Alexandria, VA

No one was injured after shots were fired near the Braddock Road metro station on Monday night (October 26), according to the Alexandria Police Department.

The incident occurred at around 9 p.m. in the 700 block of North West Street. The area is near public housing, the Braddock Road Metro station and a number of local businesses.

A parked car was struck and no suspects were arrested, police spokesman Lt. Courtney Ballantine told ALXnow.

Earlier this month, police asked the public for help in identifying suspects after a surge in gun-related incidents. There have been a number of violent incidents in the city over the last several days, including a shootout that left a suspect dead and an officer injured on Monday. Two people were also shot last week and there were two robberies.

Map via Google Maps

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Alexandria is warning residents that toxic marijuana laced with “unusual substances” has led to four recent overdoses in Prince William County.

“One person died, and the other three were revived with Narcan (naloxone), suggesting that the marijuana may have been mixed with opioids,” the city said in a release. “While use of any illegal drug is dangerous, City officials are urging residents to be especially cautious given these recent overdoses.”

There have been 10 fatal opioid overdoses in Alexandria this year, and 62 non-fatal overdoses as of August 25, according to the city.

Virginia decriminalized marijuana on July 1, and there is a civil fine of $25 for possessing up to an ounce.

The Alexandria Health Department offers Narcan for free by calling 703-746-4888, and the medication will be shipped for free for residents who contact the city’s opioid response coordinator at [email protected]

According to the city:

If you or someone you care about needs help with addiction, call 703.746.3636 (Virginia Relay 711), 24 hours a day. Individuals who do not live in Alexandria can find treatment options at samhsa.gov or by calling 800.662.HELP (4357).

If you have information regarding past overdoses, call the Alexandria Police Department at 703.746.4444.

For life-threatening situations, call or text 911 immediately.

For more information on the opioid crisis and how the City is responding, including a printable flyer on overdose symptoms and how to get help, visit  alexandriava.gov/Opioids.

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A 43-year-old Alexandria man was killed in a car crash early Monday morning in the 2500 block of N. Van Dorn Street.

DWarren Brown died at the scene of the crash. Police responded to the single vehicle accident at around 1:44 a.m. and said that an initial investigation indicates that Brown lost control and drove off the road.

Brown was driving northbound on N. Van Dorn Street, and he crashed after driving on a long straightaway that runs parallel to Interstate 395. The speed limit in the curvy area where Brown crashed is 25 miles per hour.

The APD Crash Reconstruction Team is investigating the incident, and anyone with information is asked call investigator Jordan Young at 703-746-1816.

Map via Google Maps

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Where are Alexandrians getting COVID-19 these days?

A majority of recent coronavirus cases in Alexandria might be the result of contacts at home, indoor gatherings and eating out, according to the Alexandria Health Department.

“The activities an individual participant reported may or may not have been the sources of COVID-19 exposure for that individual; however, they do demonstrate trends and suggest common links for people who become ill,” according to AHD.

The department interviewed 422 city residents with the virus from September 21 to October 19, and discovered the following trends:

  • 44% lived with someone who recently had COVID-19
  • 25% went to their workplace
  • 10% went to a public event, social gathering, or entertainment activity, with most gatherings occurring indoors
  • 7% travelled outside of the Alexandria/D.C. area, with most travel in the U.S.
  • 7% went to a restaurant or bar, with two-thirds eating indoors and one-third eating outdoors

The Health Department recommends that residents avoid travel as much as possible, limit gatherings, wear face masks and take precautions when a family member tests positive for the virus.

There have been 74 confirmed COVID-related deaths in Alexandria, and there are or have been 4,248 cases since the pandemic started in March, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

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Morning Notes

Beyer Says Trump Has Given Up on COVID-19 — “225,000 Americans dead as the country hurtles uncontrollably towards 9 million cases with a President who has surrendered to the virus.” [Twitter]

Community Meeting Next Month on Northern Virginia Juvenile Detention Center — “Juvenile incarceration rates across the nation have declined over the last decade, including in the three jurisdictions that use the center.” [City of Alexandria]

Alexandrian Starts Custom Crayon Company — “Cosmic Crayon launched in September 2019. The first molds she purchased were letters. She began making marbled names and then eventually branched out to other shapes, like dinosaurs, rock-ets and teddy bears.” [Alexandria Living]

Carlyle Halloween Festivities Farmer’s Market & Concert is Friday — “There will be trick-or-treating on-site so kids will be able to take candy home. Bring your already-carved pumpkin to enter it in the Pumpkin Carving Challenge.” [Zebra]

Today’s Weather — “Mostly cloudy skies (in the morning). High 66F. Winds NNW at 5 to 10 mph. Cloudy (in the evening). Slight chance of a rain shower. Low 53F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney — “Our office is hiring! If you know someone who would be interested in being part of a reform-minded prosecutor’s office that is dedicated to the values of transparency, fairness, rehabilitation, and diversity, please let them know about this opening. Our office has some of the finest litigators in the state and we have a proud legacy of working to help keep the community safe, while also striving to make the justice system more just. Come join a fantastic team!” [Facebook]

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The Wrought, Knit, Labors, Legacies art installation at Waterfront Park will be taken down next month at Waterfront Park, and the public is being asked to weigh in on a proposal to temporarily move the installation outside of Old Town Pool (1609 Cameron Street).

The four figurative sculptures by Olalekan Jeyifous are meant to convey Alexandria’s history with African American quilting and textile designs, and was unveiled in March. The installation is the second to occupy the public art space at Waterfront Park, after the Mirror Mirror installation in 2019.

A community meeting on the topic will be held on Thursday, October 29, from 7-8 p.m.

No replacement installation has yet been made public.

The full message from the city on the move is below the jump.

Read More

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The Alexandria Police Department is investigating two armed robberies that occurred over the weekend.

At around 8:30 p.m. on Friday, October 23, a male juvenile was robbed of personal belongings in the 3400 block of Mount Vernon Avenue in Del Ray. The victim was not injured and police did not provide information on the suspect or if a weapon was involved.

The Del Ray incident occurred a few hours before a man was shot five blocks away by a security guard at 3901 Mount Vernon Avenue.

At around 3 a.m. on Saturday, October 24, a man was robbed of personal belongings and assaulted by two suspects at gunpoint in the 100 block of S. Bragg Street in the West End. Again, police provided no suspect description.

West End and Del Ray Maps via Google Maps

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With photos, signs, artwork and letters, the City of Alexandria is documenting Alexandria’s response to the death of George Floyd.

The Office of Historic Alexandria (OHA) and the Alexandria Black History Museum have been collecting artifacts for months and are asking for photos from the public.

“George Floyd’s life mattered,” wrote Audrey Davis, director of the Alexandria Black History Museum. “His life story matters. His murder matters. He became part of a horrible trinity on May 25th when his killing came shortly after the murders of Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery. This trinity is just the most recent example of America’s horrible legacy of racial terror deaths.”

Floyd was killed by police in Minneapolis on May 25, and the event sparked outrage throughout the country, including in Alexandria. Portions of the city were shut down during the summer for protests and vigils, and the event even turned the spotlight on the Alexandria Police Department.

Due to the pandemic, donated objects will not be accepted until city museums reopen, according to OHA.

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There are or have been 4,230 total cases of COVID-19 in Alexandria, which is an increase of 107 cases since last Monday, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

There have also been 325 total hospitalizations in the city (an increase of two hospitalizations since this time last week). The death count stands at 74 with two probable cases associated with the virus.

The Alexandria Health Department says that one in 12 infected Alexandrians have been hospitalized.

Across Virginia, there have been 3,581 deaths and there are or have been 174,275 cases of the virus. There have been 2.53 million PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests and the state’s seven-day positivity rate is at 5%.

Demographic, Age and Sex Breakdown

Of the 74 deaths, 96% have been residents above the age of 50.

Latino residents have the most infections with 1,939 reported cases, followed by Black residents with 877 cases, white residents with 850 cases, Asian or Pacific Islander residents with 158 cases, 96 cases classified as “other” and four native American cases.

There are or have been 2,193 women (with 37 deaths) and 2,024 men (with 37 deaths) in Alexandria with the virus. The only age groups that have not experienced a death so far are children and teenagers.

  • 80+    — 31 deaths, 128 cases (Three new cases)
  • 70-79 — 21 deaths, 146 cases (Three new cases)
  • 60-69 — Five deaths, 314 cases (15 new cases)
  • 50-59 — 14 deaths, 531 cases (24 new cases)
  • 40-49 — One death, 730 cases (37 new cases)
  • 30-39 — One death, 956 cases (29 new cases)
  • 20-29 — One death, 817 cases (51 new cases)
  • 10-19  — Zero deaths, 301 cases (Nine new cases)
  • 0-9     — Zero deaths, 296 cases (16 new cases)

Testing Update

There have been 49,808 COVID tests administered in the city so far and 5,166 antibody tests. The city’s seven-day positivity rate is now at 4.9%.

  • Arlington County has 4,562 cases, 154 deaths and a 3.3% seven-day positivity rate
  • Fairfax County has 23,695 cases, 621 deaths and a 4.2% seven-day positivity rate
  • Loudoun County has 7,784 cases, 130 deaths and a 4.5% seven-day positivity rate

Need a test? Inova is now offering vehicle-side and walk-in testing services for diagnosing flu and COVID-19, at the Victory Center parking lot (5001 Eisenhower Avenue).

Cases By ZIP Code

The areas of the city with the leading number of cases are the 22304, 22305 and 22312 ZIP codes, which include the West End and Arlandria, Potomac Yard and Potomac West neighborhoods.

Some of the areas share jurisdictions between Alexandria and Arlington and Fairfax Counties:

  • 22301 — 156 cases, 4,198 people tested (Estimated population 15,171)
  • 22302 — 454 cases, 7,435 people tested (Estimated population 20,238)
  • 22304 — 1,334 cases, 14,746 people tested (Estimated population 54,003)
  • 22305 — 848 cases, 5,869 people tested (Estimated population 16,095)
  • 22311 — 771 cases, 7,021 people tested (Estimated population 16,898)
  • 22312 — 1,067 cases, 8,616 people tested (Estimated population 6,901)
  • 22314 — 454 cases, 9,811 people tested (Estimated population 47,826)

Photo via CDC/Unsplash

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Alexandria Police are investigating the shooting of two people in separate incidents over the weekend in Alexandria.

A juvenile was shot in the leg on Friday night, October 23, in the 1800 block of Diagonal Road in Old Town, according to police. The teenage victim was taken to the hospital by his mother, and police found shell casings at the scene.

The suspects in the case are not known, and police incorrectly tweeted that no one was injured.

The second incident occurred a few hours later on Saturday morning, October 24, in Arlandria. After midnight, a security guard got into a fight with a patron at Lilian’s Restaurant at 3901 Mount Vernon Avenue. The patron was shot in the upper body and was taken to the hospital in serious condition, according to police.

The security guard was not charged and the incident is under investigation.

Maps of Old Town and Mount Vernon Avenue via Google Maps

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Morning Notes

Beyer Denounces Trump Over COVID Stance — “Trump accuses frontline medical heroes fighting to keep us safe of fraud and tries to erase the loss of Americans who died in the pandemic — all in a pathetic attempt to make his own incompetence seem less horrific than it is. Just disgusting.” [Twitter]

City Unveils Memorial Walkway — “At Charles Houston Recreation Center to dedicate the Parker-Gray Memorial Walkway, recognizing the 100th Anniversary of Parker-Gray School. Generations of educators ensured that those ignored by government and society could receive an education and change the world!” [Facebook]

Mayor: Thousands Vote in Alexandria Over Weekend — “Yesterday, 2,411 Alexandrians voted at our 4 locations. So far, 25,364 Alexandrians have voted in-person. 23,682 voters have mailed in ballots that have been counted. A little over 11K ballots have been mailed and not yet returned. In-person early voting resumes tomorrow!” [Twitter]

Refinements Continue for ‘The Heritage’ Development — “It looks like The Heritage Apartment project design will need to undergo additional changes before receiving approval from the Board of Architectural Review (BAR).” [Alexandria Living]

Revolutionary War Soldiers Remembered — “On a partly cloudy day in Alexandria, Virginia, the George Washington Chapter Virginia Society of the Sons of the American Revolution gathered to honor fallen American Revolutionary War soldiers John Longden, John Sloan, and Joseph Smith.” [Zebra]

Today’s Weather — “Cloudy early with partial sunshine expected late. High 68F. Winds light and variable. Partly cloudy skies during the evening will give way to cloudy skies overnight. Low around 55F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Deputy Clerk — “Duties include preparing detailed court documents in accordance with established guidelines, automated case management system data entry, scheduling matters for court, preparing correspondence, and filing court documents, daily docket preparation, attending the counter, assessing fines and costs, receipting payments. Must be able to multitask and assume additional responsibilities as assigned by management.” [Indeed]

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This was a big week for Alexandria.

Our top story this week was the Alexandria School Board’s decision to reopen schools for students with disabilities, while the future reopening of school for elementary, middle and high schoolers remains in doubt.

Superintendent Gregory Hutchings, Jr. said that the only feasible option for reopening schools — based on distancing and staffing constraints — would be for students to rotate to in-person schooling only one day per week. Hutchings also appeared on CNN and said that ACPS is not likely to fully reopen until there is a vaccine for the coronavirus.

We also reported that the Alexandria City Council approved plans for Virginia Tech’s Innovation Campus and the North Potomac Yard development plan, virtually paving the way for the college to open its doors to hundreds of students by 2024.

“This is a very significant set of decisions for the city, and is really going to shape, not just a portion of our city, but really the entirety of our city for a long period of time to come,” said Mayor Justin Wilson.

On the coronavirus front, there are now 75 deaths in Alexandria and there are now or have been more than 4,100 cases since the pandemic began in March. Latino residents continue to lead the case count.

Governor Ralph Northam and Virginia Transportation Secretary Shannon Valentine were in the city on Monday to unveil a team of new zero emission DASH electric buses.

We also reported that the City Council unanimously approved naming the 1000 block of Montgomery Street in Old Town “Earl F. Lloyd Way” in honor of the first Black man to ever play in the National Basketball Association.

Restaurant-wise, we spoke with one of the owners of a pizza and burger joint that is taking over the former location of Pizzeria Paradiso on lower King Street. The Chewish Deli is also now open in Old Town, and the owner of Del Ray Boccato says that his gelato shop will soon open.

Additionally, more than 17 people participated in our weekly poll. With the November 3 election around the corner, this week we asked about voting plans, and 65% of respondents voted by mail/absentee, 31% plan to vote on election day, and 4% are not voting.

Here are ALXnow’s top stories this week in Alexandria:

  1. School Board Shelves Plan to Reopen Schools in 2021, Students with Disabilities Transitioning Back Next Month
  2. City Releasing Torpedo Factory Draft Action Plan Today
  3. City Council Approves Virginia Tech Innovation Campus and North Potomac Yard Development Plan
  4. Alexandria Student Called N-Word in Online Forum, and Not By Another Student
  5. Republican Jeff Jordan Running Uphill Battle Against Incumbent Rep. Don Beyer
  6. The Chewish Deli Opens New Location in Old Town
  7. One Arrested After Attempted Armed Robbery in Alexandria’s West End
  8. Report: ACPS Superintendent Sends Child to Bishop Ireton High School
  9. Female Suspect Flees, Nothing Taken in Attempted Old Town Bank Robbery
  10. Alexandria and Arlington Want a New Future for the Northern Virginia Juvenile Detention Center
  11. Alexandria Courthouse Deep Cleaned After Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

Have a safe weekend!

Photo via ACPS/Facebook

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