By Todd Richissin
Patch has 31 sites in Virginia and Washington. Here are some of the top stories from around the region this week.
Mother Arrested After 7-Year-Old Found Wandering Streets: A Manassas-area woman is accused of letting her 7-year-old wander the streets around his home unsupervised. The 29-year-old woman, of the 8800 block of Oak Hollow Court, is charged with felony child abuse, Prince William County Police reports show. Patch isn't releasing her name to protect the identity of the victim.
One Injured in Explosion Near George Mason’s Prince William County Campus: One person was injured in a late-morning explosion in a building across from the George Mason University Prince William Campus, emergency officials said. An explosion was heard around 11:33 a.m. Monday at Utron Kinetics at 9441 Innovation Drive in the Manassas area of Prince William County, said Kim Hylander, a spokeswoman for the the county's Department of Fire and Rescue.
Reunion: Inova Staff Reunited With Former Intensive Care Babies: Inova Fair Oaks Hospital in Fairfax held a NICU Reunion on Sept. 22 for the children who "graduated" from the hospital's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, a ward reserved for premature and very sick babies. Children who were in the Fair Oaks intensive care up to six years ago were invited to the event at Navy Elementary School.
What's Up with King's Buffet in Kingstowne? After months of being closed for renovations, the sign for King's Buffet — the Asian restaurant located at Kingstowne Shopping Center — has been removed from the building.
Police: Man Threatened with Handgun, Robbed in Alexandria: A 29-year-old man walking in the 8400 block of Blankenship Street around 12:15 a.m. Sept. 21 was reportedly robbed by a group of men, according to Fairfax County police.
Virginia’s First Openly Gay Elected Official Weds Longtime Partner in DC: Arlington County Board Vice Chairman Jay Fisette and his longtime partner, Bob Rosen, celebrated their 30th anniversary this month in one of the most special ways possible: They were married. Fisette in 1997 became Virginia's first openly gay elected official.
Bare-Knuckle Brawl: McAuliffe, Cuccinelli Debate in McLean 'Mud Bath': Bare-knuckle boxing may be in Ken Cuccinelli's blood, but both he and rival Terry McAuliffe took their gloves off Wednesday night for a nasty debate at the Capital One Conference Center in McLean. Throughout the night, each candidate was able to maintain their regular talking points, despite being regularly pressed by moderator Chuck Todd, pausing only to take a breath or attack the other.
Oakton High School Runner Featured in Running Times Magazine: Oakton High School’s Allie Klimkiewicz has been named High School Athlete of the Week by Running Times magazine. The 16-year-old cross country star was praised for her recent win at the Knights Crossing Invitational in 18:10 for 5K. The magazine praised her mental toughness and athleticism.
‘Reinventing Pentagon City’ — Arlington Board OKs PenPlace Development: The Arlington County Board last weekend took a series of votes to allow for a massive mixed-use redevelopment of about 10 acres in Pentagon City, projects that will be completed over 15 to 20 years and bring up to 1.8 million square feet of office space, 50,000 square feet of retail and 300 hotel units to the area. The PenPlace plan also allows for the option of adding 300 residential units and, potentially, a new secure facility. The development ties into the streetcar line planned to connect Pentagon City with the Skyline/Bailey's Crossroads area of Fairfax County.
Plan for Massive Tyson's West Development Approved:Tysons West, a mixed-use development to include 1.7 million square feet of housing, office and retail space has been officially approved by Fairfax officials. The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved plans for the development this week. The project, by Maryland-based developer the JBG Cos., will add on to the newly opened 24-Hour Fitness and urban-style Walmart. The development will be walking distance to the Tysons Spring Hill Metro Station.
Transformer Explosion in Reston: Residents were startled and Reston Parkway and Sunset Hills traffic was snarled on Tuesday when a power transformer suddenly exploded near the Carlton House Condos in Reston. The smoke reached about seven stories into the air at one point. The building was briefly evacuated and a Dominion Virginia Power employee suffered minor injuries.
WSHS Students Remember Kenny Diaz: Some Woodbridge Senior High School students are wearing red to honor Vikings linebacker Kenny Diaz, who was fatally stabbed in Woodbridge on Sept. 21.
Multiple Arrests in Stabbing of Woodbridge Teen: Police have arrested two more suspects in a murder investigation into the death of 18-year-old Woodbridge High School Vikings linebacker Kenny Diaz, who was stabbed to death on Sept. 21 at Marumsco Acre Lake Park in Woodbridge, Prince William County Police spokesperson Jonathan Perok said. Six suspects were arrested previously.
Judge Orders National Slavery Museum Property Sold: A Circuit Court judge on Sept. 25 ordered the National Slavery Museum's Fredericksburg property be sold for unpaid taxes. An auction could take place within 30 days. The planned museum, which was never built due to lack of funding, owes the city of Fredericksburg more than $350,000 in unpaid taxes. Museum founder Gov. L. Douglas Wilder is considering an appeal of the judge's decision or a second bankruptcy filing.
1 Dead After Police Pursuit in Fairfax City: A 14-year-old D.C. boy is dead after a pursuit by a Virginia state trooper ended in a horrific crash in Fairfax City shortly before 1 a.m. Sept. 21 morning. Marquette Bell was riding as a passenger in a car driven by his unidentified and unlicensed 15-year-old friend. Virginia State Police representatives said the car was driving erratically and recklessly, prompting a trooper to put on its lights. When the trooper attempted to pull the car over, it sped away. The driver ran a red light at nearly 100 mph and crashed into another car that entered the intersection with a green light. The suspect, as well as the driver of the car he hit, both survived with non-life-threatening injuries, but the suspect vehicle’s passenger, Marquette, died at the scene.
Walgreens Pushes Back Opening Date for New Annandale Store: Annandale residents who are anxiously waiting for the new Walgreens to open at 4300 Backlick Road will have to wait just a little bit longer. The store is now aiming to open sometime in November.
Public Hearings for 'Enclave of Burke' Development Deferred to October: Residents hoping to comment on Madison Homes' application to build more than 10 homes in Burke will have to wait a little longer to submit their feedback. Both scheduled public hearings for the proposed development have been deferred until October. The rezoning application, which was filed by Madison Homes earlier this year, asks to build 13 single-family detached homes on 5.28 acres of land on Spring Lake Drive in Burke adjacent to Calvary Christian Church. The development is referred to as the "Enclave of Burke."
Police Investigating Kidnapping in Georgetown: Traffic was backed up in Georgetown Thursday morning as police investigated a reported kidnapping in the 1500 block of Foxhall Road. A woman called the Metropolitan Police Department at about 7:10 a.m. Thursday to report that she had been abducted, according to Metropolitan Police Department Spokesman Araz Alali. She told police that she met the suspect in Baltimore. Alali said the "elements of the crime" took place in DC. Alali could not say whether or not the woman was from Baltimore.
Local Youth Hockey Player Recovering From 'MRSA' Infection; Other Parents and Athletes Cautioned: Representatives from the Northern Virginia Scholastic Hockey League sent a letter to local families informing them that one of their teen players had been rushed to the hospital last weekend with a serious MRSA infection - a drug-resistant bacterial infection of the skin, which broke out in a small wound on the player’s foot. Coaches, parents and players are cautioned about MRSA, which is easily contracted and spread in sports situations and schools where people are in close-quarters and may share objects like equipment and towels and may sweat.
Herndon Town Council Unanimously Approves First Phase of W&OD Trail Lighting: After hearing comments from residents, the Herndon Town Council unanimously approved a project that will light a 3,200-foot stretch of the W&OD Trail which passes through downtown Herndon. Thirty-nine light poles will be installed along a stretch from Ferndale Avenue to Van Buren Street. The town coordinated with the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority, which owns the trail, and obtained a matching grant worth $200,000 from the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation.
Work Begins on Potomac Yard Giant Grocery Store: Construction began last week on a six-story, mixed-use development in Potomac Yard that will include 253 residential units and a 69,000-square foot Giant grocery store. The development is being built just off Route 1 and north of Alexandria Fire Station 209 on Main Line Boulevard between E. Glebe Road and Seaton Avenue. The mixed-use project will be located near the town center of Potomac Yard and have two-and-a-half levels of underground parking for residents and grocery store customers. Twelve of the residential units will be reserved at an affordable rate.
Council Approves Permits for New Old Town Gelato Shop: Alexandria City Council approved plans on Sept. 21 to open a gelato shop in a townhouse building located at 111 S. Payne St. in Old Town. Benjamin and Perla Umansky have been developing their own gelato recipe for several years, having learned from experts in the United States and Argentina. Along with gourmet gelato, the Umanskys will offer lactose-free as well as sugar-free varieties. All gelato will be produced on-site.
SCC Permits Loudoun to Intervene in Greenway Investigation: The Virginia State Corporation Commission granted Loudoun County permission to intervene in an investigation of Dulles Greenway operators TRIP II, a subsidiary of Australia-based Mcquarie Group. Supervisors earlier this month voted unanimously to request permission to intervene in the investigation requested by Del. David Ramadan. The investigation aims to reduce tolls along the Greenway, which are around $5 each way during rush hour. Tolls are the same regardless of how far motorists travel on the Greenway.