Trucker charged with four counts of reckless homicide but not DUI

| 8/26/2005

A trucker who was involved in a wreck that killed four people in Indiana on Sunday, Aug. 21, was given a sobriety field test at the scene and tested positive for alcohol, according to an affidavit filed in the Elkhart County District Court.

Stanislaw Gil, 53, of Fox Lake, IL, has been charged with four counts of reckless homicide, state authorities said.

Gil was driving on the Indiana Toll Road near Bristol on Sunday afternoon when his rig slammed into the car in front of him, triggering a chain reaction in the middle of a construction zone. Gil was not injured and was taken to the Elkhart County Jail. He remains there with bond set at $100,000.

State troopers testified in the affidavit that Gil spoke in broken English and that they “detected an odor of alcohol” coming from him. The initial field test revealed a blood alcohol content of .05 percent. However, Gil will not be charged with operating under the influence because Indiana’s legal limit is .08 percent.

Four people – a couple from Michigan, a woman from California and man from Ohio, were killed in the accident. Seven others were injured.

The accident, which occurred at about 4:45 p.m., shut down the eastbound lanes of the toll road for five hours.

Joel Williams, deputy prosecutor, said he didn’t know whether or not Gil had a valid commercial drivers license, and that he could face additional charges depending on the extent of the injuries suffered by the seven others in the wreck.

“We are trying to ascertain injuries of the other people, because those could result in further charges if they have serious bodily injury,” he said.

– By Terry Scruton, senior writer