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Crime & Punishment, 11/23/23 edition

News of crime and punishment across Fairfax County

CYBER-TIP LEADS COUNTY POLICE TO ARREST VIENNA MAN FOR ILLEGAL POSSESSION OF MACHINE GUNS: Fairfax County police on Nov. 16 executed a search warrant at the home of Vienna man wanted for allegedly communicating sexually with a juvenile, and ended up busting him on charges of illegal possession of machine guns.

In September, detectives received a cyber-tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that alleged Craig Strasbourger, 31, had been engaging in sexual communication with a juvenile from Kentucky. Through their investigation, detectives determined Strasbourger resided in the 2100 block of Robin Way Court in Vienna.

Detectives and the department’s Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team on Nov 16 carried out a search warrant at Strasbourger’s residence, which led to his arrest. During the operation, detectives reportedly confiscated four illegal machine guns and various electronic devices from the premises.

Police took Strasbourger to the Fairfax County Adult Detention, where authorities charged him with four counts of unlawful possession of a machine gun. He initially was held on a $4,000 secured bond.

Detectives continue to review electronic evidence recovered from the home and additional charges may be coming, pending results from that investigation.

COUNTY POLICE ARREST 3 MARYLAND RESIDENTS ON 65 CHARGES AFTER ATTEMPTED FRAUD IN TYSONS: Three Maryland residents face a total of 65 charges after Fairfax County police arrested them Nov. 14 when they allegedly tried to use a stolen credit card to purchase high-end smartphones in Tysons Corner Center.

Detectives with the police department’s Tysons Urban Team (TUT) were alerted at 3:49 p.m. that day about a possible fraud unfolding at the mall’s Apple store.

TUT detectives spoke with the store’s loss-prevention personnel and learned that three suspects allegedly were attempting to purchase several iPhone 15s, worth a total of $5,578, using a stolen credit card. Detectives quickly arrived to take the suspects into custody before they could leave the store.

As police were detaining the suspects, a victim called to report her credit cards had been stolen from her car and were being used by the suspects, authorities said.

According to TUT detectives, the suspects stole the credit card from the victim’s vehicle earlier that day. Through their investigation, detectives determined the suspects allegedly had entered or broken into several vehicles over the last few months in the parking lots of Scotts Run Nature Preserve and Difficult Run Park before committing fraudulent transactions in the Tysons area.

Authorities are holding all of the suspects without bond at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.

Authorities charged Jose Angel Santos, 20, of Hyattsville, Md., with 10 counts of credit-card theft, five counts of credit-card fraud, three counts of conspiracy to commit credit-card fraud, two counts of stolen property with intent to sell, two counts of wearing a mask to conceal identity, two counts of destruction of property, receiving stolen goods, identity theft, possession of burglarious tools, obstruction of justice, vehicle trespass and petit larceny.

Juan Jose Ruiz Leiva, 21, of Riverdale, Md., faces eight counts of credit-card theft, four counts of credit-card fraud, two counts of conspiracy to commit credit-card fraud, two counts of stolen property with intent to sell, two counts of destruction of property, possession of burglarious tools, identity theft, petty larceny and vehicle trespass.

Authorities charged Genesis Flores Caceres, 18, of Hyattsville, Md., with five counts of credit-card theft, conspiracy to commit credit-card fraud, possession of burglarious tools, two counts of credit-card fraud, identity fraud, stolen property with intent to sell, destruction of property and vehicle trespass.

VIENNA POLICE TO SEEK CHARGES AGAINST JUVENILE WHO ALLEGEDLY ASSAULTED OFFICER: Vienna police officers responded Oct. 27 at 9:50 p.m. to a reported fight in progress at Chick-fil-A, 538 Maple Ave., W.

Police defused the situation and contacted the parents of the juveniles involved in the incident, who then picked them up.

One of the juveniles involved allegedly assaulted an officer who responded to the incident, police said. Authorities turned the juvenile turned over to a family member and will seek petitions against the youth for the assault on the officer, police said.

VIENNA POLICE INVESTIGATING AFTER CHILD’S HALLOWEEN CANDY IS STOLEN BY TEENS, ONE ALLEGEDLY WAVING KNIFE: A woman told Vienna police that a teen approached her child at the Vienna Community Center on Oct. 31 at 9:15 p.m. and stole the candy he had collected that night, while another teen a few feet away was waving a knife.

Detectives are investigating this case, police said.

CHILD IN VIENNA SAYS TEENS TRIED TO SCARE HIM WITH TOY GUN: A child told Vienna police that while he was walking in the parking lot of the Vienna Community Center on Nov. 11 at 2:16 p.m., some teens approached him and pulled out a toy gun in an attempt to scare him.

VIENNA POLICE ARREST WOMAN, 35, ON DESTRUCTION-OF-PROPERTY, OBSTRUCTION CHARGES: A resident living in the 200 block of Courthouse Circle, S.W., on Nov. 11 at 6:17 p.m. requested Vienna police assistance with a domestic dispute.

Officers investigated the allegations and determined that a crime had been committed, police said.

Police arrested a 35-year-old Vienna woman and took her to the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center, where authorities served her with warrants for destruction of property and obstruction of justice.

PERSON BANNED FROM VIENNA PIZZA JOINT AFTER HARASSING EMPLOYEES: The store manager at Domino’s Pizza, 331 Maple Ave., E., on Nov. 11 at 8:10 p.m. requested Vienna police assistance with a person who allegedly was harassing her.

Police responded to the store and made contact with the person, who subsequently was banned from the store because he had harassed all the employees, police said.

CALLER REPORTEDLY THREATENS VIENNA PIZZA EMPLOYEES FOR NOT HONORING COUPON: A staff member at Domino’s Pizza, 331 Maple Ave., E., told Vienna police that on Nov. 9 at  9:06 p.m. an upset phone customer had threatened the employees for refusing to honor a coupon.

VIENNA POLICE FIND UNATTENDED, RUNNING VEHICLE WITH MISSING FRONT TIRE, MAJOR FRONT-END DAMAGE: While on routine patrol Nov. 12 at 8:57 p.m. in the 500 block of Ware Street, S.W., a Vienna police officer saw a vehicle had been left unattended and running.

The car had extensive front-end damage and was missing a front tire.

Authorities had the vehicle towed for safekeeping.

VIENNA MAN REPORTS THEFT OF VEHICLE WITH SPARE KEY FOB INSIDE: A resident living in the 500 block of Ware Street, S.W., told Vienna police that, sometime between Nov. 12 at 10 p.m. and Nov. 13 at 6:50 a.m., someone stole his vehicle from his driveway.

The resident told police he had left the spare key fob inside the car.

Detectives are investigating this case.

WOMAN REPORTS THEFT OF LAPTOP COMPUTER FROM TABLE AT VIENNA RESTAURANT: A customer at The Virginian, 169 Glyndon St., S.E., told Vienna police on Nov. 15 at 7:04 p.m. that she had left her laptop on a table at the restaurant and another customer had stolen it.

Detectives are investigating this case.

MOTORCYCLIST CRASHES IN VIENNA AFTER GETTING HAND STUCK ON THROTTLE: A motorcyclist was riding on Colin Lane, N.W., on Oct. 17 at 10:41 a.m. when he attempted to turn left onto Lawyers Road, N.W., but got his hand stuck on the throttle and lost control of the vehicle, Vienna police said.

As a result, the driver was thrown from the motorcycle, police said.

VIENNA PEDESTRIAN REPORTS BEING STRUCK BY HIT-AND-RUN VEHICLE: A pedestrian was crossing a parking lot at 314 Maple Ave., W., on Oct. 28 at 9:25 a.m. when he got hit by a vehicle, Vienna police said.

The vehicle’s driver left the scene without exchanging information.

An ambulance responded to the scene, but the pedestrian refused to be transported, police said.

PEDESTRIAN INJURED AFTER RUNNING INTO VEHICLE IN VIENNA: A motorist was traveling eastbound on Church Street, N.E., near Center Street, N., on Nov. 11 at 12:53 p.m. when a pedestrian suddenly ran into the vehicle, Vienna police said.

Rescue personnel transported the pedestrian via ambulance to a hospital.

VIENNA WOMAN SAYS SOMEONE STOLE HER AIRLINE MILES ONLINE: A woman living in the 600 block of Kingsley Road, S.W., told Vienna police that between Oct. 14 and 26 someone gained access to her online airline account and stole her travel miles.

COUNTY POLICE ARREST ANNANDALE MAN IN FATAL SHOOTING AT FALLS CHURCH HOTEL: Authorities on Nov. 19 arrested a 43-year-old Annandale man in Maryland in connection with a fatal shooting that occurred in the early morning of that day at the Falls Church Marriott Fairview Park hotel.

Fairfax County police at 12:42 a.m. dispatched officers to the hotel, located at 3111 Fairview Park Drive, after receiving a report of a shooting there. Officers found the victim, Charles Anthony Ashe Jr., 44, of Maryland, near the elevators. He was suffering from gunshot wounds to the upper body.

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department personnel were at the hotel on an unrelated call and able to respond quickly. Rescue personnel took Ashe to a local hospital, where he was pronounced deceased, Fairfax County police said.

According to detectives, Ashe and Vo knew each other. Ashe allegedly entered the room Vo was occupying with four other individuals and shot Ashe, police said. No one else was injured.

Ashe was able to exit the hotel room and was carried by friends, who had heard the gunshots, to the elevator. Vo fled from the hotel, police said. Detectives do not believe the shooting was a random act. County police reportedly discovered evidence of narcotics inside the hotel room.

Detectives with the police department’s Major Crimes Bureau obtained warrants for Vo on charges of second-degree murder, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, and felon in possession of a firearm.

At 11 p.m., the Fairfax County Police Department’s Fugitive Track and Apprehension Team located Vo’s vehicle unattended at a residence in Gaithersburg, Md. Members of that team, along with personnel from the U.S. Marshals Service and Montgomery County (Md.) Police Department, later took Vo into custody outside the Giant store at 18250 Flower Hill Way in Gaithersburg.

Authorities now are holding Vo at the Montgomery County Detention Center and he will be remanded back to Fairfax County.

COUNTY POLICE URGE FIREARMS SAFETY AS HOLIDAY SEASON NEARS: The Fairfax County Police Department is stressing the importance of responsible gun ownership and firearm safety to ensure community members enjoy a safe and joyous holiday season while reducing the risk of firearm-related accidents and incidents.

County police this year are working with the Fairfax County Circuit Court to provide new concealed-carry-permit applicants a free gun lock to ensure they have the proper equipment to secure their firearm. Those who already have a permit for concealed carry can contact crime-prevention officers at all of the department’s district stations to receive a free gun lock.

As the community prepares for holiday festivities, it’s essential to keep safety in mind, especially when it comes to firearms, county police said. Whether you’re a gun owner or not, understanding and promoting gun safety can make a big difference in ensuring a safer and happier holiday season for everyone, they said.

Police offer these safety tips:

• If you own firearms, store them securely, especially when family and friends gather at your home. Unintentional access to firearms by children or unauthorized users can lead to tragic accidents. You can do this by ensuring that your firearms are unloaded and locked in a secure safe, always storing ammunition separately from your firearms, treating every firearm as if it’s loaded and always keeping the muzzle of any firearm pointed in a safe direction.

• Ensure that everyone in your household, especially children, understands the basics of firearm safety. Teach them to treat every firearm as if it is loaded and immediately inform an adult if they come across an unattended firearm.

• Always follow proper handling procedures when using firearms. Keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot, and be aware of your target and what lies beyond it.

• Never mix alcohol or drugs with handling firearms. Keep firearms away from situations where impaired judgment could lead to dangerous accidents.

• Consider removing unwanted or unused firearms from your home. If you are looking to get rid of a firearm, you can bring the firearm to any of the police department’s eight district stations. Returning your unwanted firearms helps reduce the risk of accidents or stolen firearms in the community. For more information on this program, go to and search for “disposal of unwanted firearms and ammunition.”

Fairfax County police encourage residents to participate in firearm-safety courses and seek additional information on responsible firearm handling and storage. Remember that safe gun practices are not only for gun owners but for everyone, police said.