News and notes from Reston (tm).

Monday, June 7, 2010

This Week in Crime: 15 Years in Wetsuit-Clad Slaying of Taxi Driver, Plus Robbery at Reston Homestead Suites

110508gargiuloevan.jpgEvan D. Gargiulo, the wetsuit-clad Reston man who shot a taxicab driver in 2008, has been sentenced to 15 years in prison.

The man who shot a Fairfax County cab driver to death, after he couldn't pay his $130 fare, was sentenced Friday in Fairfax Circuit Court to 15 years in prison.

The man claimed that cabbie Mazhar Nazir, 49, who lived with his wife and 12-year-old son in the Baileys Crossroads area, came over the front seat at him after he revealed he had no cash for the ride from the District to Reston and then to Tysons Corner. But evidence at trial showed Nazir was still wearing his seat belt and had been shot in the back of the head on Nov. 2, 2008.

In March, Evan Gargiulo, now 23, a Hillsborough, N.J., man who had recently moved to Reston, claimed he was temporarily insane when he shot Nazir. A jury rejected that claim and convicted Gargiulo of second-degree murder. The jury then imposed a sentence of 12 years for the murder, and three years for the use of a gun. Nazir's family and cab driver friends, who attended every hearing in the case, were stunned. But they attended again Friday, as a final farewell to Nazir.

Gargiulo's lawyer, Barry Helfand, asked Fairfax Circuit Court Judge Bruce D. White to suspend five years of the jury's sentence, and impose a 10-year term. Helfand also proposed that the judge order Gargiulo to pay "reparations" to the Nazir family, in the amount of $250 a month, or 20 percent of his gross salary, once he is released from prison.

Gargiulo stood and apologized to the Nazirs, and particularly to Nazir's son Zain Nazir, now 13, whose emotional testimony at trial had an entire courtroom in tears. "No one could fill the hole in his life that I created by taking away his father," Gargiulo said Friday. "That is entirely my fault...I'm truly sorry."

Judge White could have imposed or reduced the jury's sentence, but he could not increase it under Virginia law. He imposed it, and declined to order reparations.

"You say you want to make things right," White told Gargiulo. "I don't think there's anything you can do to make things right in taking the life of this gentleman. Paying reparations doesn't make things right."

There is no parole for prisoners in Virginia, but they may be released after serving 85 percent of their time if they have served with good behavior. Gargiulo has been in the Fairfax jail since his arrest in November 2008. With good behavior, he will be eligible for release in about 2021, when he will be 35 years old.
And 14 years younger than Nazier when he was shot in the back.

Meanwhile, the Homestead Studio Suites on Sunset Hills Road was robbed Saturday afternoon.
On Saturday, June 5 around 12:09 p.m., a 26-year-old female hotel clerk and a 27-year-old female were robbed. A man entered the Homestead Studio Suites, located at 12190 Sunset Hills Road, displayed a gun and demanded money. Both victims turned over cash and personal property. The suspect fled on foot in an unknown direction. There were no injuries.

The suspect was described as white, around 5 feet 10 inches to 6 feet 2 inches tall, medium build and wearing blue jeans and black T-shirt.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Solvers by phone at 1-866-411-TIPS/8477, e-mail at or text "TIP187" plus your message to CRIMES/274637 or call Fairfax County
Police at 703-691-2131.
Update: Weirdly, the Homestead Studio Suites in Sterling was robbed the same day. Maybe someone really likes the complimentary breakfast buffet.


  1. Does anyone know the salaries of the BoS or can they post a link to it? Also is there a link to the electoral process for Fairfax County including time lines? Thanks.

  2. To this day, the Gargiulo case baffles me. What on earth he was thinking . . . and now his life is ruined and the Nazir family's American dream is shattered . . . I have a 13 year old boy and I cannot imagine what kind of pain he would be experiencing in the same situation. Sheesh...there's just no sense in it.

    And how on earth a jury would find only 15 years was appropriate. Sheesh.

  3. I don't understand the 15-year sentence at all. Isn't VA supposed to be a little more hard-core than this? You can shoot an innocent man in cold blood, for no reason at all, and only get 15 years??

  4. At a minimum, Gargiulo should have gotten life in prison.

  5. 15 years...that is pathetic and shameful. This guy should have been charged with capital murder and get the death sentence or life in prison.

  6. I blame it all on the lack of a nightlife for 20-somethings at the Reston Town Center. He's just another Pennsylvanian who wishes he had never come to the Washington DC area.

    There I've said it.

    Now that I've gotten off my chest.

    I feel much better...

  7. Sadly, Evan, you shot this man in the back of the head after a night of drunken revelry all because you didn't want to pay a cab fare. 15 years is more than merciful and certainly much better than you deserve.


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