Man Charged With DUI in I-55 Hit-And-Run

Enrique Lopez was struck while waiting for a tow truck Thursday night

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Fernando Almaraz, 40, of the 5400 block of South Ellis Avenue, is charged with one count of aggravated DUI.

    A Chicago man has been charged with aggravated drunken driving after allegedly striking and killing a man who was waiting for a tow truck on the shoulder of Interstate 55 on Thursday night, State Police said.

    Prosecutors said Fernando Almaraz's blood alcohol content was twice the legal limit when he crashed into Enrique Lopez.

    The crash happened shortly after 10 p.m. in the northbound lanes of I-55 near Damen Avenue.  Lopez, 32, was waiting for a tow truck when he was struck by Almaraz's vehicle, authorities said.

    A person who saw Almaraz drive off after striking Lopez called 911 and provided a description of the vehicle, police said in a report.

    Police said they found Almaraz and his truck about 15 minutes after the incident at his home in the 5400 block of South Ellis Avenue.

    When he was stopped, officers detected a "strong odor of alcoholic beverage" on his breath, and said he had bloodshot and glassy eyes and slurred speech, the report said.

    Almaraz had an open can of beer in the vehicle and failed field sobriety tests, officers said.

    He was charged with one count of aggravated DUI and ordered held on $1 million bail by Judge Peggy Chiampas.