WE ARE LOCAL News in Prince William, Virginia



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Man suspected of domestic related abduction arrested

Michael Kelly Puckett, previously sought for abduction and domestic assault and battery has been located and arrested by police, thanks to an anonymous tip. 

From Prince William County police:

Abduction | Domestic Related *ARREST – On July 25, officers located the accused, Michael Kelly PUCKETT, who was wanted in connection to a domestic altercation which occurred at a residence located in the 10400 block of Lonesome Road in Nokesville on July 23. Police received an anonymous tip, which ultimately led officers to his location where he was arrested without incident.

Arrested on July 25:
Michael Kelly PUCKETT, 48, of the 10400 block of Lonesome Rd in Nokesville
Charged with abduction, domestic assault & battery, and destruction of property
Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

Abduction | Domestic Related [Previously Released] – On July 23 at 3:30 a.m., officers responded to investigate a domestic call which occurred earlier that morning at a residence located in the 10400 block of Lonesome Rd in Nokesville. The investigation revealed that the victim, a 48-year-old woman of Nokesville, was involved in a verbal altercation with the accused, a family member, which escalated.  (more…)

Police charge man identifying himself as Cowboy’s player Lucky Whitehead

Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys was recently charged with petit larceny and wanted for failure to appear in court, or so Prince William County Police thought. According to police, an individual arrested for those crimes, not possessing identification verbally identified himself as Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr. to include the date of birth and social security number. 

From Prince William County police:

Upon reviewing the June 22, 2017 arrest of an individual named “Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.”, the police department is confident that the man charged with petit larceny, and who is subsequently being sought on an active warrant for failure to appear in court, is not Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys.

The man charged on the morning of June 22 was not in possession of identification at the time of the encounter; however, did verbally provide identifying information to officers, which included a name, date of birth, and social security number matching that of Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr. Officers then checked this information through the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) database. The DMV photo on file was then used to compare to the man who was in custody. (more…)

Surovell: Voluntary background check system is a failure

In 2016, the General Assembly enacted a legislation requiring the Virginia State Police to staff gun shows and be available to conduct voluntary background checks upon request by private, non-federally licensed gun sellers as part of a broader compromise on concealed weapon permits. The law has been a total failure.

The legislation required the state to spend $300,000 to hire three new Virginia State Police employees to be present at all gun shows. What have we got for our $300,000?

In January, The Daily Press reported that as of January 1, 2017, one person was denied a purchase at 41 gun shows after thirty-nine checks. (more…)

Call if you can, but Text to 911 is now available in Prince William

From Prince William County:

Calling is still the best way to contact 911 in an emergency, but in certain situations, a text might be better. The Prince William County Office of Public Safety Communications can now accept text-to-911 emergency messages from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless customers who find themselves needing assistance in Prince William County and the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park. The service should only be used when someone has a physical disability or special need where calling is not possible or when speaking out loud would put the caller in danger.

Certain communities will find text-to-911 particularly helpful, said Prince William Public Safety Communications Director Captain Alfred Miller. People who are deaf or hard of hearing, those with speech disabilities or who are unable to speak, and community service or suicide hotlines will find the service useful.

The texts can be up to 140 characters and should include the location and type of emergency. They should be short, with simple words, and without abbreviations or slang. People should be prepared to answer questions and follow directions provided by the 911 call taker. They should not text and drive. (more…)

Hope for ‘Suicide Hill’ coming with traffic improvements

WOODBRIDGE — It’s a cramped, crowded, and congested intersection in Woodbridge referred to as “Suicide Hill.”

And it was a topic of discussion at a “Conversation with the Chief,” a candid conversation with Prince William County Police Chief Barry Barnard on July 17.

The hill is where East Longview Drive intersects with busy Route 1. There’s also an entrance to Marumsco Plaza, and this all can make for troublesome traffic conditions.

Drivers that turn onto Suicide Hill at East Longview Drive, or continue straight from West Longview Drive onto East Longview, mix in with cars entering and exiting the Marumsco shopping plaza.

Drivers exiting the shopping plaza can also create chaotic traffic conditions as many turn out of the shopping plaza, head down the hill, and then quickly dart across traffic to turn left to head south on Route 1. (more…)

Sell for FREE, shop at the Chick-fil-A Bristow Community Appreciation Yard Sale

Chick-fil-A Bristow will host its first-annual Community Appreciation Yard Sale on Saturday, August 5.

The community-staple restaurant will offer spaces for area residents to sell their wares at no charge — that’s right, FREE!

Each participant will be given a parking space where they can set up to sell their wares. Participants must bring their own table, up to a 10×10-sized tent, as well as bring items to sell, and remove any leftover items.

The yard sale is open to residents, crafters, and the community. There will also be a bounce house set up for children during the community yard sale.

Electricity to the vendor area and spaces will not be provided.

The event takes place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Participants should head over to Chick-fil-A Bristow’s website to register (click on Aug. 5) and RSVP to grab your FREE space.

Mark your calendar for the Walk to End Alzheimer on October 21

Good morning Prince William – Leesylvania State Park is looking for volunteers every Monday until Labor Day 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. for lots of fun clean-up projects. Gather your work clothes, boots, water bottle, and friends to join in the fun. Please call (703) 583-6904 to learn more.

· Brain Injury Services is looking for a volunteer of Pakistani heritage to walk 1-2 times a month with a gentleman who lives in Springfield. What a great way to share your experiences with another. Please call Michelle at (703) 451-8881 ext. 232 to learn more

· Think cool fall weather! Mark your calendar for the Walk to End Alzheimer on Saturday, October 21 at the Harris Pavilion. Volunteers are needed with event set-up, clean-up, refreshments, route monitoring and much more. Please email Ben at: bedonnelly@alz.org to learn more.

· The National Counseling Group is collecting school supplies for at-risk kids. Items needed include backpacks, notebooks, pens, pencils to name just a few. Donation boxes at set up at each one of their locations including 9301 Forest Point Circle in Manassas. (more…)

Driverless cars to be tested in E-ZPass Express Lanes

Automation is coming to Northern Virginia’s E-ZPass Express Lanes.

Driverless cars, or CAV’s (connected and autonomous vehicles) will soon be tested on the E-ZPass Express Lanes on Interstates 95 and 495 “during non-rush periods at times when the Lanes are closed or traffic is not heavy.”

More in a press release from Transurban, the operator of the E-ZPass Express Lanes:

Authorization to begin testing connected vehicles and vehicle automation technologies on the 495 and 95 Express Lanes was approved earlier this week by the Commonwealth Transportation Board. The Commissioner of Highways agreed to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Federal Highway Administration and Transurban, the operator of the 495 and 95 Express Lanes, to study how connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) may improve safety and mobility. The program will enable the partnership to perform research, and develop and trial demonstration tests on the Express Lanes to examine real-world applications for the developing technologies. Program development is scheduled to begin later this month with on-road tests beginning as soon as summer 2018.


Police arrest woman previously sought in connection with strangulation

From Prince William County police:

Strangulation | Domestic Related – On July 20, Kelly Victoria APPLEGATE, who was wanted for a domestic assault which occurred at an apartment located in the 4200 block of Misty Ridge Dr in Woodbridge on July 14, was located and arrested without incident.

Arrested on July 20:
Kelly Victoria APPLEGATE, 38, of the 4200 block of Misty Ridge Drive in Woodbridge
Charged with strangulation and domestic assault & battery
Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond (more…)

‘Suspect demanded money then attempted to rummage through the victim’s pockets’

A man was nearly robbed at gunpoint in Woodbridge. 

Police tell us the man wearing white in the photo is the suspect. 

From a police press release: 

Attempted Armed Robbery – On July 20 at 10:05AM, officers responded to the 14400 block of Jefferson Davis Hwy in Woodbridge (22191) to investigate an attempted robbery. The victim, an adult male, reported to police that he had just parked his vehicle in the above area when he was approached by an unknown man brandishing a firearm. During the encounter, the suspect demanded money then attempted to rummage through the victim’s pockets. The suspect eventually fled the area on foot without taking any property.  No injuries were reported. Officers searched the surrounding area for the suspect who was not located. The investigation continues.

Suspect Description:

Black male, in his 20s, 6’00”, 200lbs with a muscular build

Last seen wearing a white sleeveless hoodie, dark jeans, and white shoes

Police arrest strong arm robbery suspect previously at large

From Prince William County police:

Strong Arm Robbery – On July 18, Akmed MANSARAY, who was wanted for a robbery which occurred in the 1400 block of Bayside Ave in Woodbridge on July 16, was located and arrested without incident.
Arrested on July 18:
Akmed MANSARAY, 34, of 6428 Edsall Rd Apt T2 in Alexandria
Charged with robbery
Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond (more…)

Verbal altercation results in two counts of malicious wounding

From Prince William County police:

Malicious Wounding – On July 18 at 12:38 a.m., officers responded to the 13800 block of Jefferson Davis Highway in Woodbridge to investigate a fight. The victim, a 29-year-old man of Fayetteville NC, reported to police that he and the accused were involved in a verbal altercation which escalated physically.

During the encounter, the accused struck the victim multiple times in the face. A second victim, a 59-year-old man of Fayetteville NC, attempted to separate the two parties. At that point, the accused pulled out a knife and began swinging the weapon towards the second victim. (more…)

County will acquire Potomac trail right of way through wildlife refuges


WOODBRIDGE — Prince William County officials today will sign off on a 50-year right of way plan to build new segments of the Potomac Heritage Scenic Trail.

The new trail sections will run through the Occoquan Bay and Featherstone national wildlife refuges in Woodbridge, adding to some 13 miles of the trial already constructed in the county.

When completed, up to 45 miles of the trail along the Potomac River between the Chesapeake Bay and Pennsylvania will traverse the county.

The trail winds into Prince William from Fairfax County on a footbridge in Occoquan. In Woodbridge, the trail traverses urban terrain in the northern section and crosses Route 1 into Belmont Bay. Further south at Featherstone, the trail will incorporate the entrance Rippon Virginia Railway Express station.

“The Potomac Heritage Scenic Trail is not just your traditional scenic trail. We’re also incorporating everyday human uses, like transportation,” said Ryan Delaney, a trails planner with the Prince William County Government.

The trail will also be a new way to see the Potomac River, along with the national wildlife refuges, long hidden from view from view along busy Route 1 and Interstate 95. (more…)

Price for senior pass to National Parks to increase

Since 1994 the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior Pass has been $10, but as a result of legislation passed in December of 2016, that price will increase to $80. The price hike is expected to take effect August 28 2017, so seniors are encouraged to act soon if they wish to purchase a senior pass. 


From Prince William Forest Park:

Seniors over age 62 may want to purchase a lifetime pass soon. The price goes up on August 28th, 2017. To qualify, you must be an American citizen or permanent resident of the United States and pay the $10 fee. This pass is a lifetime pass to National Parks and other federal recreation lands. When the supply at the Visitor Center is out, it’s out. (more…)

Police seek Mays in suspected abduction case

From Prince William County police:

Abduction | Domestic Related – On July 17 at 12:37 a.m., officers responded to a residence located in the 2900 block of Wetherburn Court in Woodbridge to investigate an assault. The investigation revealed that the accused was involved in a verbal argument with an acquaintance, identified as a 31-year-old woman of Woodbridge, which escalated.

During the encounter, the accused assaulted the victim and prevented her from leaving the residence. When the victim locked herself in the bathroom and contacted police, the accused kicked open the door and put the victim in a headlock. A struggle ensued and the victim was eventually able to break free. When the officer arrived, the accused fled the area on foot. Minor injuries were reported. (more…)

Work to demolish the old Toby Keith’s restaurant begins


WOODBRIDGE — Things are starting to happen at Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center in Woodbridge as crews prepare to demolish the building that once housed Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar and Grill. 

An Alamo Cinema and Drafthouse will soon be built. A pedestrian plaza that will be used for live events during summer ice skating in winter will replace the old restaurant building.

From Stonebridge spokeswoman Anastasia Paszkiewicz:

Construction fencing has gone up and the outer ring road around the property has been closed in sections to allow the site work (plumbing, storm water drains) to be moved first.  Once this is completed the outer ring road will be reopened and the road immediately behind the vacant Toby Keith’s will be closed so they can start tearing the building down. The whole construction project including the building of Alamo will last until early fall of 2018. 

Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center opened in 2008 with the addition of a 138,000 square-foot Wegmans grocery store. Since then, apartments, restaurants, and retail shops to include an Apple Store opened at the mixed-use shopping center.

The Potomac Nationals Minor had been in negotiations with Prince William County officials to relocate the ballclub to a new 6,000 seat stadium at the shopping center, however, team owner Art Silber pulled the project from the discussion last week and is now reportedly in talks with Alexandria to bring the team there.

Student turns down $150,000, earns scholarship to dream school

WOODBRIDGE — A Woodbridge high school student turned down $150,000 in scholarship money to a prestigious school only to end up with more cash to attend the school of her dreams.

Shekinah Reese, 17, is a straight-A student who in June graduated Woodbridge Senior High School in Lake Ridge. She was captain of her high school dance team, a member of the track and field team, and attended Metropolitan School of the Arts for nine years to train in various levels of dance. She was also selected for the Center for the Fine and Performing Arts specialty program at Woodbridge Senior High School.

Reese has always had a love for film and TV, and the urge to study in the field. She took part in a high school summer program at Ithaca College in New York in 2016 for field production to earn college credit. There she had the opportunity to create a 15-minute documentary film about Ithaca’s downtown and its locals.

Afterward, impressed with her work, the college offered her more than $150,000 in tuition aid to attend the school. Reese was thrilled, but deep down she knew she was looking for something more.

“Elon has always been my dream school. They have a state-of-the-art School of Communications that reflects the education and standards that I’m seeking,” she said. (more…)

Prince William County to sponsor Serious Play Conference

Prince William County is hosting for the first time the Serious Play Conference, a program that encourages the application of game mechanics for education and training.

The conference also looks to educate students of potential career options in the field, and bring together pioneers in the field to share what they’ve learned. 

From a press release:

Prince William County Department of Economic Development is proud to sponsor this year’s industry-leading Serious Play Conference taking place on July 18-20, 2017, at the George Mason University Science & Technology Campus, Prince William County, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C.

More than 100 thought leaders driving the adoption of game-based and simulation learning will gather to share experiences in implementing serious games. They represent leading public and private institutions including the U.S. DOD, private industry sectors and higher education, according to a press release.

DOD training leads, contractors, state and local government CIOs will share what they’ve learned training the country’s armed forces with developers and instructional designers from the serious games industry.

This year’s speakers include training personnel from the Office of National Intelligence; the Center for Deployment Psychology; Defense University; UCF; OPM; contractors from the Veterans Affairs Administration, the Army and the Navy; police departments; prisons; as well as companies implementing gamification programs, healthcare providers, researchers, developers, instructional designers and K-12 faculty using games in education, according to Serious Play. (more…)

Woodbridge VFW Post Commander achieves All-American status

From Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States:

The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is pleased to announce, Charles P. “Chuck” Wilson has achieved “All-American” status as a Post Commander (2014-2017). Wilson, outgoing commander of Post 7916 in Occoquan, VA, is one of only 279 of 6,500 (Top .04%) VFW Post commanders worldwide to earn the title of All-American Commander. 

To achieve this honor, Post commanders must meet strict requirements in their role to include exceptional leadership, authentic accomplishment in membership growth and strong support of VFW core programs. Chuck Wilson is now Commander of District 10, Virginia’s largest District with over 8,000 Veteran and Auxiliary members. (more…)

Revolutionary War uniforms will be on display at P-Nats game

The uniforms wore during the war for America will be on display soon at an upcoming game of America’s great pastime. 

From a press release: 

On 29 July 2017 at the pre-game ceremony honoring the Flag of the United States of America The Colonel William Grayson Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution will present  Colors at the baseball game between the Potomac Nationals and Myrtle Beach Pelicans.

Presentation of Colors will be approximately 6:30 pm with the game starting at 6:35. The ceremony will be a colorful execution of presentation of colors led by men wearing the uniforms of their Patriot Ancestors including two members in Continental Army uniform, one in Continental Navy Uniform and one in typical Militia Uniform.The SAR team will Present the Flag of the United States of America, the Virginia State Flag, and the Colonel William Grayson Chapter Flag.  A Member of the Daughters of the American Revolution will wear a Revolutionary War era dress and present the DAR Flag. A member of the Children of the American Revolution (C.A.R.) will wear typical young man’s clothing or Militia uniform and present the C.A.R. flag. Join us in a celebration to honor the United States of America and our Patriot Ancestors who won our Independence. (more…)

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