After more than three months of vehicle vandalisms and break-ins in a Centreville neighborhood, Fairfax County police have arrested the man they believe is responsible. He is Marques King, 26, of 14527 Ravenscar Court in that same community.
The crimes occurred in Crofton Commons between late October 2017 until the early morning hours of Feb. 2 when, say police, they allegedly caught King in the act. Lt. Ryan Morgan, assistant commander of the Sully District Police Station, said dozens of vehicles were vandalized or tampered with, including 15 on Feb. 1, alone.
The offenses involved destruction of property and vehicle trespassing — rummaging through a vehicle, but not taking anything from it. Many of them happened mostly during the overnight hours on Flamborough Road and near Hovingham Court.
“There was a rash of vehicle windows either bring busted out by unknown means or shot out with BBs,” said Morgan. “Then the vehicles were entered, either by using the broken windows or by finding unlocked doors.”
When things like this occur, he said, the perpetrator searches the car and “anything of value — from loose change to electronics — is up for grabs. We always tell people, ‘Lock your car doors,’ but many of them still don’t do it.”
In this case, said Morgan, “It’s been a source of frustration for the officers, trying to catch [the person responsible]. “So our officers were out there [last Thursday night, Feb. 1]. They did surveillance in the area and [reportedly] caught him in the act, trying door handles and going through items in one, particular car.”
He said police allegedly observed King, around 1:40 a.m., and started moving in to arrest him, “But he disappeared and got away for a short time. But officers found him near his home in that neighborhood.”
King was then taken to the Adult Detention Center and charged with felony destruction of property, petit larceny and multiple counts of vehicle trespassing and was held without bond. Morgan said additional charges may be filed, as the investigation continues. Meanwhile, police executed a search warrant at King’s home, later on Feb. 2, and seized a number of items.
According to Morgan, police followed up with neighborhood residents after the arrest and discovered that several of them knew the vehicle break-ins had been happening. But, he said, “Not everyone reported them. Sometimes, neighbors only share information between themselves on social media and don’t tell the police. We’d love to get the bad guys, but we need people to report crimes going on in their neighborhoods.”
Morgan said residents can capture valuable information on their home-security systems, too. “That’s also helpful,” he said. “It helps us narrow down likely suspects.”
Regarding King’s arrest, Morgan praised the efforts of the Sully District Station’s bike team and crime analyst. “The bike team caught him,” he said. “When there are neighborhood concerns, they’re our go-to people for special projects. They know the area and those streets.”
“And our crime analyst Kelly Gurrola provided us with intelligence-led policing,” continued Morgan. “She helped guide the police as to where the incidents have happened over time and did a probability analysis of which dates [future] crimes were most likely to occur. She used technology to put us in the right place at the right time.”