The police identified the man as Anthony Jones, 60. Mr. Jones, who is homeless, was being held without bail on a charge of unlawful entry, a misdemeanor.
Afterward, officers found Mr. Jonesâs belongings â a backpack, clothes and bedding, according to NBC â in the attic. But Ms. Savage said the authorities did not know how long he had been living there, or any other details.
âWhen officers attempted to ask him questions, he did not comply or choose to respond,â she said.
On its face, the incident on Friday was a mildly eye-catching police blotter item. But it is also a street-level symptom of the vast national problem of homelessness. Indeed, Arlington announced a â10-year plan to end homelessnessâ â in 2008, nine years ago.
Since then, the county estimates that its number of homeless residents has fallen by half, though a slight increase was reported from 2016 to 2017.
Arlingtonâs Point in Time Count, a homelessness census conducted each January, was 232 this year, up from 174 in 2016. But that is substantially lower than it was in 2012, when 451 homeless people were counted. From 2012 to 2016, Arlington recorded the largest reduction in homelessness â 61 percent â of nine jurisdictions surveyed in the Washington metropolitan area.
The homelessness rate in Arlington â around 5.9 per 10,000 people â is significantly lower than the national average of around 17 per 10,000 people.