Prince William

Heritage Hunt to hold community open house

Spring at Heritage Hunt

The public is invited to the home owners Community Open House at Heritage Hunt Golf & Country Club—a community designed for the active adult (55+).

The event is scheduled for Sunday, October 18, 2015, 12:30 – 4:00 p.m. Visitors will be registered at the front gate and directed to the community clubhouse (6901 Arthur Hills Drive, Gainesville, Va. 20155)

The visitors will be given a packet of information about the award-winning Heritage Hunt Golf & Country Club community, including a list of almost 100 clubs and activities to enjoy. Visitors may tour the golf pro-shop, clubhouse, fitness and aquatic center, the secondary clubhouse at the Marsh Mansion.

The visitors who are interested in golf may request a short tour of the golf course.

To visit the community website, go to If you would like more information, please call 703-743-5490 or

Wells Fargo Bank in Ashdale Plaza robbed

wells fargo robbery


Police called in a helicopter and dispatched search dogs, but did not find the suspect. 

Suspect Description:

Black male, between 20 & 30 years of age, 5’11”-6’0”, 150-160lbs with a thin build, medium complexion, black hair and brown eyes

Last seen wearing a red polo shirt with a black stripe across the middle, and the word “SPAIN” on the front, black pants or jeans and white tennis shoes

10:26 a.m. 

Prince William police are on the scene of a bank robbery in Dale City. 

Someone walked into a Well Fargo Bank at 2876 Ashdale Plaza, brandished a gun, and took an undisclosed amount of cash. The man fled on foot toward the rear of the bank, according to police.

The bank is located just off Dale Boulevard, between Gideon Driver and Interstate 95.

The suspect is described as black, 6 feet 2 inches tall, slender, wearing a red shirt with “11” on the back.


More as we have it.

Prince William School Board at odds over new high school design, cost

The Prince William County School Board once again finds itself arguing about transparency, and how to be the best stewards of taxpayer funds.

The discussion comes nearly two years after it approved one of the costliest high schools ever to be built in Virginia.

School officials Wednesday night were tasked once again with voting on a design to be used for the county’s 13th high school to be built in western Prince William County, slated to open in 2020.

The Board voted on April 23, 2014 to build new high schools using cheaper, a 20-year-old floor plan first used in 1991 to build C.D. Hylton High School in Woodbridge, and last used in 2004 to build Battlefield High School outside Haymarket.

school prototype

School staff on Wednesday urged the governing body to rescind their vote and built a the new school based on designs used at Patriot High School, and the new Colgan High School that will open next fall.

The Battlefield model will cost $13.7 million less to construct. The Patriot model is more modern and includes more windows for natural light — something school staff said helps children learn better, according to a 1999 study cited by school division staff.

Both the Battlefield and Patriot design will accommodate 2,053 students. Classrooms in the Patriot model are 50-square feet larger than the 700-square-feet classrooms in at Battlefield High School.

“The greater square footage drives the greater cost,” said Prince William County Public Schools Associate Superintendent David Cline.

Larger open spaces to include courtyards, cafeteria, gymnasium, auditorium, hallways, and better energy efficiency are all selling points for the newer Patriot model. Cline also pointed to a series of meetings held in September where “the vast majority of about 75 citizens who spoke, the overwhelming majority indicated they liked the Patriot prototype,” said Cline.

“To get this on the on the agenda tonight, someone had to ask for it,” said Neabsco District School Board member Lisa Bell. “We did take a vote, and now were being asked to revisit it. We held two community meetings to stir up the community again.”

The school division held two public meetings last month to discuss where the 13th high school will be located. The locations include a site proffered by a housing developer that would build a the Stone Haven neighborhood in Bristow, still awaiting approval from the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, or on a site off Rollins Ford road bequeathed to the county for use as a public park.

The meetings also dredged up the topic of how the school building should be built. Schools Superintendent Steven Walts said the meetings were held in the name of transparency with the public. 

Bell, along with Coles District member Michael Otaigbe said the school design topic should not have been discussed since the Board already voted last year to use the Battlefield design.

“We voted to use the one that was less costly and the community applauded…with that and we learned our lessons, and here we are being told we should go for a higher model,” said Otaigbe.

Bell and Otaigbe opted not return to the School Board next year. Otagibe said this was the first time in his 12 years on the Board he has been asked to revisit a prior vote.

Occoquan School Board member Lillie Jessie said she cannot fathom the cost of the more expensive model when so many students in her district in eastern Prince William County attend classes outside their school buildings in trailer classrooms.

“Do wider hallways serve any instructional purposes?” asked Jessie.

The Occoquan District representative also asked school staff for a study more recent than the 1999 study cited, noting children perform better in schools with more natural light.

“Osbourn Park and Battlefield [high schools] are nationally ranked, and they don’t have glass,” she added.

The School Board is trying to avoid a repeat of the Colgan High School debate, which ignited local bloggers that denounced the division for spending too much on the school, and for including the division’s first school pool. Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart argued then that school pools are not uncommon, and that the pool was necessary to attract more affluent residents to the county

Colgan High School, located on Route 234 near Hoadly Road near eastern Prince William County, will open next fall with a price tag of $111 million — one of the most costliest ever built in the state.

Crowded schools are also a problem in the county, as many new schools are filled to the brim with students as soon as they open.

“We do need to be building larger schools with larger capacity because land is not readily available. I’m more concerned about capacity than lighting at this time,” said Potomac District School Board member Betty Covington.

School Board Chairman Milton Johns opted not to return to the School Board in 2016 after 12 years on the Board. He said overcrowding in county schools is nothing new, and that schools on the eastern side of the county dealt with severe overcrowding issues in the 1980s and 90s.

Johns supports building the Patriot model for the 13th high school.

“We pay a lot of people a lot of money to be expert professionals and advise us, and the message I’m getting is that they think [building the Battlefield model] is a big mistake,” said Johns.

The clock is ticking on the school board to decide not only what the new school will look like, but where it will be located if it will open on time in 2020. A decision on the school design must be made this month, said Cline.

Johns tabled the discussion, and a possible vote to rescind the 2014 decision to build the Battlefield model to the next School Board meeting at 7 p.m. October 21.

Police make final arrest in Gainesville murder

The fifth and final suspect connected to a murder in Gainesville on Sept. 12 is in police custody.

Murder Investigation *ARREST – On October 6th, members of the U.S. Marshals’ Fugitive Task Force, with assistance from the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office, located and arrested the suspect, Alvin JONES, who was wanted in connection to the murder of Claude JACKSON III which occurred in the area of Old Linton Hall Rd and Charis Ave in Gainesville on September 12th.

The suspect was located at a home in the 100 block of Saint Johns Sq in Sterling. Four additional suspects were previously arrested in connection to this investigation.

Arrested on October 6th:
Alvin Burnett JONES, 32, of 8637 Sumter Ct in Manassas Park
Charged with murder, aggravated malicious wounding, use of a firearm in commission of a felony and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon

Court Date: November 18, 2015 | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

-Prince William police

Firefighters called to basement fire at Dale City home

Prince William County fire and rescue officials notified us of the cause of a fire in Dale City on Friday. 

On Friday, October 2nd, at approximately 10:30 a.m., fire and rescue units were dispatched to a structure fire in a single family home with basement located in the 6200 block of Oakland Drive in Dale City.

Upon arrival, fire and rescue crews observed a small fire in the basement’s home. Firefighters proceeded to extinguish the fire and search for further extension. No further extension was found.

An adult resident, who was home at the time of the fire, called 911, upon safely exiting the home.

No injuries reported.

According to the Fire Marshal’s Office, preliminary damages are estimated at $1,000.

The origin of the fire was an aquarium; the cause electrical and has been determined accidental.

-Kim Hylander, Prince William County Fire and Rescue Department

Nando’s Peri-Peri in Woodbridge burglarized

A popular restaurant at Stonebridge a Potomac Town Center was burglarized on Monday. 

Here’s more in a report from Prince William police: 

Commercial Burglary – On October 5th at 6:44AM, officers responded to Nando’s Peri-Peri located at 15001 Potomac Town Pl in Woodbridge (22191) to investigate a burglary. Staff reported to police that the burglary occurred between 11:00PM on October 4th and 6:00AM on October 5th. The investigation revealed that there were no signs of forced entry into the business. An undisclosed amount of money was reported missing.

Reprinting Prince William election ballots could cost thousands

It could cost tens of thousands of dollars to fix misprinted election ballots in Prince William County.

Five candidates on the ballot for the November 3 General Election will not see their listed as they requested them. Many of the candidates use and requested shorter versions of their name to be listed on the ballot. They’re getting their full names instead.

Here’s what was requested and what voters might see instead:

Mike May


Mike May (Commonwealth Attorney candidate) will be listed as Michael May

rick smith


Richard “Rick” Smith (Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman candidate) will be listed as Richard Smith

Steven “Steve” Chapman (Prince William County Board of Supervisors Woodbridge District candidate) will be listed as Steven Chapman

Earnie W. Porta, Jr. (Prince William County Board of Supervisors Occoquan District candidate) will be listed as Earnest Porta, Jr.



Gerald “Jerry” Foreman (36th District Virginia Senate candidate) will be listed as Gerald Foreman

Prince William County Electoral Board Secretary Keith Scarborough said each of the affected candidates submitted the proper form to indicate how they wanted their names listed on the ballot, but the mistake happened anyway.



“It wasn’t a space issue, it was our office when filling out the paperwork, messed up those forms,” said Scarborough. “…we made a mistake, obviously.”

The form included 28 spaces for candidates to fill in their names. It’s not uncommon for candidates to want their full names listed on the ballots, along with more common nicknames placed in quotation marks.



The upcoming General Election will be the first in Prince William County where paper ballots will once again be used at all voting precincts. New laws forced the county to get rid of electronic touchscreen machines and convert back to using machine scanners that tally votes when a paper ballot is inserted into them.

Prince William County struck a deal with Hart Invercivic, an Austin, Texas-based company that makes the voting machines. It also agreed to print all the ballots needed for the first five elections, starting with the upcoming November 3 vote, as part of the purchase agreement.

Scarborough said the ballots must be printed by that company and cannot be printed locally. The cost to reprint the ballots could range between $80 and $100,000, he added.

The Prince William County Electoral Board will meet Wednesday night to discuss their options, which include reprinting ballots, or placing signs at polling stations noting the names of the five affected candidates and displaying them as intended.

Candidates we talked to say the situation is unfortunate, but they don’t plan on asking for a reprint.

“The truth of the matter is, I don’t want to cost taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars to reprint ballots. I wish it would have been done right but I understand these types of things happen,” said Earnie Porta.

“There’s overcrowding in classrooms, and traffic issues, so there are other things the taxpayers money would be better spent on.” said Steve Chapman.

Pot deal goes bad, shots fired in Bristow

A teen used counterfeit cash to purchase marijuana, police said. That angered the alleged seller, and he went to the Bristow home of the teen and fired shots, police added. 

Here’s more in a police report: 

Attempted Aggravated Malicious Wounding – On October 3rd at 2:18PM, officers responded to a residence located in the 9800 block of Dochart Sound Ln in Bristow (20136) to investigate a shooting call. The investigation revealed that the accused shot into a residence in the above area as a result of a previous encounter earlier in the evening involving a 16 year old male juvenile, who resides at the home, and another male acquaintance. The two reportedly went to an area church parking lot to purchase marijuana from the accused and other known acquaintances. During the transaction, the 16 year old allegedly paid for the marijuana with counterfeit money. In retaliation, the accused and three other suspects went to the 16 year old’s residence on Dochart Sound Ln to confront him over the money. At one point, the accused fired into the home, striking an interior wall. No injuries were reported. Following the investigation, the accused was arrested. Additional charges are forthcoming.

Arrested on October 3rd: [No Photo Available] 

Dominic Arthur GORRIARAN, 18, of 9370 Falling Water Dr in Bristow

Charged with attempted aggravated malicious wounding, shooting into an occupied dwelling, use of a firearm in commission of a felony and possession with intent to distribute marijuana

Court Date: November 24, 2015 | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

Hylton beats Freedom in rescheduled Thursday game



Stormy weather last week prompted the C.D. Hylton Bulldogs to move up their match with the Freedom Eagles. 

The game was rescheduled from Friday, October 2 to Thursday, October, 1.

Hylton beat Freedom 34-33.

Mark Lomax was on hand to take photos of the game for Tacketts Mill Football Friday.

Police on scene of homicide near Dale City


3:30 p.m. Monday

Police identified the victim as 48-year-old Stephen Christopher Brown.

9:08 p.m.

Prince William police released the following statement :

**INCIDENT: STABBING | Manassas ** On October 4, 2015 at approximately 4:00 PM, Officers responded to the 12700 block of Lost Creek Court in Manassas (20112) for a reported stabbing. Officers arrived to find one adult male dead from an apparent stab wound following a domestic altercation. There is no public threat or need for concern. The incident is still under investigation and more details will be released when available.

6:24 p.m. 

Police are investigating a homicide on Lost Creek Court near Dale City.

Detectives were called to the 17900 block of Lost Creek Court after a man was found stabbed to death about 4 p.m. Sunday.

The unidentified victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said all parties involved in the incident are accounted for. No charges have been filed as of yet.

Police remained outside the victim’s home just after 6 p.m. Sunday.

We don’t yet have an official cause of death in the case. More as we have it.

Sports complex to be named after Ali Krieger

A new sports complex at Potomac Shores could soon bear the name of hometown sports hero Ali Krieger.

A new sports complex to be built by Potomac Shores as part of a 2013 agreement between the developer and Prince William County will include nine new fields, some to include soccer fields, a softball field, and two little league fields.

Potomac District Supervisor Maureen Caddigan wants to name the new sports complex after Ali Krieger, a member of the 2015 World Cup Championship U.S. Women’s Soccer Team. Krieger was born in Alexandria and grew up in Dumfries.

“This is really the last large park that is going to be built in eastern Prince William County, most likely, and in the Potomac District there really aren’t any soccer fields in the district, and this is a way to recognize one of Prince William County’s finest,” said Director of Prince William Soccer Inc. Mike Yeatts.

Krieger now lives in Arlington. Yeatts said he planned to speak with krieger family to gauge their reaction to the naming proposal. The soccer star could issue a statement through her agent, added Yeatts.

The “Ali krieger Sports Complex” would be located at 2400 River Heritage Boulevard.

A name change is also being considered for the Ben Lomond Community Center outside Manassas.

Located at 10501 Copeland Drive, the nearly 10,000 square feet commuity center has two meeting rooms, a multipurpose room, two dance studio, and a classroom, according to county documents.

Officials want to rename the center the “Pat White Center at Ben Lomond.” White was a community organizer who in 1970 formed a coalition of people who banded together to save a barn on the old Ben Lomond property — a dairy farm that purchased by a developer and turned into the residential neighborhood it is today.

The “save the barn campaign” was successful and county officials passed a bond referendum to save the structure. But repairs to the old barn became too costly, and the barn was replaced with a replica structure, according to county documents.

A naming committee inside the county’s parks and recreation department went to work August 19 and decided to name the center after White.

The naming of the sports complex, and renaming the community center are expected to be discussed Tuesday at the Prince William County Board of Supervisors meeting.

Manassas set the bar with high-quality, truly local craft spirits and beer

KO Distilling

The craft beer, wine, and spirits industry has been growing in leaps and bounds.

In the last few years, two breweries and a distillery have opened in the City of Manassas. While each place offers their own unique vibe and products, two characteristics unite and set them apart from the competition – a commitment to quality and local ingredients.

“Similar to the farm-to-table movement, people are excited by the grain-to-glass concept and high-quality products made from local grains,” says Bill Karlson, the co-founder and CEO of KO Distilling. “We make a point of telling people during tours that our wheat comes from Renwood Farms in Charles City and our rye came from Bay’s Best Feed Farm in Virginia’s Northern Neck.”

KO Distilling
Heritage Brewing
KO Distilling Bottles

KO Distilling opened in September and welcomed 450 people to its grand opening. During its first week, more than 100 people stopped by to sample its whiskey and gins. The distillery is a true agribusiness – the spirits are not just made in Virginia, but the majority of the grains used are sourced from local farms.

A Nielsen study found that “local, authentic” are qualities desired of beer and spirits growing in importance among consumers, most largely among the 21-34 demographic.  Perhaps that is because today about 75% of adults over the age of 21 live within 10 miles of a brewery. The Atlantic reported that there were 70 small distilleries in the U.S. in 2003. Karlson says that KO is the 19th craft distiller in an industry of about 1000 microdistillers.

Customers seek quality and want to know how ingredients are sourced, says Sarah Meyers, co-founder of Manassas’ first craft brewery BadWolf Brewing Company.

“We try to source local whenever possible and at Little BadWolf they get to see beer being made right in front of them. Given how many craft breweries are popping up, we might hit a saturation point, so you need to make sure your quality is way up there and that is our biggest focus.”

The beer made at Heritage Brewing has a 100-percent organic base and 92 percent of all ingredients are either organic or locally sourced.  Sean Arroyo, CEO of Heritage Brewing, explains, “Our approach is committing ourselves to the consistency and quality of our product and bringing the best ingredients that we can through organics and local aspects.”

This fall, Heritage is collaborating with The Bone, a barbecue spot in historic Manassas, on a bacon stout. And BadWolf is working with downtown Manassas restaurateurs on an “Old Town” Beer that will only be available in downtown establishments.

Experimenting with new creations keeps the excitement alive. Heritage, which is a 20-barrel brew house, also operates a small pilot system for making small batches of creative releases for the taproom. “It gives us a way to interact with our consumers and let them decide what our next big beers will be,” says Arroyo.

After BadWolf’s successful first year, Meyers and her business partner and husband Jeremy opened a 6,000-square foot production facility. Little BadWolf Brewing Company, the smaller, original location, is where people can try out the experimental batches and even suggest recipes, while the new Big BadWolf has space for special events and growler and kegs of their flagship brews.

“We are using our space for more than beer,” says Meyers. “We focus on giving back to charities and bringing people together for social events.” One look at BadWolf’s event calendar shows there is always something going on, including yoga, painting, and Craft Beer Bingo – all accompanied with a pint. Similarly, Heritage hosts trivia and live music nights in addition to special events like a new beer dinner series.

While all three businesses are committed to building a sense of community, they also take being a regional destination seriously. As Meyers says, “people won’t go to just a bar, but places like a brewery are something special they will seek out.”

Karlson says that he and his business partner, John O’Mara, always envisioned KO Distilling being a tourism destination by matching a great product with a great experience. “The minute visitors walk through our doors,” he says, “they know they aren’t in a warehouse anymore.”

KO Distilling’s tasting room has leather couches, a fireplace, and copper and oak design elements that mimic the copper pot still they use for distilling and barrels they use for aging. The atmosphere rewards locals as well as travelers for making the drive. Karlson, Meyers, and Arroyo all agree that Manassas, with its close proximity to I-95 and 66 and its abundance of historical sites and attractions, is an ideal location for attracting tourists from the metro area and beyond.

“What we want to do is bring in the community, produce a quality product, and have a great time doing it,” says Meyers.

Stewart, Smith disagree on BPOL tax but friendly on nearly everything else


What was an issue that once defined Prince William County as a contentious place for immigrants to be is no more.

An audience member at a debate Thursday night with Democrat challenger Rick Smith, and Republican Prince William County Chairman At-large Corey Stewart asked the incumbent if immigration was going to be an issue.

Stewart won national media attention in 2007 when he lead an effort to have police check the ID of every suspected illegal immigrant in the county.

“We’ve got to move on,” said Stewart. “We’ve implemented a policy that targets those who commit crimes, and we’ve turned many criminals over to [Immigrations and Customs Enforcement], crime is down, but we still have a way to go.”

Instead of checking every suspected undocumented migrant, it is the policy to check the immigration status of anyone arrested and charged with a crime in Prince William.

Stewart sold himself Thursday as an older, wiser politician who has learned to be a better leader since elected to the Board in 2006.

“When I first came into office I was out there throwing bombs and a lot of things, but I’ve learned that in a community as diverse in Prince William County you learn to work together to get things done,” he added.

The debate between Smith and Stewart was amicable, as the two men seemed agreeable on issues on education, taxes, and in investing in transportation infrastructure to bring more business to the region to spur economic development. Both say they want more high-paying jobs in Prince William and fewer people leaving the county to find work.



“We’re being passed up by Fairfax and Loudoun, and Stafford Counites for higher jobs with higher average paying salaries,” said Smith.

The Democrat said he had heard many complaints from small business owners an expensive and prolonged the permitting process with the county’s zoning office. Smith promised a local government that would be more business friendly.

He also advocated getting rid of the county’s Business and Professional Licensing tax, or BPOL tax, which is a tax collected on gross receipts after a business reaches the $300,000 gross receipts threshold. Smith said the county needed to work with Richmond lawmakers to find alternate sources of revenue to replace monies generated by the tax.

The tax generates $23 million annual for the county and abolishing it overnight would mean the average tax bill for Prince William residents could rise as much as 5%, according to Stewart.

“We’ve worked over time to increase the threshold, so BPOL doesn’t hit small businesses so hard… over the couple years will work to increase the threshold to half a million dollars,” said Stewart.

The two men also talked about education, and repeatedly recognized Northern Virginia Community College (the debate was held at the college’s Manassas campus) and George Mason Universtiy for educating young people, and for helping to attract the types of science and technology companies that want to hire young talent.

Smith was the only candidate of the night who received applause when he said more funding is needed for K-12 education.

“The education I got in the late 70s and 80s in Prince William County schools, and the education my older kids got in the late 90s, and early 2000s is much different than it is today,” said Smith. “We’re teaching kids to remember facts, but we’re not teaching them to tell us why they matter.”

Stewart touted investments in infrastructure, especially paying for the widening of Route 1 in Woodbridge and Interstate 66 between Gainesville and Haymarket.

“On transportation by far, nobody is close to being second, we have invested more than Fairfax County, and we’re the only county in the commonwealth with our own road building program,” said Stewart.

Stewart also touted some $20 million in new spending to build parks, libraries, and other government projects that he said would attract more high-quality jobs to the region.

This debate was sponsored by the Prince William Chamber of Commerce and Northern Virginia Community Collage Manassas Campus. It was moderated by Krysta Nicole Jones, founder and CEO, Virginia Leadership Institute.

This was the second meeting of the two men, following a debate in September held by the Prince William County Chapter of the NAACP. A thrid and final debate will be held at Congregation Ner Shalom, accross from C.D. Hylton High School in Woodbridge at 7 p.m. Saturday, October 10.

Voters head to the polls November 3.

Occoquan District School Board debate set for Monday, Oct. 5



Candidates for the Occoquan seat on the Prince William County School Board will meet for a debate hosted by Potomac Local on Monday, October 5 at 7 p.m.

The seat is currently held by Lillie Jessie, who was elected to the chair in 2011, beating out Republican Micheal Wooten. Two challengers are running against Jessie: John Gray and Karen Boyd.

110811 John Gray




The debate will be held at Occoquan Elementary School located at 12915 Occoquan Road in Woodbridge.

Potomac Local Publisher Uriah Kiser will moderate the debate. The event is held in partnership with the Prince William County Democratic Committee and the Prince William County Republican Committee.

The candidates were briefed on the format of the debate as follows:

— Candidates will be introduced to the audience
— Short bios for each candidate will be read
— A candidate will be asked a specific question
— The candidate will have three minutes to respond
— An opposing candidate will have three minutes for rebuttal
— A new question is asked of different candidate and process repeats

Potomac Local will accept reader-submitted questions that may be asked of the candidates during the debates.

The event is open to the public.

Campaign literature and signs are only permitted outside of the building and must be removed upon event conclusion.

Ashes in trashcan to blame for Bristow blaze

On Tuesday, September 29th, at approximately 4:30 p.m., fire and rescue units were dispatched to a structure fire in a two-story single family home located in the 8700 block of Lords View Loop in Bristow.

Upon arrival, fire and rescue crews observed smoke with fire blazing from the side and rear of the home that had extended through the roof. Firefighters proceeded to attack and extinguish the fire.

The fire was discovered by a neighbor who spotted flames soaring from the roof and alerted the family enabling them to safely evacuate the home.

No injuries reported.

Red Cross was called to assist, 1 adult and 2 children and their cat.

A Building Official has posted the home unsafe.

According to the Fire Marshal’s Office, preliminary reports indicate the fire originated on the rear of the home ignited by ashes placed in a trash can next to the house earlier in the day.

The fire is under investigation by the Fire Marshal’s Office.

Prince William County Fire & Rescue Chief Kevin McGee would like to remind residents when disposing of fire pit/fireplace ashes keep these safety tips in mind:
• Douse and saturate the ashes with water.
• Allow ashes to cool (at least 4 days) before disposing.
• Dispose of ashes in a tightly covered metal container.
• Place the ash container a safe distance from your home (at least 10 feet).
° DO NOT store in or around your home, garage or other nearby buildings.

-Submitted by Prince William fire and rescue 

U.S. Marshals arrest suspect at hotel outside Manassas

U.S. Marshals made an arrest this morning at a hotel outside Manassas.

Authorities tracked the suspect to a Days Inn on New Market Court, near the intersection of Sudley Road and Interstate 66.

Members of the U.S. Marshals Capital Area Taskforce knocked on the hotel room door of the suspect, who was arrested without incident, said spokesman Desmond Proctor.

A 22-year-old woman who was inside the hotel room was also charged with a lesser infraction. Proctor could not release the details of her arrest.

Prince William police issued a warrant for the suspect, identified as 20-year-old Derek Mantilla, on Aug. 21, said Proctor. Warrants for his arrest were also issued in Loudoun County, and by federal officials, he added.

Proctor said Mantilla was wanted on charges of gang participation and prostitution.

Mantilla was taken to the Prince William County Adult Detention Center where he will be seen first on the charges placed against him in Prince William County, said Proctor.

Lake Ridge Exxon station robbed at gunpoint

A gas station in Lake Ridge was robbed at gunpoint. 

Prince William police posted this in their latest incident report: 

Armed Robbery – On September 30th at 4:13PM, officers responded to the Exxon Service Station located at 4255 Seeton Sq in Woodbridge (22192) to investigate a robbery. Employees reported to police that an unknown man entered the business and brandished a firearm. The suspect fled with an undisclosed amount of money and possibly got into an unknown black vehicle. No injuries were reported. A police K-9 was used to search for the suspect who was not located.

Suspect Description:

White male, between 20 & 25 years of age, 5’8”, 135lbs with a thin build

Last seen wearing a black jacket, black hooded sweatshirt, black jeans and a motorcycle helmet

Also in  that same incident report, a drunken man allegedly walked outside of a Dale City home and fired several gunshots into the air. 

Reckless Handling of a Firearm – On September 29th at 8:40PM, officers responded to a residence located in the 14300 block of Shetland Ct in Woodbridge (22193) to investigate a domestic incident. The caller reported to police that she was involved in a verbal altercation with the accused, a known acquaintance, inside the home. During the encounter, the accused walked outside and fired multiple rounds into the air. Officers arrived at the home and detained the accused, who was intoxicated, without further incident. No injuries or property damage were reported. Following the investigation, the accused was arrested.

Arrested on September, 29th:

Kenneth Leon MARTHELL, 59, of the 14300 block of Shetland Ct in Woodbridge

Charged with reckless handling of a firearm and public intoxication

Court Date: November 18, 2015 | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

Gainesville Neighborhood Library marks last day

gainesville library 1 (2)

The Gainesville Neighborhood Library closed for good on Wednesday.

The old library located in James S. Long Park will make way for a new Haymarket Gainesville Community Library at 14870 Lightner Road in Haymarket.

Wednesday was the last time patrons could check out books at the old neighborhood library, which was dedicated back in 1987.

Gainesville Neighborhood Library's last day.
Gainesville Neighborhood Library's last day.
Gainesville Neighborhood Library's last day.
Gainesville Neighborhood Library's last day.


Photographer Micheal Porterfield sent photos of activities during the library’s last day. His mother worked at the neighborhood libarary for 23 years, he stated in an email.

You can see more photos on Porterfield’s Flickr account.

A ribbon cutting for the new library will be held Thrusday, Oct. 22 at 10 a.m.

A ribbon cutting for the new Monctclair Community Library will also be held this month, on Thursday, Oct. 29 at 3 p.m. It is located at 5049 Waterway Drive in Montclair.

Here’s some other neat stats about the Gainesville Neighborhood Library, from library spokesman Andrew Spence: 

The fifth neighborhood library in the system situated in the Gainesville magisterial district. The facility is 2,073 square-feet and has a collection of 22,000 items including books, audio books, DVDs, magazines and other materials.

Statistics from Fiscal Year 2012 thru Fiscal Year 2015

Items circulated (number of items that were checked out): 867,751

Information requests (number questions that came in): 44,712

Library visits: 309,469

Computer users: 10,502

Number of events held: 232

Number of attendees to events: 3,947

Total Volunteer hours worked: 14,318

Senate candidates for the 36th to debate Oct. 8





Candidates Scott Surovell and Jerry Foreman for Virginia’s 36th Senate district will meet for a debate hosted by Potomac Local on October 8 at 7 p.m.

The candidates are hoping to fill the seat of long-time retiring incumbent Senator Toddy Puller, and will debate local issues concerning Prince William, Fairfax, and Stafford counties.

The debate will be held at the Dumfries Community Center located at 17755 Main Street in Dumfries. 

Potomac Local is sponsoring the event, in partnership with the Prince William County Democratic Committee and the Prince William County Republican Committee.

The candidates were briefed on the format of the debate as follows:

— Candidates will be introduced to the audience
— Short bios for each candidate will be read
— A candidate will be asked a specific question
— The candidate will have three minutes to respond
— An opposing candidate will have three minutes for rebuttal
— A new question is asked of different candidate and process repeats

Potomac Local will accept reader-submitted questions that may be asked of the candidates during the debates.

The event is open to the public.

Campaign literature and signs are only permitted outside of the building and must be removed upon event conclusion.

How Habitat for Humanity ‘ReStore’ will expand to serve all of Prince William County

manassas restore habitat

Habitat for Humanity is about to expand in a big way.

The organization’s arm in Prince William County that builds homes for those in need will relocate its “ReStore” from Center Street in Manassas to an old Food Lion store on Hastings Drive in the city.

Habitat Prince William County also plans to open its first ReStore in Woodbridge, in an old Food Lion location on Prince William Parkway.

In Manassas, at more than 38,5000 square feet of retail space, the new ReStore at 10159 Hastings Drive in Manassas will be nearly three-times larger than the current location.

The store will encompass the entire floor plan of the old grocery store, and that means it’ll have more room to sell things like home furnishings, old books and DVDs, in addition to staples like building supplies.

Habitat for Humanity Prince William County also seeks to hire a district manager for the Manassas store, as well as about five new full and part-time employees. When hiring is complete, the organization will have 22 employees who will work at the Manassas and Woodbridge stores.

The Manassas store should be open in December. The center relies on donations from the public to stock its shelves.

“If we didn’t have donations coming in, this wouldn’t work,” said Habitat for Humanity Prince William County Director Traci DeGroat.

Collecting donations is a big reason the organization wanted to expand with a new store in Woodbridge. There a plenty of building contractors on the east end that donate materials to the shop, and those donations are currently picked up in a truck and hauled back to Manassas.

A new ReStore inside Prince William Commons near BJ’s Wholesale Club will serve as a donation center where building materials and a host of other goods will be collected for resale. Sales from both the Manassas and Woodbridge stores will benefit the work Habitat for Humanity does in the community.

The ReStore in Woodbridge will not take up the entirety of the old Food Lion store, and should open next spring. DeGroat said the organization got a better deal on the Manassas store since it’s not located on a major thoroughfare like Prince William Parkway, and because Habitat agreed to take the entire space existing space for its Manassas store.

Joaquin worst case: ‘Landfall around Norfolk and tracks up the Chesapeake up the Potomac River’

joaquin map wed

Hurricane Joaquin should move up the east coast this week. It could impact our area.

And whether or not we see a hurricane, we’re going to see a lot of rain.

“regardless of what happens with this storm, we are going to see five to 10 inches of rain, and that is enough that people should be paying attention,” said Prince William County Director of Emergency Preparedness Patrick Collins.

Collins had just gotten off a statewide conference call when we spoke with him Wednesday afternoon. He tells us folks at the county government are watching the storm closely.

He sent out this email to area agencies to serve as a warning, and to get people prepared for the coming storm:

Good afternoon:

We have concluded a VDEM/NWS Conference call concerning the Hurricane and they still have not nailed down the track. The worst case scenario is it makes landfall around Norfolk and tracks up the Chesapeake up the Potomac River. One thing the weather service said was they are confident that regardless of the track we can expect 5-10 inches of rain over the entire event. It will start raining tomorrow night with heavy rain Friday and Friday night and then the second period of heavy rain with the track of Joaquin. As we get further into the event the track will become clearer and we can make more specific plans.

We plan on conducting a short briefing this Friday October 2nd at 11:00am in the EOC, by then the NWS should have a better idea of what our impacts will be here in the county. In the meantime agencies should be making their normal preparations for a storm such as this. Some of the activities are listed below, but I am sure that each agency has more comprehensive checklists.

Agency Preparation:

• Fuel all vehicles
• Establish work schedules EOC/Field
• Review Plans and Policies
• Check all generators
• Stock food /water
• Remove windblown equipment such as exterior trash cans
• Advise employees to check their family plans and supplies at home
• Monitor weather and e-mails
• Check all communications equipment for readiness
• Perform any “Just-in-Time” training that is needed
• Check flashlights

The Office of Emergency Management will continue to monitor the storm and will send out regular updates.

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