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Sully District News

This section contains news from local government entities that may be of value to our community.

For crime prevention articles, please see our new Crime Prevention page.

The dates on each news item listing is the date that information was posted or became available. Follow the link for details of each event.

Click here to see an archive of older items.


Police to Sponsor 3rd Annual K-9 Krawl 5K

In honor of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Fairfax County Police Department's Victim Services Section is again sponsoring a K-9 Krawl; a 5K walk created for you and your dog. The Krawl is designed to heighten public awareness regarding the connection between domestic violence and cruelty to animals. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) emphasizes that pets are not immune from domestic violence as batterers often threaten, injure, maim, or kill their partners' pets for the purpose of revenge or control within relationships.

Plan to bring your canine, or for that matter borrow one from a friend, and join the Fairfax County Police Department, McGruff, the Crime Dog, Gracie, a Fairfax County Police Bomb Dog, and a Fairfax County Police Bloodhound, for this FREE event that includes goodie bags and domestic violence resource tables.

WHEN: Sunday, October 25; check-in at 8:30 a.m., walk at 9 a.m.

WHERE: Fairfax County Government Center (parking lot C) 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, Virginia

For more information about the walk or to register, please call the K-9 Krawl information line at 703-814-7009. For inquiries from the media, call Carroll Ann Ellis, Director of Victim Services, at 703-246-2141.

MPO W. M. BROCK
Crime Prevention Officer
Fairfax County Police
Sully District Station
4900 Stonecroft Blvd.
Chantilly, VA 20151
Office: 703-814-7048
Fax: 703-814-7013
Email


Reaching Out To Protect Your Child from the Realities of Substance Abuse - 10/19/09 from 7 to 8:30 pm

Parents and teens are invited to:
Reaching Out To Protect Your Child from the Realities of Substance Abuse

Hear from local parents whose children have abused alcohol and other drugs, and from professionals about:

  • the signs and symptoms of teen drug abuse
  • actions you can take
  • resources available

When: Monday, October 19th, from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Where: Westfield High School Auditorium
Contact: JCampbellpta@aol.com

Sponsored by

  • PROTECT - Parents Reaching Out to Educate Communities Together, a collaborative effort of Centreville, Chantilly, and Westfield High School PTAs
  • Centreville, Chantilly and Westfield Community Coalitions
  • FCPS Student Safety and Wellness Section
  • Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board ADS
  • Fairfax County Community and Recreation Services
  • Substance Abuse and Addiction Recovery Alliance (SAARA) of Northern Virginia

Free Child Fingerprinting & Property Marking Set for 11/21/09

As discussed at our September 24, 2009 general meeting, the Brookfield Civic Association (BCA) has arranged for free child fingerprinting and free engraving/property marking programs to take place at the Chantilly Regional Library. These programs will occur on November 21, 209 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.

For the fingerprinting program, we will be using the Child Identification Kit produced by Fingerprint America, and provided by the Fairfax County Police Department. See below.

Fingerprint Kit

In attendance will be a Sully District Crime Prevention Officer (CPO) with a marked police cruiser.

Special thanks to Mary Mosher for taking the lead as volunteer coordinator for this project. She has contacted all local areas schools, including Brookfield Elementary, Greenbriar East and West, and Lees Corner School, to inform them that these programs are taking place.

Photographs of your child, to accompany the fingerprint cards, will be offered through BCA for a nominal charge of 25 cents each, to support this program. The photos will be printed on site and can be affixed to the fingerprint cards.

When: Saturday, November 21, 2009 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: Chantilly Regional Library
4000 Stringfellow Rd
Chantilly, VA 20151-2627
Contact: MaryM@doronet.com
Click here for directions


Health Department Town Hall Meeting. Topic: Pandemics and Seasonal Influenza.

Presented by: Dr. Gloria Addo-Aysensu, Director of Health, Fairfax County Health Department
When: Monday, September 28, 2009 at 7:00 pm
Where: Sully District GOvernment Center
4900 Stonecroft Boulevard
Chantilly, Virginia


SALT meeting for persons 60+

The next SALT meeting is Wednesday, September 9th at 11:00 AM

Location: Sully Government Center, 4900 Stonecroft Blvd
RSVP: MPO W.M. Brock (703-814-7048), PFC P.B. Katinsky (703-814-7018), or Carol Burton at 703-378-4614, or email Bcarken@aol.com.

What is SALT? SALT is an acronym for Seniors And Law Enforcement Together. SALT is a nationwide organization that is part of Triad -- which in turn is comprised of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the National Sheriffs' Association, AARP and the general senior population.

Currently Triad/SALT is in at least 40 states. In Virginia it is overseen by the Attorney General's office and the Fairfax County Police Chief has mandated each substation must have a SALT council.

It is for all persons over the age of 60.

Reasons to attend include the fact that the senior population in Fairfax County has grown by almost 80% since the year 2000 and will continue to do so. Seniors are considered among the most vulnerable populations to criminals, often with fewer resources or resiliency with which to fight back.

The more information that is shared, the better able seniors are to confront the criminal element and to function in a fear free environment.

Please come and attend and spread the word!

MPO W. M. BROCK
Crime Prevention Officer
Fairfax County Police
Sully District Station
4900 Stonecroft Blvd.
Chantilly, VA 20151
Office: 703-814-7048
Fax: 703-814-7013
Email


Washington Post article: Helping Hand on Home Security

The following article was sent to us by Officer Brock, and is copyright © 2009 by the Washington Post, printed Saturday, July 18, 2009:

Home Security by By Gabe Goldberg, Special to The Washington Post, Saturday, July 18, 2009

As a first-time homeowner, Brandon Durflinger requested a security visit from Fairfax County police to ensure that he was doing everything possible to protect his home in the Falls Church area.

The officer's recommendations were simple: Durflinger was advised to enhance the lighting, especially near entries, and to use motion sensors that turn on the lights if an intruder approaches. He should put double-key deadbolt locks on any doors that have glass. He should use long wood screws to reinforce deadbolts where the strike plate attaches to the door frame. And police advised him to install latches on windows that allow them to be opened only partway, enough to allow air in, but to keep people out.

"In general, time is on your side," Durflinger said. "The longer it takes for someone to enter your home, the safer you are."

Nationwide, burglaries were the only type of property crime that increased in 2008 compared with 2007, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Burglaries were up 1.3 percent, the FBI reported last month.

All Washington area jurisdictions provide free security inspections and fire-safety checks, or at least checklists of simple and low-cost improvements that residents can make.

Upon request, the Fairfax County Police Department will send an officer to inspect a home and make recommendations. Courtney Thibault, a county police officer, said, "Risks stem from combinations of factors, such as homeowners not realizing how criminals seek to gain access, coupled with poor locks, or even leaving windows or doors open or unlocked." She said security goals should include keeping uninvited people off of one's property and making a break-in as time-consuming and visible as possible.

She also suggested alerting neighbors about travel plans, letting them know about pet sitters or caretakers, and placing an emergency contact list on the refrigerator for reference by police or firefighters.

Heather Hurlock, a crime prevention specialist with the Arlington County Police Department, typically includes a discussion of local crime trends in her visits.

If the homeowner has already reported a crime at the home, Hurlock said, she tailors her approach because a victim probably feels violated and needs reassurance. If there was a break-in, for example, Hurlock addresses the specifics of securing and protecting the area against another entry. If there was a car theft, she determines what was in the vehicle, how burglars gained entry and whether the burglar got access to house keys, which could lead to a break-in.

Hurlock said she checks to see that any weapons in a home are secured. And she advises gun owners on ways to protect children, caregivers or elderly residents from their misuse.

When she encounters something she considers ill-advised -- such as window security bars that could block escape -- she advises homeowners of possible consequences. But she said she cannot insist on their removal from a private residence. If it's a rental or condo apartment, building codes could require their removal.

Some jurisdictions offer programs that help residents take inventory of their valuables, noting the brand, model and serial number. Some will help residents engrave belongings with their names or other identifying information.

Most local fire departments offer similar home visits. Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department spokesman Dan Schmidt said firefighters start by asking about particular homeowner concerns and then address issues such as working alarms, smoke hazards and escape routes.

Families should plan and rehearse escape routes together, he said, adding that it's especially important to involve children in these rehearsals. Residents should pay special attention to more complicated escapes from second stories or lower levels, he said.

Fire department officials regularly recommend that residents install detectors that can alert them to fire, smoke, explosive gas and carbon monoxide.

They said the most reliable ones are powered by the house's electrical current with a battery backup, and that all batteries should be replaced when people reset their clocks in the fall and spring. Some units communicate with each other over electrical wiring, sounding all alarms if one detects a hazard, which is important in large houses or when heating systems are far from bedrooms.

In Prince George's County, fire-prevention experts aren't waiting for an invitation. Lt. Col. Carla D. Blue of the county's fire and EMS department pointed to the Proactive Residential Information Distribution Effort, or PRIDE. Their goal, Blue said, is to "knock on the door of every single-family dwelling over a four-year period to check on fire alarms."

Safety reviews are not restricted to single-family homes. Thibault said Fairfax County police will inspect rental and condo apartments if the management approves the request. It isn't beneficial to make recommendations to a resident if the management company in charge of the building won't make the suggested changes, she said.

In particular, Hurlock suggests that apartment residents check the security of basement lockers and bicycle storage facilities. Prohibiting solicitations also can help.

Aside from providing greater peace of mind, following safety recommendations could have a cash payoff. Bob Noble, a State Farm agent in Springfield, said discounts on homeowners insurance ranging from 5 percent to 20 percent are available, depending on the type of alarm or system installed.


THE VERDICT: HANG UP - Don't Fall for Jury Duty Scam

The following article was sent to us by Officer Brock, and is copyright © 2006, 2009 from the FBI's web site.

The phone rings, you pick it up, and the caller identifies himself as an officer of the court. He says you failed to report for jury duty and that a warrant is out for your arrest. You say you never received a notice. To clear it up, the caller says he'll need some information for "verification purposes"-your birth date, social security number, maybe even a credit card number.

This is when you should hang up the phone. It's a scam.

Jury scams have been around for years, but have seen a resurgence in recent months. Communities in more than a dozen states have issued public warnings about cold calls from people claiming to be court officials seeking personal information. As a rule, court officers never ask for confidential information over the phone; they generally correspond with prospective jurors via mail.

The scam's bold simplicity may be what makes it so effective. Facing the unexpected threat of arrest, victims are caught off guard and may be quick to part with some information to defuse the situation.

"They get you scared first," says a special agent in the Minneapolis field office who has heard the complaints. "They get people saying, 'Oh my gosh! I'm not a criminal. What's going on?'" That's when the scammer dangles a solution-a fine, payable by credit card, that will clear up the problem.

With enough information, scammers can assume your identity and empty your bank accounts.

"It seems like a very simple scam," the agent adds. The trick is putting people on the defensive, then reeling them back in with the promise of a clean slate. "It's kind of ingenious. It's social engineering."

In recent months, communities in Florida, New York, Minnesota, Illinois, Colorado, Oregon, California, Virginia, Oklahoma, Arizona, and New Hampshire reported scams or posted warnings or press releases on their local websites. In August, the federal court system issued a warning on the scam and urged people to call their local District Court office if they receive suspicious calls. In September, the FBI issued a press release about jury scams and suggested victims also contact their local FBI field office.

In March, USA.gov, the federal governmentís information website, posted details about jury scams in their Frequently Asked Questions area. The site reported scores of queries on the subject from website visitors and callers seeking information.

The jury scam is a simple variation of the identity-theft ploys that have proliferated in recent years as personal information and good credit have become thieves' preferred prey, particularly on the Internet. Scammers might tap your information to make a purchase on your credit card, but could just as easily sell your information to the highest bidder on the Internet's black market.

Protecting yourself is the key: Never give out personal information when you receive an unsolicited phone call.

Resources:


Laws Regarding Lawn Mowing Hours

Fairfax County residents should be aware that lawn mowing is NOT PERMITTED before 7:00 AM or after 9:00 PM. Please be considerate of your neighbors.

Should you encounter someone breaking this law and it is disturbing you, please call the Fairfax County Police Non-Emergency number, (703) 692-2131.


New Traffic Pattern on Willard Road/Route 28 Interchange Starting July 6

Beginning July 6, 2009 (weather permitting), traffic on Willard Road at Route 28 will be switched to partial use of the new interchange bridge and Ramps. Expect lane closures and flagging operations in all directions during the switch. In the event of inclement weather, the switch will be rescheduled.

The partial opening will require temporary detours for Northbound Route 28 traffic destined for Willard Road and for Willard Road traffic destined for Southbound Route 28. These detours will utilize the Westfields Boulevard / Route 28 Interchange and parallel roads to Route 28; Stonecroft Boulevard and Lee Road on the west side of Route 28 or Westfields Boulevard and Walney Road on the East side, as shown on the attached detour map. These traffic detours will be in place for approximately 3 weeks, weather permitting, until the final ramps and connections can be completed.

For more information on the project, please see our website at www.28freeway.com.

On behalf of the Project Team, we appreciate your cooperation during construction and look forward to a major improvement in traffic congestion and public safety once the project is complete.


Police Warn Seniors of "Phony" Callers

Several seniors across Fairfax County have been victimized by a phone scam in recent weeks. Thousands of dollars have been lost by these few individuals and many others have nearly lost money.

The scam begins with a phone call from a "grandchild." The caller tells the senior they have been involved in an accident or arrested for DWI. They plead with the senior to wire money and not tell "mom and dad." They also say the money cannot be sent directly to them because their wallet is in the car which was impounded. Instead, they ask for the money to be sent to a "friend" or "attorney." In some cases, another person posing as the "attorney" calls the senior a few minutes later and supports the claims made by the initial caller.

This technique, known as social engineering, is preying on the fact that most seniors will do anything to help a family member. Steps need to be taken to not fall victim of this attack.

If you get a call from anyone asking for immediate money, you need to:

  • Verify who the caller is by asking personal questions.
  • Be cautious; don't give personal information.
  • Call other family members before sending any money.
  • Call the location where the "family member" is being held or treated.
  • Remember, an unsolicited call does NOT guarantee verification.