Police say driver of truck will be charged in I-64 rest area crash that killed two

Full story: Evansville Courier & Press

Illinois State Police have charged the driver of the pickup truck involved in an early morning fatal traffic crash in Jefferson County, Ill.

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Cynthia Casteel

Oklahoma City, OK

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#1
Oct 4, 2012
 
It is my hope that the driver of the pickup lives to feel the pain (and guilt) the families feel at the loss of their loved ones. Further, I sincerely hope he is charged with vehicular manslaughter for the deaths of these young people with sentences to be served consecutively. I think solitary confinement with nothing but his thought to keep him company would work as well.

Harsh, yes. Lesson teaching, hopefully.
Bob

Barnhart, MO

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#2
Oct 4, 2012
 
Your comment is very troubling on several notes. I will address a few. Do you know this young man? Do you know the hell he and his family have been through? If you do and made a comment like this I would say you are a member of the Garner family. Ricky Garner took this young mans mother from him, maliciously and visciously. Some would say savagely. Garner received a year in jail for causing the death of this mans mother earlier this year. While I do not condone drunk or drugged up driving, I do find it troubling that you would want to condemn this young man when another murderer went essentially free on a simple battery charge. I would rather see the man that beat a woman to death in her own home rot in jail before I would ever consider jailing someone on a charges of vehicular manslaughter, especially when this young man did not intentionally set out to kill or injure himself or the other friends who were riding with him and likely under the influence of the same substance as this young man was. What he did was wrong. What they all did was wrong but posting hateful messages on here is as close to insanity as I have ever seen. This was a very tragic event that injured 3 and killed 2. Other than this event this young man has tried to put the pieces of his life back together. Up until now you are the only person unable to comprehend this. The families of those impacted were gathered in Wayne City last night in an effort to show support for all the victims. You are showing to be less of a person than they are by suggesting a harsh sentence. I say this because no matter how much jail/prison you give this young man it will never bring back the two young lives taken by this tragedy. Unless you know the whole story and also further know where the substance or even how the substance was administered or taken by this young man I would not post judgmental comments on here or any other social network. We understand the actions do not appear to be condonable or even legal or rightful but we do not have all the facts yet and I am doubtful you would either. Not saying he should get away with this, if he's proven guilty then sentence him but don't go any harsher on him for committing a mistake that many others have committed and don't go harsher on him than they did Ricky Garner. Garners actions were planned as well as willful. This young man allegedly consumed something he shouldn't have and had a tragic car accident. Tell me who deserves mercy and who deserves shame...the sober one who planned a beating to the death or the one who was allegedly intoxicated then unexpectedly had a bad crash which killed two of his friends accidentally. I doubt you will find proof he planned to kill anyone that night but if you do let us know. Until then my opinion stands and I will vote to show him some punishment but so some mercy. Its time to quit condemning people who make a mistake and now regret it. Why would you be so harsh and not believe some people learn from a mistake even one like this without putting him in jail costing all the tax payers money, when he could get out and eventually be a productive member of society? He has not done anything worse than your government has done and I doubt he repeats his actions. I believe in second chances but this young man has not had his first real chance at life. His mother was murdered before he graduated high school and the killer is about to get out of jail any day now.

Since: Jul 11

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#3
Oct 5, 2012
 
Easy for you to say, you didnt lose a family member. It wasnt your 20 year old nephew that you have to bury, or your child, or you sibling. When you get behind the wheel of vehicle after consuming something drugs or alcohol, you might as well put a bullet in a gun, spin the chamber and point it and fire. You are playing russian roulette with not only yours, but ppl in the car, and ppl on the road. I hope he spends the rest of his life in jail. He is a MURDERER! He killed 2 ppl. HE deserves the harshest punishment. Make and example out of him so other young ppl dont do the same. 19 is old enough to know better
Bob

Barnhart, MO

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#4
Oct 5, 2012
 
All I am saying is that if you wish to put him in the pen for this then the man that beat this young mans mother to death should receive the same treatment...I can go along with Russian roulette and all but I simply cannot see punishing him any more than he currently is punishing himself or punish him more than the man that murdered his mother....Garner is a cold blooded murderer! This was a stupid decision and I am laying bets that everyone in that car had drugs in their system. I am sorry for the loss of life but this tragedy does not need to seek more violence and death. It has claimed enough life already.
Bob

Barnhart, MO

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#5
Oct 5, 2012
 

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Just for the record I am not stating he isn't old enough to know better but you yourself know how it feels to lose a loved one to a tragedy. He also knows how it feels but at the hands of a cold blooded murderer. That man walked with only a year in jail, not prison, Jail. Another man who sexually assualted a little girl under 13 received a battery charge. How could one allow that to occur then condemn this young man for a very bad mistake that turned into tragedy. Let him face his day in court and for now allow yourself the time to come to terms with reality and the fact everyone of us have made a mistake and at the very least could have caused an accident. If we go by your standards we should convict anyone who is involved in a traffic crash resulting in death because a driver was texting behind the wheel. Not having your eyes on the road is just as bad as being drunk. It all puts you in danger as well as anyone on the roadway. I would be willing to bet that you would not be so willing to condemn this person if your nephew had been the one driving. Again I am sorry for your loss but that two wrongs never make a right is all this boils down to

Since: Jul 11

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#6
Oct 5, 2012
 

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If my nephew was the one who killed three ppl because he was fucked up, yes I would want him punished to the full extentof the law. You dont know me so you dont know how I feel. PPL who are driving DUI deserve to be in prison if they kill someone. This boy, however hard his life has been, that doesnt mean he should get a free pass.

Since: Jul 11

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#7
Oct 5, 2012
 
YES IF SOMEONE CAUSES A DEATH FROM TEXTING THEY SHOULD BE CONVICTED OF MURDER

Since: Jul 11

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#8
Oct 5, 2012
 

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Punishing himself? From what I have been told he is now telling the police that he was not driving that the Fenton girl was. What he dont know is my nephew was conscience when the cops got on the scene and TOLD the cops who was driving. He is trying to put more on a family that is already suffering enough, and lost a child, now lying saying that the girl also took others lives as well. HE DESERVES TO ROT IN JAIL
Bob

Spring Hill, KS

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#9
Oct 6, 2012
 
Well thanks for agreeing on one part of this. The texting or otherwise not paying attention and causing a fatal crash. What I am really digging at or gigging at is the fact Ricky Garner should have been sentenced for murder as well. If they are going to let one off of murder for doing what Ricky Garner did then this young man should be held to that standard and not as you suggest just basing it on how this young man did not intend for this to occur and it happened as a result of drugs/alcohol. The problem I have also with this that everyone in the car was inebriated or they should have used better judgement in who they rode with. This is sad and I have no official confirmation that he said he wasn't driving as we all know it was his vehicle. This is not to put your nephew down nor the other woman who lost her life down but it was a party that became a road trip and led to the tragedy we now are discussing. I hope you can find forgiveness in your heart is another angle I am viewing on this as hard as that would be to do as I can only imagine how you feel about all of this. Another fact is that no matter what he says or has handed to him as a sentence, it won't undo the damage done and there will be no justice great enough to pay that price of the two lives lost. The facts are not pretty but they are what they are. Perhaps this would be a good point to instill good discipline in all children and use this tragedy as an example of how bad it hurts others when you use bad judgement and do drugs or alcohol. Just because the others wasn't driving doesn't make them sober as any sober person with good sense would have yanked his keys or not got in the vehicle with him. That said more that one mistake was made that night and its unfortunate as well as tragic. You can be angry with me and all of that but no justice pays the price for committing the act which was committed that night. No amount of justice would ever bring these people back including the drivers mother. If he did make this statement to police or any other official it should be looked into as I am aware your nephew was alive after the accident and was said to have died from a heart attack which was brought on by not just the crash but also the substance that inebriated them all. No test is usually done on the passenger's but I am certain as with most young people if one was in on it they all were in on it. That said I still feel it as not intentional and that should be weighed in on his sentence especially since his mother's death was covered up and plead down, much like the uncharged murder of the other female crash victims mother after a local police officers service weapon was used in the commission of that act while the said officer was on duty...I don't think that was a suicide and I do not think this case was a murder for the above listed reasons. There is more to a murder conviction than opinion...you also have to prove he did it with intent or malicious intent. That's where you will fall short because I don't think he did this intentionally. Now do I condone it...NO I DO NOT! I am also sorry for your loss as well as the other family's loss. They were to young and had so much potential ahead of them that is forever lost. I am crushed by this as I do have an idea how you must feel but what I am saying is that ruining his life will not help matters and you will never feel he got a stiff enough sentence,even if he got two life sentences. It was a mistake made by all and as I have said if they were not inebriated, high or drunk they should have never allowed him to drive and they should have not got in the car with him. It's all to tragic but trust me it was more than one mistake and its a damn good reason to stay off of dope.
Bob

Spring Hill, KS

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#10
Oct 6, 2012
 

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There is only one difference between you and me and that is you don't know me and you further do not know what I have been through personally nor if I have ever lost a family member due to the effects of drugs or otherwise. I am sorry for your loss as well as the Fentons loss but I do feel that it will never be a murder trial and I further feel that it is in the best interest to vent your frustrations but it probably isn't a good idea to do so on here as this could also hurt the case by giving it to much pre trial publicity among other things. God Bless You and give you strength through this most troubling time. I do know it hurts and it hurts beyond comprehension so do not underestimate what I know or how I know it. Let's just do all we can to prevent others from going through what you and others are going; through now. Can we at least agree on that because we both know that no one should have to feel the pain you and others are feeling right now.
look_at_the_fact s

Findlay, OH

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#11
Oct 6, 2012
 

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uhhh he had a choice to use drugs or not, he had a choice to drive or not one of my best friends does not have a choice to come back in person to see me cuz that pos knowingly chose to be on drugs and drive.. MURDER is what he commited!!
Bob

United States

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#12
Oct 6, 2012
 

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By your opinion and anger you can call it what you wish. The law clearly states that in order to commit the offense of murder that obviously someone has to be dead, obviously that part has been proven. Then you must prove intent and remove all questionable doubt. That being said I doubt you will find a jury who could convict him as he chose to do drugs and get behind the wheel as you claim, but he never intended to kill anyone and especially not a friend you knew mutually. The charge will either be reckless vehicular manslaughter or aggregated battery. The state would have an excellent case for aggregated battery in the fact that his actions caused their deaths and injuries to others. That much is provable but to make it sound like anyone in that vehicle was in a sober mind besides the driver is insane. Your friend was partaking in the same substances the driver was and the only reason this will never be allowed in court is because your friend was not driving. The sad fact is that you are obviously and reasonably hurting but this young man did not show or prove intent for his actions. He made a terrible decision that cost you and many others a friend, daughter, son, niece, nephew, grandson, granddaughter but he did not technically murder them according to what is provided under Illinois law. My heart aches for all (including you) who have suffered a huge irreversible loss. It's sad and it affected many. The same way his mother being beaten to death did him. I am certain the courts will provide a fitting sentence for him, but that is for them to haggle out not us. I hope no one makes a decision to do anything out of anger towards this young man or his family. They were all friends before this and the fact this happened didn't change the way he felt about them and the fact the other occupants got into a car with an inebriated man willfully proves they wasn't thinking to well either. That said everyone can argue about this but the more publicity it is given only helps his case and not yours. Its called pre trial publicity. I know you are upset I just telling you how its looked at in court.
look_at_the_fact s

Newburgh, IN

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#13
Oct 6, 2012
 
Ty for the remorse bob i understand and know how the courts work ur righttho im all emotions hate,sorrow etc thank you for having a big heart
Bob

Barnhart, MO

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#14
Oct 6, 2012
 
I'm not here to pass judgement but I do wish there was an undo or rewind button for this. Yes you got me on having a big heart just hate not being able to do anything to make this better for all involved. The real deal is you and others are just in a horrible situation and I hope never to be on either side of the situation you are going thru, but just like the rest of the world we all could do something tomorrow that would take someones life or someone could cause it to happen to one of us. I hope not but if it occurs I would hope the good folks wouldn't just call me hopeless and what not. Anyhow hope that made sense. You hang in there on this as I can understand it's a tough situation for you and there is nothing like losing someone special to something so unexpected. Also know that while some of us have not known these fine friends of yours on a first name basis, the story has ripped our hearts out and made the community grieve as we try to figure out why everything happened. There is no good explanation but to all that are grieving please know we mourn with you. Yes some of the talk has been tough even coming from myself, but this is a tough situation for all of us and especially you. I do hope chatting has helped as you do not need to bottle up anger and hostility.
look_at_the_fact s

Findlay, OH

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#15
Oct 7, 2012
 
i usually dont bottle it up i vent and then its all good did alot of physical activity to take the mind off it it just all seems so unreal man.. But faith will show and thats all we need to recover knowing that she's looking down on us all and in a better place there's always pain before comfort and worse before it gets better..

Since: Jul 11

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#16
Oct 7, 2012
 

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Vehicular homicide (also known as vehicular manslaughter) in most states in the United States, is a crime. In general, it involves death that results from the negligent operation of a vehicle, or more so a result from driving while committing an unlawful act that does not amount to a felony. In the Model Penal Code there is no separate category of vehicular homicide, and vehicular homicides that involve negligence. Both are included in the overall category of negligent homicide.[1][2] It can be compared to the offense of dangerous driving causing death in other countries.
Bob

Barnhart, MO

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#17
Oct 7, 2012
 
Sorry I posted my replies in the article Three still in critical condition story instead of this one. Once you both see that please know I am thinking about all of you and yes this has been a terrible and tragic situation for you. I am trying to think of all involved and show compassion but sometimes the words do not come out correctly. I do realize a lot more than you think but sometimes putting the thoughts and even facts into words is hard. Its hard to think of how I would react if this were my friend or child. I still would hope and pray of I got out of hand or irrational that someone would set me in place so that I didn't ruin my life and hurt the lives of others even further than it has been already. Sorry I posted my replies to the wrong thread but I'm not perfect and I just gave you proof of that.

Since: Jul 11

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#18
Oct 7, 2012
 

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But the fact of the matter is, HE WAS NEGLIGENT he operated a vehicle while intoxicated. In doing so, he KILLED 2 people, and injured 2 more. He deserves PUNISHMENT. not a slap on the wrist. He knew better. And so what if others in the car were drunk or high? They were not the ones operating the car. HE WAS. No where does it say you cant ride in a car while intoxicated. They were killed by this GROWN MAN's choice to drive while under the influence. That is Vehicular Homicide. He deserves to be in prison.
Bob

Barnhart, MO

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#19
Oct 7, 2012
 
There isn't a law against riding in a car while intoxicated but supplying someone under 21 with alcohol and/or drugs is illegal and that is called contribution to the delinquency of a minor. The driver was no more than 20. There was two people in that vehicle over 21. I don't aim to make anyone upset here but one is dead and the other person is in a St Louis hospital that was over 21. That would mean that they contributed to the death of all involved which carries a pretty hefty fine and possibly jail/prison. Personally I feel if you are going to damn this young man to prison then you need to find out who bought the stuff and presuming that person is still alive prosecute them as well. If you are going to prosecute one prosecute anyone who contributed its only fair to all of us. I am going to conclude this with little bit of truth from the Bible. I believe it states in the scripture that we all deserve to die and spend eternity in Hell. Christ came to earth, gave his life to save us all from eternal damnation. what's we deserve and what we get is up to each of us through this walk of life. Yes he made a decision to inebriate himself but someone supplied it. Treat them all to the same level of punishment or choose to forgive as Christ did. Its your call but personally I and you know sending him to prison will not help one bit. He will probably be suicidal at some point over this and would you feel better of he completed that task to? If you answer yes may God have mercy on your troubled soul. I am sure you are not perfect and I am willing to bet we have all done something in our lives that could have ended in a similar fashion. Would you wish to be in prison for everything you didn't get caught doing that could have ended tragedy. People go to prison for drugs and alcohol everyday that were not directly related to a death so I am asking if you would like to be in prison as well? If not then why damn everyone else there for what they were doing as a pack of friends mutually partying and letting it get out of hand.

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#20
Oct 7, 2012
 

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My nephew died. he was 20. And no i have never driven while intoxicated, never while i had taken anything that could affect my driving. I do not wish death on ANYONE. But he did do something ILLEGAL that took the life of 2 ppl. He deserves to go to prison

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