No criminal charges in fatal Hinsdale sub shop crash


No criminal charges will be filed against a teen driver who killed a boy when he crashed a Jeep Wrangler into a downtown Hinsdale restaurant.

DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin announced Oct. 25 that there was no intent to harm someone, nor reckless driving, by the 16-year-old driver. Investigators determined he mistook the accelerator for the brake pedal when exiting a car wash tunnel across the street from the restaurant, Berlin said in a news release.

The crash happened July 17. The driver, who worked at the car wash, depressed the accelerator fully, sending the Jeep across Lincoln Street. The vehicle hit 14-year-old Sean Richards of Hinsdale, then entered Fontano’s Subs and Deli, injuring three other people.

Richards died several days later.

There were no drugs or alcohol in the driver’s urine or blood, according to the news release.

The driver will be given citations for failure to exercise due care to avoid colliding with a pedestrian, failure to yield the right of way to a pedestrian on a sidewalk and failure to decrease speed to avoid colliding with a person.

The three injured people who survived are suing the driver and the car wash. The lawsuit contends the car wash did not adequately train the driver. The lawsuit also alleges the car wash should not have accepted the Jeep for car washing because it claims that Jeeps have problems with sudden acceleration.