A 22-year-old man, who attended Highland Park High School and had just graduated from Northern Illinois University, was identified as the passenger killed in a high-speed crash in Waukegan on the Fourth of July.
Lake County Coroner Dr. Howard Cooper said that Javier Ocampo, 22, of North Chicago, died from multiple blunt force injuries he received in the crash, which occurred near near Bonnie Brook Lane and Lewis Avenue in Waukegan around 10:45 p.m. Thursday.
Charges have been filed against Rudi S. Orihuela, 22, of Highland Park, who is accused of driving drunk during the crash. Orihuela was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, reckless homicide and several traffic offenses.
Waukegan Police Commander Joe Florip said that a 2008 Black Ford Fusion, driven by Orihuela, was traveling eastbound on Bonnie Brook Lane at a high rate of speed when the man lost control of the vehicle and struck a tree.
Ocampo, who was in the front passenger seat, was transported to Vista East Medical Center in Waukegan where he was pronounced dead. Orihuela was also transported to the same hospital where he was treated and released.
Orihuela was released from the hospital into police custody after being treated for ‘moderate injuries’, Florip said. Investigators believe that both speed and alcohol are the main contributors to the crash, Florip said. Both men were wearing seatbelts.
Orihuela appeared in court on Saturday and a judge set his bond at $200,000. Orihuela posted $20,000 bail and was released from the Lake County Jail.
Ocampo graduated from Highland Park High School in 2015 and had just graduated with an accounting degree in May from Northern Illinois University.
A GoFundMe created to help with funeral expenses has raised almost $5,000 so far.
“On July 4, we lost Javier in a tragic car accident. He was known for being a loving, energetic and most importantly, a great friend. The Ocampo family will appreciate all generous donations for funeral expenses,” Stephanie Diaz said on GoFundMe.
“Javier was an amazing young man I had the privilege of working with at Highland Park High School. His smile and good nature was infectious in group and I loved the laughs that we all shared,” Pablo Alvarez said.
Orihuela is scheduled to appear in court again on July 23. The crash remains under investigation by the Waukegan Police Department’s Traffic Division and the Lake County Coroner’s Office.