Death Investigation Prompts Short Closure of Baron Cameron Park

Baron Cameron Park’s facilities have reopened after a death investigation last week prompted a brief closure.

Fairfax County police received a call around 1 p.m. last Tuesday (Sept. 3) about a dead body, a police spokesperson told Reston Now. Police conducted a death investigation and said that there was no threat to the public.

Judy Pedersen, a spokesperson for the Fairfax County Park Authority, told Reston Now that the park’s facilities were closed “for a short time on Friday” in connection with the police investigation.

Pederson said as of yesterday (Monday) morning that the park’s facilities have now all reopened.

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger of self-harm, call 911 or the Department of Human Services’ emergency services line at 703-527-4077. 

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Local Police Seek Community Help in Hunters Woods Death Investigation

At a public meeting on Monday (July 29), local police turned to the community for help as it investigates a suspicious death that happened behind Hunters Woods Plaza in late June.

Local law enforcement and Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins met with the community Monday night to discuss the ongoing investigation.

Jose Lorenzo Guillen Mejia, 24, of Reston, was found dead near a walking trail on Sunday, June 24 near a wooded area between Hunters Woods Plaza and Breton Court. Mejia was found with trauma to his upper body and was pronounced dead at the scene.

“Remember, the information you have, regardless of how trivial it may be, could be the critical link in solving this case,” according to handouts distributed during the meeting.

Police encouraged anyone with information about the incident to contact the Major Crimes Bureau at 703-246-7800. Tips can be submitted  by calling 1-866-311-TIPS or by texting “TIP187 plus the messages CRIMES.”

Photo via handout/FCPD

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Hudgins to Hold Community Meeting on Suspicious Death Investigation Near Hunters Woods

Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins is holding a community meeting to provide updates on a suspicious death investigation near Hunters Woods Plaza.

The meeting will be held on Monday, July 29 at 7 p.m. at Reston Community Center Hunters Woods (2310 Colts Neck Road).

Hudgins, police officers from the Fairfax County Police Department’s Reston District Station and representatives from the Hunters woods Neighborhood Coalition will attend the meeting.

Attendees will receive an update on the investigation and discuss how to keep the Hunters Woods area safe.

Jose Lorenzo Guillen Mejia, 24, of Reston, was found dead on June 23 near a path between Hunters Woods Plaza and Breton Court.

Police are investigating the incident as a “suspicious death.” Gunshots were reported moments before police responded to the scene. The state’s Office of the Medical Examiner declined to release the cause and manner of death to Reston Now.

Photo via FCPD

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Police Withhold Autopsy Information in ‘Suspicious’ Death Near Hunters Woods Plaza

Local authorities are declining to releasing an autopsy report on  24-year-old man whose body was found near Hunters Woods Plaza in late June.

A spokesperson for the state’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner said local police requested to withhold information about the cause and manner of death. Local police said the investigation was ongoing.

Jose Lorenzo Guillen Mejia of Reston was found around 1:45 a.m. on June 23 on a path between Hunters Woods Plaza and Breton Court. 

A spokesperson for the Fairfax County Police Department said the department did not have any releasable details about the incident, which is being investigated as a “suspicious” death.

Mejia’s body was found after FCPD investigated reports of multiple gunshots.

Photo by FCPD

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Reston Couple Killed in Jet Skiing Accident

Two Reston residents were killed during a jet skiing accident on South River in Maryland last week.

Elizabeth Howle, 48, and her husband, Jeffrey Sessions, 53, were killed last Wednesday (July 3), according to the Department of Natural Resources.

Their bodies were found in Edgewater, Md. around 5:15 a.m. that day. Firefighters came to the scene after receiving reports about two missing jet skiers in the area.

Officials said that the couple hit a day marker and that they were not wearing a life jacket. Their 2019 Sea-Doo personal watercaraft was partially submerged when it was found.

Sessions was the CEO of Red River, an IT company that contracts in state, local and education markets.

The company issued a statement following the public announcement of Session’s death.

“The entire Red River family mourns this loss. Jeff led our company with intelligence, humor, integrity and passion. The contributions he made to the transformation of our business cannot be measured. Jeff’s impact on Red River, our people and the communities we serve will forever be felt. On behalf of our management team and employees, we extend our deepest sympathies to Jeff’s family.”

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Body Found Near Hunters Woods Shopping Plaza

Police are investigating a suspicious death after a man’s body was found near the Hunters Woods Shopping Plaza.

Fairfax County Police found the body after responding to a call about shots fired around 1:45 am. on Sunday.

The body was found in the woods near a walking trail. No other information was immediately available.

Photo via FCPD/Twitter

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Police Investigating Man’s Death Near Downtown Herndon

Police are investigating the death of a man who was reportedly suffering from “upper body trauma” near downtown Herndon, according to the Herndon Police Department.

Around 1 a.m. today (April 5), police responded to the 600 block of Clearwater Court for a report of an unresponsive man with trauma to his upper body, according to the report. The 45-year-old man was pronounced dead around 2 a.m. at the Reston Hospital Center, police say.

Police say there is no known threat to public safety and are asking for anyone with information regarding the incident at contact Detective Miranda at 703-435-6843.

File photo

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Thursday Morning Notes

Tai chi — The Reston Regional Library will a tai chi fitness class led by local instructor Susan Shen from 6:30-7:30 p.m. tonight. [Fairfax County]

Sinking solution — “Officials have finally repaired a $52 million parking garage along Phase 2 of Metro’s Silver Line expansion that was sinking, but the garage is greatly behind schedule, according to a report. NBC Washington transportation reporter Adam Tuss reported that the parking garage slated for the Innovation Center Station has been repaired and work on it has resumed, but it is now 8-10 months behind schedule.” [Patch]

Reston activist dies — Barbara Freeman, a civic and community activist, died Jan. 26 at her home in Reston at the age of 91. Her daughter told the Washington Post the cause was pneumonia. Freeman volunteered with the Reston Community Association, Reston Interfaith, the League of Women Voters of Fairfax County and youth soccer. [The Washington Post]

Scavenger hunt in Herndon — “During February, teachers at Herndon Community Center Preschool taught their young students about community helpers, the given individuals traditionally seen working in public service roles of safety, health and education.” [Connection Newspapers]

Herndon company acquired — A Texas-based software provider acquired Herndon-based MicroPact, which currently serves NASA, the Social Security Administration and the Justice and Treasury departments, in a $185 million deal. [Washington Technology]

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Crime Roundup: Herndon Woman Arrested in Connection with Husband’s Death

Herndon police arrested a Herndon woman in connection with a domestic assault that caused her husband’s death, according to the Herndon Police Department.

Thuan Tran, 79, was transported to the hospital with life-threatening injuries last Tuesday (Feb. 19) after he was assaulted in his home in the 400 block of Patrick Lane, police say.

Police took his wife, 77-year-old Nhan Pham, into custody at the scene and charged her with malicious wounding.

Tran died on Friday (Feb. 22) “as a result of the injuries sustained during this incident,” according to the report.

Pham is being held without bond at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.

Herndon police detectives are working with the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office to amend the charges, according to the report.

The Fairfax County Police Department’s Reston District Station reported the following incidents in recent days:

LARCENIES:

11900 block of Bowman Towne Drive, cash and document from location

2400 block of Centreville Road, merchandise from business

9800 block of Georgetown Pike, merchandise from business

10800 block of Hunter Gate Way, wallet from vehicle

2300 block of Hunters Woods Plaza, beer from business

1400 block of Lake Fairfax Drive, wallet from residence

12200 block of Laurel Glade Court, property from residence

11900 block of Market Street, merchandise from business

11500 block of Maple Ridge Road, license plate from vehicle

1800 block of Michael Faraday Drive, laptop computer from business

1500 block of Northgate Square, package from residence

Olde Georgetown Court/Georgetown Pike, documents from vehicle

11400 block of Orchard Lane, license plate from vehicle

11100 block of South Lakes Drive, cell phone from location

12000 block of Starboard Drive, license plate from vehicle

12100 block of Sunset Hills Road, merchandise from business

1800 block of Town Center Parkway, cell phone from residence

STOLEN VEHICLES:

None reported

Fairfax County police arrested a man who was living in a vacant Reston apartment.

The property manager for the apartment in the 1800 block of Oracle Way alerted police about the man on Friday, Feb. 15. Police found the man and confirmed he was not a resident, according to the report.

Police arrested and charged 23-year-old Michael Spruill of no fixed address with unlawful entry and destruction of property.

Sheriff’s deputies found a stolen gray car without license plates in Herndon. The car was stolen last Tuesday (Feb. 19) in Sterling, according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office. The case stolen auto case is still under investigation.

Herndon police are investigating their own stolen auto case. A 2008 Grey Pontiac Vibe was reportedly stolen between 11 a.m. and 10 p.m. last Tuesday (Feb. 19) after it was parked in the 1000 block of Knight Lane, and the key was left inside the unlocked car.

Herndon police are investigating an armed robbery that happened in the 1100 block of Elden Street last Monday (Feb. 18). A man demanded personal property from a victim and then ran away when the victim tried to call the police, according to police. The victim’s personal property was recovered.

“The suspect is described as a Hispanic male between 19-21 years of age wearing a black blue hoodie/jacket with the hood up and black pants,” according to the report.

File photo

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FCPD Investigating Possible Weather-Related Deaths Outside Reston Senior Facilities 

Fairfax County detectives are investigating three weather-apparent deaths — two of which happened outside senior facilities near Reston.

The first Reston-area death occurred last Monday (Jan. 14).

Police arrived within six minutes of the initial call at 5:59 p.m. to a CPR in progress at the Brightview Nursing Home (10200 Colvin Run Road), according to the report. The staff at the nursing home told police that 88-year-old resident Joan Ackley had been missing for approximately two-and-a-half hours before she was located outside of the facility.

A week later on Jan. 21, police responded around 3:30 p.m. to a Critical Missing Person call at the Sunrise at Reston Town Center, an assisted living facility at 1778 Fountain Drive.

Staff said that 86-year-old Ida Wolk of Reston had a scheduled wellness check, but hadn’t been seen for almost three hours, according to the report.

During a search of the building and surrounding areas, one the officers “looked out a window in the rear of the building and saw the woman laying outside in the snow,” according to the report.

Police wrapped her in warm blankets and took her inside the facility until the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department arrived and transported her to a local hospital where she later died.

Both cases are active death investigations and are awaiting results from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Police are urging locals to check on vulnerable family and friends and to call the police non-emergency number if they spot anyone who appears confused or inappropriately dressed outside during the cold weather.

More from the Fairfax County Police Department:

Detectives from our Major Crimes Bureau are investigating after what appears to be three weather-related deaths. In the past nine days, officers have been called to three separate incidents involving exposure to the cold weather and we are asking for your help in preventing any further weather-related tragedies.

On Monday afternoon, around 3:30, our officers were sent to a Critical Missing Person call at the Sunrise at Reston Town Center assisted living facility, located at 1778 Fountain Drive.  The staff at Sunrise had a scheduled wellness check for an 86-year-old resident, Ida Wolk, of Reston who hadn’t been seen for almost three hours and could not be located after an extensive search.  Numerous officers started a methodical search of the building and surrounding areas. As one of our officers was clearing the third floor, he looked out a window in the rear of the building and saw the woman laying outside in the snow.  Officers rendered immediate aid; wrapping her in warm blankets and taking her inside the facility until the Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department arrived.  She was transported to a local hospital where she died.  The case remains as an active death investigation, pending the results from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

On Monday morning, around 11:30, our officers were sent to the 9800 block of Clifford Drive for a trespassing call.  A resident had found a homeless person sleeping on top of the washing machines in the laundry room of the apartment complex.  Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department arrived on the scene and pronounced the 47-year-old-man, Kenneth Perez, no fixed address dead.  The case remains as an active death investigation, pending the results from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

On Monday, January 14, at 5:59 p.m., our officers were sent to a CPR in progress at the Brightview Nursing Home, located at 10200 Colvin Run Road, in Reston.  Our officers arrived within six minutes of the initial call. According to the staff at the nursing home, 88-year-old resident Joan Ackley had been missing for approximately two and a half hours.  She was located outside of the facility.  The case remains as an active death investigation, pending the results from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Please check on vulnerable family, friends and neighbors during the cold weather. If you see someone who appears confused and/or not properly clothed for the weather sleeping outside or in a place without heat when temperatures are below freezing, they may be at risk of hypothermia –  please call the police non-emergency number, 703-691-2131. For more information please visit Fairfax County’s Hypothermia Prevention Program.

For ongoing updates, please read our blog and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram at @FairfaxCountyPD.

Map via Google Maps

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Reston Association Honors the Memory of Former President

(Updated at 9:30 a.m. on Jan. 14) The Reston Association is honoring the memory of David Bobzien, a former president of the RA who succumbed to cancer in December.

“David was a great steward of Reston,” RA President Andy Sigle said in the homeowners’ association’s newsletter sent today (Jan. 11).

Sigle highlighted Bobzien’s service to the Reston community. “Much of his time was spent volunteering, be it for his church, Reston Runners, the Reston Triathlon or for the legal community in Virginia,” Sigle said. “His time on the RA board really showed what a professional David was and that whatever he chose to pursue he did it passionately and diligently.”

After serving as a captain in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps at Fort Meade, Md. for four years, Bobzien became an associate with Fitzgerald and Smith in Fairfax, Va. He then served as assistant counsel in the Department of Justice’s Office of Professional Responsibility from 1979 until 1992.

He was the president of the Virginia State Bar from 2004 to 2005 — the first local government attorney to serve in that capacity. He was also a past president of the Local Government Attorneys of Virginia, Lawyers Helping Lawyers, the Virginia Law Foundation and the Fairfax Law Foundation.

He also served as a Virginia State Bar Delegate to the American Bar Association’s House of Delegates, on the ABA Commission on Domestic and Sexual Violence and as chairman of the Virginia Law Foundation’s Virginia CLE Committee.

In June of 2016, he retired after 23 years as the county attorney for Fairfax.

Bobzien was first elected to serve a three-year term as the RA apartment owners’ representative in 2017 before accepting the role as president. In May last year, he resigned from his position as RA president after revealing he has recently been diagnosed with cancer.

“My hope is to get through this so that I can continue to enjoy the people and pathways that [my wife] Cathy and I fell in love with when we moved to Reston in 1975,” Bobzien said at the time of his resignation, the newsletter wrote, adding that he publicly revealed the nature of his illness so that he might help others in similar situations.

Bobzien died at the age of 72 on Dec. 30 at The Johns Hopkins Hospital after battling leukemia, according to his obituary.

He is survived by his wife, two sons, a daughter-in-law, three grandsons, a granddaughter, a sister-in-law, niece and four nephews.

A memorial mass will be held on Friday, Feb. 8, at St. John Neumann Catholic Community (11900 Lawyers Road). The family will receive friends at the church from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. prior to the mass and reception in the church hall. Interment at Arlington National Cemetery will happen at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Bobzien’s name to either the Fairfax Law Foundation or the Virginia Law Foundation.

RA Chief Executive Officer Hank Lynch said the association will contact family members to discuss ways to honor and recognize Bobzien’s service to Reston.

Photo via Reston Association 

This story has been updated

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Fundraising Starts for Family of Killed South Lakes HS Teen

GoFundMe page is raising funds for the family of the South Lakes High School student Marvin Daniel Cruz Serrano, who was struck and killed by a car nearly two weeks ago.

The campaign, which was created on Jan. 5 and activated today (Jan. 10), aims to help Serrano’s family and friends cover funeral costs and any other expenses.

People can also send donations to the Biblica Bautista Emanuel Church at 21770 Beaumeade Circle in Ashburn, Va., which will also disperse all of the funds raised to Serrano’s family.

The GoFundMe page says the following:

Friends and family of Daniel Serrano suffered a heart breaking loss on December 29 when Daniel was killed by a hit and run driver as he was attempting to cross South Lakes Drive in Reston, Virginia. Daniel had just exited the bus he was taking to return home after his work shift at a restaurant. Daniel was 16 years-old and attended South Lakes High School. He is remembered as a kind, generous and loving young man who will be greatly missed by his family and friends. Many have asked where to donate to help with funeral and other expenses. Donations can be made here or to Biblica Bautista Emanuel Church, 21770 Beaumeade Circle, Ashburn, VA 20147. The church will disperse all funds raised.

Reston Now previously reported that Principal Kim Retzer said funeral arrangements are still being planned.

The day after Serrano was killed by a driver while crossing South Lakes Drive, family and friends gathered at the spot for a vigil.

Fairfax County Police are still looking for the driver, who fled the scene, and are asking anyone with information to contact the Crash Reconstruction Unit witness phone line at 703-280-0543 or to submit a tip anonymously through Crime Solvers.

Detectives believe the sedan involved “may possibly be gray or silver, and it likely has significant front end damage.”

Photo via GoFundMe

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Friday Morning Notes

Herndon’s HawkEye 360 aims high — The Herndon-based company behind a space-based civil global intelligence network successfully sent its first three satellites into orbit last month. [Financial Times]

Bike ban ends — Starting next week, Metro will allow bikes on trains during rush hours, which means Metro riders can now bring their bikes onboard at any time. The ban on bikes during rush hours ends on Monday. [WMATA]

Metro crime decreases — Metro recently announced there were fewer serious crimes on the transit system in 2018 than any year since 1999. The decline was driven mostly by a 19 percent reduction in theft. Robberies decreased 6.2 percent and aggravated assaults declined at slightly 3 percent. [WMATA]

County tallies up most traffic fatalities statewide — Fairfax County had the most traffic fatalities in 2018 in Virginia with 44 deaths — an increase from 35 in 2017. On Dec. 30, a 16-year-old South Lakes High School student died after a hit-and-run in Reston. [DCist]

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Vigil Sunday Night Honors South Lakes HS Teen Killed in Hit-and-Run

Family and friends gathered on Sunday evening at the spot where 16-year-old Marvin Daniel Cruz Serrano was killed Saturday.

They placed a white wooden cross with “Daniel” near the intersection where the South Lakes High School sophomore was struck by a vehicle while returning home from work at Reston’s Cafesano, WJLA reported.

The memorial continues to grow with several bouquets of flowers and a stuffed animal for the teen who friends called “kind and selfless.” Serrano leaves behind his mother and a 2-year-old brother.

In a message sent to the school community Monday evening, Principal Kim Retzer said funeral arrangements are still being planned.

Fairfax County Police are still looking for the driver, who fled the scene. Detectives believe the sedan involved “may possibly be gray or silver, and it likely has significant front end damage.”

“At about 5:40, officers responded to the report of a pedestrian hit-and-run crash on South Lakes Drive and Castle Rock Square in Reston,” police said in a press release. “The teen was attempting to cross South Lakes Drive… when he was hit by a vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene.”

The fatal hit-and-run was the 44th road death in Fairfax County in 2018 — the most for any county in Virginia last year, according to DCist.

Police are asking anyone with information about the fatal hit-and-run to contact the Crash Reconstruction Unit witness phone line at 703-280-0543 or to submit a tip anonymously through Crime Solvers.

Photo via Madison Grace Shannon/Facebook

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Police: Construction Worker From Herndon Dies After Fall From Ladder

A construction worker from Herndon died the day before Thanksgiving after succumbing to injuries from a fall in the Ashburn area, according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.

At 10:20 a.m. last Wednesday (Nov. 21), deputies discovered Jose Escalante, 49, had fallen between 10 to 29 feet to the ground from a ladder. He had been doing construction work at a residence on the 22000 block of Dolomite Hills Drive, police said.

“All indications are this was an accident,” a spokesman for the sheriff’s office told Reston Now.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration also responded to the scene, according to police.

Escalante succumbed to his injuries after being taken to a local hospital, police said.

Map via Google Maps

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