Charges to Be Filed Against Driver Who Injured Eleven in Aurora Crash | Westword

Charges to Be Filed Against Driver Who Injured Eleven in Aurora Crash

Police say the driver will likely be charged with careless driving or vehicular assault, but they're waiting on more information.
Eleven people were hospitalized following the June 16 crash, including the driver and a minor who was with them.
Eleven people were hospitalized following the June 16 crash, including the driver and a minor who was with them. 9News/YouTube
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Criminal charges are expected to be filed against a motorist who caused a multi-car crash in Aurora last weekend that sent eleven people to the hospital, including the driver and an underage passenger.

"There will be charges," says Aurora Police Department public information officer Sydney Edwards. "Just unsure which charges at this time."

The driver, who has not been publicly identified, was traveling southbound on South Parker Road last Sunday evening, June 16, when they lost control near East Lehigh Avenue and slammed into multiple cars. Cops believe that speed was a factor.

Edwards tells Westword that the driver will likely be charged with careless driving resulting in serious bodily injury or vehicular assault. "They're still waiting for info from the investigation," she says.

Careless driving resulting in SBI is a Class 1 misdemeanor that carries a sentence of up to a year in jail and possible fine up to $1,000. Vehicular assault, however, is a Class 4 or 5 felony, depending on whether it's "reckless driving vehicular assault" or "DUI vehicular assault."
click to enlarge Cars smashed up on a road after an accident.
Multiple cars were involved in the Parker Road crash, including a Chevrolet Corvette.

For reckless driving vehicular assault, the driver would face one to three years in prison and a fine up to $100,000. If it's DUI vehicular assault, then they'd be facing two to six years in prison and a possible fine of $500,000.

Out of the eleven people who were injured and transported to the hospital, police say one of them was the driver and another was a juvenile passenger who was with them. It's unclear what condition they were in, only that their injuries were described as serious.

After the crash was reported by the APD on X, multiple people came forward to complain about the Parker and East Lehigh intersection in the reply section, calling it a known "trainwreck" and popular spot for speeders.

APD officials, however, tell Westword that the data proves otherwise.
click to enlarge Comments of people complaining about an intersection in Aurora, Colorado, on social media.
Motorists complaining online about the South Parker Road and East Lehigh Avenue intersection.

"Our Public Works staff researched crashes at or near the intersection at South Parker Road and East Lehigh Avenue in our statewide database," says Aurora's public safety strategic communications manager, Matt Brown. "They found that, overall, it is not a high-crash location."

While it was unable to provide specifics, Brown says Aurora's Traffic Engineering division conducted a review of the last three years of crash data at the intersection — screening for "correctable patterns" — and found that there is just one crash per month there on average.

"This is less than what is typical at similar intersections statewide," Brown notes. "Almost all the reported crashes were of the rear end or sideswipe variety, which is typical of any signalized intersection that carries high-traffic volumes."

Parker Road is owned by the Colorado Department of Transportation, but the City of Aurora manages traffic signal maintenance and operations on the parts of the road that fall within its jurisdiction.

CDOT communications manager Tamara Rollison tells Westword that the lead cause of crashes in the area — and on state-maintained roadways in general — is driver behavior, including speeding, reckless driving, distracted driving and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Currently, data pertaining to the June 16 crash is not available yet, according to Brown.

APD says that the Traffic Engineering team will work with authorities to review the details of the crash once they are made available. Charges are expected to be announced against the driver in the coming days.
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