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Teen Charged in Fatal Avalon Park Crash Was Trying to Ditch Cops

By Erin Meyer | September 27, 2013 7:40am | Updated on September 27, 2013 5:49pm
 A 17-year-old boy was charged in connection with a crash that killed a 32-year-old man, police said.
Accident in Avalon Park
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CHICAGO — Dorian Williams, 17, was trying to ditch police when he allegedly blew through four stop signs and caused a crash that killed a man on his 32nd birthday and injured two other people Tuesday.

Williams is charged with reckless homicide and DUI for driving his car into three people, injuring two of them and killing Eugene Ratcliff, who was celebrating his 32nd birthday.

The teenager was also charged with driving under the influence causing death, two counts of driving under the influence causing bodily harm and marijuana possession.

When Williams appeared in court for a brief bond hearing Friday, Assistant State's Attorney Heather Kent said that police spotted him speeding east on 82nd Street shortly after 8 p.m.

After he blew through a stop sign, the police turned on their lights and went after the speeding Volkswagen Jetta, Kent said. But Williams was intent on escape.

"Officers turned off their emergency lights, but continued to follow (Williams') vehicle and observed him drive through four more posted stop signs," she said.

At the intersection of 83rd Street and Blackstone Avenue, a driver traveling westbound who did not have a stop sign crashed into Williams' car, which then careened into three people standing at the southwest corner of the intersection.

Ratcliff was pronounced dead at 9:41 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office. His brother said Ratcliff was running an errand before the two were to head downtown to celebrate his birthday.

The Jetta didn't stop until it crashed into a nearby house. He later tested positive for cannabis, and officers recovered cannabis for the car.

Cook County Judge James Brown ordered Williams held on $500,000.