FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA. (WUSA9) -- - There are murderers still out there and they are tied to gangs.
Fairfax County’s Police Chief Ed Roessler said this to reporters Friday, confirming the discovery of two different human remains inside Holmes Run Park in the Lincolnia section of Alexandria, Va.
Police are not yet willing to say who they believe the remains belong to. A Medical Examiner is now working to confirm the identities.
What police are saying is: this is all part of much bigger problem of gang resurgence in the Northern Virginia area.
"They left about 7-clock last night,” said Marita Elsts, who could see the crime scene from her backyard.
The tape may be gone Friday, but there’s still an uneasy feeling for neighbors along the 6000 block of Crater Place. The human remains discovered sat just beyond their backyards.
Police told WUSA9 investigators had to dig to get to the evidence. The discovery was reportedly made late Thursday.
Holmes Run Park is the same park that saw two gruesome MS-13 murders in 2014.
Elsts walked through the area police were investigating just the day before. It’s not an easy location to get to. There’s a steep drop from the homes to the once guarded-off wooded area. There’s another steep drop to get to the popular path and Holmes Run, the stream that goes through the park.
“It’s far enough away that residents wouldn't notice,” said Elsts. When asked if she thought that was a little concerning, Elsts replied, “nobody would walk back here so you could abandon someone for many years and no one would ever see them."
Fairfax County Police started searching off of a tip they said is gang-related. Chief Roessler took that one step further Friday, saying the remains found will most likely be connected to other murders in the area.
Right now police in Prince William and Fairfax Counties have around 16 people in custody for two separate but connected MS-13 homicides. Many of the arrests the cases involve minors and very young adults. ICE issued detainers against six of the some 16 people in custody.
Fairfax County Police are also dealing with two missing teens who are believed to be affiliated with gangs. They are also believed to be in danger.
"Knowing that the bodies are just beyond the woods, it's kind of crazy,” said Evangeline Kelly, whose kids often play in the park.
"I would not want my kids growing up in this area at this time,” said Elsts. Others acknowledge there’s violence everywhere and say you can’t be afraid all the time, but you can be aware.
"This problem is horrible. This is four murders in this park. Obviously we've had other murders in the region in the past few weeks. This is getting out of control and we need to stop it,” said Chief Roessler. Friday.
The Chief also said, “There needs to be no fear in calling the Fairfax County Police and asking for us to intervene with our young people to get them out of gang activity.”
Roessler is pleading for the community to help address this growing gang violence. He’s asking parents to become more involved with their kids, report any suspicious activity. Investigators also say graffiti should be reported. This can sometimes be gang members marking their territories.
Police are still not done investigating in the park area. A command post location remains set-up near the Parklawn Pool parking lot.
Police say they have no information on the suspect or suspects responsible for the human remains found.
Anyone with additional information is asked to contact Crime Solvers electronically by visiting www.fairfaxcrimesolvers.org or text-a-tip by texting “TIP187” plus your message to CRIMES(274637)** or by calling 1-866-411-TIPS(8477), or call Fairfax County Police at 703-691-2131.
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