Roads Around Pentagon Closed This Morning: Roads surrounding the Pentagon are closed this morning—I-66, Route 110, ramps to and from I-395, and Washington Boulevard, according to NBC Washington—due to what is being reported as a suspicious vehicle along Washington Boulevard. Further details have not yet been reported. Update: ARLNow, which has been following reports this morning, says that a man, a naturalized US citizen from Ethiopia, has been apprehended by police. There was no explosive device found in the vehicle, though police are investigating suspicious substances found in a backpack. The man is believed to be acting alone. Some roads have now been cleared for traffic.
DC Council Approves Rhee Successor: Yesterday the DC Council approved Kaya Henderson to be chancellor of the city's schools. Henderson, who spent many years working with former chancellor Michelle Rhee, has been considered more politically savvy than her predecessor. Mike DeBonis notes for the Washington Post, "What a difference from late in the Rhee regime, when any appearance before city legislators became a forum for rhetoric and recrimination."
Montgomery County to Investigate School Surplus: Edward Blansitt, inspector general of Montgomery County, announced he will be investigating a $14.5 million surplus discovered in the public school system's budget. Rachel Baye at the Washington Examiner reports that the council found the money, "which Council President Valerie Ervin called a "slush fund"—in the trust fund used to pay for employee health care shortly after the budget was approved" in May. Others have known about the surplus since April.
Spike in Officer Arrests Due to Aggressive Internal Investigations: DC Police Chief Cathy Lanier held a press conference yesterday in which she tried to explain the 16 police officer arrests in the first half of 2011, the latest of which WTOP reports is a sergeant charged with scamming $43,000 from an elderly woman. The bulk of arrests are related to domestic violence threats or DUI investigations, though pending charges include car theft and murder. Lanier says the police department is pursuing more aggressive internal investigations.
Frederick County Privatization Plan Garners Pushback: County commissioners in Frederick released a report that suggested privatizing $67 million worth of county services in the fiscal year 2011 budget. Sherry Greenfield, writing for the Gazette, says the report suggests, "services to be privatized are community development, court, facility services, financial administration, fleet services, human resources, interagency information technology, internal audit, parks and recreation, and public works." Several members of the public and former public officials have criticized the plan.
Gay Couple Harassed in Safeway: Metroweekly reports that Jason Morgan and Bredan Harrington filed a complaint with the DC Office of Human Rights, alleging that a Safeway cashier in Southwest called the couple a derogatory term. The clerk then recorded a video apology and has since been fired for violating the store's anti-discrimination policy.
Briefly noted: Is dad's job getting in the way of being a dad . . . a lawsuit alleges a man on the Beltway was cruising at 85 miles per hour while having sex (partially or totally) in the back seat of his car . . . a flower thief is targeting a community garden in Cleveland Park . . . a lunch lady in Damascus retires after 36 years.