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Vol. XXI, No. 4

Mount Vernon’s Hometown Newspaper • A Connection Newspaper

January 28, 2010

Driver Beware

Do flashing lights warn drivers of pedestrians or distract them from the road?

By Michael Lee Pope The Gazette

At the Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia ReStore are, from left to right, Sandra Mitchell, Benjamin Ruiz, Jason Martel, Kylin Fishe , Gina Broxterman, Virginia Patton, Julie Martel, Colin Campbell, Erica Einhorn, Tony Cruz and Valerie Dowling.

ReStore Benefits Housing for Needy

F or years, pedestrians have darted across Rich- mond Highway. Many have been injured. A few have died. Still they come, year after year in rising numbers. Now a new series of warning signs and flashing lights have been installed just north of Woodlawn Planta- tion, essentially warning drivers that they are about to drive into an area of the highway notorious for jaywalking. But no new cross- walks have been installed. And some say the constantly flashing lights may do more harm than good.

“I personally find them very distracting,” said Katherine Ward, co-chair of the Mount Vernon Council of Citizens’ Associations. “Your eyes go up in the sky toward the flashing lights instead of staying on the road.”

Officials at the Mount Vernon District Station of the Fairfax Po- lice Department say they were not consulted in advance of installa- tion of the new pedestrian safety devices. But public-safety officials

See Warning Signs, Page 5

Non-profit raises money through resale of donated items.

lated organizations who were handing out their literature, free advice and counseling, and spon- soring a raffle. Approximately 25 volunteers and staff were on hand and busy moving donated or purchased furniture and other items in and out of the warehouse building.

Manhunt for Former Youth League Coach

By Gerald A. Fill The Gazette

T he Habitat for Humanity of Northern Vir- ginia ReStore at 7770 Richmond Highway sponsored a wellness day on Saturda , Jan. Jan. 23, at its warehouse. A steady stream of families and individuals came into the rear warehouse site to visit the event’s sponsors in the nutritional, fitness area, and re-

Alexandria Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia ReStore manager Colin Campbell was at the hub of all the hustle and bustle of activity: “We were very happy to see donations and resale of donated items pick up in December and have continued through the month of January.

“The heart and soul of our program is our vol- unteers, and the folks out there who make an ef- fort to bring their donated items here, so that we

See Resale, Page 5

Decision on Police Shooting Nears

C ommonwealth Attorney Ray Morrogh is ex- pected to announce his decision this week about whether or not he would prosecute the Mt. Vernon District police officer who shot and killed Dave Masters on Nov. 13, 2009.

Masters, a former Green Beret veteran, and a sus- pect for petty larceny — for taking plants from a landscaping business in the 8800 block of Route 1

  • was shot by a Mt. Vernon District police officer in

the vicinity of Route 1 and Fort Hunt Road. The po- lice officer who shot Masters was accompanied by two other police officers in the pursuit of Masters in response to an emergency dispatch call.

Since that incident, according to previous reports

by the Fairfax County Police Department, an inter- nal police investigation and Commonwealth Attor- ney review of the facts of this case had been under way.

As of Monda , Jan. 25 Mt. Vernon Supervisor Gerald Hyland announced that the police chief would meet with the Board of Supervisors in executive ses- sion on Tuesda , Jan. 26, and brief the board on the results of the police department’s internal criminal investigation. The police internal criminal investi- gation report was submitted to the Commonwealth Attorney for his action.

  • Gerald A. Fill

Accused of sex offenses on minors, Hamilton fled U.S.

By Gerald A. Fill The Gazette

police forces in Europe to bring

F airfax County police con- tinue to investigate the case of former Fort Hunt Youth Athletic Association coach and umpire John Hamilton who was charged with aggravated sexual battery and three counts of taking indecent liberties with a child by a person in a supervisory relation- ship last May and subsequently fled the country.

him back to the U.S. and to see to it that justice is served,”

John Hamilton

said Fairfax County Detective Jeremy Hinson. “I believe there are more victims out there who have yet to come forward; I want to encourage them to contact me or the Fairfax county police depart- ment to provide us with additional

“I am working with national

See Police, Page 8

Attention Postmaster: Time-sensitive material. Requested in home 1/29/10

PRSRT STD U.S. Postage PAID Alexandria, VA Permit #482

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