Twenty years after a suspect forced a 25-year-old woman at knife point into a vacant business in Burke, Virginia, police said they’ve now made an arrest in the case.
Fairfax County police arrested 67-year-old Allen Lewis Buracker at work in Hyattsville, Maryland, on Thursday morning. He is awaiting extradition to Fairfax County.
“To be able to close a case that is two decades old, it’s very rewarding,” said 2nd Lt. Vincent Scianna, supervisor of Fairfax County police’s cold case unit.
On Aug. 18, 1999, police said a woman was looking for a business that had moved at the Burke Town Plaza on Old Keene Mill Road, and a passerby offered to help her. Moments later, that passerby is accused of forcing the woman at knife point into a vacant business.
Scianna said the woman then struggled with the man, eventually escaping. “She received several cuts and had been punched, and thrown around, and throttled,” Scianna said.
Investigators had a composite sketch of the suspect, but that drawing never resulted in an arrest.
Then, recently, Scianna said his cold case investigators revisited the case and they came up with Buracker’s name. Buracker has been a property manager in a number of counties and cities in Virginia and Maryland since the 1990s, including Prince William, Stafford and Spotsylvania counties in Virginia, and Prince George’s County, Maryland.
“Where he worked in the past was also the Burke Town Plaza,” Scianna said.
Detectives were then able develop probable cause and secure an arrest warrant for Buracker.
He will face abduction charges once he is extradited.
Scianna said the victim has been notified of the arrest, who he said was “surprised” given “how long it has been.”
Police are concerned there could be other victims and urge any potential victims, or anyone who may have information in the case, to call the Major Crimes Bureau at (703) 246-7800.
For Scianna, he credits his team’s dedication for bringing closure and justice to victims for the arrest in this case so many years later. He said it is cases like this which should serve as a warning to criminals who think that time may have allowed them to avoid capture; the hunt for them never ends.
“We are here to fight for the victims in these cases and that we don’t forget,” Scianna said.