| Image via Fairfax County Police|
By Emily Leayman
MCLEAN, VA. - Fairfax County Police have arrested a suspect in the Tuesday vandalization of the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia and Little River United Church of Christ.
Police arrested Dylan M. Mahone, 20, of Annandale in connection with three hate-motivated incidents Wednesday night. He is charged with two counts each of felony destruction of property, placing a swastika on religious property with the intent to intimidate and wearing a mask in public to conceal one’s identity. Fairfax County Police obtained video footage of at least one incident and identified the suspect. More charges could be filed, Fairfax County spokesperson Julie Parker said at a Thursday press conference.
County police did a joint investigation with Northern Virginia Community College Police, and Mahone is also accused of posting anti-Semitic flyers on the NVCC campus on March 20. NVCC Police charged Mahone with one count of felony destruction of property and one count of wearing a mask in public to conceal one’s identity.
The Fairfax County Police encourages individuals to report hate-related incidents. Police said not all incidents may be considered crimes, but identifying them early can prevent behavior from escalating into crimes. Call the police's non-emergency number at 703-691-2131 to report suspected incidents.
"This is an example of anyone in Fairfax County that commits hate crimes, we will arrest you," said Police Chief Ed Roessler Jr. at the press conference.
The arrest happened within 48 hours of the incident being reported. "This is a demonstration, I think, today of how quickly and how well we're able to come together to address actions that disrupt the harmony of our community," said Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bulova at the press conference.