Alesia Kelly Killed, Steven Kelly Injured in Fayette County, IL 18-wheeler Accident
Fayette County, IL -- November 29, 2019, Alesia Kelly was killed and Steven Kelly was injured after an accident where their vehicle hit an 18-wheeler.
Illinois State Police responded to the accident scene at approximately 6:19 a.m. They say it happened along I-70 near mile marker 61.
In their reports, troopers said that Jordan Nelson was driving an 19-wheeler westbound along the interstate. He told police that another tractor-trailer forced him off the road. As a result, his truck careened across the median, crashing to a halt partially in the left lane of travel. Afterward, a Chevy crashed into the truck.
Emergency services transported both car occupants to local hospitals in critical conditions. They were 54-year-old Alesia Kelly and 56-year-old Steven Kelly. Alesia Kelly later died from her injuries.
Police cited Nelson for improper lane usage. Additional details surrounding the crash are unavailable at this time.
Something stands out in these reports. The truck driver claims another driver forced him off the road, but police cited him for improper lane usage. This tells me that police, for one reason or another, aren't buying the truck driver's story. Whether they outright think it's false or not, they obviously think the truck driver did something wrong to contribute to this deadly series of events.
But that doesn't really make this an open-and-shut case. At the end of the day, criminal and civil law are two separate processes. A truck driver may even face criminal charges, but the trucking company can still deny responsibility for the victims' injuries and losses. I even litigated a case recently involving a drunk truck driver. Despite their driver getting a DUI, the trucking company denied fault. In fact, they hired a defense lawyer to help beat the DUI charge so they'd have an easier time screwing over our clients. Fortunately, our case was thorough enough on its own that we didn't even need the DUI charge to get the company to take responsibility.
That's why I constantly tell people to prepare themselves thoroughly after a serious truck wreck. Trucking companies may be able to defend themselves however they want, but case founded upon evidence and effective legal strategy can overcome this. I wouldn't let a seemingly straight-forward incident like this one change that.
--Grossman Law Offices