DA: Driver in fatal crash was high on Fentanyl

The driver in a fiery crash that killed a motorcyclist in Montgomery County on May 3 was charged today with homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, authorities said.

Dante Rau, 27, was behind the wheel of his 2000 Honda Civic in Douglass Township when he collided with motorcyclist on Route 100 near Rick Road. Rau then drove over the victim and his motorcycle, dragging both about 750 feet before the car came to rest and the motorcycle erupted into flames, said District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman in a statement.

Rau, of Mertztown, Berks County, was able to escape from his vehicle uninjured. The motorcyclist, Robert Gatchel, died at the scene.

Toxicology tests revealed the presence of the powerful synthetic narcotic Fentanyl in Rau's blood, along with metabolites of marijuana, Vetri Ferman said.

Judge Maurice H. Saylor set bail at $20,000 and scheduled a preliminary hearing for July 14. 

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