Schools Across Virginia Targeted by Fake Reports of Active Shooters on Monday and Tuesday

Over a dozen school districts across Virginia were targeted by hoax reports of active shootings or other violence on Monday and Tuesday. That’s part of a broader wave of similar hoax calls targeting schools across the U.S.

“On Monday, Virginia State Police personnel responded to assist numerous local police and sheriff’s offices with reports of active shooters on school campuses,” Virginia State Police Public Relations Director Corinne Geller told The Virginia Star. “None of the threats were deemed valid, and the state police, through collaboration with the Virginia Fusion Center, is now working with those same local law enforcement agencies to investigate the source of the threats and to determine if there is any evidence to connect them.”

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Report: Virginia Agencies Ignored Lessons from 2018 Snow Storm that Could Have Helped with January’s I-95 Traffic Jam

A new report on the January 2022 I-95 snow incident says that Virginia agencies failed to apply lessons from a December 2018 snow incident on I-81.

“VDOT needs to improve on applying what is learned from prior events and ensure it is applied to future events,” the Office of the State Inspector General (OSIG) recommended in an August report. “Lessons learned from the 2018 I-81 Snow Incident, as well as those from the 2022 I-95 Snow Incident, should be analyzed and incorporated into each agency’s policies and procedures.”

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Community Violence Top Public Health Concern for Virginia Voters

A Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association poll found that community violence and crime is the top public health concern for Virginia voters.

“In the public opinion survey from Mason-Dixon Polling and Strategy, 51 percent of respondents cited community violence and crime as the top public health concern for their families. Health care workforce shortages, which have been intensified as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, was the second most commonly cited public health concern with 25 percent of those polled listing it as their primary concern,” a VHHA release states.

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Drug Arrests Down, Overall Incidents Down, Violent Crime Up in 2021 Crime in Virginia Report

Drug arrests in Virginia 2021 decreased 46.7 percent in 2021 from 2020, according to the Crime in Virginia 2021 report released Wednesday by the state police. Total incidents reported was also down: 324,558 in 2021 versus 338,784 in 2020, and 375,639 in 2019. Violent crime was up in 2021 with 16,823 incidents compared to 15,713 in 2020, and 17,993 in 2019.

“Drug arrests decreased by nearly half (46.7%) with the largest percentage decrease in arrestees under age 25 (67.6%). The number of reports of drugs seized decreased for nearly all drug types, especially marijuana (67%), due in part to decriminalization of possessing less than 1 ounce of the drug effective July 1, 2020 and Code of Virginia §18.2-250.1 being repealed July 1, 2021,” reported a Virginia State Police release.

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Virginia State Troopers Partnering with Homeland Security on Human Trafficking Initiative

In partnership with two federal law enforcement agencies, the Virginia State Police (VSP) is conducting a three-day sweep to combat human trafficking on the I-95 corridor. 

“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Washington, D.C. partnered with the Virginia State Police and the Virginia Trucking Association in order to detect, deter, and raise awareness of the growing problem of human trafficking,” said an ICE press release. “During mid-April, they will conduct Operation Safe Passage, a high‐visibility, human trafficking prevention and public outreach initiative.”

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Virginia Department of Transportation: Results of Independent Review of Days-Long Snow Storm Traffic Jam Being Analyzed

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) says it is in possession of an independent review of what caused a days-long traffic jam on I-95 in January. 

“VDOT’s top priority is and always will be the safety of the traveling public, and as we learn from each event, this report highlighted key areas for us to refine in our winter-weather operations,” said Virginia Commissioner of Highways Stephen Brich according to a press release. “Our on-road messaging, snow-clearing resource staging and partner engagement are all areas in which we are exploring new approaches to improve our response. Above all, we remain committed to better executing our mission of keeping Virginia’s transportation system safe every day and in the face of future extreme weather events.”

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Ransomware Attack Impacts Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Systems While Separate Attack Hits General Assembly

As the Virginia General Assembly battles a ransomware attack, the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Systems (DBHDS) is dealing with impacts from a separate attack against timekeeping systems provider Ultimate Kronos Group (UKG).

“It is clear the global KRONOS ransomware attack and the ransomware attack experienced over the weekend in Virginia are not connected, and there is no indication that information was compromised or that any DBHDS systems have been compromised. Central Office staff are working with UKG to develop an interim situation and find out more information,” DBHDS Communications Director Lauren Cunningham told The Virginia Star. “State facilities have switched back to manual systems that are very time-intensive, but they will get the job done and ensure staff are paid.”

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Gov.-Elect Youngkin Tells Republican Governors He’ll Fire Entire Virginia Parole Board on Day One; Calls for Ending ‘Rather Silly Debate’ Over Funding Police

The incoming governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia hailed public safety, funding the police and preserving qualified immunity for law enforcement officers as pillars of his election victory and his new administration a November 17 talk at the Republican Governor Association annual meetings in Phoenix.

“Let’s fund law enforcement, and oh, by the way, let’s protect qualified immunity, which protects law enforcement from frivolous lawsuits,” said Governor-elect Glenn A. Youngkin, who takes office January 15.

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Virginia Police Benevolent Association Wants to Ban Ticket Quotas

The Virginia Police Benevolent Association is drafting legislation to ban ticket quotas in all law enforcement agencies across the Commonwealth.

“This legislation comes from my state police chapter,” VPBA Executive Director Sean McGowan said. “We have a state police chapter that has 800 troopers that are members. This is their concern, this is not something that Sean McGowan or the committee came up with. This is directly from our members.”

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Virginia Prosecutor: No Improper Benefit for Stoney in Richmond Monument Removal Contract

A special prosecutor, working with the Virginia State Police (VSP), found no evidence that Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney improperly benefited from the contract to remove Richmond’s monuments last summer.

“The investigation did not reveal anything criminal regarding the awarding of the contract,” Augusta County Commonwealth’s Attorney Timothy Martin said in a Wednesday press release.

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Virginia State Police to Investigate Windsor Traffic Stop Use-of Force

The Virginia State Police (VSP) are investigating the December traffic stop of Army officer Lieutenant Caron Nazario, who was pepper sprayed by officers from the Town of Windsor, according to press releases from Town Manager William Saunders. In a Sunday evening press release, Saunders announced that Officer Joe Gutierrez, one of the officers from the stop, had been fired. The incident has become a subject of statements by candidates for public office. It has also drawn the attention of Governor Ralph Northam, who said he was ordering a VSP investigation, and Attorney General Mark Herring.

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Virginia Police Increasing Sobriety Checkpoints and Patrols During the Holidays

Virginia is again ramping up its Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign, a program aimed at reducing drunk driving through increased police activity and sobriety checkpoints. Through December 8, 2020, there were 253 alcohol-related traffic fatalities in Virginia, up from 249 in the same period in 2019, according to a press release from Governor Ralph Northam’s office.

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Central Virginia Law Enforcement Agencies Won’t Pull Over Cars Violating New Curfew

Several law enforcement agencies in Central Virginia as well as the Virginia State Police say they will not be pulling over drivers as a method of enforcing Governor Ralph Northam’s new midnight to 5 a.m. statewide curfew.

“We will NOT be conducting traffic stops on people otherwise lawfully operating a motor vehicle during these times,” Chesterfield County Police Chief Colonel Jeffrey S. Katz wrote on Facebook. “The law requires officers to have reasonable suspicion to stop a driver. There are completely lawful reasons for people to be out and about during these times and therefore mere operation of a motor vehicle does not remotely meet the legal burden necessary to justify a lawful stop.”

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Commentary: Democrats File Bill to Defund Virginia State Police by 25 Percent

Virginia Democrats have been playing a bit of a cat-and-mouse game over defunding Virginia law enforcement professionals as punishment for standing up to the BLM/Antifa mobs that have destroyed places such as Downtown Richmond.

Looks like this Friday, the payback was delivered.

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Two Arrested as Richmond and State Police Clash with Locals Outside Jackson Ward Bar

Richmond and Virginia State Police got into a confrontation with a group of people and arrested four individuals Thursday night for obstructing justice by not showing identification, according to Richmond resident Jimmie Lee Jarvis who witnessed the event firsthand.

Yet another incident between police and citizens has taken place in Richmond, this time outside of GWARbar, a local heavy-metal themed bar in the Jackson Ward neighborhood.

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The Daily Caller News Foundation: An Exclusive Look At How Virginia Police Emptied Emancipation Park

Virginia State Police cleared Emancipation Park Saturday after a white nationalist demonstration turned violent, but the action forced attendees into a crowd of counter-protesters. The rally was organized as a protest to the ordered removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee in downtown Charlottesville, Va. The rally was named…

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