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Posted at 1:15 PM ET, 03/30/2010

Arrest in Goth scene leader's death

By Washington Post editors

The girlfriend of Dirk Smiler, the gourmand Goth and D.C. club scene fixture, was arrested Tuesday and charged in Fairfax County with his murder.

Smiler, 37, was shot to death in his basement bedroom on Little River Turnpike in Annandale on Feb. 15. Witnesses and police said his girlfriend, Cara Cottle, 31, ran upstairs, naked and covered in blood, and screamed that Smiler was dead.

Witnesses and law enforcement sources said Smiler was shot once in the head with a World War II-era bolt-action rifle. Cottle declined to be interviewed by homicide detectives and then checked herself into a mental hospital for three days, according to numerous people familiar with the case.

Cottle, who was living in Prince William County with her mother, was notified of the warrant Tuesday morning. At 12:15 p.m., she surrendered to homicide Detective Robert A. Bond at the Fairfax jail.

Cottle was being held in the Fairfax jail Tuesday without bond. She will be arraigned Wednesday morning.

-- Tom Jackman

By Washington Post editors  | March 30, 2010; 1:15 PM ET
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety, DC, Maryland, Virginia  
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