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Week in Great Falls

<sh>Police Arrest Girl Posing as Student

<bt>On Friday, May 11, at 3:45 p.m., Fairfax County Police responded to a report of a woman soliciting without a license in the 700 block of Miller Avenue in Great Falls. The woman told police that she had responded to her doorbell and was met by a girl who appeared to be approximately 15-16 years old, and who claimed to be collecting money for the Langley High School cheerleading squad. The resident described the girl as Caucasian, with reddish brown hair worn in braids, wearing a white shirt with jeans. The suspect then told the resident that she resided on a neighboring street and she identified herself as Tanya Mitchell. Before making a donation, the resident checked her local neighborhood directory and discovered that there was no such family name listed. She subsequently declined to make a donation and called Langley High School to make further inquiry. The resident said Langley High School staff confirmed that the girl was a scam artist, and said that there was no fund-raiser being run by the Langley High School cheerleading squad. Langley High School staff then sent out a mass community notice about the incident and asked the resident who had been approached by the girl to notify the police, which she did. The responding officer located the suspect and further investigation revealed that she had also approached several other residents in the area, and had solicited for money. Police said the suspect told victims she was collecting funds for cancer victims and a cheerleading group. Officers arrested 19-year-old Tasha M. Mitchell, of no fixed address. Mitchell was charged with three counts of obtaining money by false pretense and was transported to the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center. Police said the investigation is still ongoing at this time.

<sh>SCC Hosts ‘Warning Signs’ Workshop

<bt>On Thursday, May 24, from 7:30 to 9 p.m. the Safe Community Coalition will present special guest speaker Mary Livingston Azoy, LPC, CPT at its “Warning Signs of Youth Depression and Suicide” workshop at the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, located at 1545 Chain Bridge Road in McLean. Azoy, the director of Community Education & Crisis Response for CrisisLink, will discuss myths and facts about depression and sucide, as well as the warning signs of depression and suicide, how to ask the "suicide question,” effective ways to listen and communicate and how to stay safe and seek help. The workshop is free and includes a brief presentation, video and a Q&A session.

<sh>16th Annual Awards for Excellence

<bt>The Fairfax Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP) and the Northern Virginia Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) will present their 16th Annual Awards for Excellence in Community Service and Public Safety on Friday, May 18, at 10 a.m. The ceremony will be held at the Tysons Westpark Hotel, located at 8401 Westpark Drive in McLean. The awards ceremony will recognize the work of law enforcement personnel who have been diligent in their efforts to combat drinking and driving in the past year. Fairfax County Police officers from each of the eight district stations, as well as officers from 17 other jurisdictions who have been especially helpful in the fight against impaired driving during 2006, will be honored at the event.

The keynote speaker for the ceremony will be John W. Marshall, Virginia’s Secretary of Public Safety. Gail Pennybacker of WJLA-TV will be the emcee for the ceremony. The following Fairfax County Police officers from the McLean District Station will receive awards: PFC Jason Krull and PFC Ryan Fisher. Officers from the Reston District Station receiving awards are: PFC Jared Priset and PFC Patrick Nolan.