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Attorney for Cop Charged in Lake Shore Drive Crash Gets Hospital Access

By Erin Meyer | March 18, 2013 1:37pm | Updated on March 18, 2013 2:37pm
 Wreckage remains on southbound Lake Shore Drive several hours after the fatal collision. (March 15, 2013)
Wreckage remains on southbound Lake Shore Drive several hours after the fatal collision. (March 15, 2013)
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DNAinfo/Erica Demarest

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTS BUILDING — A judge on Monday allowed a lawyer access to the hospital room of an off-duty suburban police officer facing criminal charges after a wrong-way crash on Lake Shore Drive left two men dead.

Cook County Judge Edward Harmening gave attorney Victor Escarcida access to Terrell Garrett, a North Chicago police officer who was charged Saturday with two counts of aggravated DUI and two counts of reckless homicide.

Harmening granted Escarcida's request at a hearing Monday afternoon.

Garrett was reportedly celebrating his birthday and had been drinking before the crash. His blood alcohol level was .184, prosecutors said. The legal limit for driving is 0.08.

About 4 a.m. Friday, Garrett, 35, entered Lake Shore Drive's southbound lanes at LaSalle Street heading north, police said. Garrett's SUV struck a Scion between Belmont Avenue and Diversey Parkway before smashing into a Jeep, police said.

The two men in the Jeep were killed. They were identified as Fabian Torres, 27, of the 2800 block of South Avers, and Joaquin Garcia, 25, of the 2200 block of West 18th Place, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office.

Garrett, who became a North Chicago cop in 2008, was stripped of his police powers and placed on administrative leave following his arrest Friday, according to a statement from North Chicago Police Chief James Jackson.

Following the crash, Garrett was taken to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center where he is being treated for a fractured hip, police said. A woman driving the Scion who was also involved in the accident was sent to Northwestern Memorial Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, police said.

Garrett on Sunday was ordered held on $500,000 bail.