Reckless Driving Charged in Death of Lorton Man

Reckless Driving Charged in Death of Lorton Man

A crash between a car and a motorcycle, two months ago, killed 27-year-old Zafeer Piracha of Lorton. And now, Fairfax County police charged Gael Cruchet, 53, of Ashburn in connection with his death.

The tragedy happened Nov. 16. 2023, at 9:01 p.m., in Centreville. Detectives said Cruchet was driving a 2016 Acura TLX northbound on Route 28, prior to Westfields Boulevard in Centreville, as was Piracha on a 2022 Kawasaki.

According to police, the Acura “struck Piracha, causing him to separate from the motorcycle.” Piracha was pronounced dead at the scene, and Cruchet was taken to a local hospital for treatment of injuries not considered life-threatening. Afterward, officers continued to investigate whether speed and/or alcohol were factors in the incident. 

As a result, detectives with the Crash Reconstruction Unit concluded that Cruchet was allegedly driving the Acura “well above the posted speed limit,” prior to the crash. And on Dec. 15, police charged Cruchet with reckless driving – speeding more than 20 mph higher than the speed limit – which is a civil traffic offense, not a criminal felony.

--Bonnie Hobbs