Tysons Corner, VA

A McLean man linked to a neo-Nazi group pleaded guilty today (Tuesday) to possessing firearms as a drug user and lying to buy a semiautomatic rifle

Andrew Thomasberg, a 21-year-old who is a member of the Atomwaffen Division, is accused of purchasing a semiautomatic rifle for a third party, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

“He transferred that firearm to that third party after purchasing it,” the press release said. “Thomasberg also possessed at least four firearms while unlawfully using controlled substances, including marijuana, psilocybin mushrooms and opium.”

“In federal court in Alexandria on Friday, FBI Special Agent Shawn Matthews, who testified that his focus is domestic terrorism, said Thomasberg took part in the deadly Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville in 2017 with a neo-Nazi group called Vanguard America,” The Washington Post reported.

Thomasberg was arrested in September, according to The Washington Post story.

More from the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia:

“Lying to the FBI is a federal crime, and Thomasburg lied to hide an additional crime,” said Timothy R. Slater, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office. “The FBI works with our partners to take criminals possessing illegal firearms off the streets.”

According to court documents and testimony, Thomasberg has association with white supremacist organizations, such as Vanguard America and Atomwaffen Division.

Thomasberg pleaded guilty to making a material false statement in relation to the purchase of a firearm and to possessing firearms while being an unlawful user of or addicted to controlled substances…

Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Timothy R. Slater, Assistant Director of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Liam O’Grady accepted the plea. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony W. Mariano and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ronald L. Walutes, Jr. are prosecuting the case.

Thomasberg will be sentenced on Feb. 28, 2020 and faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, according to the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Photo via Joe Gratz/Flickr

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A disorderly man allegedly threw a piece of chocolate at another man’s vehicle after the owner said he wasn’t interested in selling it, according to the Vienna Police Department.

The incident occurred on Thursday, Nov. 7, around noon.

More from the police report:

A citizen advised that he was approached by a man in the parking lot of 150 Branch Road, SE. The man asked how much he wanted to sell his vehicle for, then became disorderly when he said he was not interested. The citizen advised the man threw a piece of chocolate at his vehicle before driving off.

The man was located and advised it was the citizen who became irate when he asked about the vehicle, so he immediately left the area.

Police told the citizen about the warrant process, in case he wants to pursue charges for the man.

Photo via Facebook

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(Updated at 10:15 a.m.) Tysons area commuters heading to and from Maryland on the Beltway may see some relief from the constant traffic woes.

The governors of Virginia and Maryland announced an agreement Tuesday morning that would see the construction of a new American Legion Bridge.

The agreement to rebuild the bridge is being billed as “historic” and “a big win for Northern Virginia, the metro region, and our entire Commonwealth” by Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D).

The new bridge will “relieve congestion at one of the country’s worst traffic chokepoints,” according to a press release, below. “The project is expected to cut commuting time in half for many travelers, reduce congestion in the regular lanes by 25 percent, provide 40 percent more lane capacity over the old bridge, and include bicycle and pedestrian paths across the Potomac River.”

The new bridge will be build on largely the same footprint as the existing bridge, but with two new express lanes in both directions. The initial stages of construction could begin as early as 2021.

More via a press release from the governor’s office:

Governor Ralph Northam (D-VA) and Governor Larry Hogan (R-MD) today announced a bi-state, bipartisan accord to create a new, unified Capital Beltway, replace the aging American Legion Bridge and relieve congestion at one of the country’s worst traffic chokepoints. The two governors made the announcement at the annual Capital Region Transportation Forum in Washington, DC.

“A new bridge means commuters will get to work and back home faster,” said Governor Northam. “Our teams have identified a way to fix one of the worst traffic hot spots in the country. This demonstrates what can get done when leaders come together to find shared solutions to tough regional problems. This is about helping people see their families more, grow their businesses, and further unlock the region’s vast economic potential.”

“The ‘Capital Beltway Accord’ is a once-in-a-generation achievement for the capital region,” said Governor Hogan. “A bipartisan, commonsense, interstate agreement such as this has eluded elected leaders throughout the region for many decades. Together with our partners in Virginia, we are building a foundation for even greater economic growth, greater opportunity for our citizens, and advancing real, lasting, transformative improvements for the entire Washington metropolitan region.”

The project complements ongoing plans by both governors in their jurisdictions–advancing a region-wide vision for a seamless network of reliable travel options around the Capital Beltway, and along Interstates 270 and 95, 395, and 66.

The project is expected to cut commuting time in half for many travelers, reduce congestion in the regular lanes by 25 percent, provide 40 percent more lane capacity over the old bridge, and include bicycle and pedestrian paths across the Potomac River.

The American Legion Bridge has been operating beyond its capacity for nearly four decades. Daily traffic has grown 390 percent since the bridge opened in 1962, with 235,000 vehicles using it daily. More than 40 percent of the region’s population travels this segment of the Capital Beltway, and the region expects to grow by another 1.2 million people by 2040. Both governors have made it a top priority to identify a long-term, seamless solution for the Capital Beltway.

The project will replace the existing lanes in each direction across the Potomac River and add two new Express Lanes in each direction for approximately three miles between the George Washington Memorial Parkway in Virginia to the vicinity of River Road in Maryland. New bicycle and pedestrian access will connect trails on both sides of the Potomac River. The project is being designed predominantly within the footprint of the existing bridge and right-of-way to minimize impact to travelers, the environment, and surrounding communities. No homes or businesses are expected to require relocation.

“This is once-in-a-generation project that will improve accessibility throughout the region,” said Virginia Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine. “This is a milestone in regional cooperation. We in Virginia look forward to working hand-in-hand with Maryland to deliver this transformative transportation solution.”

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Little City Incumbents Celebrate Reelection — “All four incumbents won handily in Tuesday’s City of Falls Church City Council and School Board elections and their success was touted as a ‘vote of confidence.'” [Falls Church News-Press]

Tysons Building Off The Market — Rubenstein Partners and Griffith Properties “completed the sale of Centerstone at Tysons, a six-story office building located at 1550 Westbranch Drive… The sale follows the announcement earlier in 2019 that Centerstone at Tysons was brought to full occupancy through a single 150,000-square-foot lease at the property.” [Cision]

French Cuisine Coming to Mosaic Soon — “Parc de Ville, a French bistro set to feature classic cuisine for brunch, lunch and dinner… is set to open for dinner service on Monday, Nov. 18.” [Northern Virginia Magazine]

Women-Owned Businesses Booming in Falls Church — “Across the Washington metropolitan area, the highest rates of business ownership for are in Falls Church City, and Prince George’s County, as 12 percent of establishments. In Falls Church City, 12 percent of workers work at business establishments owned by women.” [DC Policy Center]

Vienna IT Firm Working With Defense Department — “Vienna IT consulting firm Rightstar Inc. secured a spot on a $820.45 million blanket purchase agreement (BPA) Friday [Nov. 1] to supply the Department of Defense with commercial-off-the-shelf software.” [Washington Business Journal]

Former Falls Church City Attorney Dies — “Paul Terrence ‘Terry’ O’Grady, age 81, formerly of Falls Church, passed away peacefully on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019.” [Falls Church News-Press]

Soaking Up The Sun in Vienna — “Vienna’s zip code is the top place for solar energy system installations in Northern Virginia, according to numbers from the Solarize NOVA program.” [Patch]

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Tysons Reporter is back with its new monthly crime map showing where the incidents occurred in Fairfax County Police Department’s McLean District Station.

We went ahead and pulled together all of the incidents noted for the McLean District Station in FCPD crime recaps from Oct. 1-31, weeded out the ones that are not in the Tysons Reporter coverage area and plotted them in the interactive map above.

The McLean District Station covers crime in Merrifield, Dunn Loring, Falls Church, McLean, Tysons and Great Falls.

The map only includes information from FCPD and does not include reports to the police departments in the Town of Vienna or the City of Falls Church.

Use the icon in the top left corner of the map to toggle between the various types of crimes displayed.

Fairfax County’s weekday police recaps are not comprehensive lists of every incident and the addresses are approximate. FCPD also notes that information in the recaps “is generally based on initial reports made to the police department.”

Anyone with information about any of these crimes should call 703-691-2131 or 1-866-411-TIPS(8477).

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(Updated at 12:55 p.m.) A man was shot last night (Thursday) in a residential area off Lee Hwy in the Falls Church area, according to the Fairfax County Police Department.

The incident occurred around 7:45 p.m. in the 2800 block of Pine Spring Road, which is near Pine Spring Park, the Trinity School at Meadow View and Pine Spring Elementary School. The area is surrounded by homes.

The man was shot outside and was transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, Sgt. Greg Bedor, a police spokesperson, told Tysons Reporter.

“A male reported he was outside of his home when he was approached by someone who shot him,” according to the daily crime recap. “The suspect fled; no additional description was provided.”

Bedor said that there was no threat to the public. “We think this was not a random incident,” he said.

Despite some confusion on Twitter, the incident is not related to the hit and run that killed a pedestrian in Fairfax, Bedor said.

Image via Google Maps

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As the January deadline looms, the Falls Church City Council discussed proposals for e-scooters before state laws take effect and the city loses its chance to create regulations.

Concerns arose at both the Oct. 21 and Oct. 28 City Council meetings, including potential funding issues, underage use, parking and the upcoming pilot program. The pilot program would be limited to two scooter vendors, leaving companies to compete for a one-year trial period, Councilmember Ross Litkenhous said.

If implemented, the program would allow 14 scooters per 1,000 people into city limits. On average, the scooters would cost users $1 to unlock and a $0.25 per-minute fee, according to statistics gathered from Arlington and Alexandria.

On average 20% of e-scooter users ride them for social or entertainment purposes, while roughly 20% use them for shopping and errands. Another 20% use them to commute to the metro. Scooters could help to solve the first-to-last mile commuter problem, an expert brought in by the City Council and Councilmember Phil Duncan said.

There was some talk at the Oct. 21 meeting about using scooters to raise revenue for the city, by adding on taxes and unlocking fees. The city would charge each vendor an $8,000 permitting fee, regardless of fleet size, according to city documents. But no one seemed to have a concrete answer to the total profits.

“It would be interesting to see how much we can get out of it without impacting the demand,” Litkenhous said.

Councilmember Dave Snyder took another perspective, saying that it might cost the city more money. He said that police would be distracted by monitoring people, ensuring they are following laws and guidelines while riding the scooters.

Parking was yet another major focus of the conversations.

Several people suggested corrals, while others said that they encourage people to lean them against polls that are out of the way of pedestrians and cars. All of the councilmembers agreed that measures should be taken to ensure that they are not being left in the way of traffic or parked illegally in yards.

“Parking is going to be one of the major sources of complaints we will get, so we should prepare for that,” Councilmember Letty Hardi said.

Going forward, the Falls Church City Council will continue to discuss potential implementation plans before they make a final decision. At the next City Council meeting on Tuesday (Nov. 12), councilmembers are expected to discuss a first reading of the new ordinance regarding motorized scooters and shared mobility devices.

“I really think the success of this pilot is going to hinge on good communication,” Hardi said. “Lowering the bar to explain this won’t be perfect, [but] is important.”

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Several companies in Tysons made job site Monster’s list of the best places for veterans to work, ahead of Veterans Day (Nov. 11).

Monster recently published the list in collaboration with Military.com, ranking 10 companies across the United States as the “2019 Best Companies for Veterans.”

DynCorp International, a global government services provider for flight operations support, training and mentoring, topped the list. DynCorp is headquarters at 1700 Old Meadow Road near the McLean Metro station.

“The company recognizes the leadership and life experiences that veterans bring to the workforce; therefore, they accept military training for civilian credentials and acknowledge the importance these skills bring to the success of their business model,” the ranking says.

Logistics Management Institute — or LMI — nabbed the fifth spot on the list. The consulting firm is dedicated to improving government management and has a location at 7940 Jones Branch Drive in the Tysons Central neighborhood.

Falls Church-based IntelliDyne got the ninth spot. IntelliDyne focuses on information technology consulting services and moved to its current spot at 3110 Fairview Park Drive in June 2018 to expand.

Outside of the Tysons area, several companies in Northern Virginia made the list as well, including CACI in Arlington and Intelligent Waves, LLC in Reston.

Monster and Military.com worked with a panel of veteran hiring experts to identify the list, describing the employers as “demonstrating an extraordinary commitment to veteran hiring and retention,” according to a press release.

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Fairfax County police say that an intoxicated woman kicked and tried to bite police late last night (Wednesday) after being arrested at Tysons Corner Center.

The incident occurred around 11 p.m. “Mall Security called [the] police to report two people engaged in suspicious activity,” according to a police report.

Police arrested a 43-year-old woman from Leesburg for being drunk in public. While the woman was getting into the police car, she “kicked two officers and attempted to bite a third,” the report said.

Police also charged her with three counts of assault on law enforcement.

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