Archive: Public Safety

Officers' Personal Use of Police Vehicles Under Scrutiny

According to this article, for many years Fairfax County's police department has had no rules with regard to how its official vehicles were used or how they far they could travel when officers were off duty. Now chief David M. Roher is warning that with fuel costs soaring and the county facing a budget crunch, the days of the taxpayer-funded personal use of police cars might soon be ending....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 18, 2008; 08:05 AM ET | Email a Comment

No Go on Red Light Cameras Yet

More than 14 months after the use of red light photo enforcement cameras were again approved for use by the Commonwealth, none of the Northern Virginia localities that had lobbied for their use have begun using them. Find out why in this article from today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 5, 2008; 04:16 PM ET | Email a Comment

Law Gives Troopers a Wider Berth

In an effort to get drivers, as the law requires, to move to another lane or slow down when police officers have made a traffic stop, the state police have relaunched the public awareness campaign, Move Over. Read about it in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 22, 2008; 03:01 PM ET | Email a Comment

Vienna Police Rumble through Traffic

A new tool is helping the Vienna police get the notice of other drivers when the officers are responding to a call. The device, called the Rumbler, augments the traditional siren with subwoofer driven low frequencies that even drivers with their stereos and air conditioning fully cranked should be able to sense. Read about the technology and the police department's hopes for it in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 8, 2008; 01:14 PM ET | Email a Comment

Update 5/5: Reckless Driving Charges For Officer in Fatal Crash

Updated 5/5 According to this article from Saturday's Metro section, the officer involved in the crash that killed Ashley McIntosh has been charged with reckless driving. Originally posted 3/26 According to this story from today's Metro section, six weeks after Ashley McIntosh was killed when a Fairfax County police officer responding to a call crashed her cruiser into McIntosh's car, her family is still waiting for the police to tell them the results of the investigation into what happened. Police officials say they are just being thorough want all the details before they share any information. McIntosh's relatives say that need to know what happened to help them in their grieving process. One witness said the cruiser was travelling at a high rate of speed, with its emergency lights on and its siren off at the time of the collision....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 5, 2008; 09:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

Pedestrian Safety and Street Smarts

New data shows that pedestrian deaths account for about 25% of the region's traffic fatalities. Local public safety officials are responding with a multi-pronged enforcement and education campaign aimed at pedestrians, motorists and cyclists. Today's Fairfax Extra has the story....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 3, 2008; 02:40 PM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 3/13: Police Used Hidden GPS Device To Nab Sexual Assault Suspect

Updated 3/13 According to this story from today's Metro section, Fairfax County police hid a global positioning system device on Foltz's van to track his movements. Foltz's attorney is questioning the legality of the police action that led to his client's arrest. Updated 2/8 According to this story in today's Metro section, the suspect in custody is David Lee Foltz Jr., a suspected rapist. Police are investigating a possible connection to the series of attacks. Updated 2/7 Falls Church city police arrested a man at 7:30 last night. The news is here. Updated 2/4 More details on the series of attacks on women by a masked man were in this article from yesterday's Metro section. Originally posted 1/30 Fairfax and Alexandria police now say they believe that the same man is responsible for ten attacks, some sexual, on women in the area, going back to August of last year. The...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 13, 2008; 09:32 AM ET | Email a Comment

Zero Tolerance for Street Racing in Fairfax

Read in this Fairfax Extra article about how two teens might lose their cars, their drivers' licences, their freedom and some money if they are found guilty of street racing. Louis Violetta and Oscar Cornejo both 18 of Fairfax, were arrested Feb. 26 after a police officer witnessed them racing side by side at more than 70 mph in a 40 mph zone....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 6, 2008; 01:33 PM ET | Email a Comment

State Uses You Tube To Spread Preparedness Info

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management is using the web site YouTube to post messages aimed at getting people to think about what they need to do to prepare for disaster. Read about it in today's Fairfax Extra and check out the videos here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 6, 2008; 01:10 PM ET | Email a Comment

Rehabilitation of County's High-Risk Dams Set For Spring

Three of the county's earthen lake dams that have been determined by state engineers to constitute a failure and flooding risk are set to be brought up to code at the cost of $3 million this spring. Read about the work and why it needs to be done in this article from today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 14, 2008; 11:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE: 2/14: Woman Shot Over Car Keys

Update 2/14 The latest on the October murder of Joan M. Gillinson is here. Updated 12/21 Kevin C. Kline, the 18-year-old Woodbridge man who is suspected in the murder of Gillinson, was sentenced to five years in prison for another attack for which he was free on bail at the time Gillinson was killed. The judge in the case has tendered his resignation from the bench. Today's Metro section has the story. Update 10/22 The victim in the fatal shooting linked to last week's bus standoff has been identified as Joan M. Gillinson, 60 of Alexandria. This article from Saturday's Metro section has more. Updated 10/19 The suspect in Wednesday's standoff and in the killing of a woman whose body was found nearby, was free on bond awaiting sentencing on an assault conviction. The news is here. Originally posted 10/18 Fairfax County police shut down Route 1 in Hybla Valley...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 14, 2008; 10:09 AM ET | Email a Comment

Operation Highway Men Nabs Scores

According to an article in today's Fairfax Extra, seventy-four convictions and counting have followed since a crackdown on drug and gun crimes in Northern Virginia began last summer. Read more about the feds' local fight on violent crime....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 10, 2008; 12:12 PM ET | Email a Comment

NOVA Police Honored For Anti-Drunk Driving Efforts

Officials of the Washington Regional Alcohol Program are lauding efforts of Northern Virginia's law enforcement community for efforts to curb drunk driving. The Fairfax Extra has the news....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 13, 2007; 02:07 PM ET | Email a Comment

Vienna Officials Consider Alternative to Fireworks

From today's Metro section: Vienna, which had the worst of several fireworks malfunctions in Northern Virginia on July 4, is leaning toward replacing its annual pyrotechnics display with a laser light show, town officials said yesterday. Rockets from a box of Chinese-made mortar tubes launched into the crowd at Waters Field in Vienna, injuring 11 people, two of them seriously. The same type of box also misfired at five other locations in Fairfax County and Fairfax City the same night. County officials reviewed fireworks regulations and decided that the distance from the firing spot to the spectators had to be doubled for such fireworks boxes, which would eliminate them from Waters Field, said Cathy Salgado, the town's parks and recreation director. Vienna was already considering eliminating fireworks after this year's incident, because the mortar boxes could not be sufficiently inspected, Salgado said. At a Town Council work session this week,...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 13, 2007; 10:48 AM ET | Email a Comment

County Faces Budget Crisis

A shortfall of about $220 million faces the Fairfax County government according to this article from the front page of today's Washington Post. The crunch, which stems from the housing slump, could last several years and affect a range of county services and programs. So what gets cut? Let's hear what readers of Focus on Fairfax would do if you had to make the hard choices that face county leaders....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 12, 2007; 10:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Fingerprint Machine for County Police

Lt. John V. Byrd of the Fairfax County police shows off the new mobile automated fingerprint identification system at Fairfax police headquarters last week. (Tom Jackman) Called by one local law enforcement officer potentially "the most effective tool for police since the two-way radio," the Automated Fingerprint Identification System enables county police to scan a suspect's fingerprints at a crime scene and find any matches on file within 30 seconds. Read all about it here in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 6, 2007; 11:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

County: No Figure for Cost of Services For Illegal Immigrants

Fairfax County officials can't put a dollar amount on the amount of money the local governement spends on services used by illegal immigrants they say, partly because many of those services are "universal access;"required by federal law to be open to anyone, regardless of immigration status.The officials also cite the difficulty of counting how many undocumented immigrants live in here. This is in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 27, 2007; 10:01 AM ET | Email a Comment

House Fire Kills Seven Cats, Bird

From today's Metro section: Seven cats and a bird were killed when fire swept through a pet-filled home in the Falls Church area Monday afternoon, but 60 animals survived, Fairfax authorities said yesterday. Fire broke out about 2:30 p.m. at a Cape Cod-style house in the 6900 block of Jefferson Avenue. Firefighters found 54 dogs inside, none seriously hurt. Police took 52 of them to the county shelter, and two service dogs remained with their owner. Of 13 cats found, seven died, five were taken to a veterinarian and one went to a shelter, police said. Police charged residents Denis J. Downey Jr., 51, and Mark D. Snyder, 31, with a misdemeanor animal care violation and began seizure proceedings against them. Police were not certain why the men had so many animals. -- Tom Jackman...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 14, 2007; 07:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

Screening for Illegal Immigrants To Begin at County Jail

Fairfax County Sheriff Stan G. Barry has pledged to screen inmates for immigration violations and to work with federal authorities to deport those here illegally. Read about it in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 11, 2007; 10:09 AM ET | Email a Comment

Police Chiefs Worried About Cuts To Funding

According to this article from today's Metro section, local police chiefs are concerned that state spending cuts will affect public safety efforts. Fairfax County could lose up to $1.5 million....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 5, 2007; 11:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 9/13: Man Shot by Police in Traffic Stop Is Identified

Updated 9/13 From today's Metro section: Fairfax County police identified yesterday the man they shot early Tuesday during a traffic stop as Rocky L. King, 26, of no fixed address. King remained under guard yesterday at Inova Fairfax Hospital with injuries that were not deemed life-threatening. Arrest warrants were on file charging him with attempted capital murder of a police officer and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony. The warrants were to be served upon his release from the hospital. Police shot King sometime after 3:30 a.m. Tuesday in the Dulles Technology Center, an office park near Herndon, where they were responding to a report of a one-car accident. Police said King pointed a gun at them, prompting them to fire. -- Amy Gardner Originally posted 9/12 From today's Metro section: Fairfax County police shot a man who pointed a gun at them during a traffic...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 13, 2007; 10:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 9/10: Gun Owners' Suit Is Dismissed

From Saturday's Metro section: The Virginia Citizens Defense League's lawsuit against Fairfax County was dismissed yesterday by a judge who ruled that the plaintiff, which was seeking to hold a gun raffle, had sued the wrong defendant. County officials told the gun owners group in May that holding a raffle with guns as prizes constituted illegal gambling. The raffle was intended to raise money to assist two gun shops that New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg (I) targeted in a lawsuit. So the league sued Fairfax in July, seeking a court's declaration that the raffle did not violate state law. Assistant Fairfax County Attorney Erin C. Ward argued that the county did not write the law and that the commonwealth's attorney, who would decide whether to enforce it, is not a county employee. Fairfax Circuit Court Judge Marcus D. Williams agreed and dismissed the case. Richard E. Gardiner, the league's...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 10, 2007; 09:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Schools Knew of, Treated Cho's Disorder

According to this article from today's front page, educators from Fairfax County Public Schools had recognized and responded to Virginia Tech shooter Seung Hui Cho's anxiety disorder while he was a student here, but were forbidden by privacy laws from passing that information on to the University. Only his parent or Cho himself could have let University officials know about his problem....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 27, 2007; 10:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Security Measures at GMU

Prompted by the shootings at Virginia Tech last April, officials at George Mason University have moved to make the campus safer and more secure by implementing new procedures on campus. Today's Fairfax Extra has the details....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 23, 2007; 11:45 AM ET | Email a Comment

A 'Night Out' for the Chief and the Chairman

Courtesy of today's Fairfax Extra here is a look at some of what went down with county police chief David M. Rohrer and Board of Supervisors chairman Gerald E. Connolly as they hit backyard barbecues and bike parades over a course of four hours during last week's National Night Out crime prevention event....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 16, 2007; 12:22 PM ET | Email a Comment

Inmates Tackle Tall Grass Along Braddock Road

Fairfax County has been using the free labor of inmates from the county's detention center to cut the grass along Braddock Road this summer. Considering VDOT's problems keeping up with their regular maintenance recently, the idea seems to be win-win for everyone. This week's Fairfax Extra has the story....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 10, 2007; 09:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

Driving School Teaches Accident Avoidance

Most driver education programs can handle general driving instructions, but for real life experience in what to do when something goes wrong, young drivers enroll in programs like Drive2Survive. Read about the nonprofit safety school that specializes in teaching how to steer clear of crashes in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 2, 2007; 12:30 PM ET | Email a Comment

Bill on Public Safety Unions Has Local Ramifications

Virginia's prohibition on collective bargaining by public safety workers could be struck down if a bill just passed by the U.S. House of Representatives becomes law. Locally that could mean that the Fairfax County government might have to negotiate pay raises and benefits with police officers and firefighters in a way it never has before. Read the news story in today's Metro section here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | August 1, 2007; 10:45 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fire Shutters Therapeutic Riding Program

A fire is a Clifton barn has left the horses used by a therapeutic program for mentally and physically disabled people homeless and forced the suspension of the program. Read about it in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | July 26, 2007; 11:20 AM ET | Email a Comment

700 Lbs. of Explosives Found in Centreville After Fire

A Centreville homeowner was apparently engaged in an illegal and very dangerous hobby, the making of large homemade fireworks, when an explosion and fire engulfed his property this week. Today's Metro sections has the tale....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | July 17, 2007; 10:33 AM ET | Email a Comment

GMU Group Pushes for Concealed Carry at School

A former U.S. Marine currently enrolled at George Mason University wants to overturn a university policy allowing students and faculty to carry concealed guns. To that end he has started George Mason University Students for Concealed Carry and recruited 45 students to date to join him. The news is in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 14, 2007; 04:34 PM ET | Email a Comment

And The Green Grass Grew All Around, All Around

Tall grass in medians and along public roadways in Fairfax County is generating many complaints to county supervisors' offices. But mowing is the responsibility of the Virginia Department of Transportation, not the county. Tall grass, un-mowed on the median strip along Braddock Road blocks a clear view of the west bound traffic wishing to turn left off Braddock Road into a subdivision. (Photo by Richard A. Lipski ) But it's an election year and being seen as responsive is important, so local leaders are adding their voices to the hue and cry. The news from the Post's Metro section is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 29, 2007; 10:50 AM ET | Email a Comment

Police Kill Man in Alexandria Area Drug Raid

One suspect is dead and two are in custody after Fairfax County police conducted a drug raid at an Alexandria area motel. Police said they fired on the suspect who was killed after he failed to obey their orders and exhibited a gun. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 25, 2007; 10:27 AM ET | Email a Comment

Resident Pushes to Better Supervise Sex Offenders

Diane C. Beatty took the experience of her own childhood sexual abuse and focused her energy on helping police keep convicted sex offenders from committing further offenses. Read all about it in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 17, 2007; 02:16 PM ET | Email a Comment

Immigration and Overcrowded Houses

This front page article in yesterday's paper on neighborhood disputes over overcrowded houses in Fairfax County has spawned a spirited discussion with people from Fairfax, the Washington region and elsewhere in the country, joining in by posting comments about the problem. Focus on Fairfax invites readers to continue the discussion here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 14, 2007; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 5/9: Arrest in School Food Tampering

Updated 5/9 Police said today they have arrested a student at the school. The news is here. Originally posted 5/8 Three straight pins have been discovered in school cafeteria food at Rachel Carson Middle School in Herndon over the past two weeks. Police think the pins were inserted by someone at the school. A news story is in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 8, 2007; 10:07 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 5/9 : Fairfax Officers Remembered

Updated 5/9 A report from yesterday's unveiling of a memorial to the fallen officers is here. Originally posted 5/8 The attack on the Sully District police station that claimed the lives of two Fairfax County police officers occurred one year ago today. Read here to find out how the officers are being remembered and how the other officers at the station have been coping with the loss of their comrades....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 8, 2007; 09:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax County Ties to Virginia Tech Shootings

With so much attention on Monday's shooting deaths of 33 students and faculty and Virginia Tech, Fairfax County was home to several of the victims and the suspect, whose family lived in Centreville. The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and Faith Communities in Action will host a community gathering at 7:30 p.m. tonight, April 18 Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, "to assemble, grieve and celebrate the lives of those killed."...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 18, 2007; 10:22 AM ET | Email a Comment

Breaking Schools News: Schools To Close Early Today Because of High Winds

The details are at the Fairfax County Public Schools website....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 16, 2007; 10:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Fire and Rescue Chief a Familiar Face

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County yesterday named Ronald L. Mastin, the fire chief of Henrico County, to be the new chief of the Fairfax Fire and Rescue Department. Mastin, 53, was with the Fairfax department for 28 years, rising to the rank of deputy chief of operations, before leaving in 2001 to take over in Henrico, just outside Richmond. Mastin succeeds Michael Neuhard, who retired in February to become a deputy county administrator in Stafford County. Mastin's appointment, announced by the Board of Supervisors after a national search, becomes effective June 3. His annual salary will be $160,000, Fairfax officials said. -- Tom Jackman...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 10, 2007; 08:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 3/21: Family Sues County, Police for Shooting Death

Updated 3/21 According to this story from today's Metro section, the Culosi family filed their lawsuit yesterday in federal court. Updated 1/12 An article in today's Metro section provides details from a report by the Fairfax County Police Department on the shooting in January, 2006. Updated 1/5/07 An attorney for Salvatore and Anita Culosi has written a letter to Board of Supervisor's Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) as required by state law before the filing of a wrongful death lawsuit. The Post's article is here. Originally posted 1/27/06 Fairfax County police were using SWAT tactics when an officer accidentally fired his weapon, killing the unarmed suspect of a gambling investigation on Tuesday night. Now the victim's father wants to know how this happened and why such tactics were necessary in the first place. Read the latest article here....

 

By | March 21, 2007; 10:27 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 3/21: Fund to Aid Family After Trailer Home Fire

Updated 3/21 From today's Metro section: Friends of the Peterson family, which was devastated by a March 11 Chantilly trailer home fire, have set up a fund to help survivors rebuild their lives. "They've lost everything. Susan doesn't have even a single article of clothing," said Lindsey Swanson, who helped establish the fund to aid survivor Susan Peterson. Fairfax Fire and Rescue Department officials are still working to identify two people killed in the blaze, but Peterson said her husband, Richard, 60, and her disabled daughter, Sophia, 21, were the victims. Richard had quit work 15 years ago to care for Sophia; he also took care of his wife after she was badly injured in a car accident. Donations may be sent to the Richard & Sophia Peterson Fund, c/o Wachovia Bank, Bradlee Financial Center, 3624 King St., Alexandria, Va. 22302. -- Brigid Schulte Originally posted 3/19 Richard and Sophia...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 19, 2007; 10:26 AM ET | Email a Comment

Female County Detective Subject of Docu-series

June Boyle, The Fairfax County homicide detective best known for her work on the 2002 Washington area sniper shootings will be featured on the pilot episode of a new show about female investigators on the Oxygen cable network. Boyle was chosen because of her work on a three year investigation that led to the arrest of Matthew Harper for the 1995 murder of his sister, Anne, in Burke. The story is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 12, 2007; 09:24 AM ET | Email a Comment

Cell Phone Ban for State's Teen Drivers Likely

According to this article from today's Washington Post, a ban on the use of cell phone by teenage drivers is likely to become a state law now that it has passed the Virginia House of Delegates. What do you think? If driving and using a cell phone is such a distraction, shouldn't an ban for all drivers be enacted? If not, why not? Would such a proposal have been politically dead on arrival? This ban would affect no voters, only those 17 and younger....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 22, 2007; 09:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 2/13: Man Charged in School Training Center Fire

From today's Metro section: An Annandale man has been charged with setting a fire that caused $1 million in damage to a Fairfax County school administrative building this month, after an officer reportedly saw him flee the scene and drop his cellphone. The fire occurred at the Lacey Center, 3705 Crest Dr. in Annandale, shortly after 4 a.m. Feb. 3. Court records indicate that an officer responding to a burglar alarm saw Amer Ishtiwi, 22, running from the building. A car idling nearby contained items taken from the center and was registered to Ishtiwi's father, a search warrant affidavit stated. Police obtained warrants for Ishtiwi, charging him with burglary, grand larceny, possession of burglary tools and arson, but Ishtiwi remained at large. The Lacey Center hosts instructional training for teachers and other specialized programs. A Fairfax schools spokesman said some employees were expected to return next week. Originally published 2/5...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 13, 2007; 10:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

Cold Case Squad Solves Old Abduction, Sex Crimes

This story from today's Metro section introduces us to the officers of the Fairfax County Police Department's cold case squad for sexual assaults and abductions. One of the first of its kind in the nation, the squad has solved 14 rape cases dating back to the 1980s....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 13, 2007; 10:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fire at Mall Prompts Evacuation

From today's Metro section: Dozens of people were evacuated at Tysons Corner Center yesterday evening after a fire broke out at an optical store. No one was injured. About a quarter of the mall was closed for about 90 minutes until the fire was contained. The fire started about 5 p.m. in a machine at the Lenscrafters store inside the mall, in the 1900 block of Chain Bridge Road, authorities said. Fire officials ordered customers and workers at several adjacent stores to move to other parts of the mall because of concerns that chemicals at the optical shop could ignite, said Renee Stillwell, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department spokeswoman. About a quarter of the mall was closed for about 90 minutes until the fire was contained. -- Candace Rondeaux...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 25, 2007; 10:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly Critical of Kaine's Police Funding Proposal

Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly criticized on Saturday Governor Timothy M. Kaine's proposal to boost police spending in Richmond saying it was being done at the expense of Fairfax County. Read about it here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 8, 2007; 10:58 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 1/5: Herndon Police Will Be Trained To Enforce Immigration Laws

Updated 1/5/07 From today's Metro section: Herndon has been accepted into a federal program that will train some of its police officers to enforce U.S. immigration laws, including the initiation of deportation proceedings. Police Chief Toussaint E. Summers Jr. told the Town Council on Tuesday night that the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency approved the town's request to enter the agency's "287 (g)" program, a provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act. The council, which has approved measures designed to make the town less hospitable to illegal immigrants, voted 6 to 1 on Sept. 19 to apply for the program. Summers said that two senior immigration agents have been assigned to oversee the town's participation in the program and that his department would soon begin discussions on the scope of training the officers would receive during the five-week course. The council would then review and vote on a memorandum...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 5, 2007; 10:40 AM ET | Email a Comment

Sketch Released of Suspect in Two Break-Ins

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County police released a composite sketch this week of a man they think broke into two houses on Christmas Eve in the area where two women have been killed since August. Investigators are trying to determine whether the four cases are related, police said. The first attack Dec. 24 occurred on Frontier Drive, near Springfield Mall, between 8 and 9:40 p.m. A woman told police that a man knocked at her door, then forced his way in and stabbed her in the arm. While investigating that case, officers learned that a man had entered a home on nearby Alamo Street about 8:30 p.m. and told a resident that he was looking for food. He did not show a weapon or attack anyone, Officer Richard Henry said. Henry said there was no evidence to link the man to the slayings of Marion B. Marshall on Aug....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 5, 2007; 10:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 1/3/07: Police Suspend Officer Who Killed Springfield Teen at IHOP

Updated 1/3/07 Alexandria Police announced yesterday that they have suspended officer Carl Stowe and are revising their policies on officers stepping in front of, and shooting at moving vehicles. The news article is here. Update Posted 3/2The police officer's attorney defended his client's actions to reporters yesterday. The Metro section article is here. Update Posted 3/1Two of the teens that were passengers in the Jeep disputed the police account of the shooting when they spoke to reporters yesterday, saying that the officer was not directly in the path of the vehicle when he began firing. Update Posted 2/28:More on this story, including the name of the police officer, is in today's paper. Read "Fatal Shooting In Alexandria Fuels Debate On Police Policy". Originally Posted 2/27:A 18-year-old Northern Virginia Community College student was shot and killed by an off-duty Alexandria police officer after the teenager and a group of friends allegedly...

 

By | January 3, 2007; 10:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

Firetrucks are Red, Station is Green

Today's Fairfax Extra takes us inside Fairfax County Fire Station 40, the county government's first building designed and built to be especially energy-efficient and environmentally-friendly....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 21, 2006; 12:22 PM ET | Email a Comment

Tips on How to Stay Warm, Stay Safe

With the winter solstice set for 7:22 p.m. this evening, the Fairfax Extra offers these winter safety tips....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 21, 2006; 12:09 PM ET | Email a Comment

Sully Officers Honored; New Details of Shootout Released

Slain Fairfax County Police officers Michael E. Garbarino and Vicky O. Armel will receive posthumous gold medals of valor from the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce as part of the chamber's annual Valor Awards. The announcement was made yesterday even as new details about the May shootout at the Sully police station were released. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 20, 2006; 09:18 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 12/18: Robbery Suspect's Family Says Killing Was Avoidable

Updated 12/18 Suspected bank robber Edward R. Argus Jr.'s family spoke about his death on Friday. The news article is here. Updated 12/15 More details on the robbery and the slaying of the suspect are here. Originally posted 12/14 A man suspected of a string of robberies along the Route 1 corridor was shot and killed by Fairfax County police yesterday after another apparent robbery attempt. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 14, 2006; 09:39 AM ET | Email a Comment

Off-Duty Officer Charged With DWI

From today's Metro section: An off-duty Fairfax County police officer was arrested yesterday and charged with drunken driving after crashing his Hummer H3 sport-utility vehicle into the back of a delivery truck in the county's Alexandria area, police said. Officer Walter R. Fasci, 32, was driving the SUV south on South Van Dorn Street, just past the Capital Beltway, when he slammed into a 1993 Chevrolet truck near the intersection with Oakwood Road, Officer Richard Henry said. The collision, at 5:40 a.m., did not injure Fasci or the truck driver, a 30-year-old Woodbridge man. Fasci refused to take a breath test, police said. He was charged with driving while intoxicated and refusal to take a breath test. Fasci, who has been a Fairfax officer for four years, is assigned to patrol duties, although police declined to say in which district. He was placed on administrative leave with pay pending an...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 13, 2006; 10:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE: Abducted Fairfax County Child Found Unharmed

UPDATE: Here is a news release from the Fairfax County Police Department. The following was posted on washingtonpost.com at Noon today. The Associated Press Virginia State Police and the Virginia Missing Children Clearinghouse say a one-year-old child in Fairfax County has been abducted. Authorities have issued an Endangered Missing Child Alert for the boy. The Fairfax County Police Department is looking for one-year-old Zian Armani Holeman. Police say he was last seen in Alexandria yesterday evening with the suspect -- 26-year-old Vernice Simmons -- and is believed to be in danger. Simmons is described as black, 5-foot-6, about 210 pounds, with brown eyes and straight black hair. She was wearing a blue hooded shirt, dark jeans and white sneakers. Vernice Simmons (Fairfax County Police Dept.) The baby is described as a black male, 18-inches tall and weighing 21 pounds. He was wearing a black-and-red hooded shirt, blue jeans, black Timberland...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 20, 2006; 02:02 PM ET | Email a Comment

County Wants Trucks Banned From 193

Citing safety concerns on a winding eight-mile stretch of Route 193 through Great Falls, the county Board of Supervisors is asking VDOT to ban heavy trucks fro using the road. The Post's article is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 3, 2006; 10:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

FBI Relocates Tysons Offices to Prince William

Citing cheaper land and a more secure location as reasons for the move, FBI officials said they should have their new Prince William headquarters ready in about 13 months. Read about it here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 25, 2006; 10:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

Pedestrian Deaths Already Exceed 2005 Totals

In the first nine months of this year, a dozen pedestrians have been killed on Fairfax roads. According to this Fairfax Extra article, 11 of the 12 who died were crossing street improperly and the minority population is disproportionately represented among the casualties. Ten pedestrians were killed in the calendar year 2005. A link to information about the county's pedestrian program is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 28, 2006; 10:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

Bond Referendums on Ballot For Nov. 7

By now most Fairfax County households will have received a brochure from the Board of Supervisors explaining the upcoming bond referendums to fund public safety renovations and expansions and parks and recreation facilities development. The mailing explains the basic arguments for and against issuing bonds to pay for these types of expenses, but there is certainly more to both the pros and cons of borrowing the money. What's your take?...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 28, 2006; 10:08 AM ET | Email a Comment

World Police and Fire Games Here in 2013?

Officials from the biennial games, which pit athletes from public safety departments from around the world against each other, are in Fairfax to check out what the county has to offer in the way of facilities for the 2013 competition....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 8, 2006; 01:07 PM ET | Email a Comment

Danger On the W&OD Trail?

According to a front page article from this morning, increased usage of the historic Washington & Old Dominion Trail is choking the pathway, leading to increased danger for bicyclists pedestrians and other users. Three bicyclists have died on the trail in the last year....

 

By | August 18, 2006; 10:45 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax, Others, Misspent Homeland Security Funds

According the Department of Homeland Security's inspector general, Virginia has been haphazard in its distribution of homeland security grants to local governments and some of them, including Fairfax County's, misused the money . The story is here....

 

By | July 31, 2006; 10:20 AM ET | Email a Comment

8/3 UPDATE: Army Ft. Belvoir Plan Draws Critics

Updated 8/3 From today's Metro section: Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.) will hold a hearing this month to question the Army about its plans for transferring 22,000 employees to Fort Belvoir, a member of his staff told Army leaders yesterday. "He has a lot of concerns," Davis aide Bill Womack said. "There are too many moving parts to not take a closer look at this." Womack's comments came at a meeting at the post of an advisory board formed by the post commander to gather comments on the Army's plans. The Army announced last week that it is planning to cluster most of the relocated employees at the Engineer Proving Ground, a mostly vacant site a couple of miles northwest of the main post. The plans have come under criticism from state and local officials who were hoping the Army would disperse the new workers more, on the main...

 

By | July 28, 2006; 10:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Police Departments Prepare For National Night Out

Tuesday night is the 23rd annual National Night Out, when people are asked to gather outside their homes with their neighbors in an effort to raise awareness about crime prevention. Details are in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | July 27, 2006; 11:16 AM ET | Email a Comment

Studies Warned of Huntington Floods; Urged Protection

Cranes and garbage trucks pick up trash taken from a house as residents and volunteers work to clean in Huntington after flood waters ravaged the neighborhood in June. (Mark Gong) Studies conducted in 1977 and 1982 both concluded that flood protection measures were appropriate for the Huntington neighborhood that suffered $10 million in damages during the heavy rains last month. But studies were ignored and no action was taken. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By | July 24, 2006; 10:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Flu Pandemic Funds: Largely to Local Awareness

Northern Virginia jurisdictions last month began receiving federal dollars aimed at preparing for a potential influenza outbreak. According to this article from the Fairfax Extra, most of the money is going to public education programs....

 

By | July 13, 2006; 10:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Undercover Operation to Add Teeth to Meth Law

Fairfax County police plan an undercover operation to curb manufacturing of methamphetamine. Today's Fairfax Extra reports that police will test stores to see if they sell more than the limit of 3.6 grams of ephedrine or pseudoephedrine a day to anyone. This is designed to enforce a law now in effect in the state limiting sale of the allergy and cold medicines, a key ingredient in manufacturing methamphetamine....

 

By | July 6, 2006; 11:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

West Nile Virus Shows Up in County

A mosquito pool in the county has tested positive for West Nile virus, the first such positive test in Virginia this year, county health officials said yesterday. So far this year, health department workers have tested more than 31,000 mosquitos looking for West Nile and similar viruses, and treated more than 30,000 storm drains, which can become breeding areas, with lavicide that inhibits breeding. More treatments are scheduled throughout the mosquito season, which usually runs from May to October. Meanwhile, the Health Department recommends that residents take measures to reduce exposure to mosquitos. These include using insect repellants containing the active ingrediate DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon or eucalyptus when outdoors, turning over or removing yard containers and other recepticles of standing water. For more information on West Nile virus, residents may visit Fairfax County's "Fight the Bite" Web page at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fightthebite or call the Health Department at...

 

By | July 3, 2006; 11:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Aftermath of Flooding Includes Mold, Mildew and Fungi

Today's Fairfax Extra reports County tips on how to rid homes of mold after the floodwaters. The tip sheet includes avoiding use of heating units in closed areas because that can contribute to the spread of mold spores....

 

By | June 29, 2006; 11:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

Relief for Storm Victims; Information Offered.

More rain failling today and tonight. Be safe. Information on emergency preparedness is at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/emergency/ or through county's office of public affairs at 703-324-3187, TTY 703-324-2935, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. And with all of this moisture and the promise of more to come, the county has issued a press release with helpful information about mold, mildew and fungi. Fairfax and the Red Cross will open an emergency shelter from noon to 8 p.m. today at Edison High School, 5801 Franconia Rd., Alexandria for residents of the Arlington Terrace section of the county who have been evacuated because of localized flooding. Those affected by flooding should seek higher ground or go to the shelter using exits 12 and 14 at the school. Animals are accepted. Residents should not return home until the county has inspected homes and given the OK. Residents can call 703-817-7771 for updates in English and Spanish....

 

By | June 26, 2006; 11:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

CIA's Tenet Joins Fairfax Firm

Today's Business section reports that former CIA director George J. Tenet, former chief information officer for the CIA Alan Wade and former CIA intelligence analyst John P. Young have joined the Analysis Corporation's (TAC) advisory board. The Fairfax-based intelligence and contracting company advises the federal government on potential terrorist threats....

 

By | June 22, 2006; 11:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hotline Aims To Find Teen Drinking Parties

Comments? Fairfax County police have brought back their Shut It Down hotline for a second summer season to allow anonymous tipsters to report parties where minors are consuming alcohol. The Fairfax Extra has the story....

 

By | June 15, 2006; 01:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Planners Use 9/11 Lessons For Disaster Prep

Today's Fairfax Extra explains how volunteer coordinators and public safety planners are using the lessons learned from 9/11 to put disaster plans in place on the local level. Read about it here....

 

By | June 15, 2006; 01:41 PM ET | Email a Comment

Large, Eco-Friendly Fire Station Opens

From today's Metro section: Fairfax County's newest and largest fire station opened yesterday on Lee Highway near the County Government Center. Station 40, at the intersection of Legato Road, just east of Costco Plaza, began responding to calls at 7 a.m. The station covers more than 24,000 square feet, sits on about six acres and has five drive-through bays. In addition to 75 firefighters on three shifts, a hazardous materials unit will be assigned there. A grand opening has been scheduled for July 8. The station is the first "green," or environmentally friendly, county building and uses energy-efficient heating and cooling, natural lighting, reflective roofing, recycled and non-toxic materials and a biological retention pond. The station was estimated to cost slightly more than $6 million....

 

By | June 13, 2006; 02:31 PM ET | Email a Comment

$150 Million Bond Referendum Set For November

What do you think of this? The county Board of Supervisors will put this question to the voters on the Nov. 7 election ballot: Should the county sell $150 million dollars in bonds to pay for renovations and more security for police and fire stations, to expand the county animal shelter and to add synthetic turf to athletic fields? Metro section coverage of the board action is here.. There are a couple of questions here and plenty of room for observations....

 

By | June 6, 2006; 10:14 AM ET | Email a Comment

Safety Reviewed at Police, Fire, Sheriff's Buildings

When Michael W. Kennedy staged the ambush at the Sully district police station that killed two police officers last month, he was able to drive directly into the station's back parking lot; a gate that should have prevented him driving into the lot was not working. Now county officials are asking a committee to examine the policies and procedures for security buildings that house public safety operations. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

 

By | June 5, 2006; 11:58 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Detective Dead; Two Wounded, One Badly

Updated 5/31 Today's Metro section reports that police are seeking Michael Kennedy's phone records for evidence that he made threats against the police before the ambush. Updated 5/26 According to an article in today's Metro section, Michael Kennedy was rebuffed several times when attempting seek help for his mental health. Updated 5/23 ATF Investigates Parents of Teen in Shooting Updated 5/19 Friends of Michael Kennedy said he sought help for delusions in the months leading up to his attack on the police station. A front page story in this morning's Washington Post has the details. Updated 5/12 Attorneys for the Kennedy family released a statement last night saying that the guns stored in the family home were kept under lock and key. Coverage is in this morning's paper. Updated 5/11 According to a story in today's Metro section story, a police search of the townhouse shared by Michael Kennedy and...

 

By | May 26, 2006; 10:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

Speed Control or Optical Illusion on Lee Chapel Rd?

A narrow bend on Lee Chapel Road where drivers routinely speed is a test site for new system of speed control based on creating an optical illusion that makes speeding drivers think they are travelling even faster than they are. Read about how it works here. Video is here....

 

By | May 4, 2006; 09:16 AM ET | Email a Comment

Family Challenges Police on Fatal Crash With Cruiser

Jatinder Baboota 61, of Vienna, died in February, 13 days after his car had been struck by a Fairfax County police cruiser driven by officer Michael D. Weinhaus who was responding to an emergency call. Now Baboota's family questions the police department's official version of what happened, citing witness reports that the officer didn't have his siren or lights on. Police did not disclose the crash or Baboota's death. The Metro section article is here....

 

By | May 2, 2006; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax: The 2006 Guide

An Introduction To The Guide Trying to make sense of Fairfax? Join our club. To help newcomers learn and old-timers discover new possibilities, here's The Guide for 2006. We know how easy it is to get confused here, because there are about a million people -- more people than seven states have -- and trying to make sense of the governing machinery can be tricky. The local governments include those of the county and two cities, the City of Fairfax and the City of Falls Church, each with its own idiosyncrasies and treasures. What you'll find in these pages is our attempt to lead you to old favorites you had not thought of for a while or to what might become favorites. There's golfing and fishing and biking and walking, just to name a few leisure pursuits. If you have students in the family, there's a place within the county...

 

By | April 28, 2006; 09:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

Crashes Caused By Distracted, Drowsy Drivers

Eighty percent of all vehicle crashes in the Washington area are caused by sleepy or distracted drivers according to a new study that is the subject of a front page story in this morning's Washington Post. The top distraction for drivers? Cell phones....

 

By | April 21, 2006; 10:05 AM ET | Email a Comment

Gang Task Force Wants Faith-Based Groups to Help

Leesburg Police Chief, co-chairman of the Northern Virginia Regional Gang Task Force, community and religious leaders recently it is time that faith-based groups help combat Northern Virginia's gang problem. The story is in this week's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | March 24, 2006; 03:59 PM ET | Email a Comment

Multilingual Police Unit Working

The Fairfax County Police Department added a language skills support unit whose officers include speakers of Spanish, Korean, and Vietnamese. A Fairfax Extra article explains how the new unit is helping with investigations in Fairfax's multicultural communities....

 

By | March 24, 2006; 02:03 PM ET | Email a Comment

No Charges in Police Shooting of Fair Lakes Optometrist

Updated 4/17 An article in Saturday's Metro section reports that the FBI has begun a preliminary review of the case. Updated 4/14According to a Metro section article in this morning's paper, Culosi's family is expressing frustration that their request to the FBI to investigate the case has not been acknowledged. Meanwhile they are saying that the police department's five-hour delay in notifying family members of Culosi's death prevented him from receiving last rites. Originally posted 3/24Fairfax County's chief prosecutor has declined to file charges against a police officer who fatally shot a man who was suspected of running an illegal gambling operation, according to this article from this morning's Metro section. His family decried the decision. Salvatore J. Culosi, 37 was killed in January while a police SWAT team was attempting to arrest him outside his Fair Lakes townhouse. Investigators have concluded that the shooting was an accident....

 

By | March 24, 2006; 01:09 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax First Reponders Recognized For Valor

Last week marked the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce's annual Valor Awards and 51 fire, police and rescue personnel were awarded for bravery. An article about the awards and a list of recipients is in this week's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | March 17, 2006; 12:06 PM ET | Email a Comment

Please Read: Rules Issued for Commenting on Fairfax Focus Blog

Some readers of this blog have recently raised questions about the role of The Washington Post in policing Fairfax Focus. I have deleted a few blog posts because they did not meet The Post's standards for fairness. For more clarity about how to play by the rules, Jim Brady, the executive editor of washingtonpost.com has posted a message explaining the rules for readers participating in the site's Live Online discussions, discussion forums and for posting comments on the company's blogs. The complete list of rules is here. --Steve Fehr, Fairfax Extra Editor...

 

By | February 17, 2006; 01:06 PM ET | Email a Comment

Walking May Be Hazardous To Your Health

Today's Fairfax Extra cover story looks at the perils of being a pedestrian in Fairfax County and what the government, planners and neighborhood leaders would like to do about them....

 

By | February 16, 2006; 11:50 AM ET | Email a Comment

888 Sober Mount Vernon Drivers

The following news releases are from the Fairfax County Police Depatement: Mount Vernon District DWI Checkpoint Results Fairfax County police officers from the Mount Vernon District Station conducted a sobriety checkpoint from 11 p.m. Friday, February 10 to 2 a.m. Saturday. All motorists were stopped, and the drivers were checked to assure their abilities to drive had not been impaired by alcohol or drugs. Approximately 888 cars passed through the checkpoint conducted near 6130 Richmond Highway. One motorist was arrested for possession of false identification, six were arrested for driving without a license and one was arrested for driving on a suspended license. Sully District DWI Checkpoint Results Fairfax County police officers from the Sully District Station conducted a sobriety checkpoint from 11 p.m. Thursday, February 9 to 2 a.m. Friday. All motorists were stopped, and the drivers were checked to assure their abilities to drive had not been impaired...

 

By | February 13, 2006; 02:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Annandale Pedestrian Dies from Injuries

From today's Metro section: An Annandale man who was struck by a car Friday evening on Little River Turnpike died yesterday from his injuries, Fairfax County police said. Thomas Edward Hope, 48, of the 4200 block of Conally Street tried to cross the 7400 block of Little River Turnpike near Annandale Road shortly before 7:30 p.m. and was hit by a 2000 Lincoln Continental driven by a 56-year-old Silver Spring woman, Officer Beth Funston said. Hope was taken to Inova Fairfax Hospital, where he died yesterday. Police do not believe alcohol or speed were factors in the crash, and no charges have been filed against the driver....

 

By | February 9, 2006; 10:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Police Stepping Up Pedestrian Safety; Pedestrian Killed in Bailey's Crossroads

The Fairfax County Police Department has released a statement about the pedestrian fatality that occurred over the weekend on Leesburg Pike. The news comes at the same time that the department is announcing a pedestrian enforcement campaign....

 

By | January 31, 2006; 09:20 AM ET | Email a Comment

Use Caution When Selecting Day Care

Julia Karpeisky of McLean offers advice to parents looking for a day care provider in this week's Voices of Fairfax guest column....

 

By | January 26, 2006; 11:39 AM ET | Email a Comment

Pedestrian Task Force Offers Recommendations

From today's Fairfax Extra: The county's pedestrian task force has called for a series of broad changes in policy and infrastructure to improve the safety of the walking public. The report, which capped a year of work by the task force, proposed a 10-year capital spending plan in four areas: var technorati = new Technorati() ; technorati.setProperty('url','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/25/AR2006012500954_Technorati.html') ; technorati.article = new item('IN BRIEF','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/25/AR2006012500954.html','The county\'s pedestrian task force has called for a series of broad changes in policy and infrastructure to improve the safety of the walking public.','') ; document.write( technorati.getDisplaySidebar() ); · Major pedestrian activity centers, transit access and intersection retrofits. · Neighborhood connections, arterial walkways and road diets (reducing the traffic lanes of a particular roadway). · Bus stops. · Retrofitting for the disabled and pedestrian bridges. The Board of Supervisors has identified about $11 million in federal, state and county funding for pedestrian improvements. "This document will not...

 

By | January 26, 2006; 11:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Civil Defense Sirens Could Make A Comeback

Fairfax officials will have their eyes (and ears) on our neighboring jurisdictions in Alexandria and Arlington where officials plan to supplement existing terror alert systems with updated versions of Cold War era technology. The story was on this morning front page of the Washington Post....

 

By | January 25, 2006; 10:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Pedestrian Bridge Coming To Seven Corners

County Supervisor Penelope A. Gross (D-Mason) announced Sunday in a letter to the editor that a fix is on the way for one of the county's most dangerous intersections for pedestrians. The text is here....

 

By | January 18, 2006; 11:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wolf Set to Speak At Meeting On Gangs

From today's Fairfax Extra: The Fairfax League of Women Voters will discuss the problem of gangs on Jan. 21 in Chantilly, with U.S. Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.) as the featured speaker. var technorati = new Technorati() ; technorati.setProperty('url','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/11/AR2006011100867_Technorati.html') ; technorati.article = new item('in brief','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/11/AR2006011100867.html','A portion of Wilson Boulevard in the Falls Church area would be named Saigon Boulevard under a proposal made by the county Board of Supervisors to the Virginia Department of Transportation.','') ; document.write( technorati.getDisplaySidebar() ); Wolf will talk about legislation he has sponsored to address the gang problem in Northern Virginia. The 10:30 a.m. meeting will be at the International Country Club, 13200 Lee Jackson Hwy. Registration is required; call 703-404-0498 by Saturday. Attendance is free, but a luncheon scheduled to follow is $25. For more information, call 703-658-9150 or go to http://www.lwv-fairfax.org and click on "What's New."...

 

By | January 12, 2006; 12:50 PM ET | Email a Comment

Part Of Wilson Boulevard Could Get a New Name

From today's Fairfax Extra: A portion of Wilson Boulevard in the Falls Church area would be named Saigon Boulevard under a proposal made by the county Board of Supervisors to the Virginia Department of Transportation. The supervisors voted Monday to ask VDOT to designate the stretch of Wilson between Route 7 and Roosevelt Boulevard as Saigon Boulevard, with signs to mark the change. The stretch is in front of the Eden Center. var technorati = new Technorati() ; technorati.setProperty('url','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/11/AR2006011100867_Technorati.html') ; technorati.article = new item('in brief','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/11/AR2006011100867.html','A portion of Wilson Boulevard in the Falls Church area would be named Saigon Boulevard under a proposal made by the county Board of Supervisors to the Virginia Department of Transportation.','') ; document.write( technorati.getDisplaySidebar() ); Representatives of the Vietnamese American community requested the change to reflect the area's retail and cultural activity. The name change would be ceremonial; Wilson Boulevard would keep its name and addresses...

 

By | January 12, 2006; 12:40 PM ET | Email a Comment

Woman Says Vienna Town Police Assaulted Her

Tara Shea, 28, of Bowie, who has been charged with DWI and possession of a concealed weapon, said officers bloodied her following her a sobriety test. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By | January 9, 2006; 10:33 AM ET | Email a Comment

Study To Explore Upgrades To 3 County Police Stations

From today's Fairfax Extra: The Fairfax engineering office of PSA-Dewberry has been selected to conduct feasibility studies for improvements at three district police stations, in Reston, McLean and Fair Oaks. The studies will explore current and future space needs and opportunities for renovation and/or expansion to improve staff efficiency, security and community outreach services at the stations, according to a news release....

 

By | January 5, 2006; 11:07 AM ET | Email a Comment

County To Report On High Risk Dams

With the devastation wrought by hurricane Katrina on the U.S. gulf coast still fresh in people's mind, county officials want to know just how many homes are at risk from dam failures here. The story is in today's Fairfax Extra. The list of the county's high-hazard dams is here: Download Dams.doc...

 

By | December 29, 2005; 10:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax County Police: "50 mph Means 50 mph"

The Fairfax County Police Department has released the following statement about the upcoming speed enforcement campaign along the Fairfax County and the Franconia-Springfield Parkways. Motorists will notice increased police presence on the Fairfax County Parkway and the Franconia Springfield Parkway during the next two weeks. Officers from five district police stations (Franconia, West Springfield, Fair Oaks, Sully and Reston) and the Motorcycle Unit are participating in an Educational and Speed Enforcement Campaign for the two weeks ending Friday, December 9, 2005. The intent of the campaign is to stop bad driving behavior, especially speeding, driving recklessly or aggressively. From January through October 2004, there were 690 reportable crashes on the two parkways. During the same time this year, there have been 782 reportable crashes. Throughout the campaign, variable message boards will be set up somewhere along the 37 miles of the two parkways. Three messages will be programmed to be displayed...

 

By | November 30, 2005; 04:03 PM ET | Email a Comment

Culmore Garage Fire Kills One, Injures Two; Officials Say Victims Possibly Homeless

None of the people (believed by neighbors to be Latino laborers) injured in the blaze have been identified. Yesterday's Metro section had the full story....

 

By | November 28, 2005; 02:31 PM ET | Email a Comment

New Emergency Communications Center Under Construction

The Fairfax Extra reported this week on the groundbreaking for the county's West Ox Complex which will house a new police and fire communications center....

 

By | November 25, 2005; 10:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

In The Event Of An Emergency

The cover story in today's Fairfax Extra lets County Executive Anthony H. Griffin explain how Fairfax is preparing for potential disasters....

 

By | November 10, 2005; 02:53 PM ET | Email a Comment

Groundbreaking Saturday for Crosspointe Fire Station

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department will conduct a groundbreaking ceremony at 11 a.m., Saturday, Nov. 5 for Crosspointe Fire and Rescue Station 41....

 

By Steve Fehr | November 4, 2005; 04:43 PM ET | Email a Comment

Ten Horses Die in Clifton Fire

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Dept. issued this news release today: Units responded to a barn fire at approximately 2:40 a.m Oct. 26 in the Clifton area. The barn is located at 6429 Clifton Road....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 26, 2005; 05:42 PM ET | Email a Comment

Watch for Deer

The county police issued a news release today advising residents "to be extra vigilant for deer while driving during October, November and December."...

 

By Steve Fehr | October 20, 2005; 02:26 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Disaster Plan Unveiled

County Executive Anthony H. Griffin yesterday outlined the disaster plan that Fairfax officials would implement in the case of a terrorist attack or natural disaster. Details are here....

 

By | October 18, 2005; 10:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

Parking Change Goes Into Effect Monday at Public Safety Complex

Beginning Monday (Oct. 17), parking for jurors and visitors to the Fairfax County courts and other facilities at the Public Safety Complex will be restricted to garage B on Page Avenue. The move is to tighten security at the court and public safety complex....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 15, 2005; 02:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

Organized Opposition To Development In Fairfax

A front page article from this morning's Washington Post gives prominent play to the recent efforts of citizens to organize themselves to oppose what they view as unfair development practices in Fairfax County. See it here....

 

By | October 14, 2005; 09:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Gov. Warner Taps GMU for Statewide Shelter Plan

From a news release issued today: Gov. Mark Warner has requested the assistance of George Mason University in developing the first-ever Virginia plan for evacuation event response. The plan is expected to be completed later this fall, allowing Virginia to be the first in the nation to develop a written plan documenting lessons learned about state-level emergency sheltering response activities necessitated by recent natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 11, 2005; 01:03 PM ET | Email a Comment

Herndon Receives Homeland Security Grant

Herndon has received a $200,000 homeland security grant to buy emergency response equipment, officials said....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 10, 2005; 02:53 PM ET | Email a Comment

New Boys & Girls Club in Herndon Aims To Prevent Gang Involvement

That the new extension of the Boys & Girls Club at Hutchison Elementary School in Herndon will help discourage young people from joining gangs is the hope of town officials, according to a Fairfax Extra article published today....

 

By | October 6, 2005; 02:52 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax Urban Rescue Unit Heading for Texas

Virginia Task Force 1, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department's Urban Search and Rescue team has been activated and will travel to a staging area in Fort Worth, anticipating the arrival of Hurricane Rita. The Type III, 35-person team was scheduled to depart at noon today....

 

By Steve Fehr | September 21, 2005; 04:48 PM ET | Email a Comment

Are We Prepared in Fairfax for a Disaster or Attack?

Yesterday the Post published an opinion piece by Falls Church city councilman David Snyder expressing concern about the lack of a system being put in place to provide regional coordination in the event of a major disaster or terrorist attack in the Washington area. Do you think we in Fairfax County are adequately prepared for a disaster or terrorist attack?...

 

By | September 19, 2005; 02:38 PM ET | Email a Comment

County Search and Rescue Unit Returns Tonight From Hurricane Recovery Effort

The county Fire and Rescue Department's urban search and rescue team, returns at 7 p.m. tonight from a week-long deployment to Mississippi in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina...

 

By Steve Fehr | September 6, 2005; 02:17 PM ET | Email a Comment

 

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