A 19-year-old woman -- apparently distracted by a cell phone when she struck and seriously injured an Illinois State Police trooper Saturday night on the Dan Ryan Expressway -- was ordered held on $50,000 bond Monday.
Kimisha M. Moore, of the12400 block of Kostner Ave., was charged with aggravated reckless conduct, a felony, according to an ISP spokesman.
Moore was also cited for improper lane usage, failure to reduce speed, operating an uninsured vehicle and violating Scott’s Law, which requires that drivers yield to emergency vehicles.
Police say Moore was driving the Toyota that struck the state trooper, who was standing outside her patrol car during a traffic stop in the northbound lane of the Dan Ryan near 63rd Street at around 9 p.m. Saturday.
The trooper, a three-year veteran of the force, was assigned to the department's special enforcement violent crime unit. She suffered injuries to both of her legs and her head, and was taken in critical condition to John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County. Emergency crews reported finding on the pavement but conscious.
Some northbound lanes were temporarily closed following the accident.
Assistant State's Attorney Kevin DeBoni alleges that Moore was looking at her cell phone at the time of the crash. He said a passenger in her car grabbed the steering wheel in an attempt to avoid a collision, but Moore "jerked the wheel back and lost control, striking the trooper."
The trooper was listed in "stable" condition in the Intensive Care Unit following emergency surgery. Lt. Luis Gutierrez said Monday that the trooper will likely have another surgery later this week.
"In spite of everything that's happened, her spirits are very high," Gutierrez said.
State Police on Monday issued a release reminding motorists that taking their eyes off the road, even for a second, can lead to tragedy. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration records indicate nearly 6,000 people died last year in crashes involving distracted or inattentive drivers, and more than 500,000 people were injured.
Judge Jackie Portman scheduled a preliminary hearing for March 5.