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by Tim Regan — February 3, 2017 at 11:35 am 0

Police car (file photo)(Updated at 12:10 p.m.) Arlington County Police are seeking one or more people who might have followed students near Washington-Lee High School on two recent occasions.

Police said one or more subjects appeared to follow students near the school on Jan. 31 and Feb. 2. Both incidents happened around 6 p.m.

Though authorities said no crime is believed to have occurred during the incidents, the department is looking to identify and speak with the person or people involved.

In the first instance, a person driving a red minivan appeared to follow a girl who was walking in the area of 15th Street N. at N. Stafford Street. “As she picked up her speed, the vehicle accelerated to match her pace,” police said. “The juvenile ran to a friend’s house and the subject proceeded to drive off in an unknown direction.”

Two days later, someone in a black sedan appeared to follow two middle schoolers as they walked near 13th Street N. at N. Nelson Street. When the car made a “sharp turn” and pulled into a driveway, blocking their path, the boys ran home and the driver sped off in an unknown direction.

Police described the person involved in both incidences as a “white male, mid-30’s with a short beard and dark hair.”

The full police press release is below:

The Arlington County Police Department is making the public aware of two instances of suspicious subject(s) appearing to follow students in the vicinity of Washington-Lee High School. At this time, no crime has occurred. The police department is investigating these incidents and would like to identify and speak with the subject(s) involved.

At approximately 6:02 p.m. on January 31, an 11-year-old female was walking in the area of 15thStreet N. at N. Stafford Street when she noticed a red minivan keeping pace with her. As she picked up her speed, the vehicle accelerated to match her pace. The juvenile ran to a friend’s house and the subject proceeded to drive off in an unknown direction.

At approximately 6:00 p.m. on February 2, two middle school-aged male juveniles were walking in the area of 13th Street N. at N. Nelson Street when they noticed a newer black sedan appearing to follow them. As they continued walking, the vehicle made a sharp turn and pulled into a driveway, blocking their path. The juveniles ran home and the subject proceeded to drive off in an unknown direction.

The subject involved in both incidences is described as a white male, mid-30’s with a short beard and dark hair.

The Arlington County Police Department is increasing patrols in the area. If anyone has information on the identity of the suspect, please contact the non-emergency number at 703.558.2222. In the case of an emergency, call 911. To report information anonymously, contact the Arlington County Crime Solvers at 866.411.TIPS (8477).

by ARLnow.com — February 3, 2017 at 9:15 am 0

A lineman working on power lines (Flickr pool photo by Alan Kotok)

High Water Bills Prompt Questions — A number of Arlington residents say their quarterly water bills for the summer and fall spiked to inconceivably high levels, in some cases in excess of $2,000. The county government, however, says no systemic billing issues have been found and blames the high bills on hot and dry weather combined with homeowners irrigating their yards. [InsideNova]

News Photog Saved By Arlington Medic — WUSA9 photographer Dion Wiggins suffered a massive heart attack while shooting video of traffic along I-395 last month. It was an Arlington County paramedic, Chris Abrahams, who together with firefighter Jason Griffith revived Wiggins from cardiac arrest, stabilized him and transported him to George Washington University Hospital. Wiggins is now back at home and on the road to recovery. [WUSA9]

ACPD: Don’t DUI After the Super Bowl — Super Bowl Sunday is two days away and the Arlington County Police Department is reminding residents to designate a driver for the big game. The Super Bowl is one of the biggest days of the year for DUI, with a third of all U.S. traffic deaths due to drunk drivers. [Arlington County]

D.C. Metro Work This Weekend — Major scheduled track work will close six downtown D.C. Metro stations along the Blue, Orange and Silver lines this weekend. The Blue and Orange lines will be split in two and the Silver line will end at Ballston. “Customers traveling between Virginia and DC are encouraged to use the Yellow Line, if possible,” Metro says. [WMATA]

Kudos for Sheriff’s Office — “The Arlington County Sheriff’s Office has been awarded reaccreditation by the American Correctional Association Commission (ACA), whose standards are the national benchmark for the effective operation of correctional facilities in the United States.” [Arlington County]

WHS Swimmers in Regionals — “With three Wakefield swimmers heading off to regionals — the most in recent history — the Wakefield community is overflowing with enthusiasm and excitement in anticipation of a splashing victory.” [Wakefield Chieftain]

Obit: Mel Labat — Long-time Arlington tennis coach Mel Labat passed away last week. A memorial service will be held tomorrow (Saturday). A scholarship fund has been established, with the proceeds going to the Arlington Youth Tennis Program. [YMCA, Legacy]

Flickr pool photo by Alan Kotok

by ARLnow.com — February 1, 2017 at 5:05 pm 0

Shops on the 1600 block of S. Glebe Road (photo via Google Maps)

A store on S. Glebe Road, just south of Columbia Pike, was robbed Tuesday night.

Police say two masked men, one armed with a gun, entered a store on the 1600 block of S. Glebe Road around 7:30 p.m. and demanded cash from the register. They then fled on foot.

The stores on that block of Glebe include a market and deli, a vape and tobacco shop and a drycleaner.

Officers established a perimeter and brought in a police K-9 but were unable to locate the suspects.

“The first suspect is described as a white or Hispanic male in his thirties, approximately 6’0″ tall,” police said.” He was wearing a dark gray hoodie, black ski mask, jeans, and sneakers. The second suspect is described as a white or Hispanic male in his thirties, approximately 5’10” tall. He was wearing a light gray hoodie sweatshirt, black ski mask, and sneakers.”

No one was hurt during the robbery.

Photo via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com — February 1, 2017 at 11:10 am 0

Police car lightsA store security guard was bit while trying to stop a shoplifter last week.

The incident happened Wednesday afternoon on the 700 block of N. Glebe Road.

While the name of the store was not revealed by police, that’s the same block as the Macy’s at Ballston Common Mall.

More from an Arlington County Police Department crime report:

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 2017-01250175, 700 block of N. Glebe Road. At approximately 1:19 p.m. on January 25, officers responded to the report of a shoplifter. A store employee attempted to stop a male suspect who was shoplifting, when a struggle ensued and the suspect bit the employee. The suspect then fled the scene without the merchandise. The suspect is described as a black male in his late twenties, approximately 5’8″-6’2″ tall and weighed 160-200 lbs. He was wearing blue jeans and a collared shirt at the time of the incident. The victim suffered non-life threatening injuries and was treated on scene by medics. The investigation is ongoing.

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

(more…)

by ARLnow.com — January 31, 2017 at 11:35 am 0

Murder suspect Heber Amaya-Gallo (photo courtesy ACPD)(Updated at 5:45 p.m.) A 28-year-old Arlington man has been charged with murder after police say he killed his roommate during a fight.

The charges follow the death investigation yesterday on 7th Road S. in the Arlington Mill neighborhood. It is Arlington’s first reported homicide of 2017.

Police say Heber Amaya-Gallo killed 55-year-old Michael Wiggins after a “verbal altercation between roommates became physical” in an apartment. Amaya-Gallo has been charged with first degree murder and is being held without bond.

As pointed out in the comments section, Amaya-Gallo has been implicated in at least three other violent crimes in Arlington over the past seven years.

From an Arlington County Police Department press release:

Shortly after 2:00 p.m. on January 30, 2017, Arlington County Police officers were dispatched to the 5100 block of 7th Road S. for a death investigation. Arriving officers located 55-year-old Michael Wiggins of Arlington, VA deceased inside the residence. Three subjects were located on scene and transported to police headquarters where they were interviewed by detectives. Heber Amaya-Gallo, 28, of Arlington, VA was arrested and charged with first degree murder. He is being held in the Arlington County Detention Facility on no bond. The other two subjects were determined to be witnesses and have not been charged.

The investigation revealed that a verbal altercation between roommates became physical, resulting in the death of the victim. Official cause of death will be determined by the Medical Examiner’s Office.

Anyone with information about this investigation is asked to contact Detective S. Roeseler of the Arlington County Police Department’s Homicide/Robbery Unit at 703-228-4182 or [email protected]. Information may also be provided anonymously through the Arlington County Crime Solvers hotline at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).

by ARLnow.com — January 30, 2017 at 2:30 pm 0

Update at 11:40 a.m. — Police say the man’s death was a homicide. A suspect has been arrested and charged with first degree murder.

Earlier: Arlington County Police are investigating what they’re calling a “suspicious death” in an apartment building in the Arlington Mill neighborhood.

The body of a 55-year-old man was found in an apartment in one of the garden apartment buildings on 7th Road S. Two people have been detained by police for questioning, according to ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

Police are not yet confirming whether this is Arlington County’s first homicide of 2017. That determination will be made by a medical examiner, Savage said.

The apartments are located across from Tyrol Hill Park. School children were playing in the park while police were conducting their investigation Monday afternoon.

by ARLnow.com — January 30, 2017 at 1:15 pm 0

NHSTA pedestrian safety enforcement diagram for law enforcement

(Updated at 2 p.m.) The Arlington County Police Department is continuing to conduct traffic enforcement details around the county — and is finding no shortage of drivers who don’t stop for pedestrians.

Last week police issued 21 traffic tickets in just one hour on Washington Blvd in Virginia Square, near where a teen girl was struck by the driver of an SUV in December.

The operation utilizes an undercover officer who crosses the street in a crosswalk.

“Using traffic data, drivers in this 30 MPH zone were given 150 feet to see the pedestrian and stop their vehicle,” the department explained in an Instagram post. “Our pedestrian always waits for a safe break in traffic and never enters in disregard of approaching vehicles.”

The enforcement detail was similar to a pair in the fall, along Columbia Pike and Lee Highway, that resulted in 35 citations.

“The pedestrian safety enforcement campaign is one piece of our overall effort of ensuring the safety of pedestrians, cyclists and motorists and maintaining the safe and orderly flow of traffic in Arlington County,” ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage tells ARLnow.com

Through this high visibility enforcement, the goal is compliance with failure to yield even when police are not present,” she continued. “No matter how you commute, there are ways we can all be street smart while sharing our roadways.”

Savage said ACPD’s Special Operations Section is conducting two details per month, one during the day and one during the evening.

The enforcement campaign started to ramp up in early 2016 after the police department saw Montgomery County, Md. police successfully implement a similar strategy, which was created by the National Highway Safety Transportation Administration.

Expect more enforcement in 2017, according to Savage.

“Additional officers are being trained and it is anticipated that the number of details each month will increase,” she said.

by ARLnow.com — January 27, 2017 at 1:20 pm 0

Yorktown teacher Thomas Lenihan and note to Yorktown HS families (photo, left, via FCPD)

A history teacher at Yorktown High School, has been charged with indecent exposure by Fairfax County Police after an incident in Tysons Corner Thursday night.

Police say Thomas Lenihan, 38, exposed himself to two teens in the locker room of the Sport & Health Club on Greensboro Drive. He was arrested on two counts of indecent exposure shortly thereafter.

Lenihan will be placed on administrative leave and will not return to Yorktown, families were told in an email, which also encouraged students who may have additional information about Lenihan to come forward.

More on the charges from the Fairfax County Police Department:

Officers were called to the 8200 block of Greensboro Drive, a Sports and Health Club, yesterday around 9:30 p.m. for a report of a man exposing himself to two juveniles in the locker room. The victims, 16 and 17 years old, told employees that a man had watched them in the shower and followed them around the locker room while exposing himself.

Officers located the suspect at the business and identified him as Thomas Lenihan, 38, of Falls Church. Lenihan is currently employed as a teacher in Arlington County at Yorktown High School. He was arrested, taken to the Adult Detention Center and charged with two misdemeanor counts of indecent exposure. He was released on a $5,000 bond.

Anyone who might have witnessed this incident is asked to contact the Fairfax County Police at 703-691-2131, or contact Crime Solvers electronically by visiting www.fairfaxcrimesolvers.org or text-a-tip by texting “TIP187” plus your message to CRIMES (274637).

by ARLnow.com — January 26, 2017 at 6:25 pm 0

Commuters heading westbound on Lee Highway and southbound on the Spout Run Parkway should expect significant delays due to a tree that fell on a car near the Lyon Village Shopping Center.

The tree fell on the car just past 6 p.m., at the height of the evening rush hour. A police officer arrived on scene shortly thereafter and reported that no one had been injured.

A traffic camera appears to show the tree down in the roadway and one lane of traffic squeezing by on the left.

by ARLnow.com — January 25, 2017 at 1:00 pm 0

Police car (file photo)A woman was arrested last Thursday night and charged with biting an Arlington County police officer.

Police say the woman was in Rosslyn, arguing with someone she knew, but became “aggressive and hostile” after officers intervened.

From this week’s ACPD crime report:

ASSAULT & BATTERY ON POLICE, 2017-01190332, 1800 block of N. Nash Street. At approximately 10:06 p.m. on January 19, officers responded to the report of a dispute between two known individuals. While officers were interviewing the involved parties, the female suspect became verbally aggressive and hostile. As officers were attempting to secure her in handcuffs, the suspect allegedly bit one of the officers on the leg.  Idella Tah, 38, of an unknown address, was arrested and charged with assault on police. She is being held on no bond.

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

(more…)

by ARLnow.com — January 25, 2017 at 9:00 am 0

Minor flooding along Pimmit Run in Arlington after a steady rain

Abingdon Closed Due to Asbestos Issue — Abingdon Elementary, which is undergoing an expansion and renovation project, is closed today due to an asbestos incident on Tuesday. “This afternoon an error was made by one of the subcontractors working on the Abingdon Elementary School project who did not appropriately handle the removal of asbestos,” parents were told in an email yesterday. “As a result, since it was close to dismissal time APS Facilities staff immediately contacted the school to have all students and staff shelter in place in their classrooms to limit movement throughout the school for the remainder of the day.” APS will conduct testing to determine whether the school can reopen Thursday.

Graffiti PSA From ACPD — Arlington County Police is reminding the public that graffiti on either public or private property should be reported to the police non-emergency line, at 703-558-2222. “Graffiti is not a new problem in Arlington but something ACPD needs your help with,” the department said. ACPD’s Gang Unit reviews all graffiti reports. [Arlington County]

Man Charged With Secretly Filming Sexual Encounter — A former Oregon congressional candidate has been charged in Arlington with secretly recording a video of himself having sex with a 22-year-old woman in his apartment. Jim Feldkamp, 53, most recently worked as an adjunct professor at George Mason University, and the woman was a student there, according to news reports. [Register-Guard, KVAL]

Metro Workers Meet at Arlington Church — A group of Metro workers met last night in an Arlington church to discuss planned budget cuts and service reductions. Said one former bus operator: “Virginia should be outraged. This is going to cause of catastrophe. All of these cuts in Virginia, it’s already gridlock.” [WJLA]

Favola Gets in Knife Fight in Richmond — State Sen. Barbara Favola (D) is speaking out against a bill that would make it legal for family members to give several types of knives — a switchblade, Bowie knife and a dirk — to children. Currently, family members can give kids guns but not those types of knives. “This is just bad public policy,” Favola said of the bill, which narrowly passed. “Why would you want to put our children at risk?” [Washington Post]

by ARLnow.com — January 24, 2017 at 4:15 pm 0

Multiple ambulances are responding to a crash between a Red Top taxicab and a sedan in the middle of Columbia Pike at S. Dinwiddie Street.

The accident happened around 3:45 p.m., near the Arlington Mill Community Center. Several ambulances were dispatched to the scene for 3-4 people reporting injuries, none of which were considered serious, according to scanner traffic.

Columbia Pike is down to one lane in each direction and backups for westbound rush hour traffic extend nearly to George Mason Drive, according to traffic cameras. Drivers should expect significant delays in the area.

Update at 4:50 p.m. — The lanes have reopened, according to scanner traffic.

by ARLnow.com — January 24, 2017 at 10:00 am 0

Map of Windy Run Park (via Google Maps)

(Updated at 12:40 p.m.) Police are investigating a dead body found between Windy Run Park, in north Arlington, and the banks of the Potomac River.

U.S. Park Police, as well as Arlington County police and firefighters, hiked to the scene after someone alerted authorities to a body spotted in the rocky, wooded area along the river and the GW Parkway.

The body is that of a man, according to Park Police spokeswoman Sgt. Anna Rose, contradicting initial reports that the deceased was female. Rose did not have any additional information.

Photo via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com — January 23, 2017 at 6:05 pm 0

Bomb squad called to incident at Yorktown High School (file photo)Arlington’s bomb squad is on scene at the Americana Hotel in Crystal City for a suspicious package investigation.

Police requested the bomb squad respond to the hotel, at 1400 Jefferson Davis Highway, just before 5:45 p.m. to investigate several suspicious packages. Additional fire department units were requested to the scene around 6 p.m.

Police were initially called to the hotel for a suspicious person.

“There was a report [that a] male subject was acting suspiciously,” Arlington County Police Department spokeswoman Ashley Savage told ARLnow.com. “He had left the scene prior to police arrival.”

The man “left some packages behind in a hotel room,” Savage said. “In an abundance of caution, the ACFD Bomb Squad is going to investigate the packages.”

Update at 7:20 p.m. — The scene has been cleared, police said via Twitter.

File photo

by ARLnow.com — January 23, 2017 at 1:00 pm 0

Police car (file photo)Two Arlington men in their teens have been charged with a series of car break-ins near Virginia Hospital Center.

The pair were arrested Saturday night after trying to flee from officers, according to an Arlington County Police Department crime report. They’re accused of breaking into at least three vehicles and stealing items.

From the crime report:

GRAND LARCENY x2 (significant), 2017-01210264, block of N. 16th Road between N. Greenbrier and N. Harrison Street. At approximately 9:52 p.m. on January 21, officers responded to the report of suspicious subjects tampering with autos in the area. Upon arrival, one subject was observed exiting a vehicle and another subject was observed nearby. As officers exited their vehicle, the subjects fled the scene on foot. One subject was caught quickly and the other was stopped by perimeter units in the area. Charles Edward Contreras, 19, of Arlington VA, was arrested and charged with three counts of trespassing of a motor vehicle, two counts of grand larceny, and petit larceny. He is being held on no bond. Antonio Vincente Shivers, 18, of Arlington VA, was arrested and charged with three counts of trespassing of a motor vehicle and petit larceny. He is being held on a $2000 secured bond.

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