Crime Roundup: Reston Man Suspected of Robbery During Cell Phone Exchange

A man was robbed during an in-person exchange of a cell phone with an online seller.

Police arrested Monzir Hassan, 18, of Reston for the robbery on Oct. 3 at around 5:53 p.m., according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

Authorities believe Hassan punched the victim in the face when the victim gave him money for the phone. Hassan was arrested after he attempted to escape in a black sedan, police said.

FCPD did not disclose how much cash was stolen.

In a separate incident, a home burglary was reported on Oct. 5 on the 2400 block of Old Farmhouse Road. Police believe someone broke into the home that evening and stole personal property.

FCPD’s Reston District Station also reported the following minor incidents in recent days:

LARCENIES:

1500 block of Autumn Ridge Circle, license plates from vehicle

Carpers Farm Way/Colvin Run Road, batteries from location

11800 block Freedom Drive, camera from location

1700 block of Ivy Oak Square, book bag from car

1800 block of Sycamore Valley Drive, change from car

13300 block of Feldman Place, tools from location

11400 block of Commerce Park Drive, purses from location

2300 block of Fox Fire Court, identification from location

11900 block of Market Street, merchandise from business

1900 block of Reston Metro Plaza, wallet from location

STOLEN VEHICLES:

10700 block of Midsummer Drive, 2007 Honda Accord

Photo via FCPD

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Police Search for Man who Attempted to Rob Herndon Hotel

A man walked into a hotel in Herndon on Monday and demanded cash, police said.

The man entered Candlewood Suites (13485 Sunrise Valley Drive at around 3:42 p.m. on Sept. 30. He implied he had a gun, according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

Police described the suspect as a white man in his 40s, 5’10” and 160 pounds.

No other information about the incident was released.

Anyone with information about any the incident should call 703-691-2131 or 1-866-411-TIPS(8477), or text “TIP187” plus the message to CRIMES(274637).

Photo via Google Maps

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Monday Morning Notes

Sunrise Valley Elementary School Turns 40 — “When Sunrise Valley Elementary School (SVES) was established in September 1978, it was still under construction. Students were initially bused to South Lakes High School to attend classes. The school officially opened its doors on Sept. 4, 1979 with Principal William “Bill” Berkeley Martin welcoming the first 600 students as they walked through the front entrance, according to the SVES website.” [Fairfax County Times]

County Police to Offer Car Seat Safety Checks — The Fairfax County Police Department is hosting several free car seat safety and install events on a monthly basis this year. The Reston District stations will offer reviews by appointment only on Oct. 17, Nov. 14, and Dec. 12. [Fairfax County Police Department]

Metro to Weigh Fare Increase — Metro could raise fares or make other changes next year, a prospect that is drawing pushback from the Metro Board’s Riders’ Advisory Council… The council had a budget briefing and discussion earlier this month, and urged the board to think more creatively about fare changes that could get riders onto the system. [WTOP]

Photo by Jay Westcott

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Crime Roundup: Fairfax Police Investigating Robbery, Assault in Herndon

Fairfax County police are looking for four of the five suspects involved in a robbery and assault in Herndon.

The incident occurred around 8 p.m. on Monday (Sept. 9) in the 13100 block of Parcher Avenue.

“The victim was walking home when five suspects surrounded him,” according to a police report. “They assaulted him and removed personal items.”

Police said that they found one juvenile connected to the robbery after a lookout was provided. The juvenile was charged with robbery.

“The other suspects were described as Hispanic males in their late teens,” police said.

FCPD’s Reston District Station also reported the following incidents in recent days:

LARCENIES:

11700 block of Arbor Glen Way, license plate from vehicle

1800 block of Cameron Glen Drive, property from residence

12900 block of Centre Park Circle, purse from vehicle

12000 block of Creekbend Drive, property from residence

11800 block of Freedom Drive, camera from business

2300 block of Hunters Woods Plaza, liquor from business

2300 block of Hunters Woods Plaza, liquor from business

11900 block of Market Street, jewelry from residence

11600 block of Plaza America Drive, wallet from location

1000 block of Preserve Court, license plate from vehicle

12100 block of Sunset Hill Road, electronic device from business

STOLEN VEHICLES:

None reported

On Saturday, Sept. 7, a man was robbed by two men while walking home. The incident occurred in the 1700 block of Ascot Way around 12:30 a.m.

“The men were described as being in their late teens to early 20s,” police said.

File photo

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Tuesday Morning Notes

Local Firefighter Retires — Local fire and rescue personnel gathered over the weekend at Station 25 in Reston to celebrate the career of Captain Eric Cunningham, who retired after 28 years of service in the county. [Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department]

Furry Recruits for Fairfax County Police Department — “The department has long used dogs to search for illegal drugs or explosives or to track missing people. But Holmes and his fellow recruits, Labrador retrievers and golden retrievers, will have a far different role. Instead of helping to solve or uncover crimes, they will be tasked with helping first responders cope with the stress of the job.” [The Washington Post]

Farmers & Makers Market is Today — The market, which features local farmers and artisans, returns to Reston Town Center today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. [Reston Town Center

Photo via vantagehill/Flickr

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Thursday Morning Notes

Take a Break Concert Series Today — Enjoy a performance by The Rick Whitehead Trio at Lake Anne Plaza today form 7-9 p.m. The event is free and open to all ages. [Reston Community Center]

Reston Built to Live, Work and Play — “Reston is an unincorporated area in Fairfax County, approximately six miles from Washington Dulles International Airport and 17 miles from downtown Washington, D.C. In 2018, Money magazine ranked it as the Best Place to Live in Virginia due to its many parks, lakes, golf courses and bridle paths and noted the shopping, dining and entertainment opportunities in Reston Town Center.” [The Connection]

Unlawful Entry Reported at Ledura Court Home — Police believe someone entered a vacant condominium on the 11700 block of Ledura Court sometime between August 24 and August 27. Nothing was taken. [Fairfax County Police Department]

Photo via vantagehill/Flickr

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Crime Roundup: Request for Cigarettes Turns Violent

A request for a cigarette turned violent on August 22. According to the Fairfax County Police Department, a suspect asked someone for a cigarette. When the victim did not provide a cigarette, the suspect pushed the individual and stole a purse.

The suspect is described as a black teenager with a thin built. The incident happened around 4 p.m.

In a separate incident, police believe two teenagers assaulted a victim and took personal items on August 22. The incident happened near the 2200 block of Millrace Lane at around 1:30 a.m. The suspects were described as Hispanic men. One suspect is thin and the other is heavyset, police said.

In a separate incident, a home on the 13300 block of Misty Dawn Drive was burglarized on August 21. Police believe someone broke into the home overnight and stole personal items.

FCPD’s Reston District Station also reported the following incidents in recent days:

LARCENIES:

11900 block of Bowman Towne Drive, wallet from location

9800 block of Georgetown Pike, merchandise from business

1700 block of Ivy Oak Square, wallet from vehicle

11900 block of Market Street, earrings from business

12100 block of Sunset Hills Road, merchandise from business

STOLEN VEHICLES:

2000 block of Capstone Circle, 2010 Acura TL

2200 block of Double Eagle Court, 2010 Chevrolet Suburban

11600 block of Stoneview Square, 2017 Honda Civic

As we reported last week, Reston Wellness, a massage therapy business was robbed on August 20. Two men took cash from the business and ran away. The investigation is ongoing.

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Missing SLHS Teacher Found Dead Near Crashed Motorcycle

A South Lakes High School teacher who was reported missing earlier this month was identified as the motorcyclist found dead Thursday near Fairfax County Parkway.

Simon Chang, 39, of Ashburn, was a special education teacher and a member of the boys basketball coaching staff. He was reported missing on August 16.

The news comes just days before students return to SLHS. Kim Retzer, the school’s principal, wrote the following message to parents about Chang’s passing:

The South Lakes High School community is mourning the death of one of our teachers, Simon Chang. As a special education teacher and member of the boys basketball coaching staff, Mr. Chang was as a beloved member of the Seahawk family. He will be remembered for his positivity and dedication to our staff and students.  He will be greatly missed. We have been in contact with Mr. Chang’s family to offer our condolences and support. 

We feel it is important for you to be aware of this situation so that you can provide any support your children might need.  Our counselors and an FCPS crisis team will be available Monday to meet with any students or staff who need assistance.  All staff will have information on where to direct students who need support. We are taking every step we can to be responsive to the needs of our students and families.  Please reach out if there are ways we can support you.  

Our thoughts are with Mr. Chang’s family and friends during this difficult time.

Police believe Chang was riding a motorcycle from Lee Highway to northbound Fairfax County Parkway when the motorcycle ran off the shoulder of the ramp and drove into a wooded area near a pond.

Chang’s body was found on Thursday, August 23 after a groundskeeper found the wreckage.

Detective do not believe other vehicles were involved in the accident. It is unclear if speed or alcohol were factors.

Photo via Loudoun County Government

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Poll: Should We Bring Back a Monthly Crime Map for the Reston District Station?

In addition to a weekly crime report, Reston Now published monthly maps detailing all major crime incidents reported by the Fairfax County Police Department”s Reston District Station.

A example of a map from July 2017 is below.

We would love to know if you would like us to restart this monthly map. All reports of crime incidents are pulled from daily information provided by FCPD.

Photo via FCPD

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Armed Men Rob Massage Therapy Business at Gunpoint

Two men robbed a massage therapy business at gunpoint on Tuesday (August 20).

Police believe the armed men demanded money after displaying a handgun at Reston Wellness, a massage therapist at 11250 Roger Bacon Drive.

The incident happened around 4:55 p.m.

The suspects were described as Hispanic or Middle Eastern men in their early 20s. The employee who reported the incident police said the men took an undisclosed amount of cash and ran away.

Photo via Google Maps

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Crime Roundup: Boys with Gun Take Bikes in Reston

Two juveniles — one of whom was armed with a gun — took the bicycles of two other juveniles in Reston last week.

The victims were walking near the intersection of North Shoer Drive and Wainwright Drive at around 8 p.m. on Thursday, August 15 when two other juveniles demanded their bicycles at gunpoint.

Police believe the suspects are boys. One was wearing a blue shirt and black shorts and the other was wearing a white shirt with black dots.

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

LARCENIES:

6300 block of Alderman Drive, wallet from location

1700 block of Clubhouse Road, property from business

13300 block of Fones Place, backpack from vehicle

2300 block of Hunters Woods Plaza, cell phone from location

2500 block of John Milton Drive, liquor from business

2100 block of Whisperwood Glen Lane, wallet from location

1800 block of Wiehle Avenue, bag from location

STOLEN VEHICLES:

None reported

In a separate incident, a Reston woman was charged with driving while intoxicated and refusal to provide a breath test on August 17.

Alexandra Gilmore, 33, was arrested on near Hogback Mountain Drive, according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.

Photo via FCPD

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Crime Roundup: Herndon Man Arrested in Assault Incident

Town of Herndon police arrested a resident for allegedly assaulting someone.

Police said that a fight broke out among a group of people shortly after 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 1, in the 1100 block of Elden Street.

“The victim sustained lacerations to his hand when he attempted to break up the fight,” according to the police report. “He was transported to Reston Hospital where he was treated for his injuries.”

Police arrested and charged 33-year-old Jorge Daniel Cruz Martinez with aggravated assault, narcotics violation, and drunkenness.

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

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

LARCENIES:

1800 block of Cameron Glen Drive, bicycle from residence

12700 block of Fantasia Drive, package from residence

13300 block of Glen Echo Circle, bicycle from location

4100 block of Hummer Road, merchandise from business

1900 block of Isaac Newton Square, wallet from location

1400 block of Lake Fairfax Drive, cash from location

1400 block of Lake Fairfax Drive, wallet and cell phone from location

1800 block of Library Street, cell phone from location

3300 block of South Jefferson Street, merchandise from business

12000 block of South Lakes Drive, tools from vehicle

11700 block of Sunrise Valley Drive, electronic devices from vehicle

11700 block of Sunrise Valley Drive, laptop bag and jewelry from vehicle

12000 block of Sunrise Valley Drive, purse from vehicle

1600 block of Reston Parkway, merchandise from business

STOLEN VEHICLES:

None reported

In a separate incident, Herndon police are investigating a robbery that happened on Monday, July 29, around 11 p.m. in the 12 block of Herndon Parkway.

Police said that two men robbed a man who was walking home and ran off with the victim’s wallet towards Parcher Avenue.

“The suspects are Hispanic males; one was wearing a mask, shorts, and white sneakers and the other was wearing a mask, pants, and white sneakers,” police said.

File photo

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Local Pilot Body Camera Program for Police Yields Mixed Results

The results of an analysis on the county’s pilot body-worn camera program are officially in. Researchers at American University found that the six-month pilot project could have limited results in enhancing policy-community relations increasing police legitimacy and accountability.

In a 119-page report that uses survey data from residents and police officers, researchers found that people had “modest expectations” about the necessity and benefit of body-worn cameras.

Less than half of survey respondents and interviewees noted that the devices would reduce complaints against officers, improve legitimacy or increase police accountability. Police officers also noted that it was unlikely that the devices would change their behavior or how community members responded to the police department.

“If the decision is not to deploy them, the high regard for the department will lead nearly everyone to conclude that it was the right decision for all,” the report states.

Researchers did not find any statistically significant changes in officer behavior and performance once the devices were deployed. They also found that respondents were unconvinced that the cameras would lessen the use of force by police.

The pilot program went into effect in March last year after Fairfax County Police Chief Edwin Roessler and a police commission suggested the idea. Last year, 191 cameras were deployed at the Mason, Mount Vernon and Reston District Station, yielding more than 12,000 hours of video.

The police department found that judges, clerks of the courts and staff from the office of the public defendant generally supported the program.

If the program is implemented, the county would deploy 1,210 body-worn cameras to all operational police officers over five years. The Reston, Mason and Mt. Vernon district stations would be the first to get the cameras.

The program could cost nearly $30 million over a five-year contract period. The county would have to hire staff to manage the technical aspects of the equipment, improve station infrastructure and ensure public records laws were being followed.

Additionally, the Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney would need nearly $3.1 million for 23 positions to help review the footage, roughly $773,000 to help the court system use the videos generated by the cameras in the court-rooms, and $150,000 to boost storage capacity to capture video evidence.

The county still has to mull several issues:

  • The impact of the devices on prosecutors, public defenders and the court system is entirely unclear
  • The Commonwealth Attorney’s Office cannot accommodate planned growth
  • Whether or not cameras should be given to School Resources Officers
  • Training requirements for the defense bar
  • The possibility that future contract costs could increase

The report will be presented to the county’s Public Safety Committee today (July 9).

Photo via FCPD

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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: Former Herndon HS Teacher Recorded Illicit Videos of Students in School

A former Herndon High School teacher recorded dozens of illicit videos of students with hidden cameras around the school for more than a year, according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

During a news conference on Wednesday (June 19), police said Raphael Schklowsky, 36, of Reston will face additional charges in connection with filming multiple students. Schklowsky is currently in jail due to previous charges for unlawful filming and possessing child pornography.

Maj. Ed. O’Carroll, commander of FCPD’s Major Crimes Bureau, said that FCPD has not determined the new charges yet. He says female students were filmed while undressing.

“The case remains active. Detectives have been working diligently on this case and our other important cases to bring justice and closure,” he said.

So far, police contacted nine people after identifying them from photos of videos taken by the former drama teacher. Videos were taken between May 2017 and June 2018, according to O’Carroll.

Some photos were taken outside the area, including New York, O’Carroll said. Authorities in other jurisdictions are conducting their own investigations.

Charges against Schklowsky have slowly built up as police discover new details about the investigation. Previously, police discovered over 3,500 videos on various devices.

At a hearing in May, he was charged with 20 felony counts of possession of child pornography and one felony charge of unlawful filming.

He has been on leave since his arrest, according to a spokesperson for Fairfax County Public Schools. His next court hearing is scheduled for Aug. 6.

Any individual who think they may have been recorded by Schklowsky should call the police at 703-246-7800.

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