Press Club

(Updated at 2:15 p.m.) Yorktown High School’s homecoming football game Friday night was marred by “unacceptable behavior” by a group of students during halftime.

That’s according to principal, Kevin Clark, who sent a scathing email to Yorktown families on Saturday, ahead of the school’s homecoming dance.

“Students reported that during the halftime performance and thereafter, several students harassed fellow Yorktown students using inappropriate and unacceptable language of a sexual nature and inappropriately touched a student,” Clark wrote. “This created an unsafe environment and does not reflect the values of our students and staff at Yorktown.”

Clark promised to “fully investigate and address reported behavior from the football game.”

Several parents, citing a social post describing what happened, told ARLnow that the harassment was aimed at girls in the band and the color guard. That could not be immediately verified. No classes are being held today due to the federal holiday.

The Arlington County Police Department reported today that a girl was touched inappropriately during the game.

SEXUAL BATTERY (late), 2021-10090195, 5200 block of Yorktown Boulevard. At approximately 4:57 p.m. on October 9, officers were dispatched to the police station for the late report of an assault. Upon arrival, it was determined that at approximately 9:00 p.m. on October 8, the juvenile victim was walking in the area during the Homecoming Football Game when the unknown suspect inappropriately touched her. There is no suspect(s) description. The investigation is ongoing.

Last year Clark addressed another controversy with families, after a banner created for graduation was seen by some as racist.

The full letter about the behavior at the homecoming game is below.

Dear Yorktown Community,

I’m writing to follow up on last night’s Homecoming Football Game and provide an update about tonight’s Homecoming Dance. While the vast majority of our students enjoyed an exciting and positive experience, we are extremely disappointed and concerned about the unacceptable behavior of several students during the halftime performance and second half of the game.

Students reported that during the halftime performance and thereafter, several students harassed fellow Yorktown students using inappropriate and unacceptable language of a sexual nature and inappropriately touched a student. This created an unsafe environment and does not reflect the values of our students and staff at Yorktown, where we teach Respect for Others, Community and Self (ROCS) at all times.

We harshly condemn the actions of these students and will not tolerate such behavior at any Yorktown or APS activity. We are taking these reports seriously and are investigating them thoroughly. Students found to be responsible for this behavior will be held accountable. Additionally, we will take immediate measures (listed below) so that all students have a safe environment to learn and participate in school activities. This type of behavior impacts our entire school community. We need your support to address this moving forward and encourage you to speak to your child about the importance of positive and safe interactions.

If you have any information about what occurred last night or if you have any questions, please reach out to me directly […]

Next Steps Identified

  • Limiting student ticket sales to future athletic events to reflect facility limitations and capacities
  • On-field viewing of half-time performances for Seniors suspended
  • Designating specific areas for each grade level of students
  • Coaches of all sports will meet with their team to discuss appropriate behavior at events and to have players encourage peers to represent themselves appropriately at games
  • Continued supervision of students by administrators and security staff
  • Fully investigate and address reported behavior from the football game.

Homecoming Dance 

We also want to ensure that tonight’s Homecoming Dance is safe and enjoyable for all of our students who will be attending. We emphasize that inappropriate language and behavior will not be tolerated, and any student suspected of being under the influence will be denied entry and asked to leave. Tickets will not be for sale at the door, and there will be no re-entry if students leave the dance.

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This year, half of all calls to your mobile phone could be robocalls, according to predictions by call protection company First Orion. And ARLnow wants to know: have you noticed more robocalls to your phone?

There were 27.2 million robocalls placed to 703-area-code numbers in March, per call tracker YouMail, and 13.2 million calls to 571 numbers.

That’s up from 17.2 million robocalls to 703 numbers in March of last year, and 8.5 million calls to 571 numbers.

One Arlington resident who’s definitely getting spammed with robocalls is FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. “Last Week Tonight” host John Oliver set up a robocall system to call Pai every 90 minutes and leave a voicemail urging him to take action to reduce robocalls.

First Orion’s prediction that robocalls will make up half of all cellphone calls was based on an analysis of 50 million calls which showed an increase from 3.7 percent of cellphone calls were robocalls in 2017 to 29.2 percent in 2018.

It may be a reason why one analysis of monthly calls by caller ID provider Hiya found people now only pick up their phone about half the time it rings.

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Police say an increasing number of Arlington residents are getting phone calls from scamsters claiming to be bill collectors.

The police department issued the following press release today regarding the fraudulent phone calls.

The Arlington County Police Department has recently seen an increase in reports of telephone scams. There have been at least four instances where a man with a thick Indian accent has called victims claiming to be a bill collector. This suspect was quite aggressive over the phone and one woman was pressured into giving him her bank account number.

These, and all phone fraud cases may be prevented by utilizing simple tips regarding your personal information.

  • Never give your credit card info out when you receive a phone call. Legitimate companies don’t call you to ask for a credit card number over the phone.
  • Never give your bank account, social security, or credit card number to anyone you don’t know or cannot trust.
  • If the person is from a legitimate bill collector, they should have paperwork to prove it.
  • Say no to any offer or deal that is only available “right” now.
  • If you are offered a prize but are asked to pay for a “processing fee” or “taxes” is advance, it is likely a scam.
  • Always ask for and wait until you receive written material about any offer or charity, this includes police department “unions or associations”.
  • Don’t pay in advance for services. Pay services only after they are delivered.
  • When an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Other popular scams are elaborate stories concerning a friend or loved one.
  • A friend e-mails you from a foreign country where they were robbed and need money wired for assistance.
  • Someone has hired a “hitman” to kill you, but if you pay him, he will spare your life because you are a good person.
  • Your grandchild is stranded in a foreign country and needs money wired to them to get home.

The Arlington County Police Department understands that it may be embarrassing to fall for these scams, but we urge you to report phone and e-mail fraud if you encounter it at 703 228-4300 or www.arlingtonva.us/police.

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Arlington residents are being bombarded with mysterious, repeated hang-up calls from a Wyoming telephone number at all hours of the day and night.

At an online message board, dozens of people identifying themselves as residents of Arlington and other Northern Virginia communities have swapped stories of receiving calls from the same phone number, 307-459-1039.

Upon picking up the phone, the mysterious entity at the other end hangs up.

By some accounts, the calls are coming in every two or three hours.  Most people mention receiving calls on Friday and Saturday. Others report having received calls for the past week.

Tamar Abrams, a Huffington Post blogger, wrote about receiving the bizarre phone calls at her Northern Virginia home. A Verizon operator reportedly told Abrams that an investigation into the calls is underway.

Calls to 307-459-1039 are greeted with a recorded message saying that the line has been disconnected.

Other localities around the country have reported getting repeated calls from the same 307 number. A Connecticut newspaper reported last month that the police department in the coastal town of Stonington received “hundreds of complaints” about the calls.

Although the number traces back to Cheyenne, Wyoming, some have theorized that the caller ID may be faked, or “spoofed,” and that the calls actually originate from overseas.

Update on 4/26 — The Arlington County Police Department says it has received more than 150 complaints about phone calls from the 307 area code. Police released the following statement:

Preliminary investigation reveals calls were received from this telephone number in Arlington, Alexandria, and parts of Maryland. Detectives are currently working with agencies from local jurisdictions, communications personnel, and several telephone providers. At this time, it appears that the telephone calls may have been the result of a computer dialing error.

Representatives at Verizon state that although the calls were not generated from a Verizon account; they are in contact with the service provider involved. A Verizon spokesperson stated that Verizon customers who are receiving the annoying telephone calls may contact them at (800) 257-2969 to initiate a courtesy trace for two weeks. Non-Verizon customers may contact their respective telephone provider to report any annoying calls.

The Arlington Police are aware of the issue and are actively working to resolve it. Arlington residents wishing to report telephone calls related to this matter may email Detective Diane Guenther at [email protected] (preferred), or call (703) 228-4242.

Verizon has also released a statement, via police.

“Verizon security is working with the carrier who has this number {a} to block that number from reaching Verizon’s network – and our customers – and {b} to investigate ultimately who’s responsible for this. We are not happy about this, and we sympathize with our customers and the level of annoyance this has caused them.”

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