Prosecutors: Man was drunk, going 83 mph when he caused double-fatal crash

  • A West Dundee man who prosecutors say was involved in a car accident minutes before he drove head-on into two South Barrington women was ordered held on $1.5 million bail Tuesday.

    A West Dundee man who prosecutors say was involved in a car accident minutes before he drove head-on into two South Barrington women was ordered held on $1.5 million bail Tuesday.

 
 
Updated 8/15/2018 8:50 AM

A West Dundee man who prosecutors say was involved in a car crash minutes before he drove head-on into two South Barrington women was ordered held on $1.5 million bail Tuesday.

The second collision caused the deaths of Mary Kendzior, 82, and her daughter, Lisa Kendzior, 50, earlier this month.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Michael Kelly, 48, who prosecutors said had a blood alcohol content of .3, was charged with two counts of aggravated DUI causing a death, a felony punishable by six to 28 years in prison. Probation is not an option unless a judge determines that extraordinary circumstances exist to allow it.

Kelly, of the 500 block of South 1st Street, was driving east on Higgins Road in his 2007 GMC Sierra about 9:30 p.m. Aug. 3 when he struck the passenger's side of a vehicle traveling in the same direction then sped away "at a high rate of speed," said Cook County Assistant State's Attorney Maria McCarthy. One occupant dialed 911 and reported Kelly's license plate number while the driver followed Kelly's car, McCarthy said.

At one point, Kelly turned off Higgins Road onto Prairie Stone Parkway. He made a U-turn, stopped at a red light then turned west onto Higgins Road but drove onto the grassy median between the east and westbound lanes, according to the witnesses who followed him, McCarthy said.

Driving east into oncoming traffic, Kelly struck head-on the 2012 Honda Odyssey driven by Mary Kendzior, McCarthy said.

The black box recovered from Kelly's vehicle revealed he was traveling at 83 mph before the crash, which occurred about 9:45 p.m. near Beverly Road, McCarthy said. The speed limit there is 55 mph.

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Both women and Kelly had to be cut from their vehicles, prosecutors said.

Paramedics found no pulse on Lisa Kendzior, who was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital. Mary Kendzior died a few hours later at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge.

Defense attorney Sam Amirante said his client suffered a lacerated spleen and a lacerated liver. Additionally, Kelly contracted pneumonia. He was released from the hospital Tuesday morning, Amirante said.

Amirante added that Kelly and his family "extended their sympathy to the victims' family."

Among the drivers who witnessed the fatal crash were: the occupants of the vehicle Kelly struck initially; the driver in the car behind the Kendziors who saw the collision and whose vehicle was struck by debris; and the driver of the car in front of the Kendziors, who moved into a different lane just before Kelly's car struck the victims, McCarthy said.

Prosecutors say Kelly has a 2003 felony conviction from DuPage County for driving on a suspended or revoked license and three misdemeanor DUI convictions from 1989 and 1991.

Prosecutors said Kelly previously had a breath alcohol ignition interlock device. People with two or more DUI convictions must install the device in order to legally drive, according to the secretary of state's office. Kelly was issued a driver's license in 2012 with no restrictions, McCarthy said.

He next appears in court Sept. 12.

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