A 27-year-old Racine man faces 18 criminal charges after a three-vehicle accident last week.
Demario L. Reynolds was charged Friday in Racine County Circuit Court with five felony counts of first degree recklessly endangering safety, five felony counts of hit and run causing injury, two felony counts of knowingly operating a vehicle while suspended causing great bodily harm, five misdemeanor counts of reckless driving causing injury and a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct.
If convicted of each of the felonies, Reynolds faces a maximum fine of $195,000 and 48 years, three months in prison. The misdemeanors carry a total fine of $11,000 and five years, three months in county jail.
According to the criminal complaint: Officers with the Racine Police Department responded to Lathrop Avenue and 19th Street, where they found three vehicles that had been involved in an accident.
Occupants in two of the vehicles suffered injuries and were transported to the hospital. Police also observed that both vehicles had sustained heavy damage.
Police located the third vehicle, which was unoccupied, that also had sustained heavy damage. Calls to dispatch stated that the operator and passenger from the vehicle, a Ford Explorer, had fled on foot and were traveling eastbound.
Witnesses at the scene told officers the Explorer failed to stop for the stop sign at 19th Street at Lathrop and was traveling at a high rate of speed when it collided with the two other vehicles.
While they searched for the suspects, officers responded to a residence on Hayes Avenue and spoke to a woman, who stated she was in her living room when she heard someone call out. She believed it was her grandson, but when she got to the kitchen, she saw a man standing in her kitchen, bleeding. The man stated that he had just been in a car accident and needed help.
The woman saw an officer in front of her house and told the suspect that the police could help. At that point, the man fled. He left a bloody cell phone behind on the kitchen floor. A couple minutes later, Reynolds was found in a garage on Blaine Avenue, where he had forced entry. He was taken into custody.
Police also located the passenger, who stated that Reynolds was driving so fast because he thought a police vehicle was behind them near 21st Street. He said he was yelling at Reynolds to slow down just before the collision.
Reynolds is due back in court Dec. 6 for a 9 a.m. preliminary hearing.
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