Semi-Truck Driver Charged In IL Trooper Deatherage’s Death

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

FeltonCOLLINSVILLE, IL (KTVI) – A Hinesville, Georgia man has been taken into custody in the death of an Illinois state trooper.

Reckless Homicide charges were issued against Johnny B. Felton, 52,  for the November 2012 accident that killed Trooper Kyle Deatherage.

The Montgomery County States Attorney says Felton was speeding when the semi-tractor trailer he was driving struck and killed Trooper Deatherage. Felton is also charged with driving on a license that did not allow him to drive in Illinois.

Deatherage was standing next to a car during a traffic stop when the accident happened.

Felton was taken into custody Tuesday morning in Georgia and will appear in Illinois for arraignment of pending charges.  Felton could face up to 14 years in prison.  Bond is set at $250,000.

Dot Transportation, Inc. released this statement:

“The management and employees of Dot Transportation, Inc. (DTI) continue to express their deepest sympathies to the family of the Illinois patrolman who lost his life in a tragic accident on I-55 last November.

Today we learned that the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office has filed charges against DTI driver John Felton of reckless homicide and allegedly driving a commercial vehicle in Illinois when he did not hold an interstate commercial driver’s license (CDL).  

DTI has fully cooperated with the authorities and assisted them in their investigation as requested. DTI has not completed its own internal investigation nor has it seen all of the information that Grand Jury reviewed prior to issuing the Indictment.

It is DTI’s policy that no driver will drive for DTI unless he or she has a valid medical card and is in full compliance with the Federal Motor Safety Act.  DTI was not informed of and unaware of any reason which would indicate this driver was unable to safely operate DTI’s truck.  DTI cannot release information about the driver’s medical condition because of statutory restrictions and out of respect for the employee’s privacy.

The driver in question is a 25-year veteran of the armed forces who rose to the rank of sergeant and commanded 80 troops.  He was hired by DTI after an honorable discharge and had a clean driving record at the time of hire.”

Related Stories:
USDOT Calls Driver that struck Trooper Deatherage an “Imminent Hazard”
Family, Friends Mourn Trooper Deatherage
Illinois State Troooper Killed In Crash Volunteered for ShiftIL State Trooper Struck And Killed On I-55