Crackdown coming on dangerous stretch of Route 47

Updated 3/3/2011 5:07 PM

Three Fox Valley police agencies are joining forces to get people driving more sensibly on one of Kane County's deadliest thoroughfares.

The effort starts Tuesday from Route 47 in Sugar Grove north to Main Street in Blackberry Township, southeast of Elburn. Lt. Pat Gengler of the Kane County Sheriff's Department said the targeted stretch of roadway has seen numerous fatal crashes in recent years, and police are tired of it.


"Route 47 used to be kind of a country road, and I think a lot of people are still traveling it with that kind of thought process," Gengler said. "But we have seen an increase in traffic out there and, as a result, more crashes."

Among those killed in the targeted area were Wade and Denise Thomas of St. Charles, who died May 23, 2009 when a pack of motorcycles they were riding in crashed into a car pushed in front of them in a rear-end collision near Smith Road in Elburn. William McKenzie, 54, of Marengo, also died traveling Route 47 when his van was hit head-on near Merrill Road in Sugar Grove Township on March 20, 2009.

In April, Brandon Utley, 19, and Ryan Sherrod, 18, both of North Aurora, were killed when Sherrod's vehicle was hit by a garbage truck while turning into the north Waubonsee Community College entrance from the highway.

Gengler said the road is particularly dangerous because the speed limit varies widely, and lanes shift from four to two.

"There's also a lot of cross traffic where people stop and turn," he said.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service

The enforcement campaign, which lasts through Sept. 24, involves Sugar Grove police, Waubonsee campus police and the sheriff's office.

Driver sentenced: An Aurora man who ditched his seriously injured passenger after a crash last year was sentenced Friday to 51/2 years in prison.

David Solis, 27, of the 100 block of Sard Avenue, had pleaded guilty July 16 to one count of failure to report an accident with personal injury, according to the Kane County state's attorney's office.

Prosecutors said Solis parked his 1999 Lexus RX300 and ran away after rear-ending a box truck on East New York Street, west of Trask Street, in Aurora on Oct. 9, 2009, despite the fact that his passenger was bleeding severely from the head.

Authorities arrived moments later to find the passenger trapped inside the car, which had been torn up in the crash. Prosecutors said the victim was left with significant and permanent brain damage.


Solis later tested positive for marijuana and multiple narcotics, including hydrocodone, authorities said.

Molester convicted: An Elgin man pleaded guilty Friday to sexually preying on a child younger than 13.

Jesus Urieta-Dominguez, 29, of the 400 block of Jewett Street, was sentenced to eight years in prison in exchange for his plea to one count of predatory criminal sexual assault.

Prosecutors said Urieta-Dominguez sexually preyed on a child known to him over a period of two years, from January 2008 to January 2010.

As a result of his conviction, Urieta-Dominguez must register for life as a sex offender, and also faces deportation.

• Follow me on Twitter: @DH jstockinger


Get articles sent to your inbox.