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Week in Fairfax

News Briefs

House Fire Causes $500K in Damages

<bt>On Thursday, Dec. 1, firefighters from the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue department responded to a house fire in the 5100 block of Brookridge Place in the Fairfax area of the county. According to a Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department press release, fire units arrived at the scene around 8:30 a.m. and saw heavy smoke and fire coming from the entire structure of the two-story, single-family house.

Over 40 City of Fairfax and Fairfax County firefighters arrived at the scene, and brought the fire under control after about 50 minutes, said the release.

No one was injured in the fire. The house was vacant and under renovation, but damage is estimated at $500,000. The fire was accidental, caused by an overloaded fireplace used by construction workers, said the release.

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<pc>Police Sketch

<sh>Man Abducted, Suspect Sought

<bt>Fairfax County Crime Solvers seeks the public's assistance in identifying the person responsible for abducting a 24-year-old Alexandria man and stealing his car.

According to a Crime Solvers press release, the victim went to a night club in Washington, D.C. and left in the early morning hours of Sunday, Nov. 20, with a man he had just met.

Both men drove to a house, where the victim was house-sitting, in the 11600 block of Valley Road in Fairfax.

When the two men got into an argument around 11:30 a.m., the suspect became violent, said the release. The suspect tied the victim up and threatened him with a knife. He took numerous items from the house, including an SUV, which he used to flee. The victim was uninjured, and the items and the SUV belonged to the owners of the house, said Officer Shelley Broderick, Fairfax County Police Department spokesperson.

The suspect is described as white and in his 40s. He had short brown hair, said the release, and was 5 feet 10 inches tall and 180-210 pounds. The SUV is a silver 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee with Virginia registration JBK-9007.

Crime Solvers ask anyone with information on the suspect, the incident, or the whereabouts of the vehicle to call the Crime Solvers tip line at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477). Crime Solvers will pay a $1,000 cash reward for information leading to an arrest. Callers never have to give their names or appear in court.

<sh>Reaccreditation Input Sought

<bt>In December, the City of Fairfax Police Department will be applying for reaccreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). During the process, public comment is sought to help verify that the department meets professional standards for law enforcement in four basic areas: policy and procedures, administration, operations and support services.

A public hearing is set for Monday, Dec. 12, at 7 p.m., in City Hall Room 306. Residents may also phone in their comments, the phone-in session is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 13, from 1-5 p.m. The phone number is 703-273-2385.

Comments must address the extent to which the Police Department meets CALEA's standards. A copy of the standards is available at the Police Department headquarters, 3730 Old Lee Highway.

For more, contact Captain Kenneth Caldwell at 703-385-7971 or Lieutenant Harold Slaton at 703-385-7937.

<sh>Nutley Gets Schooled

<bt>The Hunter’s Branch office complex at the corner of Nutley Street and Lee Highway will soon be home to small college campus. At its Dec. 5 meeting, the Board of Supervisors authorized the owners of the property, Hunters Branch Partners, to use a portion of the existing buildings for classroom space.

The two 12-story buildings, which total about 400,000 square feet, will not get any bigger. Previously, they were permitted to house a health club and deli in addition to office uses, and now up to 30,000 square feet of space may be used by colleges or universities.

According to board documents, the University of Southwestern Missouri seeks to be a tenant and use about 1,000 square feet. The university plans “to offer highly specialized classes associated with strategic defense,” states the statement of justification prepared by the property owner’s attorney.

<sh>Fairfax Hospital Gets Taller

<bt>The Claude Moore Health Education Center, on the Grounds of Fairfax Hospital, will be able to add a fifth floor. On Monday, Dec. 5, the Board of Supervisors approved a 14-foot increase in the height of the building bringing it to 69 feet.

In addition, the board approved adding 576 square feet to Ronald McDonald House, construction of a pedestrian plaza and the addition of an eighth cooling tower, to be located on an extension of the roof of the mechanical building.

The hospital will also initiate a program designed to reduce by 15 percent the number of car trips to and from the site during rush hour. “We thought it was appropriate that they … help mitigate traffic,” said Supervisor Linda Smyth (D-Providence).

<sh>Advisory Board Volunteers Sought

<bt>The City of Fairfax Community Appearance Committee seeks one volunteer board member. The committee coordinates the Adopt-a-Sport program, cleanup programs, and decoration award programs, and meets the fourth Thursday of each month.

A volunteer board member is also sought for the Community Criminal Justice Board, which enhances the ability of the county and the city to develop court services, community-based corrections programs, and other criminal justice programs.

Letters of interest for both positions are due by Monday, Dec. 19 and should be submitted to City Clerk Melanie Burrell. For more, call 703-385-7935.

<sh>JCC Super Sunday, Dec. 11

<bt>The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington conducts its annual Super Sunday fund-raiser Dec. 11, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The fund-raiser takes place at three locations this year: the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia in Fairfax, the District of Columbia JCC in Washington, D.C. and the JCC of Greater Washington in Rockville, Md.

Super Sunday is the Federation's largest single day of fund-raising each year. Individuals and families gather to make phone calls and raise money for people in need locally, in Israel, and around the world.

This year's Super Sunday is dedicated to the late Jerry Dick, creator of the first Super Sunday in 1979. For more information or to volunteer, call 301-348-7350 or visit the Super Sunday Web site at www.SuperSunday2005.org.