DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert B. Berlin and Clarendon Hills Chief of Police Paul Dalen announced today that bond has been set for a Chicago man accused of causing a head-on crash while driving the wrong way on Route 83 in Clarendon Hills that claimed the lives of two passengers in an oncoming vehicle. Juan Rodea-Cruz, 25 (d.o.b. 9/9/1994) of 4210 W. Kamerling, appeared at a bond hearing this morning where Judge George Bakalis set bond at $750,000 with 10% to apply. The State requested a bond of $5 million with 10% to apply.
It is alleged that at approximately 2:47 a.m., October 20, 2019, Rodea-Cruz was driving his vehicle northbound on Route 83 in the southbound lanes just north of 55th Street in Clarendon Hills. It is alleged that while driving on the wrong side of the road, Rodea-Cruz crashed his car head-on into a southbound vehicle with four passengers. Following the crash, Rodea-Cruz and the victims of the crash were transported to local hospitals for treatment of their injuries. Marko Boskovic, 27, of Revere, Massachusetts and Laura Uribe, 26, of LaGrange, both died at the hospital as a result of their injuries. A twenty-seven-year-old male remains in the hospital in critical but stable condition while another twenty-seven-year-old male received treatment for his injuries and was released. The two surviving victims are both from Massachusetts. After the crash, officers allegedly found Rodea-Cruz alone in his vehicle, emitting an odor of alcohol, with glassy/bloodshot eyes. Numerous opened and unopened bottles of beer as well as a broken 750 ml bottle of liquor were allegedly found in Rodea-Cruz’s vehicle. He has been charged with two counts of Aggravated DUI Causing Death (Class 2 Felony) and one count of Aggravated DUI Causing Great Bodily Harm (Class 4 Felony).
“Mr. Rodea-Cruz’s decision to allegedly get behind the wheel after he had been drinking demonstrates his complete disregard for the motoring public,” Berlin said. “It is unfathomable that in today’s world, with ride-sharing services available with the touch of a finger, people still continue to get behind the wheel after they have been drinking. We have seen enough death on our roadways that could have and should have been avoided. It is very simple. If you have been drinking, do not drive. I offer my sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Marko Boskovic and Laura Uribe. I wish them strength as they attempt to come to terms with this horrible tragedy. I would like to thank the Clarendon Hills Police Department for their efforts in this case. I would also like to thank all the other agencies that assisted including the MERIT Task Force, the Hinsdale and Oak Brook Police Departments as well as the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office. I would also like to thank Assistant State’s Attorneys Helen Kapas, Patrick Miner and Diane Michalak for their work in securing a strong prosecution against Mr. Rodea-Cruz.”
“This was a senseless and avoidable tragedy,” Dalen said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the friends and family of Laura and Marko and we pray for a full recovery of the third victim. I commend all the first responders and investigators who worked tirelessly throughout this investigation. In particular, I would like to thank the MERIT Accident Reconstruction Team, the DuPage County Sheriff’s Forensics Evidence Team, the Hinsdale Police Department and the Oak Brook Police Department for their quick response and assistance. I would like to also thank the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office, Assistant State’s Attorneys, Helen Kapas, Patrick Miner and Diana Michalak for their hard work and guidance in this case.”
Rodea-Cruz’s next court appearance is scheduled for November 25, 2019, for arraignment in front of Judge Bakalis. If convicted, he faces a penalty of up to twenty-eight years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.
Members of the public are reminded that these complaints contain only charges and are not proof of the defendant’s guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial in which it is the government’s burden to prove his or her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.