Michael Thomson

Detectives with the Arlington County Police Department’s Cold Case Unit have arrested a 63-year-old Montross man in connection with a series of rapes and attempted rapes near the East Falls Church Metro station back in 1991.

is announcing the arrest of a suspect in a cold case rape series. Michael F. Thomson was arrested Tuesday and has been charged with two counts of the following charges: rape, abduction with the intent to defile, forcible sodomy and use of a firearm during the commission of a felony, Arlington police said in a news release.. Additional charges are anticipated. He is being held in the Arlington County Detention Facility without bond.

Between January and December 1991, Arlington County Police investigated multiple reports of rapes and attempted rapes involving female victims walking from the East Falls Church Metro Station. In each reported incident, the victims were approached by an unknown male who displayed a firearm. Three cases were linked by DNA evidence with a fourth case being investigated as part of the series due to similarities with the other cases.

At approximately 6 p.m. on Jan. 17, 1991, the female victim was walking home from the East Falls Church Metro in the 4800 block of Little Falls Road when an unknown male suspect approached her, brandished a firearm and forced her into a grassy area between two homes. The suspect raped the victim before fleeing the scene on foot.

At approximately 7:40 p.m. on Feb. 13, 1991, the female victim was walking from the East Falls Church Metro to her parked vehicle in the 2300 block of N. Tuckahoe Street when she observed the unknown male suspect walking towards her. The suspect brandished a firearm, forced the victim to the side of a residence where he raped her before fleeing the scene on foot.

At approximately 10 p.m. on March 6, 1991, the female victim was walking home from the East Falls Church Metro in the 6300 block of Lee Highway when she was approached by an unknown male who alleged to have a firearm. The suspect forced the victim to the back of a nearby residence and directed her to remove her clothing. The suspect placed the firearm to her head and told her to be quiet. The suspect then asked the victim if she wanted him to leave and when she said yes, he fled the scene on foot.

At approximately 7:08 p.m. on Dec. 2, 1991, the female victim was walking from the East Falls Church Metro to her parked vehicle in the 6100 block of N. 22nd Street when she was approached by an unknown male suspect brandishing a firearm. When the victim screamed, the suspect ran away and fled from the scene in a vehicle. As the suspect was fleeing, he dropped the baseball hat he was wearing. DNA from the baseball hat was later linked to DNA recovered in the January 17 and February 13 incidents.

In 2017, the Cold Case Unit initiated a fresh look at these unsolved cases including the review of cold case files, crime scene evidence and laboratory results. The DNA was resubmitted for additional analysis including phenotyping and genetic genealogy. The analysis resulted in additional information that led detectives to identify Michael Francis Thomson as a possible suspect. Forensic evidence combined with thorough investigative efforts linked the suspect to the 1991 incidents. He was taken into custody without incident at his residence on the morning of Dec. 1.

This remain an active criminal investigation and anyone with information related to this series is asked to contact Detective R. Ortiz at 703-228-4702 or Information may also be provided to the Arlington County Police Tip Line at or anonymously through the Arlington County Crime Solvers hotline at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).


(5) comments

Martin Geter

I wouldn't be surprised if he was able to avoid arrest for so long due to assistance from others in his community.

PWC resident since '69

Whatever, but in my opinion he should get the needle ASAP or if he had an ounce of honor he would off himself!

Paul Benedict

So you think the people in his community, which is Montrose, knew he attacked the victim in Falls Church 30 years ago, and not only that, they assisted him in avoiding arrest? Those awful Montrosenites, something needs to be done about them. Another sign that liberals completely lack critical thinking skills.


Montross, not Montrose. If you’re going to slander people, at least slander the right ones - with all due respect to Montrossians and Montrosers. Doubt that either community would have harbored such a monster. Pretty sure he didn’t disclose himself roun’ town. 🙄

Paul Benedict

You are correct. I was not familiar with either town. I copied the town name and pasted it into Google Maps and it showed me exactly where it was. But when I typed it the second s didn't show up. And your point is exactly the point I was wanting to make, perhaps too snarky or subtle for you, no community would purposely hide somebody like this guy if they knew what he did. I was disagreeing with Swandive.

However, there are many cases where people do protect bad guys, either out of fear, or in a misplaced loyalty against law and order. Happens all the time in inner city crime and some local neighborhoods.

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