Authorities release more details on fatal crash in Volo

  • Chris L. Miller

    Chris L. Miller

  • Authorities say Chris L. Miller struck this squad car, which in turn hit an auxiliary deputy who was standing outside on Monday night in Volo.

    Authorities say Chris L. Miller struck this squad car, which in turn hit an auxiliary deputy who was standing outside on Monday night in Volo. Courtesy of the Lake County Sheriff's Office

 
 
Updated 12/24/2019 5:27 PM

An 82-year-old Lake Zurich man died and two other people -- including an auxiliary Lake County sheriff's deputy -- were injured in crashes Monday evening in Volo, officials said Tuesday.

Just before 6 p.m., the 82-year-old man was traveling south on Route 12 in a 1995 Mazda convertible when, for an unknown reason, his car crossed into the northbound lanes near Volo Village Road, Lake County sheriff's police said.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The Mazda struck a northbound 2005 Toyota sedan driven by a 20-year-old Lake in the Hills man, whose car was pushed into the path of a southbound 2008 Subaru SUV driven by a 27-year-old McHenry man. The Subaru struck the Toyota.

Police said the driver of the Mazda was pronounced dead at the scene.

The 20-year-old driver of the Toyota was taken to Advocate Condell Medical Center with serious injuries. He was hospitalized in stable condition on Tuesday but is expected to recover, authorities said.

Meanwhile, the driver of the Subaru was uninjured.

The crash is being investigated by the sheriff's technical crash investigations unit. An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday.

While authorities were at the scene of the accident, an auxiliary deputy who was blocking southbound Route 12 at Molidor Road was injured in another crash about 7 p.m.

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Authorities said there were eight traffic cones, flares and a marked squad car with its emergency lights activated perpendicular across the lanes of traffic, to alert drivers that the roadway was closed.

Nevertheless, police said, Chris L. Miller, 65, of the 29000 block of North Fairfield Road, an unincorporated area near Mundelein, disregarded the warnings and crashed a 2016 Ford pickup truck into the squad car.

The force of the collision pushed the squad car into the auxiliary deputy, who was standing outside. He was taken to a hospital with broken bones in at least one leg, officials said.

He was discharged just after midnight.

Police said Miller left the scene driving south, but the pickup truck became disabled -- likely due to its heavy damage -- in the area of Route 12 and North Fox Lake Road.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Sheriff's deputies located Miller and took him into custody.

Miller is facing a list of charges, including felony aggravated DUI involving an accident with injuries, felony leaving the scene of an accident with injuries, felony operation of a vehicle on approach of an emergency vehicle causing injuries, misdemeanor DUI and failure to give aid following an accident. Police also said Miller was driving an uninsured vehicle.

Miller was being held at the Lake County jail pending an initial court hearing.

"While I'm thankful our auxiliary deputy wasn't killed or critically injured, I am very disappointed a drunk driver crashed into a scene we were working to keep secure, and injured one of our personnel," Sheriff John Idleburg said in a statement. "Then, rather than do the right thing and stop to see if the auxiliary deputy was OK, he fled.

"Driving under the influence is unacceptable to begin with; crashing into an emergency vehicle while intoxicated, then fleeing, is downright inexcusable."

• Correspondent Mary Chappell contributed to this report.

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