Oak Lawn Village Manager Resigns Days After Hit-and-Run Charge

The village manager of Oak Lawn has resigned days after being charged with critically injuring a man with his vehicle in Chicago Ridge and driving away from the crash.

Larry Deetjen, 70, announced his resignation Tuesday in a letter to the Village of Oak Lawn board of trustees, according to a village official. He had been on paid administrative leave since four days after the October crash.

On Oct. 10, Deetjen was driving a municipal vehicle when he allegedly struck a 48-year-old man in the 10100 block of South Harlem Avenue and continued without stopping, Chicago Ridge police said at the time.

Deetjen allegedly told investigators he was distracted by something and did not realize he hit someone, police said. His vehicle had damage on its front right side.

Deetjen was charged Nov. 15 with leaving the scene of an accident, failing to render aid, failure to give information after striking a person, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident and failure to exercise due caution, police said. He posted bail and is due in court again Dec. 10.

Police said the man was still in critical condition a month after the crash.

Reached by phone Wednesday, Deetjen’s lawyer said that the comment’s in Deetjen’s resignation letter stand on their own.

In the letter, Deetjen said it was a “unique and distinct honor to represent Oak Lawn and be a small part of the whirlwind of positive milestones…”

Deetjen served as Oak Lawn village manager since 2007. Oak Lawn police chief Randy Palmer has been acting as interim acting village manager, according to a village official.

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