Fairfax Co. police find 3 missing girls during gang investigation

WASHINGTON — Fairfax County police officers investigating a suspected gang member got information leading them to three girls who had run away from home.

The case was launched when an ex-girlfriend told police that the suspected gang member had threatened to kill her.

Police won’t say which gang they believe the suspect might be affiliated with, because the department has a policy of not naming specific gangs.

As detectives gathered evidence and conducted interviews, they got some good news. “We also got information on the whereabouts of three runaways who had been reported from our county,” Officer Tawny Wright told WTOP.

When the suspect was arrested March 11, police found one of the missing girls, a 16-year-old, with him at his home in Falls Church.

A 17-year-old was also found in Falls Church on March 10, and a 14-year-old in Maryland on March 12.

All three girls have returned home.

“We’ve had a number of gang related cases recently. We don’t believe that this suspect or these incidents are connected to any of those,” Wright said.

“Our detectives are looking into … whether these girls were involved in some kind of trafficking or prostitution. That has not yet been confirmed,” she added.

If you think you can help with similar investigations, police want to hear from you.

“If anyone out there has suspicions of gang activity going on in their neighborhood or their community, or they think there [are] some teenagers who might be reported runaways, definitely give us a call.  You can call our police nonemergency number. Our officers will go out there, try to find them, and try to talk to them to see what’s going on. You could be helping us get a teenage runaway home, or stop some kind of suspicious or criminal activity,” said Wright.

Michelle Basch

Michelle Basch is a reporter and anchor at WTOP.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow WTOP on Twitter and Instagram to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2022 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up