WE ARE LOCAL News in Prince William, Virginia




Chimney fire scorches three-story townhouse in Woodbridge

From Prince William County Department of Fire and Rescue:

On Wednesday, March 15th at 8:55 p.m., fire and rescue units were dispatched to a townhouse fire located in the 3400 block of Braddock Road in Woodbridge.

Upon arrival, firefighters encountered heavy fire in the basement that had extended to the second and third floor of the home. Firefighters initiated fire attack and extinguished the fire.

No injuries reported. According to the Fire Marshal’s Office, preliminary damages are estimated at $200,000, a total loss.

The Building Official has posted the home unsafe.Red Cross was on scene to assist, 2 adults and 2 children, displaced by the fire.

The fire originated in the chimney and has been determined as accidental.

Prince William County Department of Fire and Rescue Chief Kevin McGee would like to urge residents to follow these fire and life-safety tips when using wood burning equipment:

  • Each year, prior to using your fireplace or wood stove, have your chimney and vents inspected and cleaned by a qualified professional.
  • Have a sturdy fireplace screen or keep the doors on the wood stove closed to stop sparks from flying into the room.
  • Burn only dry, seasoned wood in fireplaces and wood stoves and dry, seasoned wood pellets in pellet stoves.
  • NEVER start the fire with a flammable liquid, kerosene or gasoline; use newspaper or kindling.
  • Keep anything that can burn at least 3 feet away.
  • NEVER leave a fireplace or wood stove fire unattended, particularly when children are present.



Dale City Marine molded, immortalized forever at Marine Corps museum


QUANTICO, Va. — It starts by applying layers of pink goop to the feet, knees, and legs.

The wet concoction forms a wet, warm, molded barrier over the body.

Now totally emersed in goo, a crew places pieces of wet plaster cloth over the top to form the mother mold.

Underneath is Lt. Col. Gordon Miller, a 22-year Marine veteran, and Dale City native. He’s volunteered an afternoon so a crew can make a mold of his body.

Miller’s cast will be featured in a permanent display in the soon-to-open expansion of the National Museum of the Marine Corps at Quantico, in a scene from 2002’s invasion of Iraq. Though he served as a Marine Corps Officer in the run up to Bagdad, he — his cast — will portray a non-commissioned officer standing in a in a gun turret inside an all-terrain vehicle (M-ATV) used during the invasion, holding a pair of binoculars.

Miller’s cast will be joined by others who were in the battle, to include Maj. Gen. Herman Stacy Clardy, Gunnery sergeants Brandon Richards and Brian Nelson who were with Miller during the early days of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The scene will depict Marines on downtime where one is cleaning a weapon, while another is on a chow break, another is reading a map and plotting a path, and another is answering the call of nature with a roll of toilet paper in hand.

“This scene depicts the common ‘hurry up and wait’ part about combat,” said National Museum of the Marine Corps Gallery Manager Keith Bearley. (more…)


Manassas City Police is seeking information that leads to an arrest of the following individual:


RACE: White (Hispanic)

SEX: Male

H / W: 5’7 170

DOB: April 6, 1987 (age 29)

EYES: Brown

HAIR: Black


Manassas, VA

Case # 16005167– Det. Brooks

Julio UMANZOR-CRUZ is wanted for sex offenses stemming from a Manassas City Police investigation that began on Sept. 2, 2016. UMANZOR-CRUZ’s last known residence is Manassas however, he might have left the area.

The Manassas City Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward up to $1000 for information that leads to an arrest in this case. The confidential 24-hour tip line is (703) 330-0330.

Stafford man wins $492,919 lotto prize


It may be the most memorable lunch break Shaun Bennett has ever taken.

The Stafford carpenter was working on a roofing project when he stopped at the Wawa at 275 Butler Road in (Stafford County). He bought two Virginia Lottery tickets and won $5. So he bought another ticket and won $25. He took $10 of that and bought a 20 Years of Cash ticket. That ticket won the top prize of $2,500 per month for 20 years.

He had the choice of taking the monthly payments or a one-time cash option of $492,919 before taxes. He chose the cash option.

As he waited for his check at the Virginia Lottery’s Northern Virginia Customer Service Center in Woodbridge, he bought another Scratcher ticket and won an additional $25.

The 20 Years of Cash Scratcher is one of dozens of games available from the Virginia Lottery. It features prizes ranging from $5 all the way up to $2,500 per month for 20 years. Mr. Bennett is the first player to claim the top prize in this game, which means three more remain unclaimed.

The odds of winning the top prize are 1 in 2,080,800. The odds of winning any prize in this game are 1 in 4.21.

Mother charged with felony child neglect

From Prince William County Police:

Felony Child Neglect – On March 13 at 6:18 p.m., officers responded to the 12100 block of Cinnamon St in Woodbridge in reference to a found child. The caller reported to police that she located a young child walking around a parking lot unattended in the above area. Officers attempted to obtain information from the child regarding her residence and other identifiable information without success. (more…)

Law ensures Virginians can resell tickets

In a defeat for Ticketmaster, a new state law will allow Virginians to resell tickets they’ve bought for concerts, football and basketball games, and other public events.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe has signed two bills that would protect people involved in reselling tickets – a practice critics call scalping. The law also says you can’t be turned away if you show up at an event with a ticket you received from someone else. (more…)

9-1-1 Call hang up results in concealed weapon arrest

Stafford, VA. On March 10, 2017, at 8:29 p.m., Deputy K.J. Simpson and Deputy S.P. Whitt responded to a 9-1-1 call from a residence on Poplar Road. The call had disconnected before deputies arrived on the scene. As is the routine practice, the deputies were outside interviewing the husband and wife about the circumstances that led to the call.

A short time later, an uninvolved male subject exited the residence and approached Deputy Simpson. As the male approached, he began using very explicit and abusive language toward law enforcement. (more…)

‘While none of it is funny, comedy…gets people to stop talking…and literally act’


Rahmein Mostafavi has been bringing headlining comedy acts to venues in Northern Virginia since 2011.

His shows at the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, in Arlington, Fredericksburg, and other locations have introduced area residents to acts who have been featured on Comedy Central, HBO, and others.

We talked to Mostafavi about his recent efforts to use laughs to raise money for a serious cause — helping children in war-torn Syria.

PL: What inspired you to start the “All for Aleppo” fundraising campaign?

Mostafavi: Quite simply the horrifying images of the country and it’s suffering people. Especially the children.

PL: How much money did you raise?

Mostafavi: $11,976

PL: What was the best thing about doing this campaign?

Mostafavi: Seeing the people come out for a cause that has nothing to do with their daily lives. We can all just watch the news and even get sad, but to take the time to go out and do something, even as simple as attending a comedy show, is action.

It was truly heartwarming to see people give, $5, $10, $20, and
often much more than that to people that, at this time, need if far more than we do.

PL: What’s a big challenge you had to overcome with this endeavor?

Mostafavi: Honestly, it didn’t take much. The DC comics are very supportive and wonderful people. The minute I put the word out about these shows, I had more than enough talent to produce great shows. Our talent pool runs extremely deep in DC.

I suppose the challenge was taking time away from my kids to do these non-profit shows. They are old enough to know when daddy is gone, so they got a bit less daddy time during this run. However, it provided me a perfect opportunity to sit them down to talk
about exactly what I was trying to do.

They are smart boys. They got it and became supportive too. When I’d get home from a fundraiser, they’d ask me how much I’d raised for
the people of Syria.

PL: Where are you performing next?

Mostafavi: I’m kind of all over. Locally my next shows are my productions that I’m hosting in Leesburg, Lorton, and Fredericksburg. Details at coolcowcomedy.com.

PL: Was it a bit awkward to use comedy as a way to raise funds for such a tragic endeavor?

Mostafavi: At first, I had those concerns as well. But it’s like any fundraiser. Whether it’s the Orlando shooting, Katrina, etc…we gather for the cause. While none of it is funny, comedy is simply the magnet that
gets people to stop talking or posting about a given situation and literally act.

PL: When did you start your business Cool Cow Comedy?

Mostafavi: About six years ago.

PL: What’s next for you and Cool Cow Comedy?

Mostafavi: More of the same I suppose.

PL: If someone wants to donate to your campaign how/where do they do that?

Mostafavi: At this point, no more fundraiser shows are scheduled. Please donate directly to whatever cause inspires you. The three I focused on where Islamic Relief, Doctors Without Borders (with Syrian focus), and Handicap International (with Syrian focus).

*This post is written by Rod Loges and Jenn Mathis, of One Degree Capital in Occoquan, in collaboration with Potomac Local.