MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ill. (KSDK) - A Georgia truck driver faces up to 14 years in prison for allegedlykilling an Illinois State Police trooper.
Illinois State Police said the Grand Jury indicted Johnny B. Felton, Jr., 52, on April 22 withreckless homicide for the death of Trooper Kyle Deatherage on November 26, 2012.
Felton is accused of driving a semi-tractor trailer on northbound I-55 and hitting Trooper Deatherageas he wasstanding next to a carduring a traffic stop on the side of the road. Felton is accused of not slowing down or changing lanes to avoid the trooper.
Felton was also charged with a second felony for allegedly driving a commerical motor vehicle in Illinois when he did not have a valid commerical driver's license.
Felton was taken into custody Tuesday morning in Hinesville, Georgia. He waived extradition and will be transported from Georgia to Illinois for arraignment.
A spokesperson for Dot Transportation, Inc. released the following statement Tuesday:
"The management and employees of Dot Transportation, Inc. (DTI) continue to express their deepest sympathies to the family of the Illinois patrolman who lost his life in a tragic accident on I-55 last November.
"Today we learned that the Montgomery County State's Attorney's Office has filed charges against DTI driver John Felton of reckless homicide and allegedly driving a commercial vehicle in Illinois when he did not hold an interstate commercial driver's license (CDL).
"DTI has fully cooperated with the authorities and assisted them in their investigation as requested. DTI has not completed its own internal investigation nor has it seen all of the information that Grand Jury reviewed prior to issuing the Indictment.
"It is DTI's policy that no driver will drive for DTI unless he or she has a valid medical card and is in full compliance with the Federal Motor Safety Act. DTI was not informed of and unaware of any reason which would indicate this driver was unable to safely operate DTI's truck. DTI cannot release information about the driver's medical condition because of statutory restrictions and out of respect for the employee's privacy.
"The driver in question is a 25-year veteran of the armed forces who rose to the rank of sergeant and commanded 80 troops. He was hired by DTI after an honorable discharge and had a clean driving record at the time of hire."