A Chicago man has been charged with driving the wrong way on Interstate 94 near Gurnee while allegedly drunk and striking another car head-on, leaving the driver critically injured.
The incident happened around 4 a.m. on July 19, 2021, on Interstate 94 just north of Route 120 at milepost 11 near Gurnee.
The Illinois State Police received reports of a wrong-way driver traveling eastbound in the westbound lanes, according to a police report obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.
The wrong-way vehicle, a red Lexus sedan, crashed head-on into a red Nissan Sentra, while troopers were responding to the area.
One trooper, who was attempting to stop the Lexus, had witnessed the head-on collision and noted the Lexus was traveling at a “very high rate of speed,” the report said.
The suspect driver was identified as Alton D. Jackson, 34, of Chicago.
Jackson ran from the scene on foot and jumped over the concrete barrier before continuing to run across the interstate, the report said. Troopers eventually caught him and arrested him.
The male driver of the second vehicle was trapped in his car and seriously injured.
He was transported by ambulance to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville.
The victim suffered numerous serious injuries throughout his body and underwent multiple surgeries.
The victim spent several months at an in-patient care facility, the report said.
Jackson suffered a broken arm and was also transported to Advocate Condell Medical Center.
Troopers noted Jackson was driving under the influence of alcohol and his bloodwork showed he was driving with a .240 blood alcohol level, three times over the legal limit.
Jackson was charged with initially only charged with misdemeanors, including driving under the influence, driving while license revoked, driving wrong way and various other traffic offenses.
The Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office declined to approve felony charges because Jackson was receiving medical treatment at the time, the report said.
Jackson was released from police custody on a recognizance bond.
Jackson’s misdemeanor charges were later dismissed and in February 2022 felony charges were filed against him.
He was charged with two counts of aggravated driving under the influence causing great bodily harm and one count of aggravated driving under the influence on a revoked license.
Jackson was taken into custody of the Lake County Jail late last month on the warrant.
He was ordered held in the Lake County Jail on a $400,000 bond. Jackson remains held in the jail and would need to post $40,000 cash in order to be released.
A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for July 18.