Cops: Orland firefighter charged in Oak Forest crash that killed Downers Grove woman
BY CASEY TONER email@example.com March 3, 2013 2:28PM
Cook County Sheriff's Police investigate the scene of a 3 car accident on 167th Street at Laramie Avenue in Oak Forest, Illinois, Friday, March 1, 2013. | Joseph P. Meier~Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 5, 2013 6:24AM
An Orland Fire Protection District and Crestwood firefighter is facing felony reckless homicide charges after allegedly causing the traffic crash Friday afternoon that killed a 25-year-old Downers Grove resident, a Cook County sheriff’s police spokesman said.
Patrick Bruce, 45, of Oak Forest, also was charged Sunday with failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident and reckless driving. He is set to appear in bail court Monday morning at the Cook County Courthouse at 26th Street and California Avenue in Chicago.
According to sheriff’s police, witnesses testified that Bruce, a full-time Orland Fire Protection District firefighter and part-time Crestwood firefighter, was driving a black Lincoln Navigator SUV east on 167th Street near Oak Forest about 1:40 p.m. and struck an eastbound white SUV and then veered into oncoming traffic, striking an Oldsmobile driven by Anasis Knox.
Knox, 25, was pronounced dead at 2:35 p.m. Friday at South Suburban Hospital in Hazel Crest, authorities said. A passenger in Knox’s car was treated and released, authorities said Friday.
Sheriff’s office spokesman Frank Bilecki said Bruce was taken to a hospital for a checkup after the crash but then investigators took him into custody.
Orland Fire Protection District Chief Ken Brucki said in a statement that his department is cooperating with the investigation. In the statement, Brucki did not identify Bruce, but said that he had been on duty injury leave for the past eight months.
“Our condolences go out to the family of the victim,” Brucki said.