Skip to comments.She was drunk and she was speeding [DuPage County (IL) prosecutor]
Posted on 05/26/2007 6:21:14 AM PDT by Krankor
A DuPage County prosecutor killed in a drunken driving crash was traveling more than 80 mph and possibly using her cell phone seconds before her government-issued car struck another vehicle head-on, authorities said Friday.
A 33-page police report also indicated that Jane Radostits had been drinking before the May 11 crash during a long lunch at an Oak Brook restaurant with seven other prosecutors and another office staffer.
Lab results released last week showed that Radostits, 46, had a blood-alcohol level of .25 percent -- three times the level at which a motorist is considered drunk.
"She was drunk, and she was speeding. Those are horrible circumstances," DuPage County State's Attorney Joseph Birkett said Friday after reviewing the crash report prepared by the DuPage County Sheriff's Department.
The 3:45 p.m. crash seriously injured Michele Lubinski, 36, of West Chicago, whose sport-utility vehicle was hit by Radostits' county-issued Chevy Impala. Two other vehicles were damaged in the crash near Winfield.
"My heart is broken over what's taken place," Birkett said.
He confirmed Friday that veteran prosecutor Jeffrey Kendall, who had been drinking with Radostits and later gave her a ride in his county car back to the Wheaton courthouse so she could pick up her work vehicle, has resigned in the wake of the revelations. But Birkett would not say whether he asked Kendall to leave.
Birkett would not comment on whether any of the other prosecutors who had been at the lunch at the Kona Grill in Oak Brook have been disciplined, though sources say none has been punished.
Radostits and Kendall were the first to arrive at the restaurant, coming from the DuPage County courthouse after a bomb threat forced the closure of the building. While other prosecutors arrived later and stayed for a lesser amount of time, Radostits and Kendall spent at least three hours there, investigators said.
Other prosecutors who were with Radostits, a respected deputy bureau chief in the office, estimated she had three to five drinks, but they told police they saw "no outward signs of impairment or intoxication."
Radostits and Kendall, who could not be reached for comment, had received permission to take the rest of the day off, officials said.
Data obtained from Radostits' Impala indicated that in the seconds before the crash, she was driving between 81 and 85 mph -- far exceeding the posted 45 mph limit, investigators said. There was no indication that Radostits tried to brake before the crash on Winfield Road, nor did she appear to be wearing a seat belt, investigators said.
"The excessive speed combined with the blood alcohol level may have given the driver of the Impala a false sense of how fast she was traveling," Detective Kevin Farley wrote in the crash report.
Phone records also indicate she apparently was making a cell phone call about the time the crash occurred, investigators said in the report.
Sheriff John Zaruba declined to comment on the crash report, except to say it had been released without prior review by Birkett's office.
Lubinski, who broke her left arm and left leg in the crash, remains "completely bedridden," her attorney said Friday.
Attorney Dennis Stefanowicz questioned why at least some prosecutors were drinking after the bomb threat closed down the courthouse.
"This wasn't a routine bomb threat," he said. "It seemed to be more of a party on behalf of the DuPage County state's attorney's office."
I knew a dude who blew .24 and could hardly stand up. The guy was 6'5'' and went a bit over 250lbs.
In Virginia, .15 is automatic ten days in jail for first offense. .25 is catatonic, how anyone could get behind the wheel of a car is astonishing.
Data obtained from the Impala? Is there something going on that I'm not aware of?
I thought Flight Data Recorders were only used in airplanes.
It has always been a conservative Republican county and its special dynamics and attractive surroundings reflect outstanding Republican governance for well over a century.
Joe Birkett is a conservative State's Attorney. He frequently speaks as an invited guest at many conservative breakfasts, picnics and meetings such as the welll-known TAPROOT organization (Traditions And Principles Republican Often Overlook Today) of which I was a founder many years ago.
I know the guy. He's a good Christian family man, and a tough law enforcer. I don't buy that he's "covering up" anything at this moment when an investigation is ongoing and the family will be burying the deceased.
Was she a Dem? If so, nuff said.
So the SUV caused the whole thing???
If there was a GPS unit in the car, it was recording speed.
Many newer model cars collect telemetry. On-Star is considered a security risk by some government agencies.
Not true, I think all illegals are exempt. Ask the head cop at virginia beach. Sac off
Lots of cars have data recorders these days.
Alcoholics can tolerate a lot of booze. They’re still impaired, but ambulatory.
Where have you been for the last few years, on a desert island?
If you pay attention at all, you would know that modern computers in cars are also capable of recording events and statistics, such as speed, throttle position, etc.
A lot of cars have monitors that store data for a short while. After crashes the data can be recovered...
Naturally... it's part of their culture
She was apparently also talking on her cell phone and not wearing a seat belt while driving 81 mph in a 45 mph zone. No signs of braking. A lot of senseless tragedy would have been averted had she simply left the car in the restaurant parking lot and taken a cab home.
That's right. You or I would be prostrate and close to unconscious with a BAC like that. We couldn't find our car keys in our own pocket, much less figure out how to use them. Someone who is driving with that kind of BAC is unquestionably a long-term alcoholic.
The guy was 6'5'' and went a bit over 250lbs.
Well, that doesn't really tell us much, because the BAC is expressed as a percentage of blood volume and thus is indirectly normalized for body mass. He would be approximately as drunk as the woman prosecutor.
If a 95-lb woman and your friend the 250-pounder both drink the same amount of alcohol, her BAC would end up much higher than his, and she would be more drunk. If they have the same BAC, it means he drank much more than she did.
That's just a reflection of what every college boy already knows about getting "lightweight" girls drunk.
Almost or all GM produced vehicles since about 2004 include a scaled-down black box that stores the last 30 seconds or so of vehicle information, including speed, whether brakes were applied, etc.
See http://reviews.cnet.com/4520-3513_7-6731442-1.html for one article about it.
I wonder if she’d ever been pulled over before for DUI and was never charged? I can’t believe this was the first time she’d ever driven impaired. If so, someone’s got some ‘splainin’ to do...
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