To curb gang violence, Fairfax Co. police want parents to monitor kids’ social media

Fairfax County police car
After three gang-related shootings over three days in Fairfax County, Virginia, last week, the police chief said parents can help with their investigations by monitoring their children’s texting and social media accounts.

“We are in great need of tips from our community about these events because we know the community could help us identify those responsible,” Fairfax County Police Chief Ed Roessler said.

“Some of the gang members are just blatantly texting back and forth to each other about this in different platforms that we cannot normally see without a search warrant.”

Police took part in three community meetings to discuss and answer questions about the string of crimes. The most recent meeting was held Thursday night at Rose Hill Elementary School.

No arrests have been made in connection with the shootings, and police have no credible leads yet.

The first shooting happened at about 11 p.m. July 1, when police said two juveniles were shot at a playground on Fordson Court in the Gum Springs area.

The next day, three men were injured in a late-afternoon shooting outside a recording and photography studio on Telegraph Road in the Rose Hill area.

On July 3, there was another shooting just before midnight at the Fordson Court playground in Gum Springs that injured one man.

None of the six people who was hurt had life-threatening injuries, but Roessler fears future violence could result in death.

“It’s only a matter of time if these don’t stop, that someone’s going to get gravely hurt, and that’s unacceptable,” Roessler told WTOP. “In these three specific events, there were dozens of rounds fired from handguns.”

Investigators said 29 shell casings were found at the scene of the first shooting; and cars and an apartment near the playground were hit by bullets.

To submit a tip, call the Major Crimes Bureau at 703-246-7800. To submit an anonymous tip, call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS, or text “FCCS” plus your tip to 847411. You can also submit a tip online or by using the Fairfax County Crime Solvers mobile app.

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

© 2019 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Michelle Basch

Michelle Basch is a reporter and anchor at WTOP.

Federal News Network Logo

More from WTOP

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

Sign up