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Week in Loudoun

Possible Exposure

<bt>Around 11:24 a.m., Tuesday, Dec. 11, Loudoun County received a 9-1-1 call for an illness in the 22900 Block of Wilder Court located off of Old Ox Road in the Le Bourget Business Park. Moments later, a second call was received from the same location, reporting that a carbon monoxide detector had been activated.

Fire and rescue personnel from Sterling, Moorefield, Ashburn, Fairfax County and Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority arrived on the scene to find five construction workers who had been welding inside the building located at 22995 Wilder Court feeling ill. A total of 11 patients were evaluated at the scene for possible exposure to carbon monoxide. Three of the patients were transported to Loudoun Hospital Center at Lansdowne for further evaluation. The remaining eight patients signed waivers at the scene.

<sh>Suspect Caught in Thefts

<bt>A Herndon man is accused of renovating his new home with at least $10,000 in stolen appliances and materials. A majority of the items were taken from homes under construction in the Ashburn area, according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.

The 41-year-old was charged Monday, Dec. 10, with possession of stolen property. The Loudoun Sheriff’s Office learned of the thefts and possible connection to the suspect in November after a superintendent of a construction site witnessed a truck leaving a home under construction with an air conditioning unit. The truck was traced back to the suspect’s new home located in the 21630 block of Ashburn Road in Ashburn.

The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant on the home in November and discovered numerous stolen items including; a dishwasher, a faucet, a sink, doors, cabinets, a furnace, air conditioning units and other building materials. Some of the items have been traced back to previous reports of larceny from construction sites at several Van Meter homes.

County investigators are working with other builders in the area to determine if some of the other items found in the home were also stolen. Those items include a dishwasher, A/C units, a kitchen faucet and cabinets.

The suspect was being held on a $2,500 bond.

<sh>Man Charged as Child Predator

<bt>Members of the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office assisted Pennsylvania authorities with the arrest of a Leesburg man wanted for sexually propositioning what he believed to be a 13-year-old girl over the Internet.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett on Thursday, Dec. 6, announced that agents from the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit arrested the 52-year-old man. The suspect is the chief operating officer and executive vice president of a transportation and storage company. He is accused of using hidden Internet chat rooms to sexually proposition what he believed was a 13-year-old girl, as well as sending sexually explicit and pornographic Web cam videos to the girl. The "girl" was actually an undercover agent from the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Child Predator Unit, who was using the online profile of a child. To date, the unit has arrested 111 Internet predators from Pennsylvania and several other states.

According to the criminal complaint, the suspect, using the name "Gene Grant," initially approached an undercover agent in July 2007, using a hidden Internet chat room, which has been used by predators arrested in previous investigations by the Child Predator Unit.

According to the criminal complaint, the suspect engaged in a series of online and e-mail exchanges with the child between July and October 2007, graphically describing the sex acts he wished to engage in.

Corbett said that agents from the Child Predator Unit worked closely with the Virginia State Police and Loudoun County Virginia Sheriff's Office to monitor the suspect’s home and office and verify when he had returned from his most recent business trip.

He was arrested at his office in Leesburg Monday, Dec. 3, by the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office, based on information provided by the Child Predator Unit. The suspect waived extradition in Virginia and was transported to Pennsylvania Dec. 5, where he was lodged in the Allegheny County Jail in lieu of $100,000 cash bail. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Dec. 11, at 8:30 a.m., in Pittsburgh Municipal Court.

The suspect is charged with two counts of unlawful contact with a minor (obscene or sexual materials of performances), two counts of attempted obscene or sexual performances and two counts of criminal use of a computer. All of those charges are third-degree felonies, which are each punishable by up to seven years in prison and $15,000 fines.

<sh>New Standards Approved

<bt>The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has approved amendments to the Loudoun County Facilities Standards Manual (FSM). The amendments, effective immediately, were adopted after the board directed the FSM Public Review Committee to conduct a comprehensive review and update of the FMS with the goal of improving the land development review process.

The FSM is designed to assist the public and development community in determining the policies, which apply to land development in the county. It contains information primarily concerned with design and construction standards and guidelines for improvements related to subdivisions and site plans.

The adoption of the amendments Tuesday completed a two-phase review of the FSM. In June 2006, the board adopted a "top 10" list of high priority amendments to the FSM and the Land Subdivision and Development Ordinance (LSDO).

More information about the FSM and LSDO is available online on the Loudoun County government Web site at www.loudoun.gov/b&d.