Alexandria Police are reporting no known threats to the city in the run up to the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Wednesday, Jan. 20, and the city is not planning to impose 6 p.m. curfew that night.
Mayor Justin Wilson told ALXnow that he sees no reason that a curfew will be necessary, as the Alexandria Police Department has been working closely with federal and regional law enforcement partners.
“At this point, we see no reason that will be necessary,” Wilson said. “Our police have been working closely with federal and regional partners for months to prepare for this period and I am confident they will keep our community safe.”
The city will activate its Emergency Operations Center on Jan. 20, and residents are asked to virtually observe the swearing-in of President-elect Joe Biden.
The governor imposed a 6 p.m. curfew on Alexandria and Arlington on Jan. 6 after the siege at the U.S. Capitol. The District will remain in a state of emergency until the day after Biden and Harris are inaugurated.
On Tuesday night, Police Chief Michael Brown briefed City Council on preparations in the run up to the inauguration, and said that the department’s civil demonstration unit is ready to be deployed.
Also this week, Alexandria Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker asked Alexandria hotels to cancel reservations for any members of the Proud Boys, an aggressive group that supports outgoing President Donald Trump.
The City’s EOC will be activated to monitor for any issues and coordinate response activities as needed. @AlexandriaVAPD is evaluating intelligence information and preparing necessary staffing for a variety of potential security scenarios. https://t.co/QvIbii40U8
— Justin Wilson (@justindotnet) January 15, 2021
See the full release from the city below the jump.
Virginia Lieutenant Governor candidate Del. Mark Levine has joined legislators in calling for the resignation of Republican State Senator Amanda Chase (R-Chesterfield) over her involvement with the Jan. 6 siege on the Capitol.
“She should resign,” Levine told ALXnow. “She is saying things that aren’t true and she’s inciting violence. She’s basically attacking the foundations of our democracy, and it really disappoints me because we work together. We had a good personal relationship. I’m just very disappointed in what she’s done.”
Chase attended the rally that preceded the riot but did not participate in the attack on the Capitol building.
Chase, who is seeking the Republican gubernatorial nomination, is accused of committing insurrection by the Senate Democratic Caucus and faces multiple calls for her resignation. Her Facebook account was briefly shut down after she said publicly in a video that the incident at the Capitol was the fault of Black Lives Matter and Antifa protestors, a claim that has since been disproven.
We’re not going to take this anymore. Get your popcorn folks and tune into the Senate tomorrow. I have a few surprises of my own. https://t.co/TxZTdYkwG3
— Senator Amanda Chase (@AmandaChaseVA) January 14, 2021
Amanda Chase encouraged the Trump-led deadly insurrection against the United States. She is a stain on our Commonwealth. pic.twitter.com/kurtHYwlfe
— Terry McAuliffe (@TerryMcAuliffe) January 14, 2021
Levine, 54, announced his intent to run for Lieutenant Governor last month, and if he loses the democratic primary says that he will run for reelection for the 45th District seat that he has held since 2015. His only opponent for the 45th is Alexandria Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker, who announced this week that she is running for the seat.
Levine said that Bennett-Parker did not call him about her entering the race for the 45th District.
“It’s not like the vice mayor called me and told me she was running. She didn’t,” Levine said. “I’m gonna run for lieutenant governor, because I think, frankly, what I’ve done for the 45th has been so positive that I think I can deliver for the entire state, the whole Commonwealth of Virginia, including Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax. But should I not prevail in the governor’s race, I think I’ve got a very good record to run for reelection as delegate, and obviously I hope to prevail.”
Less than a week before the presidential inauguration of Joe Biden on Jan. 20, Alexandria’s Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker is asking hotels in the city to cancel reservations for the Proud Boys.
In a letter to the Holiday Inn Alexandria-Carlyle, Bennett-Parker said that it rented rooms to members of the Proud Boys before the Jan. 6 siege on the U.S. Capitol.
“It is my understanding that members of the Proud Boys, which has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, stayed at your hotel during their insurrection attempt earlier this month,” Bennett-Parker wrote. “These anti-democratic groups are inciting violence and must not be welcome in our city.”
On Jan. 4, a protest at the Holiday Inn was canceled for security concerns after a notification was posted on the pro-Trump site thedonald.win and a commenter said that if any Trump supporters arrived early to the hotel that “it’s time to give them a show of force.”
Bennett-Parker asked that Alexandria hotels cancel reservations with anyone associated with the group. The hotel is located one block from the Eisenhower Avenue Metro station, and reservations can be made online.
“There is another planned armed militia insurgence from January 17, 2021, through January 20, 2021,” she wrote. “Please join me in condemning these right-wing terrorists by denying them lodging at your hotel. Your actions will send a message that there is no place for hate in Alexandria. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.”
Hate has no home here. Alexandria hotels, please don't do business with violent white supremacists. pic.twitter.com/7OjFSDoBAw
— Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker (@EBP4Delegate) January 13, 2021
Photo via Grassroots Alexandria/Facebook
Beyer Urges Senate to Remove Trump After House Impeachment — “Donald Trump is a clear and present danger to the United States, and a menace to the Constitution. The events of the past week, my conscience, my oath of office, and my duty to the people of Northern Virginia allow no other course than to vote for his impeachment. I urge the Senate to remove him from office as swiftly as possible.” [Beyer.house.gov]
Police Seeking Alexandria Man For Assaulting Woodbridge Boy — “Ian M. Simpson is wanted after police said he attempted to strangle an 8-year-old boy during after two arguments between the two relatives.” [Patch]
Police: Business Robbed on N. Quaker Lane Wednesday Morning — “The Alexandria Police Department is investigating a robbery from a business in the 1600 block of N. Quaker Lane. It happened around 5:45am. Expect police activity in the area.” [Twitter]
WATCH: Governor Northam Gives State of Commonwealth Speech — “My 2021 State of the Commonwealth address is starting–watch live.” [Twitter]
Poll Opens to Select New Names for T.C. Williams High and Matthew Maury Elementary Schools — “Between now and Jan. 27, we are asking everyone to help us whittle down names that have been suggested by our students over the last month. Don’t like any of the options you see? The community will also be given another chance to make suggestions at this time.” [Zebra]
Casa Chirilagua Gets Desk Donations from Building Momentum — “Casa Chirilagua, a non-profit serving the Arlandria neighborhood in northern Virginia near Reagan National Airport, has been one of the largest recipients and distributors of the desks. Adriana Gómez Schellhaas, executive director of Casa Chirilagua, said the non-profit has distributed over 50 desks to homes and learning centers in their community.” [USChamber.com]
Today’s Weather — “Some clouds in the morning will give way to mainly sunny skies for the afternoon. High near 55F. Winds light and variable… A few clouds from time to time in the evening. Low 31F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]
New Job: Experienced Servers at Mia’s Italian Kitchen — “We are searching for Experienced Servers to join our Team at Mia’s in OLD TOWN” [Indeed]
A protest today (Jan. 4) outside the Holiday Inn Alexandria-Carlyle against supporters of President Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election was canceled for security concerns.
Protest organizers from Shut Down DC planned to hand out fliers and stickers and demonstrate against the Proud Boys and other Trump supporters who they call fascists and may be staying at the hotel at 2460 Eisenhower Ave. and are marching in D.C. on Wednesday.
The small event outside the hotel was canceled after a notification was posted on the pro-Trump site thedonald.win and a commenter said that if any Trump supporters arrived early that “it’s time to give them a show of force.” That comment was enough for the organizers to cancel the event.
Jonathan Krall of Grassroots Alexandria was among a handful of undeterred anti-Trump protestors who flashed signs and a banner reading, “Hey Holiday Inn — No Room For Fascists.”
“They only have to win once and our Democracy is finished,” Krall told ALXnow. “Of course they consider themselves patriots, but they are supporting Donald Trump and Donald Trump declared himself the winner of the election. And the only thing that’s keeping him from being a dictator is that the rest the government is not playing along.”
Protestor Glenn plans to march in a group against Trump in D.C. on Wednesday. The D.C. National Guard has been mobilized for the event.
“They’re stabbing and beating people up and not wearing masks,” Glenn said. “These are dangerous people.”
Photo with banner via Grassroots Alexandria/Facebook
Elderly resident rescues dog walker pinned under 500-pound headstone — “When Suzanne Dalton went out to walk her dog in Bethel Cemetery… one fall afternoon, the last thing she expected was to have a literal brush with death. After a headstone fell on her arm and pinned her to the ground, Charles Nelson, an 89-year-old Alexandria resident, came to her assistance and lifted the 500-pound stone up just enough for her to escape.” [Alex Times]
Beyer Says Trump is Being ‘Theatrical’ — “Refusing to initiate a peaceful transition of power in the middle of a deadly pandemic because he’s being theatrical.” [Twitter]
Alexandria Sheriff’s Office Reports New Phone Scam — “If you receive a call from someone saying they are from the Alexandria Sheriff’s Office (or any other Sheriff’s Office) and that you have to pay them money, hang up. Scammers will try a variety of approaches to intimidate and coerce people into giving them money. But actual sheriffs’ offices in Virginia will never call you and demand money.” [Zebra]
The Story Behind the ‘Official Sock of Alexandria’ — “Alexandria’s new official sock is being made in the USA by Living Royal and will be a high quality, soft unisex crew sock. A hundred pairs will be made initially, with the potential for more if the initial batch sells out.” [Alexandria Living]
Made In ALX Makers Market Opens — “While millions of people shop on national retail websites, it’s harder to stumble across local artists and craftspeople working right here in Alexandria. MadeinALX.com is a website and platform designed to support local artists, creators and makers and connect them to consumers.” [Alexandria Living]
Today’s Weather — “Cloudy skies early, followed by partial clearing. Slight chance of a rain shower. High 63F. Winds NW at 10 to 15 mph. Clear skies (in the evening). Low around 40F. Winds NW at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]
New Job: Fingerprint Operator — “This is an entry-level, part-time position and prior experience in the field or a related field is not required. You will receive training in taking and verifying personnel fingerprints, making comparisons of rolled inked and computer image fingerprints, use of fingerprint scanning equipment, completing fingerprinting forms and submitting reports at the end of the fingerprinting session.” [Indeed]
Alexandria Man Shot to Death in Georgetown — “Officers from the Second District responded around 2:56 a.m., to the 3300 block of Water St., N.W., for the sound of gunshots. They found Franklin Hernandez Arevalo, 19, of Alexandria, Virginia suffering from a gunshot wound. D.C. Fire and EMS determined Arevalo had died and transported him later to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.” [Patch]
Beyer Says Trump Trying to Steal Election — “This is simple: Donald Trump is openly trying to steal an election he lost. He will not succeed, but we will remember who went along with it. ‘I was just following orders’ will not be accepted as an excuse for attempting to overthrow the results of an American election.” [Twitter]
ALIVE! Free Food Distribution is this Saturday — “On Sat, Nov 14, 8:30-10:30 am, @ALIVE4AlexVA will distribute food in Cora Kelly Elementary School parking lot (3600 Commonwealth Ave) and parking lot B-1 of NOVA-Alexandria Campus (3320 Bisdorf Drive; map at alive-inc.org).” [Twitter]
Free Flu Shots This Wednesday — “Now is the time to get a flu shot! The next Alexandria Inova Cares Clinic for Families FREE flu shot clinic for uninsured people is Wednesday, Nov. 11, 3-5 p.m.” [Twitter]
Virtual Alexandria Film Festival Kicks Off Nov. 12 — “There are about 50 films in this year’s festival.” [Alexandria Living]
Today’s Weather — “Intervals of clouds and sunshine (during the day). Areas of patchy fog. High around 75F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph. Partly cloudy skies during the evening will give way to cloudy skies overnight. Slight chance of a rain shower. Low 62F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]
New Job: Juvenile Detention Specialist — “The Detention Specialist work involves providing direct care to detainees in the custody of the Northern Virginia Juvenile Detention Center. The primary responsibilities for the position are to provide security, safety and care for juveniles. The Detention Specialist shall receive direct supervision by the Assistant Shift Supervisor and Shift Supervisor.” [Indeed]
It was a historic week in Alexandria.
Alexandrians overwhelmingly helped reelect U.S. Senator Mark Warner and Congressman Don Beyer, and 80% of voters chose Democrat former Vice President Joe Biden for president over incumbent Republican President Donald Trump.
Out top story this week was election-related. It turns out that before election day several Alexandria households with Joe Biden signs were sent letters with a Northern Virginia postage mark stating that Biden is a pedophile. The Chair of the Alexandria Democratic Committee advised that anyone who receives such notes should call the police. The police, in turn, are sending along the information to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
Additionally, 91 people participated in our weekly poll. This week we asked about election night plans, and 65% of respondents said they were staying home to watch the results, 24% had no eleciton night plans, 10% planned to protest that evening, and 1% were going to an election night event.
Alexandria City Public Schools were back in action this week — sort of. While the ACPS opened in-person classes on Thursday, fewer than 10 students made it to class. There were about 60 students eligible to go back to school, since only kids with kindergarten through second graders with disabilities were allowed to attend Jefferson-Houston PreK-8 IB School.
It was the first in-person public schooling in Alexandria since the pandemic shut down schools in March. ACPS plans to expand opening for all citywide special education students by December. Meanwhile, however, hundreds of parents want the school system to open and have started the #OpenACPS messaging campaign.
Also in school news, a two-year-long court battle was settled with the city and 15 Alexandria homeowners were settled regarding the addition of stadium lights to Parker-Gray Stadium at T.C. Williams High School.
The Week in Crime
The week started with news that there were two shootings in Alexandria over the weekend.
The was also the story of a 17-year-old on the run since last month after allegedly stealing a car in the West End. The juvenile, who later admitted stealing the car, was seen by the victim — a federal law enforcement officer — driving past his house, and the victim got into another of his cars and followed the suspect. The victim got the juvenile out of his car and held him at the scene until police arrived, and the juvenile left the area after being charged.
We also covered the story of the ‘Beltway Bank Bandit’. Freddie Lee McRae, 34, of Washington D.C., pleaded guilty to three counts of brandishing a firearm during a series of bank and shoe store robberies in and around Alexandria in 2018 and 2019. He will be sentenced on February 23, 2021, and faces up to life in prison and a mandatory minimum of 21 years in prison.
Health and Business
As of Friday there were 76 deaths attributed to the coronavirus in Alexandria, and the case count stands at 4,444, according to the Virginia Department of Health. Latino residents continue to lead the case count.
We also reported that longtime Del Ray staple, Al’s Steak House, is for sale since the owner passed away.
This week also saw fewer continued and initial unemployment claims in Alexandria.
Here are ALXnow’s top stories of the week in Alexandria:
- Alexandrians with Joe Biden Yard Signs Get Anonymous Letters Saying Biden is a Pedophile
- Del Ray Staple Al’s Steak House for Sale After Owner’s Death
- Republican Jeff Jordan Running Uphill Battle Against Incumbent Rep. Don Beyer
- Braddock West Project Headed to Planning Commission Later This Year
- Identity Released of Old Town North Suspect Killed in Shootout
- Soft Opening for New Chicken Joint in North Old Town Today
- Alexandria Parents Start #OpenACPS Sign Campaign as School System Begins Partial Reopening
- Juvenile Allegedly Steals Car and is Tracked Down by Victim in the West End
- BREAKING: Massive Power Outage Reported in Alexandria
- The Alexandria Drive-In Just Kicked Off an Encore Series on Halloween
- Did You Know: The Tall Ship Providence Encountered a Ghost Ship in 1777
Have a safe weekend!
Beyer Says Trump Only Cares About Himself — “Trump doesn’t care about legal principles or the law. Trump doesn’t care about fair counts, and he doesn’t care about our democratic norms. Trump doesn’t care about his oath to protect the Constitution. The only thing Donald Trump cares about is Donald Trump.” [Twitter]
Mas Seafood to Open Retail Space in Old Town — “From the previous North Henry Street location, they supplied restaurants in Alexandria and Arlington, including Daniel O’Connell’s Pub, Fontaine Caffe & Creperie, Alexandria Pasty Shop and Belle Haven Pizzeria. While they had always been interested in doing retail sales, it wasn’t until the COVID-19 pandemic upended their market that they were able to make the shift — almost by accident.” [Alexandria Living]
Outcasts Brass Band Jazzes Up Old Town — “Band members who can wear masks while playing wear their masks, and all band members wear masks in between songs. They also stand farther apart from one another and encourage audiences to practice social distancing and wear masks.” [Alex Times]
Alexandrian Sending Space Cube to Moon — “Alexandria’s Hudson Merrick is going to take a selfie in space. At least that is part of what he what he and 19 other carefully selected students at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University are attempting in the latest space mission, the EagleCam CubeSat camera system. The first-of-its-kind student-led project aims to snap a third-person ‘selfie’ of a lunar lander touching down on the moon.” [Zebra]
DCHS Helping Residents with Medicare Open Enrollment — “Do you or someone you know need assistance with Medicare Open Enrollment? The Department of Community and Human Services can help. The Medicare health insurance program–for people age 65 or older, or under age 65 with certain disabilities or disease–encourages all enrollees to review their plans to ensure the plans meet their needs. Open enrollment ends December 7.” [City of Alexandria]
Today’s Weather — “Some clouds in the morning will give way to mainly sunny skies for the afternoon. High 72F. Winds light and variable. A mostly clear sky (in the evening). Low 46F. Winds light and variable.”[Weather.com]
New Job: Ministry Program Associate — “This is a full-time position at the Alfred Street Baptist Church (ASBC) located in Alexandria, Virginia. The incumbent is under the day-to-day supervision of the Liaison for Ministries and serves as Ministry Program Associate. This role is primarily responsible for providing direction and leadership to ministry leaders and staff in the areas of ministry program development, volunteer and event management and new ministry development.” [Indeed]
Alexandria Voted 80% for Joe Biden — “The vote total in Alexandria, as of Wednesday morning, was 65,201 or 80.4 percent for Biden, the former Vice President; 14,251 voted for Trump.” [Alexandria Living]
Alexandria Reaches Complete Count in 2020 U.S. Census — ” The Bureau’s Crystal City Area Census Office, which includes all of Alexandria, was the only such office in the Washington, D.C. metro region to count 100% of households by the time data collection ended on October 15. Because almost 74% of Alexandria households completed the census questionnaire by mail or online, census workers had to visit fewer households in person.” [City of Alexandria]
Here’s Updated COVID-19 Guidance from Alexandria — “Everyone has a role in stopping the spread of COVID-19. Take immediate action by wearing a mask, reducing unnecessary travel, maintaining at least 6 feet of physical distance from others and staying home when sick. Below are specific guidance and resources based on setting or need.” [City of Alexandria]
Vegan PLNT Burger Restaurant Opens Inside Whole Foods — “Co-founder and chief culinary director for PLNT Burger, Spike Mendelsohn (of ‘Top Chef’ fame) was in town recently to open the hip new vegan burger joint inside the Whole Foods store at 1700 Duke Street and on opening day gave away 100 free burgers to the first people in line.” [Zebra]
Waterskiing Santa Going Virtual This Year — “The show was originally scheduled to run on Christmas Eve this year but organizers announced that they decided to cancel the live event for safety reasons. Instead, a recording will be available for viewing on Dec. 20 so families can “stay home, get some hot chocolate and popcorn and cozy up while watching the Waterskiing Santa,” organizers said on the event’s Facebook page.” [Alexandria Living]
Today’s Weather — “Except for a few afternoon clouds, mainly sunny. High 69F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph. Partly to mostly cloudy (at night). Low 48F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]
New Job: Scholarship Program Assistant — “The Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation, a national nonprofit in Alexandria, Virginia, seeks a Scholarship Program Assistant to become part of the Scholarship Program team. The Scholarship Program Assistant works closely with the Assistant Director, Scholarship Programs to support the needs of the department and the \Foundation and its various stakeholders. S/he is responsible for supporting the Department in an overall administrative capacity and to provide support in the day-to-day functions of the Department and team.” [Indeed]