After more than 40 years as a cold case, charges were brought against a 63-year-old Maryland man for the rape and murder of a woman with strong ties to Alexandria.
Vickie Lynn Belk was 28 years old when she was found murdered in Charles County, Maryland, on August 29, 1979. The mother of a seven-year-old boy was raped and fatally shot and her case lingered for decades until last November, when a DNA match was made with 63-year-old Andre Taylor, who lived four miles from where Belk’s body was recovered at the time of her death.
“Nearly 44-years ago, our family lost Vickie Lynn Belk, a beloved mother, sister and friend to a tragic and heinous crime,” said Kay Belk, Vickie’s sister. “The news of the grand jury returning an indictment for the individual responsible for Vickie’s death and an arrest in her murder begins the long-awaited process of justice finally being served. We are grateful for the tireless efforts of the Charles County Sheriff’s Office detectives and the forensics personnel who never ceased seeking justice on Vickie’s behalf. And we extend our thanks to the Charles County State’s Attorney’s Office for their commitment and prosecution of Vickie’s case.”
Taylor was arrested last month and is being held without bond in the Charles County Detention Center. He was charged with rape and first-degree murder. When arrested, he was living in failing health in a D.C. nursing and rehabilitation facility, according to The Washington Post. He is being defended by the Maryland Public Defender’s office.
Belk grew up in Alexandria and was a 1969 T.C. Williams High School graduate and member of Oakland Baptist Church on King Street. She got an education degree from St. Augustine College in Raleigh, North Carolina, and at the time of her death was a management analyst with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The Vickie Lynn Belk Scholarship Foundation in Alexandria has awarded approximately 100 scholarships since being founded in her honor.
Images via Charles County SHeriff’s Office
A 32-year-old Maryland man was arrested last month for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars worth of steel from a company he contracts with in Potomac Yard.
On June 6, Management of a construction lot located in the 2700 block of Potomac Avenue was alerted of the theft of between $10,800 and $21,600 worth of H-pile beams, according to a recently released search warrant affidavit.
Staff reported that a stack of H-piles appeared to be smaller than it had been the previous day, and that a “piece of construction apparatus that could have been used to load H-piles” was parked nearby, according to the search warrant affidavit.
“The lot is secured by a combination lock, although most employees know the combination,” police said in the search warrant affidavit. “In total, 20-40 beams costing $540 apiece were missing.”
The investigation into the theft turned internal, and an operator at the site was identified as a suspect. Police found that the employee was driving on a suspended license and was previously charged a number of times with driving with fictitious tags.
Police confirmed that the suspect sold $332 in steel to a metalworks shop in Springfield. Video surveillance showed the suspect driving into the Springfield lot in his gray Ford truck, which was attached to a trailer that contained several H-beams, according to the search warrant affidavit.
The suspect was arrested on June 21 and charged with grand larceny and fugitive charges. He was transferred out of state on June 26.
Photo via Brett Jordan/Unsplash
The Alexandria Police Department (APD) said an Alexandria resident, Jovan Saunders, 45, was arrested today after allegedly shooting a 30-year-old woman.
The woman arrived at a hospital today with a gunshot wound to her lower body, police said. The wounds were non-life threatening, police said, and an investigation started after APD was notified by the hospital.
Police said the shooting occurred in the 300 block of East Raymond Avenue. According to APD:
APD officers arrested the suspect, Jovan Saunders, 45, a City of Alexandria resident, was arrested and charged with aggravated malicious wounding, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and use of a firearm during the commission of a felony.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact Detective Matt Kramarik via phone at 703 746 6650, via email at [email protected], or on the non-emergency line at 703 746 4444. Tips can be made anonymously.
A 27-year-old man, Leon Solomon Jackson, is being held without bond after allegedly abducting a woman, threatening her with a knife, stealing her credit card and car earlier this month.
The victim reported the incident to police on June 8 that the incident occurred the previous day with a man she’d recently met at a convenience store in the 300 block of N. Ripley Street, according to a recently released search warrant affidavit.
The victim was allegedly assaulted at her apartment in the 900 block of N. Van Dorn Street, which is near Holmes Run.
Jackson allegedly told the victim that it was his birthday and she agreed to buy him White Claw alcoholic seltzer. They then got into her car, and he allegedly showed her a knife and asked her to buy him a pair of $99 Air Jordans from a shoe store in the 6100 block of Little River Turnpike, according to the search warrant affidavit. The victim provided police a receipt for the shoes and said that the suspect stayed outside during the transaction.
The victim told police that the suspect allegedly put two pills in her White Claw and that she drank it under pressure. She also told police that he held a knife to her throat, choked her, threatened her and then took her money and car. She also alleges that the suspect forcefully removed her clothing.
Jackson was arrested at his home a half-mile away allegedly driving the stolen vehicle at around 8:45 p.m. near his home in the 300 block of N. Ripley Street, which is close to where the victim met him.
Jackson was charged with credit card theft, robbery with a weapon, brandishing a bladed weapon, auto theft and abduction by force/intimidation.
The suspect goes to court for a preliminary hearing on July 19.
Image via Google Maps
A 56-year-old Maryland man faces multiple charges after allegedly planting peephole cameras in bathroom air vents in Alexandria and Baltimore restaurants, and then attempting to extort money from the owners by pretending to be a customer who found the cameras.
The Alexandria incident goes back to March 2022, when the suspect called the police from the Tempo restaurant (4231 Duke Street) and reported a hidden camera attached to a vent over the toilet in the men’s room, according to a recently released search warrant affidavit.
The responding officer retrieved the camera and found that the glue used to fix it to the vent was still “wet and tacky,” according to the search warrant affidavit. The suspect also allegedly emailed the restaurant owner and said he was willing to settle out of court rather than sue.
“The email indicated it was the suspect, and that despite individuals urging him to sue (the owner), he would be willing to informally settle with Tempo,” police said in the search warrant affidavit.
Police found that the suspect was detained for a similar offense that month in Baltimore County. The previous month, in February 2022, the suspect was allegedly found carrying “peeping kits” with mini-cameras, super glue and gloves, according to the search warrant affidavit.
The suspect was arrested on Feb. 14, 2023, and was transferred to Baltimore County where he posted a $5,000 bail on May 13. He goes to court on July 18.
The suspect was charged with committing a theft scheme greater than $1,500 but less than $25,000, which is punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine. He was also charged with a number of misdemeanors, including three counts of theft, malicious destruction of property, fraud and resisting arrest.
Image via Google maps
A 27-year-old Maryland man has been charged with robbing two separate Alexandria banks in March and April.
Jaquan Royal, of Prince George’s County, was arrested on May 24 in connection to the robbery at the Wells Fargo Bank in Arlandria (3506 Mount Vernon Avenue) on March 23, and at the Bank of America in Carlyle (415 John Carlyle Street) on April 3.
In both cases, the suspect allegedly handed the teller a note demanding cash and fled with an undisclosed amount. No one was injured in either robbery.
Royal is being held in another jurisdiction and goes to court on June 12.
The Alexandria Police Department is continuing to investigate the incident and asks anyone with information to contact Detective John Brattelli at 703-746-6699, at [email protected], or by calling the APD non-emergency number at 703-746-4444. Callers can remain anonymous.
News Release:: APD Makes Arrest in Connection to Two Bank Robberies
The Alexandria Police Department has charged a man in connection with two bank robberies in the area.
— Alexandria Police (@AlexandriaVAPD) May 26, 2023
The Alexandria Police Department said they made an arrest in a car theft in Old Town earlier this week and were able to recover the vehicle.
According to the police, the incident occurred on Wednesday when the victim left their car running when they went into a business on the 800 block of Saint Asaph Street.
According to the release:
The Alexandria Police Department made an arrest in a stolen auto incident. On Wednesday, May 17, 2023, the victim left his car running while he ran into a business in the 800 block of Saint Asaph Street, and when he came out his vehicle was gone.
Police were able to track down the sedan in real-time using the owner’s GPS tracking software to the 300 block of Braddock Road. On arrival, officers discovered the suspect sitting in the car. APD officers were able to recover the vehicle and arrested… a 27-year-old City of Alexandria resident and he was charged with grand larceny auto.
The suspect was taken to the William G. Truesdale Adult Detention Center and is currently being held without bond.
An 18-year-old Alexandria man suspected of robbing a juvenile of his Nike Air Jordan sneakers and bicycle at gunpoint was tracked down by the victim on social media, according to police.
The victim was robbed on April 10, in the 4500 block of 31st Street South, per a recently released search warrant affidavit. He told police that he was walking his Mongoose BMX bike up a hill when two suspects approached him.
One suspect asked the victim “why he was looking at him so seriously,” police said in the search warrant affidavit. “The same male got closer to the victim, opened his jacket and showed him the handle of a handgun that was concealed in an interior jacket pocket.”
The suspect then allegedly asked the victim his shoe size, to which the juvenile replied he is a size 9.
“This suspect then demanded the victim’s tennis shoes while threatening to physically assault him,” the affidavit says. “The victim complied. The suspects then took the victim’s bicycle and fled down the hill out of the area.”
A week and a half later, on April 21, the victim texted police that he identified the man who allegedly took his shoes and bike on Instagram.
Police found that the robbery suspect bore a close resemblance to Jose Santos Giron-Munoz, who was already in jail for a separate crime committed around the same time. He was arrested on April 17 for carrying a concealed handgun and possession with intent to distribute narcotics. He is being held without bond.
A booking deputy at the Alexandria jail told police that Giron-Munoz wore black and blue Nike Air Jordan 5s on the day of his arrest. Police said that the shoes were “identical to the shoes stolen from the victim,” according to the affidavit.
Giron-Munoz is being held without bond and goes to court on May 31 for a hearing on drugs and weapon charges.
Target is pressing charges against a Maryland man who allegedly stole nearly $1,500 worth of products in three separate shoplifting incidents, according to a recently released search warrant affidavit.
The 54-year-old suspect allegedly did not scan 47 products totaling $442.42 on Saturday, March 17, and then 108 products totaling $1,040.30 on Sunday, March 18. Police reviewed security footage and found that the man appeared to scan some items in his basket, bag them and then put the bags on top of unscanned items.
On Thursday, April 6, the suspect allegedly made a third attempt but was confronted by a loss prevention employee and “ran away,” according to the search warrant affidavit.
Police reviewed security footage and found that the suspect drove from the store in his wife’s Dodge Caravan with Maryland license plates. Police called the wife, who said that her husband was out shopping and gave them his phone number. Police then received calls from the suspect asking if he could pay for the items.
“(The suspect) apologized and asked if he could come back and pay for the items,” police said in the search warrant affidavit. “However, Target had said they wanted to press charges.”
The suspect was served with a summons at Alexandria Police headquarters on April 16 and charged with petit larceny, which is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and/or a $2,500 fine. He goes to court on May 26.
Image via Google Maps
Multiple people from DC, Maryland and Virginia have been charged with felonies in Alexandria within the last several months as part of an alleged scheme to get driver’s and commercial driver’s licenses with forged documents, ALXnow has learned.
On May 5, 2022, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles discovered fraudulent out-of-state driving records being used to get driver’s licenses and commercial driver’s licenses, according to a recently released search warrant affidavit filed in the Alexandria Circuit Court by DMV’s law enforcement division.
That was when an “observant DMV customer service representative” alerted DMV law enforcement of suspected wrongdoing, said Pam Goheen, assistant commissioner for communications for Virginia DMV.
Seven people have been arrested in Alexandria in connection to the ongoing investigation, according to Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan Porter.
“The case involves charges in multiple jurisdictions in Virginia, and obviously the defendants reside outside of Virginia,” Porter said. “As this is an ongoing investigation, my office cannot comment on the evidence, the charges, or our trial strategy. Anyone charged is presumed to be innocent and the Commonwealth bears the burden of proving every element of any charged offense beyond a reasonable doubt in a competent court of law.”
As of April 3, DMV has uncovered 94 cases of fraudulently issued licenses from altered driving records and altered residency documents, according to the search warrant affidavit. Additionally, those arrested referred investigators to an Instagram account that advertised the documents for sale.
“The seller required the purchasers to pay via Cash App and the documents would be emailed (and) printed off by the purchaser,” the search warrant affidavit said. “One individual provided screenshots of the advertisement from the Instagram account as well as instant messages describing how to obtain the Virginia license and which DMV office to go to.”
DMV found that transcripts were changed to show that the person listed had a valid driver’s or commercial driver’s license from the jurisdiction they live in “when in fact they did not,” according to the search warrant affidavit.
Goheen said that the investigation is ongoing. She did not say which DMV locations were targeted, except that some of the offenses occurred in several regions, including Northern Virginia.
“DMV has canceled licenses that were obtained illegally in this case, and additional arrests and charges are expected,” Goheen said. “It is inappropriate at this time to provide details of the activity until the investigation is complete and arrest warrants are served. However, DMV has taken steps to prevent future instances of the activity.”
So far, a 30-year-old man from Capital Heights, Maryland, is the only suspect found guilty. The man was initially charged with obtaining a license by fraud, a felony punishable by up to a year in prison and/or a $2500 fine, but the charge was downgraded to unauthorized use of DMV materials, which is a misdemeanor. He was found guilty on Jan. 24 and sentenced to 30 days in jail, all of which was suspended. He was also charged $214, which is now past due, according to court records.
Each suspect arrested in Alexandria was released on bond, or on their own recognizance, according to court records.
The other suspects include:
- A 28-year-old D.C. man — Charged with obtaining a license by fraud and forging public records. The offense allegedly occurred on October 29, 2022, he was arrested on April 12 and goes to court to have an attorney appointed to him on May 19
- A 29-year-old Hyattsville, Maryland, woman — Charged with obtaining a license by fraud and forging public records. The offense allegedly occurred on January, 19 2023, she was arrested on Feb. 2 and has a preliminary hearing on May 26
- A 38-year-old Waldorf, Maryland, woman — Charged with obtaining a license by fraud and forging public records. The offense allegedly occurred on May 22, 2022, she was arrested on March 26 and has a preliminary hearing on May 26
- A 28-year-old D.C. man — Charged with obtaining a license by fraud. The offense allegedly occurred on October 22.2022, he was arrested on March 15 and has a preliminary hearing on May 24
- A 41-year-old Clinton, Maryland, man — Charged with forgery and obtaining a license by fraud. The offense allegedly occurred on April 24, which is the same day he was arrested. His preliminary hearing is on June 23
- A 59-year-old D.C. man — Charged with obtaining a license by fraud. The offense allegedly occurred on March 3, he was arrested on April 26 and goes to court for an arraignment on May 10