Man acquitted of Belleville murders in 2011 believed to be same person who ran roadblock on McKinley Bridge

Illinois

BELLEVILLE, Ill. – A man shot by police after he allegedly ran a police roadblock on the McKinley Bridge last week appears to be the same man who once stood trial in a Belleville triple murder case.

Thirty-two-year-old Darrell Lane of St. Louis was 21 when he was acquitted of the murders of two sisters and their hairdresser at a Belleville beauty salon.

The verdict came in 2011. The murders happened in 2005.

“God is good and we knew (acquittal) was coming,” Lane’s relatives told FOX 2 as Lane walked out of the St. Clair County Jail smiling after his acquittal. He’d been locked up for more than four years awaiting trial.

Authorities believe they now have the same man locked up in a St. Louis jail, awaiting extradition to Madison County, Illinois.

A man with the same name, appearance, and date of birth is accused of running a police roadblock on the McKinley Bridge last week.

Police had closed the bridge to investigate the death of Brooklyn Police Officer Brian Pierce, who was struck and killed by a driver fleeing police. Pierce was out on the bridge putting down spike strips to stop the fleeing car. The driver remains at large.

Later that morning, Lane ran the roadblock as police were investigating the officer’s death, according to Madison County State’s Attorney Tom Haine.

Police shot Lane, who suffered a minor bullet wound.

“Eventually, his car was stopped only by hitting a police car,” Haine said. “It was a very, very risky situation. Multiple police officers had to, we believe the facts will show, dive out of the way protect themselves.”

Investigators found Lane’s fingerprint left in blood in the 2005 case. The print came from the slain hairdresser’s stolen SUV. At trial, Lane’s attorney argued that Lane was one of a number of people who took the SUV for a joy-ride long after the murders. Lane was found not guilty.

He is now a suspect in Officer Pierce’s death.

Lane faces two counts of assault on law enforcement and one count of fleeing in the McKinley Bridge case. All are felony counts with a penalty of up to five years in prison if convicted, Haine said.

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