Police all over the northern part of Virginia and the DC area have been ramping up security presence at shopping centers and other highly-used public areas over the Halloween weekend after a "credible" threat has alerted authorities.
The Arlington County Police Department released a statement saying that law enforcement is "aware of information circulating regarding a non-specific, unconfirmed threat to shopping centers."
"There is no specific or identified threat to our region," the police department said in the press statement. "As always, the public is encouraged to remain attentive as you go about your normal routine, particularly in areas where large crowds of people typically gather such as shopping centers, restaurant districts, religious services, and public transportation hubs to name a few."
Chief Kevin Davis of the Fairfax County Police Department said at a press conference Friday that the intelligence concerns "potential public safety impacts to malls and shopping centers across the region."
Davis added, "We're taking it seriously. We're simply being proactive."
"We're acting with an abundance of caution in the best interest of those who reside here," the Fairfax County police chief stated.
According to local outlet ABC7, other departments, such as the Alexandria, Virginia, Police Department, Loudon County Sheriff's Office and Prince William County Sheriff's Office, "offered similar warnings" to residents.
"Security is being beefed up at malls and shopping centers across Northern Virginia over what authorities say is a 'credible' threat of an ISIS attack - sometime in the next few days," reported CBS Evening News via Twitter.
The FBI's field office in DC told local outlet Inside NoVa that it had no comment.
"However, we would remind you the FBI takes all potential threats to public safety seriously, and we take all appropriate steps to determine the credibility of any information we receive," an FBI spokesperson said via email.
It's been noted that the possible ISIS threat has surfaced ahead of the Virginia gubernatorial election that's set to take place on Tuesday.
Human Events senior editor Jack Posobiec reported that his sources indicate that the threat is related to Afghan refugees who have recently been brought over to the US and not properly vetted by government officials.
"Two US officials tell @HumanEvents that the ISIS threat alert in Northern VA / DC region is related to Afghan refugees," he tweeted Friday night.
"Some USSS agents are concerned DC-area ISIS threat may be related to a report of 3 Afghan refugees who forced their way off a bus earlier this month," he added.
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