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by ARLnow.com September 20, 2017 at 1:00 pm 0

A man ran up to a jogger on the Mt. Vernon Trail and groped her, according to this week’s Arlington County Police Department crime report.

The incident happened around lunchtime last Wednesday, on the trail near Rosslyn.

Police searched for the suspect but were unable to locate him.

More from the ACPD crime report:

SEXUAL BATTERY, 2017-09130162, Mount Vernon Trail. At approximately 2:07 p.m. on September 13, police were dispatched to the intersection of Lynn Street at Lee Highway for the late report of a sexual battery. Upon arrival, it was determined that at approximately 12:30 p.m. on September 13, a female victim was running on the Mount Vernon Trail when an unknown male suspect approached her from behind and inappropriately touched her. Once the victim called out for help, the suspect fled the area on foot. The suspect is described as a light-skinned Hispanic male, 30 – 40 years old, approximately 180 – 220 lbs with an average to medium build. The suspect is clean shaven with short black hair. He was wearing a light blue long-sleeved shirt, tan khaki pants and brown sneakers at the time of the incident. Officers canvassed the area with negative results. The investigation is ongoing.

The rest of this past week’s crime report highlights, including some that we’ve already reported, after the jump.

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by ARLnow.com September 19, 2017 at 1:30 pm 0

The victim of a vicious stabbing is expected to survive after the early Monday morning attack.

Police say someone approached the victim from behind along N. Glebe Road in the Buckingham neighborhood, just south of Ballston, and stabbed him multiple times. The man was transported to the trauma center at George Washington University Hospital with what were described as “non-life threatening injuries.”

More from an Arlington County Police Department crime report:

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 2017-09180026, 300 block of N. Glebe Road. At approximately 3:00 a.m. on September 18, police were dispatched to the report of an assault. Upon arrival, it was determined that a suspect approached a male victim from behind and stabbed him multiple times. The victim was transported to G. W. Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The suspect is described as an adult Hispanic male. The investigation is ongoing.

by ARLnow.com September 19, 2017 at 12:00 pm 0

For at least the second time this year, fraudsters have installed credit card skimmers at a gas station in Cherrydale.

Police say a skimming device was found inside a gas pump on the 4000 block of Old Dominion Drive yesterday afternoon, after customers of the gas station “reported fraudulent activity on their bank statements.”

The Arlington County Police Department is encouraging residents to take precautions when pumping gas, noting that new credit card skimmers are more sophisticated and “are undetectable without opening the pumps.”

More from an ACPD press release:

The Arlington County Police Department is warning the public about skimming devices used to steal banking and personal information.

At approximately 2:50 p.m. on Monday, September 18, police were dispatched to a gas station in the 4000 block of Old Dominion Drive for the report of a credit card skimming device located inside a gas pump. Citizens having used this location have reported fraudulent activity on their bank statements. Police are encouraging anyone who has used this gas station to review their bank statements for any fraudulent activity. If fraudulent activity is located, report to police by calling the Emergency Communication Center at 703-558-2222 or file an online police report.

Citizens can take the following crime prevention steps to avoid skimmers at gas stations:

  • Skimming devices have become more sophisticated. In most cases, the skimmers are being placed inside the machine and are undetectable without opening the pumps.
  • Pay inside at the gas station, rather than at the pump.
  • Always pay using a credit card instead of a debit card. Credit cards have better fraud protection, and the money is not deducted immediately from an account.
  • If using a debit card at the pump, choose to run it as a credit card instead of putting a PIN number in. That way, the PIN number is safe.
  • Consider purchasing a refillable prepaid card to purchase gas at the pumps.
  • If you have not already switched to a chip reader on your credit card, do so.
  • Regularly check your bank statements and if you notice fraudulent activity, notify the bank so they can begin an investigation.

Criminals will use a variety of different scams and the Arlington County Police Department wants the public to remain alert so you don’t become a victim. Individuals seeking more information about fraud can visit our website or contact the Arlington County Police Department’s Financial Crimes Unit at [email protected] .

Photo via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com September 15, 2017 at 4:45 pm 0

Police and medics are on scene of a three-vehicle crash on S. Glebe Road.

Initial reports suggest a car and a Jeep collided head-on and another car ran into a light pole at the intersection of S. Glebe Road and 12th Street, in front of the Post Office. Medics are evaluating vehicle occupants for injuries.

One southbound lane of Glebe is currently blocked just south of Columbia Pike, according to scanner traffic. Drivers should expect significant traffic impacts in the area.

by Chris Teale September 15, 2017 at 4:15 pm 0

An Alexandria man will spend 32 years in prison for raping a woman on the Four Mile Run Trail in 2012.

Elmer Umberto Lopez-Velasquez, 39, raped a 23-year-old woman near mile marker 44 in Arlington County on July 3, 2012, according to Arlington County Police.

He was sentenced to 50 years with 18 suspended for the charge of rape and five years for the charge of strangulation. The two sentences will run concurrently.

He brandished a knife and dragged the victim off the trail and sexually assaulted her. After the assault, the suspect fled the scene and the victim took herself to Virginia Hospital Center and the police were called.

Investigators discovered his connection to the sexual assault after an attack at a Columbia Pike motel in 2016.

On January 12, 2016, a woman was involved in escort-related activity at a motel when two men she did not know entered the motel room and raped her, stole her personal items and fled.  The men were caught by plain-clothes police officers nearby, and DNA evidence linked Lopez-Velasquez with the unsolved 2012 rape.

Lopez-Velasquez previously pled guilty in the January 2016 case and received a 10-year sentence.

More from an Arlington County Police Department press release:

Elmer Umberto Lopez-Velasquez, 39, of Alexandria, VA was sentenced on Wednesday, September 13, 2017, in the Arlington County Circuit Court to thirty-two years in prison for his role in a rape on a shared-use trail in 2012. Judge Daniel Fiore sentenced the defendant to fifty years with eighteen suspended for the charge of Rape and five years for the charge of Strangulation. The two sentences will run concurrently.

Theophani K. Stamos, Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney and M. Jay Farr, Arlington County’s Chief of Police made the announcement following the court appearance.

On January 12, 2016, a female victim was involved in escort-related activity at a motel in the 3000 block of Columbia Pike when two suspects unknown to the victim knocked on the door. Upon entering the motel room, the suspects sexually assaulted the victim while using the threat of a weapon to hold her against her will. The suspects stole the victim’s personal belongings before fleeing the room. The suspects were apprehended by police working a plain clothes detail in the area. DNA evidence recovered from this assault was submitted to the state lab for analysis and the results linked this case with an unsolved 2012 rape.

On July 3, 2012, a 23-year-old female victim was jogging on the Four Mile Run Trail near mile marker 44 when she was confronted by an unknown Hispanic male that she had passed minutes earlier. The suspect brandished a knife and drug the victim off the trail into taller vegetation where he sexually assaulted her. After the assault, the suspect fled the scene in an unknown direction and the victim transported herself to Virginia Hospital Center where police were called.

Elmer Umberto Lopez-Velasquez previously pled guilty in the January 2016 case and received a ten-year prison sentence.

Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney Theophani K. Stamos said, “This case brought to justice a serial sexual predator…and it’s a powerful demonstration of how intrepid victims, dogged police efforts, and dedicated prosecutors make the difference and help secure our community”.

Arlington County Deputy Chief Daniel J. Murray, Commander of the Criminal Investigations Division said, “The residents of Arlington County are significantly safer now that a predator has been removed from our streets. These horrible offenses and attacks on our community will be relentlessly pursued by our detectives. The message to criminals and the families of the victims is clear – Arlington County will not waver in our commitment to investigate and prosecute violent crimes – no matter how much time has passed.”

This case was investigated by Special Victims Unit Detective G. Sloan and prosecuted by Assistant Commonwealth Attorneys’ Lindsay Brooker and Stephanie Siegel.

by ARLnow.com September 15, 2017 at 11:35 am 0

An Indiana man walked into a Crystal City restaurant Wednesday night, wrapped his arm around the neck of a female diner and threatened her with a pair of scissors, police say.

The attack happened just before 5:30 p.m. on the 2200 block of Crystal Drive.

Police say the man was “in search of individuals that would acknowledge him” and “the incident occurred after the victim did not acknowledge the suspect.” The suspect was taken into custody after bystanders intervened, potentially saving the woman from being maimed.

Arlington County Police Department spokeswoman Ashley Savage described to ARLnow.com what happened:

After the suspect placed his arm around the victim’s neck and threatened her, a male witness approached the suspect from behind, bearhugged him and took him to the ground. Additional witnesses assisted in gaining control of the suspect, disarming him of the scissors and detaining him until police arrived and took the suspect into custody.

The immediate intervention by good Samaritans stopped an active threat against the victim and potentially saved her from serious injury.

More from an ACPD crime report:

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 2017-09130224, 2200 block of Crystal Drive. At approximately 5:24 p.m. on September 13, police were dispatched to the report of a fight in progress. Upon arrival, it was determined that a male suspect entered a restaurant, approached a female victim, placed his arm around her neck and threatened her with a pair of scissors. Witnesses came to the side of the female victim, intervened and detained the suspect until police arrived. Neal Jesspace, 49, of Jamestown, IN was arrested and charged with Malicious Wounding. He was held on no bond.

by Chris Teale September 14, 2017 at 5:30 pm 0

Bishop Michael Burbidge, leader of the Catholic Diocese of Arlington, will celebrate mass in honor of all first responders on Saturday afternoon.

The service, set for 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 16 at the Cathedral of Saint Thomas More (3901 N. Cathedral Lane), is known as the Blue Mass, a tradition that began in 1934 in D.C.

All police departments and fire and rescue departments in the Diocese of Arlington — comprised of 69 parishes in Northern Virginia — are expected to attend to remember colleagues fallen in the line of duty and pray for those on duty.

“Our first responders offer daily and dedicated service to protect us and our community,” Burbidge said in a statement. “We are most grateful for the selfless sacrifices they make and pray that God will bless and watch over them always.”

Deputy Chief Daniel Murray of the Arlington County Police Department said he will attend, alongside other directors, chiefs, officers and family members.

“We are very appreciative of the diocese recognizing the important functions the first responder community performs,” Murray said in a statement.

Photo courtesy Arlington Catholic Herald

by Chris Teale September 14, 2017 at 12:00 pm 0

An Arlington man received a 32-year prison sentence for the fatal stabbing of his father last year on 3rd Street S.

Maxwell Adams, 18, of Arlington, was sentenced yesterday (Wednesday) for killing his father, Dennis “Andy” Adams, 46.

He was sentenced to 50 years in prison with 23 suspended for a charge of first degree murder and five years for a charge of stabbing in the commission of a felony. The two sentences will run consecutively.

Adams stabbed his father on April 1, 2016 around 8 p.m. Officers responded to the 100 block of S. Glebe Road, and found both men suffering from stab wounds.

Dennis Adams later died from his injuries in the hospital, while Maxwell Adams suffered minor injuries.

Police said that initially, Adams claimed he and his father were victims of a home invasion. But investigators found inconsistencies in his statements and other evidence, leading them to believe he fabricated his story. They found that the stabbing was the result of a “domestic incident” inside a home on the 3600 block of 3rd Street S.

More from an Arlington County Police Department press release:

Maxwell Adams, 18, of Arlington, VA was sentenced on Wednesday, September 13, 2017, in the Arlington County Circuit Court to thirty-two years in prison for his role in the homicide of his father, 46-year-old Dennis “Andy” Adams. Judge Louise M. DiMatteo sentenced the defendant to fifty years with twenty-three suspended for the charge of First Degree Murder and five years for the charge of Stabbing in the Commission of a Felony. The two sentences will run consecutively.

Theophani K. Stamos, Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney and M. Jay Farr, Arlington County’s Chief of Police made the announcement following the court appearance.

On April 1, 2016, shortly after 8:00 p.m., Arlington County Police officers were dispatched to the 100 block of S. Glebe Road for an assault with injuries. Arriving officers located two individuals suffering from stab wounds. Dennis “Andy” Adams of Arlington, VA was transported to George Washington University Hospital Trauma Center where he was pronounced deceased. The defendant suffered minor injuries.

Initially, the defendant claimed he and his father were victims of an alleged home invasion. Through the course of the investigation, detectives uncovered numerous inconsistencies in the defendant’s account of these events and other evidence that lead them to believe his account was fabricated. Detectives ultimately determined that the stabbing resulted from a domestic incident that took place inside a residence in the 3600 block of 3rd Street S. and subsequently charged Maxwell Adams.

Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney Theophani K. Stamos said, “In her ruling, Judge DiMatteo gave the family of Andy Adams a measure of closure they have ached for since this awful incident. The defendant will now have the next 32 years of his life to contemplate from behind bars how his actions destroyed a family. There is no question that justice was done”.

Arlington County Deputy Chief Daniel J. Murray, Commander of the Criminal Investigations Division said, “Mr. Adams tragically lost his life in a senseless act of domestic violence by someone he spent his life caring for. Today’s sentence will not return Mr. Adams to his family, but we hope it provides some solace to know that the individual responsible will be held accountable for his actions”.

This case was investigated by Homicide/Robbery Unit Detective S. Bertollini and prosecuted by Commonwealth Attorney Theophani Stamos, and Assistant Commonwealth Attorneys Cari Steele and Joshua Katcher.

by ARLnow.com September 13, 2017 at 1:15 pm 0

A woman, wanted with a rap sheet, was arrested last week for a failed burglary along Columbia Pike.

Police say the suspect broke into a business on the 4600 block of Columbia Pike — home to a restaurant, a gas station, a market and an auto shop — but then “was unsuccessful in removing items.”

Police arrested her after responding to a call about a suspicious person around 1 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 7.

More from this week’s Arlington County Police Department crime report:

BURGLARY, 2017-09070016, 4600 block of Columbia Pike. At approximately 1:00 a.m. on September 7, officers responded to the report of a suspicious person. Upon arrival, officers located a female suspect on the property in possession of burglarous tools. During the course of the investigation, it was determined the suspect forced entry into the business but was unsuccessful in removing items. Talisha Braxton, 24, of no fixed address, was arrested and charged with Burglary, Possession of Burglarous Tools, Destruction of Property, Carrying a Concealed Weapon, and Fugitive from Justice. She was held on no bond.

The rest of this past week’s crime report highlights, after the jump.

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by Chris Teale September 12, 2017 at 4:30 pm 0

A report released Tuesday by Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos found that Arlington County Police officers were justified in shooting a man near I-395 in May and will not face charges.

Two officers, Steven Yanda and Matt Chattillion, shot 28-year-old Daniel George Boak of Centreville on May 17 around 4:30 p.m. after he struck Yanda with his black pickup truck. The officers were attempting a traffic stop at the highway’s Glebe Road exit.

“The totality of the circumstances confronting Officer Yanda and Officer Chattillion at that moment presented an imminent danger of serious injury or death to Officer Yanda and potentially a danger to others at the scene, thereby justifying the use of deadly force to defend Officer Yanda and others,” Stamos wrote.

Stamos’ report said that Boak did not comply with officers’ commands to show his hands when he stopped, and he instead accelerated into Yanda, pinned him against a white Toyota sedan in front with his car and continued to accelerate.

“I could feel pressure on my leg increasing,” Stamos quotes Yanda as saying in his statement to investigators. “He wasn’t just bumping me and then reversing. He continued to come forward. So, it seemed he was trying to injure or kill me. I feared for my life.”

Both fired into the vehicle and struck Boak four times: in the head, neck chest and forearm. Another officer who arrived on scene then placed the car into reverse to free his colleague. Boak was pronounced dead at Virginia Hospital Center at approximately 5:30 p.m. that same day, after the officers attempted CPR.

Stamos said the officers’ statements on the incident were consistent, as well as the statements from civilians in cars nearby. Stamos added that video from Yanda’s in-car camera and from a balcony overlooking the exit show him trapped between the two cars.

A blood sample found that Boak had traces of cocaine, morphine and heroin in his bloodstream, as well as a zip lock baggie in his car containing a small amount of cocaine and a glass-tube smoking device that contained cocaine residue. Stamos also noted that Boak’s family members said he had a heroin addiction and “problems with authority.”

by ARLnow.com September 11, 2017 at 9:30 am 0

Sixteenth 9/11 Anniversary — A flag was unfurled at the Pentagon this morning as the nation marked the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks. President Donald Trump, Defense Secretary James Mattis and Joint Chiefs chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford were among those expected to attend a ceremony at the Pentagon, honoring the 184 people killed in the attack there. Arlington County also hosted its own remembrance ceremony and is posting recollections from Sept. 11, 2001 on social media. [ABC News, Twitter, Twitter]

Another Police-Impersonation Phone Scam — Local residents are again getting calls from a scammer claiming to be a law enforcement officer, demanding a fine be paid over the phone. As a reminder, police never call on the phone to collect fines. [Twitter]

Arlington 9/11 5K Recap — The 2017 Arlington Police, Fire and Sheriff 9/11 Memorial 5K was held in Pentagon City on Saturday evening amid perfect September weather. Among those on hand to address the crowd were Police Chief Jay Farr, County Board Chair Jay Fisette and former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore. Spotted among the runners: former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, who was wearing a Navy t-shirt and was all smiles after the race as the occasional group of fellow runners asked to take a photo with him. [Facebook, Chronotrack]

Park Service May Revamp MVT Boardwalk — As part of a larger improvement project for Theodore Roosevelt Island and the TR Bridge, the National Park Service is considering rehabilitating the nearby, aging boardwalk bridge along the Mount Vernon Trail, which carries bike and pedestrian traffic. [The Wash Cycle]

County Holds Transportation ‘Pop Up’ Event — “Arlington Transportation Partners, the County’s business-to-business transportation outreach organization, held its very first ‘Our Shared Street’ Pop Up festival recently at Arlington Mill Community Center. The late August gathering brought together residents of Columbia Pike with local businesses to highlight Arlingtonians’ many transportation options.” [Arlington County]

GW Parkway Crash — Earlier this morning, northbound traffic on the George Washington Memorial Parkway was temporarily blocked near the TR Bridge following a multi-vehicle crash. [Washington Post]

by ARLnow.com September 7, 2017 at 8:55 am 0

ACPD Sending Supplies to Houston — The Arlington County Police Department is sending relief supplies to Houston Police, “who have been tirelessly serving those affected by Hurricane Harvey,” the department announced yesterday in a tweet. [Twitter]

More on County Board Debate — At Tuesday night’s Arlington Civic Federation debate, the two independent candidates blasted the County Board for supposedly being too pro cozy with business interests. Charles McCullough “several times ripped the county government for extending millions of dollars in ‘payola and corporate welfare’ in an effort to win economic-development successes,” while Audrey Clement “portrayed Arlington leaders as sharing a matrimonial bed with the development community, rubber-stamping new projects to reap the tax revenue they generate.” [InsideNova]

Arlington Encouraging Vanpools — Arlington County, via its Arlington Transportation Partners program, is encouraging commuters to join a vanpool, touting savings of up to $10,000 a year compared to solo commuting. [Arlington Transportation Partners]

Arlington Free Clinic Women’s Health Program — Grants from the Susan G. Komen foundation are funding a women’s health program at the Arlington Free Clinic and in turn saving the lives of breast cancer patients who otherwise could not afford their healthcare costs. Among those who beat breast cancer with the clinic’s help is one of its employees, a mother of three who found a lump while attending a breast health event in 2003. [WJLA]

Nearby: Rabid Raccoon Found — A raccoon found in an Alexandria park has tested positive for rabies. [Patch]

Flickr pool photo by Vandiik

by Chris Teale September 6, 2017 at 1:45 pm 0

A march from Charlottesville to D.C. against the “toxic ideology of white supremacy in our nation” is set to reach Arlington County this afternoon (Wednesday) before heading onto its final leg.

The March to Confront White Supremacy was organized by local religious leaders and social justice advocates. It began in Charlottesville on August 28 , following the death of Heather Heyer while protesting a white supremacist rally in the city.

Marchers are set to arrive at Gateway Park (1300 Lee Highway) in Rosslyn at 3 p.m. today, then leave for the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial for a 4 p.m. rally.

Arlington police said there are no planned road closures to accommodate the march, though ACPD and Virginia State Police will monitor it. Organizers said the march has attracted nearly 1,000 people for its final stages from Fairfax into D.C.

Since beginning in Charlottesville, organizers said they have overcome “inclement weather and threats to stop the march from state police,” on a route that took them 118 miles through “the largely white and rural Virginia countryside.” Today, the march is encountering rainy weather as it arrives at its destination.

In addition to countering the message of the white supremacists who rallied in Charlottesville, march organizers say they are calling “for the removal of President Trump and all other elected officials who embolden and support white supremacists and the end of white supremacist public policies.”

by ARLnow.com September 6, 2017 at 1:05 pm 0

Arlington County Police are investigating an armed robbery that occurred shortly after 5 p.m. yesterday (Tuesday.)

The robbery happened on the 1800 block of Key Blvd, in the Colonial Village neighborhood near Rosslyn. Police say a man with a gun and two others robbed a couple in a car of their belongings.

More from an ACPD crime report:

ROBBERY, 2017-09050034, 1800 block of Key Boulevard. At approximately 5:19 p.m. on September 5, officers responded to the report of an armed robbery. Upon arrival, it was determined that three male suspects approached a male and female victim at their parked vehicle. One male suspect brandished a firearm and demanded the victims’ personal belongings. The three male suspects then fled the scene on foot with the victims’ possessions. The victims were not injured. Officers canvassed the area with negative results. The male suspect that brandished the firearm is described as a 20-30 year old black male, 5’11-6′ tall, approximately 180-220 pounds with an average build, wearing a dark colored sweatshirt. The second male suspect is described as a 20-30 years old, approximately 5’11-6′ tall, weighing 180-220 pounds with an average build, wearing a dark colored sweatshirt with his face covered by the hood. There is no description of the third suspect. The investigation is ongoing.

The rest of this past week’s crime report highlights, after the jump.

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by Chris Teale September 1, 2017 at 11:00 am 0

With schools set to welcome students for the new year this coming Tuesday, Arlington Public Schools and the Arlington County Police Department are urging everyone to stay safe on the roads.

Police will conduct highly visible traffic enforcement around county schools starting that day, while electronic message boards placed next to the roads will remind everyone of the start of school.

To ensure everyone’s safety, police reminded drivers to:

  • Obey speed limits which may change during school zone times.
  • Avoid distracted driving and keep your attention on the road.
  • Watch for students walking and riding bikes to school.
  • Don’t pass a stopped school bus loading or unloading passengers.
    • On a two-lane road, vehicles traveling in both directions must stop.
    • On a multi-lane paved across road, vehicles traveling in both directions must stop.
    • On a divided highway, vehicles behind the bus must stop. Vehicles traveling in the opposite direction may proceed with caution.
  • Have all vehicle occupants wear their seat belts.

Students, bicyclists, and pedestrians are reminded to:

  • Cross the street at marked crosswalks and never against a red light.
  • Look before you cross and follow the direction of school crossing guards.
  • Always walk on designated sidewalks or paths, never along the side of a road.

And for general safety, students and parents are reminded to:

  • Ensure students know their address and phone number.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Whenever possible, walk or bike with another person. Stay in well-lit areas.
  • Limit the use of devices that may distract you.
  • Avoid engaging with or answering questions from strangers.
  • If something occurs that makes you feel unsafe, report the incident immediately to an adult such as a parent, guardian, principal, teacher or school resource officer.
  • Parents and guardians are encouraged to roleplay possible situations with students and discuss personal safety and awareness tips.

In a video (below) released by APS, Superintendent Patrick Murphy, Police Chief Jay Farr and School Resource Officer supervisor Lt. Susan Noack, the three urge being safe, like staying within speed limits, avoiding distracted driving and looking out for students on bicycles or on foot.

The trio also encouraged parents practice looking both ways at crosswalks before crossing the street, as well as having a buddy to walk with.

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