Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Melissa Merz
312-814-3118
877-844-5461 (TTY)
mmerz@atg.state.il.us
April 14 , 2006

COURT FINDS TEEN GUILTY IN 2003 DEATH OF ELDERLY MOTORIST

Chicago – Attorney General Lisa Madigan today announced that a judge has found a teen guilty of reckless homicide after a drag racing competition in Carroll County in 2003 resulted in a collision that fatally injured another motorist.

Circuit Court Judge William Kelly yesterday, April 13, found Theron Mason, 19, guilty of Reckless Homicide, a Class 3 felony, punishable by two to five years in prison, Aggravated Reckless Driving, a Class 4 felony, punishable by one to three years in prison, and Drag Racing, a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by up to 30 days in prison.

Mason, who lived in Mt. Carroll at the time of the incident, currently resides in Freeport. The case was tried in Carroll County Circuit Court by Judge Kelly, of Jo Daviess County.

Madigan said Mason and a teenage friend were drag racing on May 8, 2003, on Highway 52 when Mason’s car struck another car and fatally injured its 76-year-old driver from Lanark. The elderly woman was returning home from church choir practice and turning into her driveway off the highway when her car was struck from behind. According to Illinois State Police testimony at this week’s trial, Mason was driving between 92 and 112 miles per hour at the time of the collision.

The trial has been continued until Monday, April 17, when a sentencing date will be set.

The case was referred to Madigan’s office due to a conflict of interest because the defendant’s mother is employed by the Carroll County Clerk’s office. Assistant Attorneys General Daniel Nikolic and Vincenzo Chimera are handling the case for Madigan’s Criminal Prosecution/Trials Assistance Bureau.

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