Tysons Corner, VA

(Updated at 12:05 p.m.) Firefighters are on the scene of an extinguished penthouse fire that has some smoke wafting into Tysons Corner Center.

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue tweeted at 11:11 a.m. today (March 14) that the fire broke out on the roof area of a penthouse at 7950 Tysons Corner Center.

“Some minor smoke in mall that was picked up by air handler,” according to the tweet.

Image via Google Maps 

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Update on 1/25/19: The fire started when a large tree fell onto power lines servicing the building, resulting in a power surge within the electrical panel located in the basement, said Fairfax County Fire and Rescue. There were no injuries, but the damage from the fire is approximately $25,000.

(Updated at 2:25 p.m.) Firefighters are on scene of a two-alarm structure fire in the Town of Vienna.

The blaze broke out in a basement of the Pennywise Thrift Shop, at the intersection of Church and Mill streets, around 12:30 p.m. As of 1:05 p.m., firefighters on the scene said that the fire was still burning but was largely under control. As of 1:20 p.m., firefighters were removing portions of walls on the first floor, reporting that additional fire was burning in the walls.

Numerous road closures have been reported in the area. So far, no injuries have been reported.

The thrift shop has been open since 1961 and sells “affordable, lightly used clothing and household items,” according to its website. The store is run by Vienna’s Church of the Holy Comforter.

A tree fell on utility lines near the store, causing a hazard for firefighters, according to a fire department spokesperson, but it’s not clear whether that might have also helped to cause the fire.

As of 2 p.m., the fire was out and investigators were working to determine the cause.

One local resident told Tysons Reporter that she is concerned about how the thrift store will be able to recover and what will happen to everything inside.

“I’m worried about all of the merchandise in the thrift store there,” the resident said. “It’s probably all smoke damaged now.”

Units are on scene of building fire in the 100 block of Church St NE in Vienna. A Second Alarm was requested. Fire is out. No injuries reported at this time. Most units going in service shortly. Video from earlier in fire. #fcfrd #fairfaxcounty #fire

Posted by Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department on Thursday, January 24, 2019

Photo (8) via Google Maps

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A woman was pinned between a minivan and a house after an unusual accident in McLean.

The crash happened in the driveway of the home on the 6800 block of Dean Drive, near Westmoreland Street, shortly before 1 p.m. Firefighters from Fairfax and Arlington counties used heavy equipment to free the woman, who suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

It was not immediately clear to rescuers how the crash happened, nor was it clear whether the woman had been driving the van or was simply standing next to it when it pinned her against the wall.

“It was probably just one of those weird things where something happened and she was stuck,” one first responder said.

The woman was transported via ambulance to Inova Fairfax Hospital.

During the rescue operation, a passerby stopped to see what was going on and remark on the number of emergency vehicles on the street.

“There was more response for this than for the double homicide here a few years ago,” she said.

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(Updated at 11 a.m.) A Vienna man has been arrested and charged with a bias crime at a Korean-American church in Dunn Loring.

Fairfax County Police say the man entered the Church For All Nations at 8526 Amanda Place around 6:30 a.m. Wednesday and “destroyed a glass altar.”

“Our officers found Laith Faisal, 26, of Vienna, inside and arrested him for destruction of property and entering property with the intent to damage,” said FCPD.

In its crime report, FCPD described the incident as a bias crime but did not elaborate further. Police spokesman 2nd Lt. John Lieb told Tysons Reporter that “the case remains active and information regarding the offender’s suspected motivation cannot be released.”

The damage is estimated at more than $1,000, according to police. As a result of the size of the loss and the circumstances, Faisal is facing two felony charges.

Photo via Google Maps

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It’s official: half of Amazon’s HQ2 will be coming to Arlington and Alexandria. But while the offices won’t be located in Fairfax County, experts tell Tysons Reporter that the impact will be felt across the region.

Jerry Gordon, President of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority, said today that the new headquarters is not only likely to bring 25,000 new jobs to the HQ2 site, but will likely pull 50,000 to 75,000 jobs following Amazon into the region.

“There’s going to be a lot of new jobs, particularly in Tysons because of the Metro connection,” said Gordon. “There’s going to need to be new housing and new office space. The whole region is going to boom.”

Gordon said the first companies to feel the impact of the new headquarters will be regional construction companies, who are likely to see more work as developers scramble to meet the new residential and office space demands.

Among the excitement for new jobs are concerns that the headquarters will also make Tysons, an area already infamous for traffic congestion and a lack of affordable housing, denser than its supporting infrastructure allows.

“I’m hoping we get just enough of a boost from HQ2 for everyone to get raises or better jobs,” said a commenter on the Tysons Reporter Facebook page, “not so much of a boost that we end up with a housing crisis like what Seattle or [San Francisco] have right now.”

Gordon said there’s legitimacy to these concerns.

“When you bring in all these new people, you’re going to find housing values go up,” said Gordon. “There’s going to be a lot of families and they’re not going to want to live in high rises. If you want to own — or if you do own — property in the area it’s going to go up in value.”

Gordon said apartments will also feel the squeeze as new Tysonians move in, especially in the interim before the residential development market can catch up to the demand.

“Renting apartment space, that’s going to go up too,” said Gordon. “It’s all based on supply and demand. When that demand increases dramatically, the prices go up.”

Unfortunately, Gordon also said that the headquarters will likely impact traffic as well.

“If Arlington creates enough housing to accommodate, or new housing is built in proximity to the Metro, that impact will be relatively small,” said Gordon. “But that won’t be the case. This is 25,000 people… It depends on whose hired, but you’re still adding 25,000 jobs in the primary sector so there’s going to be an impact on transportation.”

But overall, Gordon said Amazon is likely to have a positive impact on the community.

“Everyone’s been focused on the new jobs, but people don’t think about the fact that Amazon is one of those companies that are very good corporate citizens,” said Gordon. “I know in Seattle they’re involved in issues from homelessness to arts to health issues. If that’s any indicator for how they’ll be involved here, the region is about to get a good shot in the arm.”

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(Updated at 2:25 p.m.) Fairfax County Police have arrested Megan Hargan for the murder of her sister Helen Hargan and mother Pamela Hargan in McLean in 2017

Palema and Helen Hargan were murdered on July 14, 2017 in their home at 6708 Dean Drive. Police had initially suspected a murder-suicide, but as the investigation continued police began to suspect double homicide.

A search warrant revealed that police believed the scene had been staged by the suspect. Suspicion turned to Pamela’s daughter Megan, who had attempted fraudulent wire transfers from her mother’s account.

Megan, 35, was arrested this morning in West Virginia is being interviewed by detectives, according to the Fairfax County Police Department. More details were released at an afternoon news conference.

More from an FCPD press release:

A 35-year-old woman is facing charges in the murder of her mom and sister. On July 14, 2017, 23-year-old Helen Lorena Hargan and her mother, 63-year-old Pamela Denise Hansen Hargan were found dead in a home in the 6700 block of Dean Drive in McLean. They had both been shot. This morning, detectives from our Major Crimes Bureau arrested Megan Hargan near her home in Monongalia County, West Virginia for their murders.

The bodies were discovered by officers, after a 9-1-1 call reporting someone in the home might have been killed. The scene was secured and meticulously processed over several days by our Crime Scene Section. Detectives determined early in the investigation that the scene was staged to appear to be a murder-suicide. Due to the complexity of the evidence, a reconstruction of the crime scene was completed by an independent company. Our investigation and forensic findings led us to Megan Hargan, and our Major Crimes Bureau remained vigilant while pursuing every investigative lead. We interviewed Megan Hargan on July 14th, and then again a few days later. Megan Hargan attempted fraudulent money transfers from her mom’s bank account on the day of the murders, as well as the day before. Megan Hargan was indicted by a multi-jurisdictional grand jury yesterday for two counts of 1st degree murder and two counts of using a firearm in committing a felony.

“This is a tragedy, domestic violence at its worst,” said Major Ed O’Carroll, commander of the Major Crimes Bureau.  “Our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Helen Hargan and Pamela Hargan. Know that justice always leads to the truth, and today the criminal justice process on this case continues.”

Our detectives are still in West Virginia, as the case remains active. We want to thank our law enforcement partners for their cooperation on this complex case, including the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Office.

Photo via Twitter

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A 75-year-old McLean man was struck by a car and killed last night near the intersection of Route 123 and Chain Bridge Road.

Police say Philip Dietz was crossing Route 123 just before 10 p.m. when he was struck by a driver in a BMW heading southbound. He died from his injuries.

All southbound lanes of Route 123 were closed for an extended period of time last night while a crash reconstruction team worked to investigate the collision, according to VDOT.

More from the Fairfax County Police Department:

Crash Reconstruction Unit detectives are investigating a fatal crash involving a pedestrian in the intersection of Dolley Madison Boulevard and Madison McLean Drive. Philip John Dietz, 75, of McLean, was attempting to cross Dolley Madison Boulevard around 9:55 last night. The driver of a 2002 BMW was traveling southbound in the right lane of Dolley Madison Boulevard when he hit Dietz in the intersection. Investigators are working to determine if Dietz used the marked crosswalk with the pedestrian signal at the time of the crash. Speed and alcohol do not appear to be factors for anyone involved. The driver remained at the scene and was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Once the investigation is complete, the Office of the Commonwealth Attorney will review the case and determine if the driver will be charged.

Map via Google Maps

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Fairfax County Fire and Rescue is on scene of a small fire at a house in the McLean area.

The fire on the 1200 block of Winter Hunt Road started in a bathroom exhaust fan, the department said via Twitter. It was quickly extinguished, but not before sending light smoke billowing out of the home’s attic.

Firefighters are now checking to see if the fire spread to other parts of the home.

The initial structure fire dispatch, which went out just before 2 p.m., drew a mutual aid response from as far away as Arlington.

Map via Google Maps

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