Fatal Aurora street racing crash now nets upgraded charges
A 20-year-old Plainfield man has been charged with nine counts of reckless homicide and two counts of aggravated street racing in connection with a Dec. 4, 2015, crash in Aurora that killed a 49-year-old man and seriously injured his 15-year-old daughter.
Jeffrey A. Bledsoe, of the 25000 block of Pastoral Drive, also was charged with aggravated speeding and reckless driving due to his actions that caused a crash resulting in the death of Charles Siebel.
Bledsoe initially was charged with a series of traffic violations. He was in court for those violations Tuesday when Will County prosecutors announced the upgraded felony charges. Prosecutors said they were waiting for police to close their investigation before increasing the charges.
Bledsoe's first court date on the felony charges was set for March 23.
Bledsoe was driving a 2007 Pontiac Grand Prix. Prosecutors allege his actions caused another vehicle, a 2011 Dodge Charger, to strike the 2004 Toyota Highlander driven by Siebel.
The driver of the Charger, a 16-year-old boy, was charged with one count of reckless homicide and two counts of aggravated street racing. He is scheduled to appear in Will County juvenile court at 9 a.m. April 22.
Siebel, of Aurora, was killed and his 15-year-old daughter was injured in the crash that occurred around 10:15 p.m. at the intersection of Eola Road and Shenandoah Drive.
Prosecutors said the juvenile was racing with Bledsoe when the crash occurred. Both Bledsoe and the 16-year-old were driving very fast south on Eola when the juvenile slammed into Seibel's vehicle as it was turning left onto Eola from the stop sign at Shenandoah, authorities said. Bledsoe was just south of the other two vehicles at the time of the crash.
Both Siebel and his daughter had to be extricated. Siebel was pronounced dead around 3 a.m. Dec. 7 at Rush Copley Medical Center. His daughter has since been released from the same hospital.
If convicted, Bledsoe faces between three and 17 years in prison. The juvenile can be held in an Illinois Department of Corrections juvenile facility only until his 21st birthday.