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Bail set at $250K for accused wrong-way driver in fatal crash

Puccinelli

Puccinelli

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Updated: April 16, 2013 4:12PM



A 19-year-old Burr Ridge man facing a felony DUI charge in connection with a fatal wrong-way crash Tuesday in Palos Township admitted to consuming alcohol, smoking marijuana and taking a prescription drug before the crash, prosecutors said Thursday.

His blood test also revealed traces of cocaine, amphetamines, barbiturates, methadone and other opiates in his system, Cook County State’s Attorney spokeswoman Tandra Simonton said.

Bail was set at $250,000 Thursday for Nicholas Puccinelli, of the 8900 block of Glenmora Lane, who was charged with aggravated DUI in the head-on crash on LaGrange Road that killed a 64-year-old Orland Park man.

Puccinelli’s blood-alcohol level after the crash was .215, nearly three times the legal limit of .08, Simonton said. Puccinelli signed a statement in which he admitted to drinking, smoking marijuana and taking Xanax — an anti-anxiety drug — prior to driving early Tuesday, Simonton said.

Puccinelli was driving a sport utility vehicle southbound in the northbound lanes of LaGrange Road when, just after 3 a.m., he hit a car being driven by John Anagnopoulos, of the 15400 block of Sunset Ridge Drive, Simonton said.

Puccinelli told police he was driving from a friend’s house.

The force of the impact pushed Anagnopoulos’ car up over a guardrail in the 10400 block of LaGrange Road, police said. Anagnopoulos was driving to his job as a short-order cook at the 47th Street Grill in Lyons.

Puccinelli’s next court date is March 25 in Bridgeview, Simonton said.



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