti-gun store literature. Despite being covered in the articles, which were held in place by colorful magnets, the car actually belonged to one of the building’s tenants and wasn’t parked illegally, says the group Act4LyonPark. [Facebook]

Female Firefighters in Arlington — In 1974, Judith Livers became the first paid, full-time municipal firefighter in the United States when she took a job with the Arlington County Fire Department. On Friday, a graduation ceremony was held for the county’s latest firefighting recruit class. Continuing Livers’ legacy, four of the 14-member class are female. Nationally, only about 4 percent of firefighters are women, while 9 percent of Arlington’s firefighters are female. [Arlington County]

Flickr pool photo by Dennis Dimick

by ARLnow.com — March 21, 2016 at 2:35 pm 0

Police car lightsArlington County Police responded with lights and sirens blaring to a report of shots fired near the intersection of Route 50 and N. Pershing Drive this afternoon, only to figure out that it was almost certainly from a drill at the military base across the street.

Police responded around 2:15 p.m. for a report of a man firing shots at the Days Inn motel, as relayed by a caller who was driving by on Route 50.

Responding officers quickly determined that the shots were almost certainly from what was described as “a 21-gun salute” drill at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, and that the woman who called had heard the shots echoing off the hotel, according to scanner traffic. The woman also reported a suspicious-looking man walking down the highway at the time.

No evidence of gunfire was found at the hotel.

As of 2:30 p.m., police were clearing the call. The incident happened as a gun store prepares to open on N. Pershing Drive, just down the block from the motel, prompting safety concerns from community groups.

by ARLnow.com — March 18, 2016 at 9:30 am 0

Daffodils along the Mt. Vernon Trail (Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley)

Ashton Heights Takes Stance Against Gun Store — More than 100 members of the Ashton Heights Civic Association voted last night on whether or not to take a position against the planned gun store in nearby Lyon Park. Fully 93 percent of those voting said they supported the civic association expressing opposition to the store, according to the group Act4LyonPark.

Retiring School Board Chair Recognized — At last night’s Arlington School Board meeting, Del. Alfonso Lopez read the joint resolution passed in the state legislature commending Dr. Emma Violand-Sanchez, who’s retiring as School Board Chair at the end of her term this year. [Katch, Twitter]

Raccoon Checks Out Home’s Toilet, Leaves — A woman in the Columbia Forest neighborhood called police after finding animal footprints on a toilet seat. The responding animal control officer determined that a raccoon had come down the chimney, apparently traipsed around the toilet and left. [Twitter]

GOP Convention Delegate Selection Gets Interesting — The prospect of a contested convention has made the selection of three delegates to represent Virginia’s Eighth Congressional District more interesting. At a recent Arlington County Republican Committee meeting, would-be delegates were asked who they would support for president. A reporter present didn’t hear anyone say Donald Trump. [InsideNova, InsideNova]

Condo for Sale Has a Unique Map of D.C. — A one-bedroom condo for sale in Rosslyn has a custom-designed map of D.C. painted across one of the walls. The mural was created by one of the current owners, who happens to be a former cartographer. [Washington Post]

Ouli Gets Attention from Local Tech Scene — “First Look: Could ‘Ouli’ Be the Concierge App for DC?” asks a new headline from a D.C. tech publication. The app’s creator, a software development firm on Lee Highway that has up until now served just corporate clients, says for now the app is focused solely on serving the Arlington market. [DC Inno]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by ARLnow.com — March 17, 2016 at 9:20 am 0

Ballston neighborhood sign

Snowzilla Cost Arlington $5 Million — The total cost of January’s blizzard to Arlington County is close to $5 million, the county said yesterday. Of that, Arlington believes that it can recoup $2 million from federal disaster assistance funds, though reimbursement process is a lengthy one. [Arlington County]

Young Republicans to Meet With Gun Store Owner — The Arlington-Falls Church Young Republicans will hear from the owner of NOVA Armory, the new gun store in Lyon Park, at their meeting on Monday. The meeting will be open to AFCYR members only — much like a Lyon Park community meeting on the store was open only to residents. The Arlington County Republican Committee, meanwhile, passed a resolution last night in support of the store, stating that the local GOP “stands with gun stores such as NOVA Armory that are engaged in lawful commerce.” [Facebook]

Metro Shutdown and Bus Stigma — Did yesterday’s shutdown of the Metrorail system help some commuters overcome perceived “bus stigma?” Given the longer lines around bus stops, bus ridership was definitely up. [Mobility Lab]

by ARLnow.com — March 14, 2016 at 11:35 am 0

Gray skies over Rosslyn and the Potomac (Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman)

Major Rosslyn Development Approved — A sweeping five-phase redevelopment of 7.65 acres of prime Rosslyn real estate was approved unanimously by the Arlington County Board on Saturday. The Board approved the framework for the development, though final approval will be necessary for each phase. Developers Vornado and Gould Property Company expect to complete the project over the course of 25 years. [Arlington County]

Gun Store Saga Continues — Who owns NOVA Armory, the gun store that’s planning to open in Lyon Park despite community opposition? The man who speaks on behalf of the business and holds its federal firearms sales license isn’t saying, exactly. Dennis Pratte declined further questions after describing it as “a female, minority-owned business” and stating “I may or may not be the owner.” Meanwhile, county leaders say there’s nothing they can legally do to prevent the store from opening. NOVA Armory is planning to a grand opening on March 26. [Washington Post, InsideNova]

Teen Tourist Scammed at Pentagon City Mall — A California teenager on a school trip to Washington was reportedly scammed out of $97 by an armed man at the Pentagon City mall. The man compelled the teen to give him $97 in exchange for what turned out to be a counterfeit $100 bill. [NBC Washington]

Arlington Natives Live Blog Day at Ballston Common Mall — Two friends who grew up in Arlington’s Bluemont neighborhood decided to spend all of Saturday at Ballston Common Mall, ahead of its imminent demise, and live-blog their experience. The blog mixes nostalgia for time spent shopping and working at the mall with observations about the current mix of largely chain restaurants and small, quirky stores. [Things Remembered: A Day at Ballston]

Other County Board Action — On Saturday, the Arlington County Board approved a Memorandum of Understanding to partner with Virginia Tech and join the national MetroLab Network, and voted to accept $731,813 in state funding to support the county’s permanent supportive housing program. [Arlington County, Arlington County]

Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman

by ARLnow.com — March 10, 2016 at 10:20 am 0

Tree blossoms in Lyon Park

Police Seek Witness in Pentagon City Investigation — Arlington County Police are trying to find a witness who rendered aid to an injured man found face down in the street in Pentagon City. The incident happened around 9:30 p.m. on February 25, on the 1200 block of S. Eads Street. The 65-year-old man remains in critical but stable condition. [Arlington County]

Group Forms to Oppose Gun StoreUpdated at 11:05 a.m. — A group called Act4LyonPark has formed to oppose NOVA Armory, the gun store that’s planning to open on March 26 at 2300 N. Pershing Drive. So far, Act4LyonPark has raised $6,300 to support its activities. The group says that in a recent vote, 88 percent of residents who responded voted for the Lyon Park Citizens Association to take an official stance against the gun shop.

Board to Consider Relaxed Historic Rules for Schools — The Arlington County Board is expected to vote Saturday on a proposal to make it easier for Arlington Public Schools to make changes to schools within local historic districts. The proposal would remove schools from the oversight of the county’s rigid Historical Affairs and Landmark Review Board. Facing a school capacity crunch, APS says going through HALRB adds unnecessary delays and costs to projects. [InsideNova]

One Person Filed 6,500 Noise Complaints Against DCA — A single individual is responsible for 6,500 of the 8,670 noise complaints filed against Reagan National Airport last year, according to the airports authority. [WTOP]

Chamber Savors Hotel Tax Victory — With Arlington’s 0.25 percent hotel tax surcharge reinstated, the Arlington Chamber of Commerce is celebrating a long-awaited legislative victory. “Reinstating Arlington’s [Transient Occupancy Tax] was the Chamber’s top priority for the 2016 legislative session, with the funds generated by the additional TOT providing much needed support to ensure that Arlington remains competitive in attracting leisure and business travel,” said Chamber president and CEO Kate Roche. [Arlington Chamber of Commerce]

Local Musician Wins Songwriting Award — Arlington’s Justin Jones has won the $10,000 grand prize from a local songwriting competition in Bethesda. [Instagram]

by ARLnow.com — March 8, 2016 at 6:00 pm 0

NOVA Armory, the controversial planned gun store in Lyon Park, says it will hold a grand opening at 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 26.

The store, at 2300 N. Pershing Drive, says it has all applicable permits needed to open. The grand opening will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony with “several VIPs,” the store’s website says.

The Lyon Park Citizens Association, however, is still discussing the store and has planned a membership vote on whether the association should take an official stance on NOVA Armory. It’s unclear what stance the association would take, though many residents have expressed concerns about the store and its proximity to a nearby preschool.

John Goldener, president of the civic association, confirmed the vote was to take place at some point this week. It comes after NOVA Armory, in a press release issued Friday, threatened to sue opponents and “local crazies.”

“The Association will not… respond favorably to any threats to our residents or to free speech in our meetings, our online forums, or on individual members’ social media pages, as appeared in NOVA Armory’s own March 4 press release to this and other media outlets,” Goldener said Monday. “We assume that the business owner is a proud and responsible gun owner, as are many residents of Lyon Park and members of the LPCA. He should understand better than most that the Constitution is not a buffet, and your cannot infringe upon individuals’ First Amendment rights in order to defend those in the Second.”

“We remain wholly committed to productive and constructive dialogue on this any any other issue of interest or concern to our residents,” Goldener added.

On Friday NOVA Armory said on its website — in a post that has since been removed — that is cancelled a planned private meeting with the citizens association and would only meet with residents at the store. Since then, the stance of NOVA Armory’s owner appears to have softened a bit.

“Dennis Pratte and I have been in touch today, and we are working together to find a new time for him to meet with the Association,” Goldener told ARLnow.com Tuesday.

Pratte, meanwhile says his business is legal and wants Lyon Park residents to stop by the store to clear up “misinformation floating around the internet” before voting.

“NOVA Armory’s application for zoning was approved and all the inspections were passed by the county,” Pratte wrote. “The business received an occupancy permit. And, every inspector, and every law enforcement official that has visited the shop has left confident knowing that they have met all the requirements to operate this business, and to operate it safely from this location. So, before the committee votes, I would hope they take this information into account, or at least stop by the business before casting their vote so they can make an informed decision.”

by ARLnow.com — March 4, 2016 at 9:50 am 0

2300 N. Pershing Drive (image via NOVA Armory / Google Maps)NOVA Armory, the gun store that says it’s planning to open soon in Lyon Park, has responded to critics with a long, threatening press release.

NOVA Armory’s plan to open this month at 2300 N. Pershing Drive has raised the ire of many residents and, in turn, has attracted scrutiny from elected officials. A petition against the store now has more than 3,000 signatures. On Wednesday, seven Democratic state lawmakers who represent Arlington sent a letter to the store’s landlord.

“We strongly encourage you to reconsider your decision to grant a lease to NOVA Armory,” the letter concludes.

The gun shop’s press release — which states the “owner-in-training” of the store is a 16-year-old girl named Lauren Pratte — first targets those lawmakers.

“We’ve given up on fact-checking all their false statements,” Pratte is quoted as saying. “Instead we’ve told our lawyers to concentrate on any actions in which we are deprived of our civil liberties by these so-called public servants — they’ll regret any abuse of their authority.”

The press release then targets local residents who have posted to Facebook, made calls or otherwise spoken out online against the store.

Besides concerns with civil rights, Pratte said their team of attorneys are keeping a watchful eye on local officials and local activists who are trying to harm the business, particularly the relationship between NOVA Armory and its landlord.

“As if infringing on my Second Amendment rights is not bad enough, the actions of these local crazies against our business is approaching the level of “tortious interference.” Pratte said she and the landlord have received threats, including calls for a boycott of unrelated business tenants of the landlord.

Pratte explained how the culprits could find themselves libel for any injury she or the landlord suffers, “If you’ve posted on Facebook, agitated people on the local community’s online forum, made harassing phone calls, or sent angry emails designed to interfere with our business relationship with our landlord, you are on my attorneys’ list. So if you don’t see NOVA Armory open for business, you better worry about seeing us in court.”

Pratte is pictured in the press release holding a shotgun. Her father is Dennis Pratte, a gun dealer who reportedly owned the now-closed My Gun Factory in Falls Church.

The full press release is below.

Gun Shop Fires Back at Critics
NOVA Armory Issues Failing Grades to Arlington Politicians; Warns Local Agitators of Lawsuit

March 4, 2016, ARLINGTON, VA — The gun shop planning to open in Arlington, Virginia this month has responded to a letter local politicians sent to its landlord. In response, NOVA Armory has issued report cards with failing grades for each of the seven elected officials who signed the letter to the landlord. Additionally, NOVA Armory warned the politicians and the local anti-Second Amendment activists they could find themselves in court if the gun shop fails to open.

On March 2, NOVA Armory’s landlord received the letter signed by various Virginia office-holders representing Arlington. They were Senator Barbara Favola, Senator Janet Howell, Senator Adam Ebbin, Delegate Patrick Hope, Delegate Alfonso Lopez, Delegate Richard Sullivan, and Delegate Mark Levine.

“The authors released the letter publicly on the official letterhead of the Virginia legislature, yet their letter contained a typo, it confused our gun shop with an unrelated business, and it relied on numerous false premises,” explained NOVA Armory’s owner-in training, Lauren Pratte. “When I see such a poorly written letter in the business world, I take my business elsewhere,” Pratte continued. “Unfortunately tax payers don’t have that choice, and we must suffer under this sort of incompetence.”

In the letter, printed on official letterhead of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virginia, the politicians said they “strongly urge” the landlord to cancel the lease with NOVA Armory. The letter made its arguments by claiming a disconnect between the “nature” of NOVA’s business with the “character” of the neighborhood. The letter also suggested NOVA Armory would give rise to a “black market” and “drug dealing” because of its accessibility to residents of the District of Columbia.

“These wild statements sound like what some call dog whistle politics. If these politicians are in the market for dog whistles, they need to know we don’t deal in that garbage,” said Pratte.

Several authors of the letter attended a private meeting for residents of Lyon Park on February 27. A person who attended that meeting alleged that Arlington County Police Chief Jay Farr said the presence of a gun shop does not increase crime.

(more…)

by ARLnow.com — March 3, 2016 at 9:45 am 0

Creepy Netflix ad for House of Cards in the Rosslyn Metro station

Lawmakers Ask Gun Store Landlord to Reconsider — Seven state legislators who represent Arlington have written to the landlord of a planned gun store in Lyon Park, asking her to reconsider the lease. The letter cites Virginia’s 1990s reputation for being the “gun-running capital of the East Coast” and says the new store, which is located near a private preschool and daycare center, “could be the site for potentially nefarious and illegal activities.” [Washington Post]

Three Arlington Bars Make D.C. Dive List — The website UpOut has compiled a list of “10 Ridiculously Cool Dive Bars in Washington D.C.” Among them are three Arlington favorites: Galaxy Hut, Cowboy Cafe and L.A. Bar and Grill. [UpOut]

More Millennials Coming to Arlington? — In Arlington, 35-40 percent of the population is of the Millennial generation. That makes Arlington one of the most Millennial-heavy places in the country. But the county’s demographer doesn’t think the county’s Millennial boom has peaked yet. “Whether Millennials choose to stay or leave Arlington could have a major impact on schools, since the bulk of that population group has not yet embarked on creating families,” notes the Sun Gazette. [InsideNova]

Memorial Bridge May Close in Five Years — After years of deferred maintenance, the 84-year-old Memorial Bridge is in such bad shape that the National Park Service could be forced to close it by 2021 unless it can get funding for a $250 million complete reconstruction. [Associated Press, Twitter]

Where You Might Bump into an Arlington Trump VoterChris Slatt has again compiled some interesting Arlington election data into map form. Slatt’s maps show Democratic turnout by precinct, Republican turnout by precinct and the population density of Donald Trump voters — the highest concentration of which are along the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor. Separately, another sage election watcher, Carrie Johnson, estimates that 5,500-6,000 voters who usually vote Democratic in Arlington voted Republican in Tuesday’s presidential primary, thus in part explaining why John Kasich and Marco Rubio outperformed here compared to the rest of the state. [InsideNova]

New Rosslyn-Based Online Publication — Rosslyn continues to cement its reputation as Arlington’s media hub. ABC 7 (WJLA) parent company Sinclair Broadcast Group is launching “D.C. Refined,” a new online-only local culture magazine. The publication will “fall under the umbrella” of Rosslyn-based WJLA. [Washington Business Journal]

by ARLnow.com — March 2, 2016 at 4:55 pm 0

Police car lights(Updated at 12:30 p.m.) A man has been charged with brandishing a gun during a road rage incident Wednesday afternoon in Clarendon.

The incident took place just after 4 p.m. at the intersection of N. Highland Street and Clarendon Blvd, near the Clarendon Metro station.

It all started when one driver reportedly cut off another. That led to a dispute in which one of the parties involved got out of his or her vehicle. It was at that point that a man in the other vehicle flashed a gun, Arlington County Police spokeswoman Ashley Savage said Thursday.

The man drove off and no one was injured. A pedestrian was caught in the middle of the dispute and served as a witness for police, Savage said. There was also a cell phone video and surveillance video of the incident.

The suspect in the case later voluntarily came to the police station and was issued a court summons, Savage said. His court date is set for March 10.

by ARLnow.com — February 29, 2016 at 12:00 pm 0

(Updated at 12:25 p.m.) Members of the media were denied access to a Lyon Park community meeting about the controversial plan to open a gun shop in the neighborhood Sunday night.

The meeting was attended by County Board Chair Libby Garvey, Vice Chair Jay Fisette, County Manager Mark Schwartz, Police Chief Jay Farr and Del. Patrick Hope. The owner of the planned gun store at 2300 N. Pershing Drive, Nova Armory, was reportedly out of town and unable to attend.

An ARLnow.com reporter who tried to attend the event, at the privately-owned Lyon Park Community Center, was not allowed in the building. A community member shut the door when the reporter tried to ask about the prohibition on media. Those working the door at the event checked IDs and only allowed Lyon Park and Ashton Heights residents inside.

A short time after seeking access, the reporter and almost a dozen other non-community members — an Arlington resident who runs an anti-gun-store Facebook page and several members of the pro-gun Virginia Citizens Defense League — were removed from the Lyon Park property by police upon a neighborhood representative’s request.

Initially, on Friday, the meeting was advertised as a public County Board meeting, as required by law when a majority of the County Board is planning to attend. On Saturday, that public notice was rescinded.

“Notice is hearby given that the County Board of Arlington County, Virginia, will NOT meet on Sunday, February 28, 2016 in the Lyon Park Community Center, 414 North Fillmore Street., at 7:00 P.M. or as soon thereafter for the purpose of attending a Lyon Park Community meeting to discuss NOVA Armory’s plans to open a firearms store at 2300 Pershing Dr,” the public notice read.

ARLnow.com reached out to the elected officials who attended the meeting, asking about what was discussed, but thus far none has responded on the record. On Friday, Arlington County issued a statement saying that due to state law, the county “does not have the authority to prohibit these sales or businesses.”

(Also in attendance at the meeting: Lyon Park resident, Planning Commission member and Democratic County Board challenger Erik Gutshall, who has said he’s “deeply concerned” with plans for the store.)

John Goldener, president of the Lyon Park Citizens Association, spoke to ARLnow.com after the meeting, which ran from 7-9 p.m. and was attended by about 140 residents, he said.

Goldener declined to provide details about the discussion, saying that the civic association purposely excluded outsiders because the meeting was intended to be a safe space for community members to discuss the gun store.

“All I can tell you is what the meeting was about,” Goldener said. “This was an opportunity for people in the community to have a safe, civil discussion.”

“The civic association’s role here is to be a facilitator,” Goldener added. “We don’t take a stance on this particular issue.”

(more…)

by ARLnow.com — February 26, 2016 at 10:05 am 0

2300 N. Pershing Drive (image via NOVA Armory / Google Maps)(Updated on 2/29/16) A petition against a planned gun store in Lyon Park has already picked up more than 1,400 supporters.

The petition, launched after ARLnow.com first reported about plans for the NOVA Armory store at 2300 N. Pershing Drive, calls for the store and its landlord to cancel plans for the store opening.

“This small strip mall along Pershing Drive and Route 50 is in a residential location and literally next door to a day care/after-care school, the Merit School of Arlington,” the petition states. “It is also within blocks of Long Branch Elementary, and less than a mile from Key Elementary and Thomas Jefferson Middle School.”

It continues:

In an era of ever-increasing gun violence, it is unconscionable to locate a gun shop anywhere in the vicinity of schools, both private and public, with young children in close proximity. The fear of armed intruders in schools is extremely prevalent in our schools, and placing a shop that sells guns and/or ammunition within immediate distance of schools sends a confusing signal to students and could certainly spark fears of access to them and their families.

We call on the owner of the building and the gun shop to exercise concern for the community, and most particularly its youngest and most vulnerable residents, and cease any action that would allow a gun shop to occupy this space.

The petition notes that residents of Cherrydale were successful in thwarting a planned gun store — Nova Firearms — from opening there last year.

“If the shop was not right for Cherrydale, what makes it right for Lyon Park?” the petition asks.

The County Board has sent emails to concerned residents explaining that the county cannot legally prevent the gun store from opening. A county staff comment on the store’s zoning application notes that the county must treat the store “as any other retail shop.”

In just over a day, the controversy over the shop has even entered the world of local partisan politics.

A local business across the street from the store, Smitten Boutique Salon, is encouraging customers to sign the petition against it. In response, the Arlington Falls Church Young Republicans sent an email decrying “evil corporate political speech.”

“How dare a local business use corporate resources to attempt to subvert our political and public policy process,” wrote AFCYR Chairman Emeritus Matthew Hurtt. “Democrats claim to want to protect our fragile democracy, and — if so — they must condemn this egregious act without hesitation.”

NOVA Armory says it is planning to open in March.

by ARLnow.com — February 24, 2016 at 5:35 pm 0

A gun store offering “the largest selection of firearms inside the D.C. Beltway” is planning to open next month in Lyon Park.

NOVA Armory is coming to the ground floor of 2300 N. Pershing Drive, near Route 50 and Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall. Much of the store’s interior appears to already be built, based on a photo on NOVA Armory’s website.

The store says it expects to open in March, pending final licensing.

“NOVA Armory will provide D.C., Maryland and Virginia residents the lowest priced firearms guaranteed,” said a recorded announcement that plays when you call the store’s phone number. “With our one-of-a-kind showroom, you will be able to handle hundreds of firearms without the need for a salesperson.”

A county permit application indicates that the store has been granted a local business license and the land use go-ahead from Arlington’s planning department

“RETAIL-FIREARMS SHOP,” says the county staff comment on the permit application online. “PER ZA AND G. ACURIO IN COUNTY MANAGERS OFFICE TREAT AS ANY OTHER RETAIL SHOP.”

Last year an effort by a store called NOVA Firearms to open a location in Cherrydale resulted in a community outcry and national media attention. Eventually the store’s would-be landlord, facing community pressure and protests, cancelled the lease.

While similar in name, a Yelp listing for NOVA Armory (below) states that it’s not affiliated with Nova Firearms. The permit holder for the business, however, is listed as Dennis Pratte, a McLean gun dealer who at one point was reported to be the owner of Nova Firearms. A different man was said to be the owner of Nova Firearms during last year’s Cherrydale controversy.

From Yelp:

The owners of NOVA Armory have been in the firearms industry for 20 years. They are active hunters and sporting arms enthusiasts that have decided to open a state-of-the-art showroom that allows customers to view and handle secured arms without the need of a sales person, thereby allowing you to shop in peace. While we will have consultants available to address your questions, we want to offer you a new and unique way to shop for your next firearm.

We will also offer free firearms transfers if we cannot provide you the same firearm for a cheaper price. We hope to be your go-to firearms resource.

Finally, while similar in name, we are not affiliated with any other firearms shops in the VA, DC or MD areas.

by ARLnow.com — December 29, 2015 at 1:00 pm 0

Arlington County police cars (file photo)(Updated at 1:45 p.m.) A lobbyist has been charged after allegedly threatening to kill a technician who was fixing his computer.

The incident happened around 11 a.m. Monday, at the suspect’s house on the 2700 block of S. Grove Street in the Arlington Ridge neighborhood, near Crystal City.

Police say 50-year-old Joseph N. Mondello “refused to let a computer technician leave the residence until his computer was fixed.” Mondello also “allegedly had a gun in his possession and threatened to kill the victim,” according to an Arlington County Police Department crime report.

Mondello, who’s a registered lobbyist, was charged with abduction by force or intimidation and use of a firearm in a felony, according to court records. The abduction charge can carry a sentence of anything from a couple of months in jail to up to 10 years in prison.

According to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck, Mondello had a previous “run in” with another computer technician, but that encounter did not escalate to the degree of this latest incident.

File photo

by ARLnow.com — December 14, 2015 at 9:15 am 0

Bonfire at the Rosslyn Holiday Market in Gateway Park on Friday

Guns Stolen from Nova Firearms in McLean — A burglary has occurred at Nova Firearms, the gun store that wanted to open a location in Cherrydale before residents pressured the store and the landlord to scuttle those plans. Two handguns were stolen from Nova Firearms’ McLean store just after midnight this past Friday. Police are seeking tips in the case. [Fairfax County Police Department]

Taxicab Fares Raised in Arlington — A taxi ride in Arlington will now cost an extra 25 cents per ride and an extra six cents per mile. The County Board on Saturday unanimously approved new taxi rates that also include a $25 cleaning fee for those who “dirty or foul a cab enough that the cab must be removed from service.” [Arlington County, WJLA]

Locals Make ’50 On Fire’ List — A number of Arlington-based companies and individuals have been named to this year’s DC Inno “50 on Fire” list. Local honorees include Vornado/Charles E. Smith honcho Mitchell Schear, Crystal City incubator Eastern Foundry, newly-IPOed Evolent Health in Ballston, Ballston-based tech firm Distil Networks and Rosslyn-based advertising agency LMO Advertising. [DC Inno]

Nauck Town Square Design Meeting — A community discussion will be held at Drew Model School to help officials arrive at a final plan and design for its Nauck Town Square project. The meeting will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. tonight (Monday). [Arlington County]

Review of Oz in Clarendon — Oz restaurant in Clarendon, which opened in September, continues to receive so-so reviews from the critics. The latest review suggests that Oz suffers from the inherent blandness of Australian cuisine, which it attempts to recreate faithfully. Oz may benefit, however, from its co-owner’s casting on the Real Housewives of Potomac. [Washington Post]

Arlington Fire Captain Retires After 35 Years — Arlington County Fire Department Captain Robert Patterson has retired after 35 years on the job. [WJLA]

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