Police: Driver was high during Elgin crash that killed passenger

Editor's note: this story has been changed to correct Dave E. Flynn's blood-alcohol concentration at the time of his arrest. The correct concentration was .056.

An Alsip man has been charged with reckless homicide and aggravated DUI for a June 26 crash on Elgin's near west side that killed his passenger, a 25-year-old Elgin woman.

A warrant was issued in late September for Dave E. Flynn, 24, of the 3600 block of West Benck Drive, on two felony counts of aggravated DUI and one count of reckless homicide in connection with the early morning crash near McLean Boulevard and Lawrence Avenue, according to Kane County court records.

He was arrested in early October, posted bond and is next due in court Nov. 15, records show.

Flynn was not legally drunk, but active THC in his body exceeded the legal threshold, authorities allege. He faces up to 14 years in prison if convicted of Maria De Jesus Ayala's death.

Authorities responded to a crash at just before 4 a.m. for a 2005 Chevy Malibu that struck a tree on the 300 block of North McLean.

Ayala had to be cut from the vehicle, and she was taken to Advocate Sherman Hospital and then another facility for a broken neck.

Flynn told authorities he and Ayala were coming from a party in Chicago and headed to her house when she fell asleep on his shoulder and began to mumble, according to an Elgin police report obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request. Flynn said he looked down to wake her and struck the tree, the report said.

Flynn said Ayala drank more than he did that night, so he drove the entire time, the report said.

Flynn admitted to drinking and using marijuana, according to authorities, and his blood-alcohol concentration was .056, below the legal threshold of .08 in Illinois. Police also recovered a pipe with an unknown residue inside of it, according to an affidavit used for a search warrant for the cellphones of Flynn and Ayala.

Lab tests on Aug. 1 showed Flynn had 6.6 nanograms of active THC per milliliter in his body, authorities said. The legal threshold in Illinois is 5 nanograms of THC.

Investigators also determined Flynn's car was going 46 mph an instant before hitting the tree; the street had a 30-mph speed limit. Flynn's car also veered across all lanes on Lawrence before hitting the tree, according to the police report.

Flynn's defense attorney, Gregory Reeder, declined to comment on the case, noting he has not received all the discovery information from prosecutors.

Flynn also was ticketed for improper lane use, speeding and driving too fast for conditions, records show.

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