<![CDATA[NBC4 Washington - Local News]]> Copyright 2015 http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/local http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/WASH+NBC4+BLUE.png NBC4 Washington http://www.nbcwashington.com en-us Sun, 29 Mar 2015 18:34:14 -0400 Sun, 29 Mar 2015 18:34:14 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Teen Pilot Dies in Virginia Plane Crash]]> Sun, 29 Mar 2015 16:06:47 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/ambulance-shutterstock_112668581.jpg

A 16-year-old pilot was killed after his plane crashed in a field in Orange County, Virginia, Sunday morning.

Virginia State Police said Ryan Lee McCall, of Spotsylvania, was the only occupant of the plane. The plane crashed in a field east of the Orange County Airport.

The aircraft was described as a 1974 Piper, single-engine, fixed-wing plane. The owner is listed as William III, of Springfield.

The Virginia State Police, Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.
 

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<![CDATA[Police: Man Found Dead in Langley Park Area]]> Sun, 29 Mar 2015 10:39:55 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Langley+Park+homicide.jpg

Prince George's County police said a man was found dead in the Langley Park area early Sunday morning.

Police said the victim was found inside an apartment building in the 1400 block of Kanawah Street at 4:15 a.m. They said he was stabbed and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The victim has not been identified.

Police have no suspects in custody. Anyone with information is asked to contact authorities.
 



Photo Credit: NBC4 Washington]]>
<![CDATA[Man Killed, Child Seriously Injured in Auto Crash]]> Sun, 29 Mar 2015 08:58:54 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/seat+pleasant+crash.jpg

One man was killed and a child was seriously hurt in after a car hit a tree in Prince George’s County Saturday night.

Police said a car was traveling along Central Avenue around 9 p.m. when it lost control, left the road and struck a tree. The driver, only identified as an adult male, was killed. A child passenger remains in serious condition.

Investigators don’t know why the car left the road.
 

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<![CDATA[Alumni Run to Close Some Streets]]> Sun, 29 Mar 2015 08:03:19 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Alumni+Run+map.jpg

The Metropolitan Police Department and the Department of Transportation would like to inform the public of street closures in conjunction with the Alumni Run 5K/10K scheduled for Sunday, March 29, 2015.

Street closings around Freedom Plaza will start on Saturday, March 28, 2015 at 7:00 pm, and will reopen on Sunday, March 29, 2015 at approximately 3:30 pm. The hours for the race will be 8:30 am to 11:00 am. The race route is as follows:

  • Form on Pennsylvania Avenue between 12th and 13th Street, NW
  • East on Pennsylvania Avenue to 3rd Street, NW
  • South on 3rd Street to Maryland Avenue, NW
  • Southwest on Maryland Avenue to Independence Avenue, SW
  • West on Independence Avenue to 7th Street, SW
  • U-Turn prior to 7th Street, SW
  • East on Independence Avenue to 4th Street, SW
  • South on 4th Street to D Street, SW
  • East on D Street to 3rd Street, SW
  • South on 3rd Street to U-Turn prior to Virginia Avenue, SW
  • North on 3rd Street to Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
  • West on Pennsylvania Ave to 12th Street , NW (finish and disband)
  • **Some runners will repeat the race route to complete the 10k

Motorists traveling in the area of this event may experience delays and should consider alternative routes, if possible. The Metropolitan Police Department and the District Department of Transportation would like to remind motorists to pay full attention whenever operating any motor vehicle and to be mindful of heavy pedestrian traffic that may be associated with special events. These street closings are subject to change without notice based upon unanticipated events and prevailing conditions.

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<![CDATA[D.C. Group to Hold Marijuana Seed-Sharing Events]]> Thu, 26 Mar 2015 23:16:06 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/DC+Marijuana+Seed+Share+Line.jpg

Marijuana has been legal in D.C. for about a month now, but there's one question that may leave those who want to indulge perplexed: How do you get it?

According to the law, selling marijuana or exchanging it for goods or services remains illegal. To help those who may not know someone who can give them marijuana seeds, the D.C. Cannabis Campaign organized two seed-sharing events.

The line stretched two blocks for the first seed share, held Thursday evening at Libertine in Adams Morgan.

The second seed share is scheduled for Saturday at the D.C. Cannabis Campaign headquarters, northwest of Dupont Circle.

Adam Eidinger, the chairman of the D.C. Cannabis Campaign, says the events are a chance for people to give away seeds to people who need them. 

"[W]e have a new right now, and that right is to grow at home," Eidinger said. "[T]hat’s one way to obtain marijuana."

Attendees can also give up to an ounce of marijuana to someone else, as long as both parties are 21 or older. While the D.C. Cannabis Campaign says they will accept out-of-state IDs, the events are for D.C. residents.

"We’ll be checking to make sure you’re 21 and older; we don’t care where you live," Eidinger said. "But if you tell us you’re taking the seeds outside of D.C., we just won't let you come in because that's not legal." 

Guests can only give away an ounce of seeds to any one person, and by law, you can only possess up to two ounces outside your home.

Once you get the seeds home, you can only grow up to six plants for personal use; only three plants can be mature at a time. In households with multiple adults, that number can increase to six mature plants.

City voters approved an initiative legalizing pot last year. Last month, Mayor Muriel Bowser allowed it to take effect despite an attempt by Congress to block it.

To RSVP and read the rules of the seed share, click here.



Photo Credit: Mark Segraves]]>
<![CDATA[Serving In Silence: Rape in the National Guard]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 09:34:19 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/West+Virginia+National+Guard+Headquarters.jpg

Captain Dendra Weaver said she fought tough battles throughout her decadelong career in the West Virginia National Guard. "I'm pretty tough, I've seen some stuff and I had my breaking point in Afghanistan."

But the real battle, she said, began when she returned home to Charleston, West Virginia, when she began to receive private Facebook messages from her high-ranking boss. "The inappropriate conversations that were very lewd and sexual in nature that he would send me."

She said she tried to avoid him, until one day, he ordered her into his office. "He said, 'Captain, if you repeat one word I say in here to anyone, I will f---ing kill you, do you understand me?’"

Frightened he could destroy her career but wanting the sexual harassment to stop, Weaver said she went to the one woman she felt she could trust — Lt. Col. Teresa James — one of the highest ranking women inside the West Virginia National Guard.

"She was untouchable, she was a fast tracker," Capt. Weaver explained.

But what the captain didn’t know is James also had a secret about the very same man.

"I was like, 'Oh my God, he's going to do the same thing to her that he did to me,’” James told the News4 I-Team. “I did not want to have sex with him, and it was rape."

Lt. Col. James said after Weaver confided in her, she started to hear about other women claiming they too were sexually harassed or assaulted by the same man.

That, and not the rape itself, is what caused her to break down during the interview. "I've had to deal with not saying something early on,” she explained. “That's been a big deal for me. Dealing with the guilt that of had I said something earlier, perhaps, if I wouldn't have been so selfish, perhaps they would not have had to do what they had to go through."

Lt. Col. James said she now felt it was her duty to come forward and report her rape, even though she had kept it quiet for years because she was worried it could destroy her 34-year career.

And, she said, that's exactly what happened.

Lt. Col. James told the I-Team she tried everything she knew from filing complaints with the Department of Defense, the National Guard Bureau and Sexual Assault Response Coordinators.

James said one of those SARCs, “She told me that they didn't believe me. That her boss, a colonel, said that I was playing the rape card."

Since James and her alleged attacker were high-ranking officers, the National Guard dispatched a special team from its Office of Complex Administrative Investigations, which "substantiated" her case.

"They did a wonderful job investigating,” James said. “But why are we spending all this money to travel all over the country to investigate and it has no meaning?”

Because James said she was told the state of West Virginia didn't have money or authority to bring a court martial against her attacker.

Instead, as the I-Team found, most guard units across the country must rely on local law enforcement to investigate sexual assaults. The local prosecutor in James’s case told her the statute of limitations had expired.

Meaning there was only one person left who could punish her perpetrator: West Virginia's Adjutant Gen. James Hoyer.

"I believe that the cases that we've dealt with, with the tools that we have, we have done the maximum level of punishment under the system that we have available to us," Gen. Hoyer told the I-Team when he sat down to discuss how he’s tackling sexual assault inside his unit.

He explained he agreed to accept the officer’s "resignation in lieu of adverse action" instead of pushing for a dishonorable discharge because the officer was so close to retirement. The two-star general said he also delayed the officer from getting his $62,000 a year pension by placing two letters of reprimand, or GOMARs, into his file. "One of the reasons that we've done those is to impact their ability not to get a job in a federal agency or a state agency."

But Capt. Weaver and Lt. Col. James say they think the officer got off lightly, while they both feel retaliated against by being ordered to undergo medical evaluations questioning whether they were fit for duty.

When asked if that’s a career killer, Capt. Weaver quickly responded, “It was. Absolutely.”

Lt. Col. James agreed. "I've absolutely been reprised against."

But Gen. Hoyer disagreed. “We have not retaliated against individuals, and all the cases that have come forward to us related to sexual assault, sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct, we have a record of dealing with perpetrators, and I think you'll see we don't have a record of reprisals."

In the end, Lt. Col. James said if she had known her guard unit couldn’t bring a court martial in her case, she would never have come forward.

“One of the hardest things I've ever had to do is to report that,” she said, calling it harder than going through war. “I lost everything and I did nothing wrong. I know I lost my opportunity to continue to serve and be a full colonel. It was a goal. And it will never happen.”

In a statement to News4, the West Virginia National Guard (WVNG) says the "allegations presented are not reflective of the commands' actions and efforts in cases of sexual assault." Click here to read WVNG's full statement.



Photo Credit: News4 I-Team]]>
<![CDATA[Teen Girl Injured as Gunman Fires Weapon, Flees]]> Sat, 28 Mar 2015 19:26:13 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/P+Street+SW.jpg

A teen girl was injured after a gunman fired numerous shots at different people in southwest Washington Friday night.

Metropolitan police said they were called to P Street, Southwest, shortly before 6 p.m. for reports of gunfire. When they arrived, they found a 14-year-old girl who had been shot once in the leg.

She was transported to the hospital and is in good condition.

Police said several apartment windows were also struck. The gunman fled in a car south on South Capitol Street.

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<![CDATA[Memorial to Fallen Officers Becomes Reality in Alexandria]]> Sat, 28 Mar 2015 23:59:36 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Alexandria+Fallen+Officers+Memorial.jpg

Saturday evening, Alexandria's Fallen Officers Memorial was dedicated at last, before dozens of relatives, officers and friends.

To Ginny Hill-Obranovich, the memorial's dedication is the fulfillment of a promise she made in 1989 when her husband and father of two small boys was killed by a suspect at a hostage incident. Officer Charlie Hill responded as part of the special operations team.

"When Charlie died I promised him he would never be forgotten, and this memorial will make all of them never forgotten, and that's what's most important to me," said Hill-Obanovich.

The memorial in front of Alexandria police headquarters is a tribute to 18 officers who died in the line of duty. Their names are etched on tall glass panels that will be illuminated at night.

There are benches with commemorative plaques that date back to 1823 when officers were called constables. The timeline also delivers a bit of Alexandria Police Department history to visitors, while a touch screen kiosk inside the lobby provides more detail on each officer.

The hope of a memorial dimmed just a few years ago. It was supposed to be part of the new Alexandria police headquarters but the city determined there wasn't enough money to cover the $300,000 price tag.

The Alexandria Police Foundation stepped in and waged a furious fundraising campaign. In just months, $400,000 was raised. The architect and builder of the police headquarters building provided their services for free. Obranovich stepped in to help coordinate everything.

"That's when I knew it ws going to be done," said Hill-Obranovich. "We were going to do it!"

Judy Birney is another strong supporter of the project. Her dad, Conrad Birney, was a youth detective. As his commemorative plaque explains, he was killed responding to a bank robbbery in 1972. Judy was just 12.

"He wasn't just a badge and a gun. He really cared greatly about the youth of Alexandria and he loved his job very much," said Birney.

Birney later followed in her father's footsteps, serving as an an Alexandria officer herself until 1999.

"To me it was like coming home. Even as a little girl I always wanted to be a police officer," said Birney.

Now the memorial gives Birney and Hill-Obranovich reason to keep coming back to police headquarters.

"It will be the final place where they can be remembered forever," said Birney. "I will always cherish it and come here as many times as I can."

For Ginny, her promise is delivered.

"I want people to know these officers loved their job, did their job and they need to be remembered forever," she said.

And when the Alexandria police honor guard opens the dedication ceremony, one of its members will share the last name of one of the fallen. Robert Hill was 4 when his dad Charlie was killed. Now he, too, wears the Alexandria police uniform.



Photo Credit: NBCWashington.com]]>
<![CDATA[UMd. Students Robbed While Inside Off-Campus Apartment]]> Sun, 29 Mar 2015 07:56:14 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/police-lights-shutterstock_222952348.jpg

The University of Maryland Police Department are warning students about an armed off-campus robbery early Saturday morning.

Police say the incident occurred around 3:55 a.m. at an apartment building on Knox Road, between Rossburg Drive and Sterling Place. They said three men, one armed with a knife and another with a BB gun, forced entry into an apartment and demanded property from five university students.

One resident sustained a minor, non-life-threatening injury to his hand. The suspects fled in an unknown direction.

Detectives believe the robbery is not a random incident.

The Prince George’s County Police Department is conducting the investigation. Individuals with any information regarding this incident or the possible identity of suspects are encouraged to contact police (911 or 301-772-4908).



Photo Credit: Shutterstock]]>
<![CDATA[Man Trapped by Conveyor Belt]]> Sat, 28 Mar 2015 12:16:55 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/conveyor+belt+rescue.jpg

A man was rescued from a piece of machinery Saturday morning after his legs became entangled in a conveyor belt.

Mark Brady, chief spokesman for the Prince George’s County Fire Department, said emergency crews were called to a recycling center in the 2000 block of Kenilworth Avenue in Chapel Oaks. When they arrived, they found a man in his late 20s who was trapped in the conveyor belt.

After freeing the man from the machine, paramedics treated traumatic injuries to both legs. He was taken to a nearby trauma center.

Brady said the victim’s injuries were serious, but not life threatening. The victim was not identified.
 



Photo Credit: Prince George's County Fire Department]]>
<![CDATA[Man Stabbed, Killed Outside Leesburg 7-Eleven]]> Sat, 28 Mar 2015 16:19:37 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/police-line-generic722.jpg

A man was killed after being stabbed during a disturbance outside a Leesburg, Virginia, convenience store early Saturday morning.

Leesburg police said James R. Sealey, 22, of Montclair, New Jersey, was stabbed in the upper leg at the Plaza Street 7-Eleven shortly before 3 a.m. He was taken to INOVA Lansdowne Hospital, and then transferred to INOVA Fairfax Hospital where he died.

Investigators said a large group of people were gathered in the parking lot of the store early Saturday. When police arrived, they found the victim in the back seat of a vehicle.

People inside and outside the store were detained for questioning. The 7-Eleven is currently closed while the investigation continues.

The Leesburg Police Department is asking that anyone who may have information or witnessed this incident to please contact us at (703) 771-4500. If you wish to remain anonymous please call The Leesburg Crime Line at 703-443-TIPS (8477). Information can also be sent using TIPSUBMIT via text. Text 274637 (CRIMES) and begin your message with LPDTIP.



Photo Credit: NBC ]]>
<![CDATA[Suspect Shot by Officer Identified]]> Sun, 29 Mar 2015 07:34:07 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/clay+terrace+police+involved+shooting.jpg

Metropolitan police said an alleged robbery suspect was shot by a D.C. police officer late Friday night in northeast Washington.

Police said the officer responded to a burglary call in the 5300 block of Clay Terrace. After an encounter with three suspects, the officer fired his weapon once, striking Troye Roberson, 23, of northeast D.C.

Robertson has been charged with assault on a police officer while armed, carrying a pistol, attempt to commit robbery, and unauthorized use of a vehicle.

A second suspect, a juvenile male, was also apprehended. A third suspect is still sought.

Robertson was transported to a local hospital. The officer was not injured.

Investigators are working to determine the sequence of events leading to the shooting.



Photo Credit: NBC4 Washington]]>
<![CDATA[Police Seek Woman Who Abandoned Cat in Parking Lot]]> Sat, 28 Mar 2015 09:40:08 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/loudoun+abandoned+cat.jpg

Police are looking for the woman who abandoned a cat in a parking lot in Loudoun County on Wednesday afternoon.

Security photos show a silver SUV pulling into the parking lot of the Dulles Crossing Plaza in Sterling.

A woman gets out of the car with a cat in her hand. She's then seen inside one of the stores without the cat.

A short time later, animal control officers found an 8-year-old tabby abandoned in a shopping cart in the parking lot along with a bag of food, a plastic bowl, and a pillow sham.
 

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<![CDATA[Police Officer Killed in Crash Had .07 BAC]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 23:17:46 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Police+Officer+Brennan+Rabain.jpg

A Prince George's County Police officer killed in a crash in Lanham this month had alcohol in his blood at the time, but there is no indication alcohol was the primary cause of the crash, Chief Mark Magaw said Friday evening.

Officer Brennan Rabain, 26, was killed in a crash about 3:20 a.m. March 7.

The toxicology report found Rabain had a blood-alcohol level of .07, which is below the legal limit of .08 for driving under the influence but could lead to driving while impaired charges under Maryland law, Magaw said.

But video does not show Rabain swerving at all, and Park Police who spoke to Rabain shortly before the crash saw no sign of impairment.

Rabain's girlfriend told investigators he was driving her home when he spotted a speeding car. She said she thought Rabain was about to slow down or pull over that car when he lost control and crashed.

She suffered minor injuries in the crash.

Rabain had been off duty, but when he initiated the traffic stop, he went back on duty, police said.

He drove as fast as 106 mph during the pursuit, Magaw said. He was driving at 64 mph when he lost control and crashed at 50 mph.

According to the investigation, at 3:19 a.m. Rabain switched his radio to channel two, which would be appropriate if he was trying to call in a traffic stop. The first 911 call came at 3:21 a.m. Magaw believes that split second he switched the channel while driving at that speed on a curve in icy conditions caused the crash.

“If I had to guess, that’s when he lost control and hit the fence,” Magaw said.

But the chief did not condone Rabain drinking any amount of alcohol before driving or driving at those speeds.

The dashboard camera in the cruiser was broken, police said.

Rabain left behind a 3-year-old daughter, police said. His fellow officers have established a GoFundMe site to help the family.



Photo Credit: Prince George's County Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Abuse Allegations Rock Northern Va. Church]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 17:19:24 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/216*120/2015-03-27_1718.jpg

Abuse allegations are rocking a Northern Virginia church, as former members claim they were physically and sexually abused.

The Loudoun County Sheriff's Office has confirmed it's investigating claims against Calvary Temple in Sterling, Virginia.

The claims of abuse against Calvary Temple leaders and church members range from verbal to physical and sexual. Former church members are going so far as to call Calvary Temple a cult. Some of the alleged victims first opened up to the Loudoun Times. Since then, several more have come forward.

Among them is Kaitlin Skeeters, formerly Kaitlin Scott, a former church member who is also the pastor's estranged adopted granddaughter.

Skeeters, now 24, told News4 that she endured years abuse within her own family, and says she was ignored by other church members.

"I was tired of being hit and punched and thrown into walls, and thrown down stairs," she said. "And I was tired of being dropped off on the side of the road and forced to walk all the way to work."

"It sounds twisted, but it just becomes all that you know," she said.

At age 16, Skeeters left home and the church, with the help of family friends. She now lives out of state, but didn't want to say where.

"And I left, and I have discovered that, you know, I am beautiful and I am strong, and there is nothing wrong with me like this church makes you believe," she said. "And I hope all the young girls know that."

No charges have been filed in the case. Deputies say the investigation is ongoing, and are asking other alleged victims to come forward.

Church leadership has not yet commented on the allegations.

Community member Samantha Haas is organizing a peaceful protest for this weekend. Haas has lived in Sterling her whole life, but her only ties to Calvary Temple is through friends.

Since the Loudoun Times first reported the claims, Haas has fielded calls from several alleged victims.

"Somebody has to give them a voice, and demand that things are done," she said.

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<![CDATA[Students Protest U.Md.'s Handling of Sexist, Racist Email ]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 23:16:52 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/215*120/OccupyStamp+March+032715.JPG

Some University of Maryland students think the student responsible for a sexist, racist email that rocked the College Park campus is getting off easy, and Friday they made their voices heard.

Protesting students said they feel the university is not taking the matter seriously enough. They feel the student who wrote the email should be expelled.

Dozens of students gathered in front of the Kappa Sigma fraternity house just off campus Friday evening.

Their anger was sparked by an email sent by one fraternity brother to several others last year. The email only recently began circulating on the Internet.

In profoundly vulgar and racist terms, the writer urges his friends not to invite African-American, Asian and Indian women to fraternity parties. He also encouraged them to ignore the issue of consent, with the women who were invited.

In an email sent to students Thursday, Maryland's vice president for student affairs said, "The University's investigation into the incident is continuing and due process will be completed before any final determinations are made."

It goes on to say, "However, by mutual consent between the student involved, his family, and the University, he will not return to campus this semester."

The protesters fear that may be the only serious punishment the email writer faces. Many do not want him to return to campus ever.

Although the student was suspended from his fraternity, the Kappa Sigma house and nearby fraternity row remain a targets of anger.

No one answered the door at the Kappa Sigma house to comment.



Photo Credit: Jackie Bensen, NBCWashington.com]]>
<![CDATA[Day Care Owner Charged With Shaking Baby: PD]]> Sat, 28 Mar 2015 08:02:08 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/mug+Valentin.Ana.jpg

A day care owner in Maryland who claims she resuscitated a 9-month-old baby has been charged with shaking the girl, according to Montgomery County Police.

Ana Isabel Valentin, 40, has been charged with first and second degree child abuse.

According to police, the baby was dropped off at Valentin's Rockville home on Jan. 5, 2015. That afternoon, Valentin called 911 to report that the baby girl wasn't breathing.

She later told police that she left the girl crying in a swing while she answered a knock at the door. When she returned a few minutes later, she found that the baby unresponsive and not breathing. She started CPR and called 911. During this time, she said the little girl started to breathe again.

Valentin told police that the baby had a "regular, normal day," but doctors at Children's Hospital determined that the child had been shaken.

The baby suffered bleeding above two halves of her brain and was not breathing for a unknown amount of time, a Children's Hospital doctor said. There were also no sign of any injuries prior to Jan. 5.

A little over a week after the incident, doctors were not able to get any visual response from the child. According to the hospital, the girl "is on the moderate to severe end of the spectrum for Shaken Baby Syndrome." The infant has also suffered multiple seizures.

Rene Sandler, Valentin's attorney, says her client denies the allegations against her. Valentin's day care is currently closed, but Sandler says Valentin intends to re-open as soon as the charges against her have been resolved.

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<![CDATA[D.C. to Hybrid Owners: Inspection Sticker No Longer Valid]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:30:39 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009939397_1200x675_419333187524.jpg Hybrid car owners in D.C. may be receiving notices that their inspection stickers are no longer valid.]]> <![CDATA[Teacher Who Pleaded Guilty to Sex Assault Not on Registry]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 23:14:36 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Garnold+King.jpg

A Prince George’s County middle school teacher who previously pleaded guilty to an inappropriate relationship with a student has now been given a second chance.

A judge struck down Garnold King’s guilty verdict on Friday only nine months into his five-year probation sentence. Judge C. Philip Nichols’ action allows King to request that his record is expunged in five years and that he does not have to register as a sex offender.

King’s defense attorney, Dana Jones-Oliver, said that his original plea paved the way for King’s conviction to be thrown out. King entered an Alford plea, a claim where a defendant maintains their innocence but admits that the prosecution has enough evidence to prove their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

“With respect to this case, do I believe justice was had?” asked Jones-Oliver. “Absolutely.”

King faced fourth-degree sex assault charges for assaulting Dana Williams’ 13-year-old daughter while he taught at Isaac Gordine Middle School. Williams said her daughter thought King was in love with her. Calling the court’s decision devastating, Williams said her mission now is to protect other children.

Despite King’s new verdict, the State’s Attorney’s Office expects King will not be able to teach again in the Prince George’s County Public Schools or possibly the entire state of Maryland.

While King may feel liberated, Williams feels anything but. Her daughter moved to another state after the ordeal to get a fresh start. She said it feels like she lost a child.

“My family is broken,” she said.

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<![CDATA[Homeless Man Stops Rape Attempt in NW D.C. ]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 22:31:29 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Ketrell+Ferguson.jpg

A homeless man says he was looking for a place to sleep when he came upon an attempted rape and intervened early Tuesday.

Shortly before 3:30 a.m., Ketrell Ferguson, who is recently homeless, heard screams and noticed a struggle in the 3600 block of 16th Street NW. At first, he thought it was a robbery.

According to police, 23-year-old Alemen Gonzalo offered a woman money for sex, and when she refused, he allegedly tried to rape her behind a bus stop.

Ferguson said he has relatives who have been raped and he felt he had to do something. He picked up half a brick and a stick.

"As soon as he lifted his head up, I smacked him with the stick hard as I could in his head,” Ferguson said. “He fell off the lady, stumbled and I smacked him again and I just kept smacking him with the stick as hard as I could."

Police found the suspect not far away about 4:40 a.m. He was bleeding from his head.

"Even though I'm going through hard times, God put in me in a place where I could help,” Ferguson said. “I was at the right place at right time."

Gonzalo is charged with assault with the intent to commit first-degree sexual abuse.



Photo Credit: NBCWashington.com]]>
<![CDATA[Md. Lawmakers Approve School Construction Funds]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:56:08 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009939651_1200x675_419360835591.jpg Overcrowding in Maryland schools has forced students to take classes in portable classrooms, but lawmakers have now approved millions in school construction funds.]]> <![CDATA[Deputy Mentoring Program Getting Results in Prince George's Co.]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:52:55 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009939580_1200x675_419343939597.jpg A special program involving Prince George's County sheriff's deputies in schools is helping bridge the gap between law enforcement and young people, and at one school it's making a big difference.]]> <![CDATA[Germanwings Crash Investigation Centers on Pilot]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:51:28 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009939581_1200x675_419343939583.jpg Investigators in Germany and the U.S. are working to find out more about the co-pilot in the fatal Germanwings airplane crash.]]> <![CDATA[D.C. Agency Honors Foster Care Donors]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:40:30 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009939513_1200x675_419337795800.jpg News4's own Barbara Harrison served as emcee for a ceremony honoring donors making a difference for children in foster care in D.C.]]> <![CDATA[Standardized Test Co. Monitoring Students' Social Media for Cheating]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 21:34:36 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009939472_1200x675_419335747737.jpg A company that created a standardized test has been monitoring social media of Maryland students to try to find cheaters. Scott MacFarlane reports that the actions are raising some concerns.]]> <![CDATA["Sticky Notes" Used to Track Liquor Inventory]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 20:51:00 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Montgomery+County+Special+Ad+Hoc+Committee+on+Liquor+Control+032715.jpg

The Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control was using "sticky notes" to keep track of missing inventory.

That was just one of the stunning revelations that came out Friday during testimony from the county's Inspector General during a special county hearing investigating the agency.

The ad hoc committee hearing began with doctors, county police and DLC Director George Griffin detailing how DLC protects public health. Griffin said he prohibited the distribution of what he called "irresponsible and dangerous" products like prepackaged jello shots and caffeinated alcohol.

"Those products at one time or another were sold in Maryland,” Griffin said. “They were never sold in Montgomery County."

After hearing testimony that Montgomery County was one of the safest and healthiest counties in the state, committee members indicated they will probably allow DLC to continue to control alcohol enforcement and the distribution of hard liquor.

But council members became very concerned when county Inspector General Edward Blansitt showed how "sticky notes" were used to track missing inventory.

He said as many as 154 cases a day go missing without anyone investigating why. As an example, he explained to the committee, “If it’s 950 cases of product that's missing, somebody needs to go out on the warehouse floor and verify it and track it and do an investigation of why those cases were missing in the first place."

The ad hoc committee and its hearings were called following our News4 I-Team “Beer Bust” investigation in November, which showed how we had to input data from more than 30,000 handwritten pages to create a database that exposed problems with missing and possibly stolen cases of beer.

Seven DLC employees have since been fired or quit as a result of that investigation, with at least one employee possibly facing court proceedings, according to previous statements made by DLC.

After the IG report was presented, Councilman Marc Elrich became critical of DLC management. “Managing a warehouse and inventory is like Business 101,” he said. “There are few things that are simpler than counting what's on a shelf."

Griffin responded that DLC has recently brought in three new experts to overhaul its warehouse and inventory systems, including a former Marriott executive and a consultant from the liquor industry. Montgomery County’s Deputy Director of Transportation Edgar Gonzalez is also transferring into the agency starting Monday.

But the council became increasingly frustrated when Griffin wouldn't give them a solid deadline for implementing changes outlined in the IG report.

Council President George Leventhal told Griffin, "Whether it's the inventory control sloppiness, whether it's the failure to delivery inventory product in a manner that's workable to licensees, this is not a government that works.” He expressed concern Griffin wasn’t taking the ad hoc committee hearings seriously. “A lack of urgency and complacency are unsatisfactory."

Griffin replied, “We get it, we know how important this is, and we know the county is looking at the future of how they want to operate in this business."

The committee’s chair, Councilman Hans Riemer, told Griffin, “It's a difficult discussion to have, and I want to say, you know, this rolls up to the county executive, he's responsible. This affects the revenue we generate. This affects a thousand small businesses in our county to depend on the government to provide them with service so they can be profitable serving the residents of our community."

Following the hearing, County Executive Ike Leggett’s spokesman Patrick Lacefield told the I-Team, "The system of local liquor control is working. It's protecting the public health and keeping county money in the county. Can we do it in a more consumer-friendly way? Yes. We're working on that."

This was supposed to be the last hearing until June for the ad hoc committee. But the committee decided at the end of the hearing it wanted to further discuss problems restaurants and stores are now reporting about DLC’s new computer system, which they say are preventing them from receiving the alcohol they purchase from the county.

The committee is now planning to meet again in about three weeks, because as Leventhal mentioned at the end of this hearing, “The more we dig, the more issues come up.”



Photo Credit: News4 I-Team]]>
<![CDATA[Autistic Boy Forced to Remove His Letter Jacket]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 13:40:25 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/214*120/LetterJacket.jpg A mother is outraged after her son's school forces him to remove a varsity letter jacket because special-needs athletes aren't allowed to wear the letters.]]> <![CDATA[All-Clear at Pentagon Centre Mall After Bomb Threat]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 15:13:52 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/2015-03-27_1401.jpg

Authorities have given the all-clear at the Pentagon Centre mall, more than two hours after it was evacuated due to a bomb threat.

Arlington County Police responded to the one-story mall, which houses a CostCo and Best Buy in a busy shopping area, at about 12:30 p.m. Friday after the threat was called in.

The mall was evacuated while police searched with the aid of bomb-sniffing dogs. Nothing suspicious was found.

Police said around 2:45 p.m. that roads in the area were being reopened.

The mall is located across the street from the larger Fashion Centre at Pentagon City.

Stay with NBCWashington.com for the latest.

This story has been corrected from an earlier version.



Photo Credit: Arlington County Police Dept.]]>
<![CDATA[Man Barricades Self Inside Home in NE D.C.]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 14:40:37 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/231*120/2015-03-27_1146.png

D.C. police and U.S. marshals are on the scene where a man has barricaded himself inside a Northeast D.C. home.

Officers were called to the 4900 block of Meade Street NE at about 10:30 a.m. Friday, after a caller told 911 that someone inside the home had barricaded himself inside the attic.

A U.S. marshall spokesperson said the man is wanted for some parole violations. The situation is ongoing. Authorities are trying to resolve the situation peacefully.

Police have closed portions of 48th Street, 50th Street, Nash Street and Lee Street.

There's no word on whether the man is armed.

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<![CDATA[14-Year-Old Girl Missing From Prince George's Co.]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 10:56:57 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/Cecilia-Ivy-Guzman-missing.jpg

A 14-year-old girl is missing from Prince George's County.

 

Cecilia Ivy Guzman was last seen in the 7100 block of Freeport Street in Hyattsville, Maryland.

She is five feet, four inches tall and weighs 135 pounds. Police said it's unknown what she was wearing when she was last seen.

Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to call police at 301-699-2601.

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<![CDATA[DDOT Begins 16th St. Bridge Project]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 06:17:08 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/215*120/2015-03-27_0607.png

The District's Department of Transportation will begin a four-month long project to replace the 16th Street Bridge Friday, resulting in a number of lane closures and bus delays.

The work along 16th Street NW began early Friday morning. The major commuter route will be down to one lane in each directions as it crosses over Military Road. There will also be some lane closures on Military Road. There will be several weekends when Military Road is completely closed.

Drivers are encouraged to use Georgia Avenue as an alternate.

In addition to replacing the bridge, crews will also "refurbish the roadway, install new drainage infrastructure and upgrade traffic signals," according to a press release from DDOT.

“The 16th Street Bridge has served District residents and visitors for more than 50 years, but now is the time to make it safer and more reliable for drivers,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser.

The construction will also affect several Metrobus routes. Metro says routes D31, D33, D34, E2, E3, E4, S1, S2, S4 and S9 will be subject to possible service changes and delays. Some routes will use detours to avoid the bridge construction.

Click here for a complete list of detours and service changes.

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<![CDATA[Missing 20-Month-Old W. Va. Boy Found in Haymarket]]> Fri, 27 Mar 2015 09:16:43 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/214*120/2015-03-27_0545.png

Police say an Amber Alert for a 20-month-old West Virginia boy was cancelled after the toddler and his alleged abductor were found in Haymarket, Virginia.

Virginia State Police found Jaxon Patel in Haymarket just after 11 p.m. Thursday, several media outlets report.

Patel hadn't been seen since Tuesday. Investigators say Patel was in the care of his grandmother when a man claiming to be his father said he was going to bring Patel back to his mother.

The man, identified by police as Aaron Taylor, is now in police custody.

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<![CDATA[Silver Line Handrail Lights Turned Off After Fires]]> Thu, 26 Mar 2015 22:59:07 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009927038_1200x675_418869827986.jpg Handrails fitted with special lights created extra problems instead of helping guide the way for passengers along Metro's Silver Line.]]> <![CDATA[Rakeem Solomon in Custody in Shooting of Disabled Vet]]> Thu, 26 Mar 2015 22:45:54 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/0123-rakeem-solomon.jpg

U.S. marshals took into custody Thursday a suspect accused of robbing, carjacking and shooting a disabled Vietnam War veteran.

The veteran brings wholesale goods to the area from New York and re-sells them so he can buy Christmas presents for his 13 grandchildren. He was attacked Nov. 4 in Bladensburg while meeting what he thought were two customers.

He told police two men grabbed him and demanded his keys and money. He said he initially resisted, but decided to give all his items up when he thought of his family. He said that's when he heard one of his attackers say, "Bust him, anyway."

That's when Rakeem "Killa" Solomon, 22, shot the vet, causing massive internal injuries, police said. The victim said he came closer to death then than he ever did in Vietnam.

Police found a YouTube video of Solomon in the weeks following the shooting wearing a plaid shirt and black jacket -- the same jacket he wore the night of the Nov. 4 shooting, which was caught on surveillance. He's holding a gun in the video, the same one police believe he used in the shooting.

A tipster who saw News4's report about the attack gave police the description of Solomon's car and location: The Copper's Landing Apartments off Annapolis Road. Bladensburg Police contacted U.S. marshals for assistance, and Solomon was taken into custody without incident.

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<![CDATA[Family Frightened by Police Response to Their Home]]> Thu, 26 Mar 2015 22:17:54 -0400 http://media.nbcwashington.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000009927036_1200x675_418791491949.jpg

Police gave a Lanham, Maryland, family a fright Tuesday afternoon when officers surrounded their home with weapons drawn.

Prince George’s County Police got a call from a complainant reporting seeing a child with a BB gun or rifle and an adult male with a handgun entering a house. Officers arrived at a home on Glenarden Parkway about 4:45 p.m. and knocked on the door.

“Opened the door and it's police, like five or six of them in front of my door aiming their guns, pointing, saying, ‘Come outside! Hurry up! Come outside with your hands up,’” Enid Sawyer said. “I’m like, ‘What happened?’”

The Sawyers learned more armed police officers surrounded the house.

“They had guns pointed at me and my son,” said Enid Sawyer’s husband, Ronny. “So I was fearing for his life.”

“They pointed it at my face and they told me to put my hands up, like, ‘Shut up and put your hands up,’” said the Sawyers’ 11-year-old son, Ronssiah.

Police then explained they were looking for a child with a gun, and the Sawyers offered them entry to the house to check.

“They did not [go inside],” Enid Sawyer said. “They said, ‘Oh no, that's not necessary.’ They left, didn't even apologize or anything. They just left.”

Glenarden Police Chief Philip O’Donnell said the officers left because they were convinced by then the Sawyers had nothing to do with the call.

“I’m scared, because I thought policemen were supposed to protect me, not hurt me,” Ronssiah said.

The officers were professional, according to O’Donnell. He said they had their guns drawn but never pointed them at anyone.

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