(Updated at 6:15 p.m.) — Bailey’s Crossroads, including Route 7 and Crossroads Place, has reopened and shelter-in-place orders have been lifted after reported gunshots prompted a massive police response to the area.
The Fairfax County Police Department continues to investigate the shooting, which reportedly damaged two cars in the 3500 block of Jefferson Street but didn’t result in any injuries.
Initial reports suggested the shots came from a “high-powered rifle” in a nearby high-rise, but police now say detectives have determined that they were fired by a handgun at ground level, according to a press conference broadcast live by NBC4.
“Detectives determined the gunfire was not from an elevated position or from a high caliber weapon,” the FCPD said. “Detectives continue to investigate & remain in the area.”
Throughout this afternoon (Friday), Bailey’s Crossroads residents and visitors were directed to shelter in place after police received a “shots fired” call at 11:15 a.m.
According to scanner traffic, a driver reported hearing a loud noise, and the rear window of their car shattered. Officers at the scene determined that two to three vehicles parked at the Crossroads Place shopping center had been damaged by gunfire.
Two people had been standing in the proximity of both vehicles at the time of the shooting, but neither of them were hit. Police currently believe that the shooting was random, and there is no indication that the people whose cars were hit knew each other, FCPD Lt. Dan Spital told media.
“We have no reason to believe that any specific individual was targeted in the shooting,” he said at the briefing.
Around 12:30 p.m., police told FFXnow that it wasn’t considered an active shooter situation, meaning there was no ongoing gunfire.
However, Crossroads Place was completely blocked off, and Leesburg Pike shut down in both directions. Fairfax County Public Schools also issued “secure the building” alerts at Bailey’s and Glen Forest elementary schools.
“[That] means no outside activities are occurring right now, everyone has been brought inside, doors are locked and the learning continues,” an FCPS spokesperson said around 2 p.m.
Arlington took similar actions at Wakefield High School and Claremont Elementary School.
“Wakefield has been notified of an incident involving police activity near the school,” Arlington Public Schools said. “As a precaution, we have placed the school in Secure-the-Building* status. This means that all doors are locked and no one can leave or enter the building as a precaution.”
FCPD had helicopter, special operations, and patrol officers involved in the search. Arlington first responder units were also dispatched to assist.
While no additional shots were reported after the initial call, Spital said the large emergency response was appropriate, since “we’re always going to err on the side of caution.” Police have not identified any suspects, but the investigation is ongoing, and community members are advised to remain “cognizant.”
“We’re not aware if [the shots] came from a vehicle or a person walking by, but we do have some active leads. We’re combing through a lot of evidence,” Spital said.
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