Truck Driver Facing Felony Charges After Crash in Illinois

Drivers in Illinois can face serious criminal charges after a fatal car accident. A recent criminal case highlights the felony charges people can face after causing a fatal car accident, and the impact those criminal charges may have on the rest of their lives.

A commercial truck driver is facing several felony charges after hitting a State Trooper’s vehicle on the Tri-State Tollway in Illinois, killing the trooper. The truck driver fell asleep behind the wheel, causing his truck to drive on the shoulder of the interstate and crash into the back of the trooper’s car.

A witness to the accident said that the truck did not break before the crash, and the truck slammed into the car so hard that it pushed the trooper’s car more than 500 feet before both vehicles stopped. The crash caused the front of the truck’s cab and trooper’s car to start on fire.

The truck driver said he woke up to seeing flames and his truck smashed into the trooper’s car. He tried to pull the trooper out of the car but wasn’t able to due to the flames. The truck driver said that he had been working for 18 hours before the crash happened.

The truck driver has been charged with several felonies, including driving while fatigued and violating federal hours-of-service regulations for commercial drivers. Prosecutors also said the truck driver falsified his trucking hour’s log that keeps track of how many hours a driver worked and documents mandatory rest periods.

The truck driver could face up to three years in prison if he is convicted of the felony charges. He has also been fired from his job and could face a civil lawsuit for negligence from the victim’s family.

This case is an example of the criminal felony charges drivers can face if they cause a fatal car accident in Illinois. Traffic violations can turn into serious criminal charges that can impact the rest of a driver’s life. Drivers who have been charged with a criminal offense after an accident should contact a criminal defense attorney to protect their rights and freedom.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Troopers pack hearing on trucker charged in fatal crash,” Jonathan Bullington, Lisa Black and Andy Grimm, Nov. 13, 2013