Fairfax Co. officer under investigation after crash sends man to hospital

WASHINGTON — A Fairfax County police officer was placed on restricted duty Wednesday after an investigation found the officer was speeding and driving without lights and sirens when he crashed into a van in Falls Church, Virginia, over the weekend.

Around 10:30 a.m. Saturday, an officer driving a marked police vehicle collided with a 2000 Toyota Sienna van at the intersection of Leesburg Pike and Patrick Henry Drive. The officer, who was responding to a call for a disorderly man in the 6100 block of Arlington Boulevard, called for help on the radio and ran to help the 53-year-old driver of the van, police said.

Emergency crews transported the van’s driver to an area hospital, where he remains as of Wednesday afternoon.

Crash investigators determined the officer was driving above the posted 40 mph speed limit and without his emergency equipment activated. Detectives are working to determine to what extent the officer’s speed may have contributed to the crash.

The crash reconstruction team is still working to determine what speed the officer was going at the time of the crash, said Officer Don Gotthardt with Fairfax County police.

The officer, whose name has not yet been released, was placed on restricted, administrative duty pending the outcome of two parallel investigations: one administrative and one criminal. The officer has been with the department for two years.

The crash caused too much damage to the cruiser’s video footage for it to be retrieved, police said.

The Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney will make a decision on charges based on the outcome of the investigation.

Anyone who witnessed this crash or with information about this incident can contact police at 703-280-0543.

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