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Corboy & Demetrio Applauds the Sentence of Driver Renato Velasquez in Fatal Crash

Corboy & Demetrio applauds the three-year prison sentence for Renato Velasquez, the commercial truck driver who caused the death of IL Tollway worker Vincent Petrella and injured an IL State Trooper after crashing into emergency vehicles along I-88 near Aurora on January 27, 2014.

“I respect the Court for not taking lightly the safety concerns involved when a speeding truck weighing more than 60,000 pounds and operated by a fatigued driver, crashes into emergency vehicles,” said attorney Thomas A. Demetrio, Co-founder of Corboy & Demetrio, which is representing the Estate of Vincent Petrella in civil litigation against Velasquez and Velasquez’ employers, DND International, Inc. and CRST Logistics, Inc.

“Velasquez turned his truck into a run-away missile while he dozed behind the wheel and ended the life of a vital husband, father, son and sibling,” Thomas Demetrio added.

At trial, prosecutors showed that Velasquez had been on duty for 27 consecutive hours, having driven from Illinois to Nebraska and Iowa and then back to Illinois with little rest.

Velasquez’ sentence was handed down Monday by DuPage County Judge Robert Kleeman.  Velasquez had been charged with impaired driving via fatigue and operating his truck in excess of safety laws that limit the numbers of hours a commercial driver can be spend behind the wheel.  The judge said that he was convinced Velasquez had far exceeded the allowable number of driving hours on the night of the crash.

At the time of the deadly crash, Vincent Petrella, 39, had been helping a trucker with a disabled semi-trailer and had parked behind the disabled truck, turning on his emergency lights.   The IL state trooper injured in the crash had parked a police car directly behind Petrella’s truck in the far right lane and had also activated his emergency lights.

Known as “Enzo” by friends and family, Vincent Petrella left behind a four-year-old son, seven-year-old daughter, and his wife, Sandra, who filed the wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of her deceased husband’s estate.

“The lost to the Petrella family as a result of the epidemic of fatigued truck driving is unimaginable, and the judge recognized it,” said Corboy & Demetrio attorney Matthew T. Jenkins who with Demetrio is also representing the Petrella Estate.

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Corboy & Demetrio
33 N. Dearborn Street
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Chicago, IL 60602