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Opinion A test arrives for Fairfax County’s attorney

A video still from surveillance cameras shows a person with a pistol on June 18 at Tysons Corner Center. (Courtesy of Fairfax County Police) (Fairfax County Police)

While a person was firing a pistol within Tysons Corner Center mall, I was volunteering at an Eagle Scout project in McLean. None of us had any idea what was unfolding just a couple of miles away.

Now that the alleged shooter has turned himself in to Fairfax police, work begins for Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Steve Descano and his team.

During his 2019 campaign and in his document “Progressive Justice: The Case for Criminal Justice Reform in Fairfax County,” Mr. Descano stated that “gun violence is a plague on our community.”

Among his proposed three-pronged approach to combat this plague, Mr. Descano pledged to prioritize gun crimes and deal with them severely, avoiding plea bargains to expedite a less severe but quick outcome.

Mr. Descano and his team must prioritize this case by conducting a swift, thorough and complete investigation. He must direct his office to fully pursue the truth, even beyond the three now-public charges. For example, was the alleged shooter illegally carrying a concealed weapon? Did such carrying constitute a crime of trespass, considering that Tysons Corner Center prohibits arms on its premises?

If found guilty, the convicted person should be dealt with severely.

Mr. Descano should keep everyone in the county informed on how he will prioritize this case and deal with it severely.

Eugene Schweikert, McLean