UPDATE: Charges Filed Against Driver in Fatal Crash

By: WIFR Newsroom
By: WIFR Newsroom
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UPDATE: ROCKFORD (WIFR) – Investigators say drugs, alcohol and speed caused a spring crash that killed 17-year-old Robert Wilson and not police, as some of Wilson’s family members claimed.

The Winnebago County State’s Attorney says the driver was under the influence at the time of the crash.

“It’s been hard on me, this has been really hard. To see your child paralyzed.”

Sharrie Bradley says it’s been a tough few months taking care of her son Drakkar Malone. The 25-year-old lost the use of his legs and needs 24-hour care since his car crashed into a tree in March. That accident killed 17-year-old Robert Wilson and now Malone is being blamed for his death.

“I think it’s an injustice. I mean I’m sorry, he’s really ill, I mean my son is really ill."

“At this point in time there is a warrant out for Mr. Malone.”

Malone is charged with reckless homicide and investigators say he was high, drunk, and speeding at 85 miles per hour when he crashed.

“I believe that the Winnebago-Boone County Integrity Task Force, along with the Rockford Police Department have conducted a thorough investigation.”

Family members on the other hand say Rockford Police caused the Accident. The Winnebago-Boone County Integrity Task Force didn’t find damage to the RPD Squad cars or evidence after reviewing dash cam video and GPS locations. Bradley says this has been hard on her family and fears jail time could take a toll on her son’s health.

“He won’t get the care that he needs if they put him in jail because he has special needs and cares that he has to be taken care of.”

Officers say the care Malone was in was involved in a shooting before the accident. However now charges have been filed in that case. If convicted, Malone faces up to more than 30 years in prison. His bond is set at $1 million.


ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The Winnebago and Boone County Integrity Task Force says there is no evidence suggesting that a Rockford squad car hit another vehicle sending it into a tree.

Robert Wilson, 17, died in that crash on March 4, 2014 near the intersection of 15th Avenue and 7th Street. Some of Wilson's family members accused Rockford Police of causing the crash.

Illinois State Police Lieutenant Todd Shaver tells 23 News the task force looked at all RPD squad cars for damage and found none.

Investigators also reviewed dash cam video and GPS locations of all police cars near the crash and none show a Rockford squad hitting the car.

Officers believe the car Wilson was in was involved in a shooting before the accident and say the driver Drakkar Malone, 25, took off when he saw police.

Shaver says Malone was allegedly going at least 85 miles per hour when he lost control and hit a tree. A 16 year old girl was also hurt in the crash, but survived.

Wilson's uncle Pastor Melvin Brown says his family does not accept the ruling.

"Our family knows that they have the wrong person. It's not Kar Malone that caused that accident. It was an officer that hit that car that caused the accident. It took them nine months to figure out how they are going to go about covering it up and think that the community is just going to accept it," Brown said.

Shaver says an arrest warrant has been issued for Malone but Winnebago County State's Attorney Joe Bruscato wont say if any new charges have been filed.



UPDATE: ROCKFORD (WIFR) – A task force is meeting with Rockford City leaders to decide whether to investigate a car accident that left a 17-year-old dead last week.

Rockford resident Robert Wilson died in a crash Tuesday, near 15th Avenue and 7th Street. Preliminary reports show Wilson was in a vehicle driven by a man who took off from police. He then crashed into a tree, killing Wilson and injuring himself and a 16-year-old girl.

Officers believe the car was involved in a shooting that happened before the accident. Family members of the victim believe Rockford Police caused the crash. The Rockford Police Department has asked the Winnebago-Boon County Integrity Task Force to finish the investigation.


ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The teen killed after a car crash early Tuesday morning is laid to rest Saturday but some at his funeral are questioning whether Rockford Police officers played a role in the young man's death.

Robert Wilson, 17, of Rockford, died after being ejected from the car he was riding it. It hit a tree around 1am Tuesday morning near 7th Street and 15th Avenue. Family gathered for his funeral Saturday, presided over by his uncle, Pastor Melvin Brown of Kingdom Authority Church of Rockford. Before the ceremony, Brown told reporters that he met with 25-year-old Drakkar Malone, the driver of the car Wilson was riding in. According to Brown, Malone alleges that a Rockford Police car rear ended him that's why he crashed into the tree. Brown says Malone is still in the hospital and is paralyzed. A 16 year old girl was also hurt in the crash.

Investigators say the incident happened Tuesday when officers were looking into shots fired near College Avenue and Kishwaukee. The car the trio was in sped off when they saw police arrive to the neighborhood. The car ended up crashing near 7th Street and 15th Avenue. The Rockford Police Department says the officers did not chase Malone’s vehicle at a high rate of speed after it took off; however, Brown says the police aren’t telling the full story.

“They’re trying to build relationship with the African American community so we hoping that they come out with the truth if a police car hit that car, we want you to come out with the truth and admit that," says Brown.

The Rockford Police Department has asked the Winnebago- Boone County Integrity Task Force to take over the case. They are expected to make that decision Monday.



UPDATE: New developments in this week's fatal car accident that killed a local teenager.

The Winnebago-Boone County Integrity Task Force has been asked by Rockford Police to take over the investigation.

The panel made up of police chiefs from surrounding departments will meet with City of Rockford leaders on Monday to decide whether they will take on the case.



ROCKFORD (WIFR) – A Rockford teen is dead after investigators say the car he was riding in took off from police and then crashed into a tree early this morning.

The victim is 17-year-old Robert Wilson of Rockford. Police say he was thrown from the car after it crashed near Broadway.

The incident started around 12:45 Tuesday morning when police got a call for shots fired near Kishwaukee and College Avenue. Officers were told a dark colored Monte Carlo was involved. When they arrived to the neighborhood, a similar looking car sped off and ended up crashing into a tree at 7th Street and 15th Avenue. Inside the car was Wilson, the 25-year-old driver, Drakkar Malone and a 16-year-old-girl. Malone and the 16-year-old had to be pried out of the car and are still in the hospital. At least one is in serious condition. A neighbor says he watched the entire scene unfold.

“I just hope that everybody saw this, the kids that watched this, that they learn from this. Don’t be running from cops or shooting people because you know karma will get you and it sucks this kid had to die,” said Christian Burgos.

Police say the three were friends. So far, no charges have been filed against Malone or the 16-year-old girl. Since she’s a minor, her name is not being released.

Police won’t say if they found a gun in the car, but they did say they didn’t find shell casings or any property damaged by gunfire at college and Kishwaukee.


UPDATE: Police have identified the teen killed in this morning's crash on 15th Ave. and 7th Street.

Police say he is 17-year-old Robert Wilson.

A preliminary autopsy shows he died from blunt trauma to the head.


UPDATE: ROCKFORD (WIFR)-- The 17 year teenage boy who was involved in a serious car accident near the intersection of 15th Ave. and 7th St. in Rockford has died.

Police say the car the teenager was in attempted to flee from officers around 1 am this morning. A 25 year old male driver then crashed into a tree ejecting the 17 year old from the car. The driver and 16 year girl who was also a passenger were sent to a local hospital to be treated for serious but non-life threatening injuries.

The intersection still remains closed.

ROCKFORD (WIFR)- Three people are involved in a serious and potentially fatal car accident that happened around 12:45 this morning near the intersection of 15th Avenue and 7th Street in Rockford.

Rockford Police were responding to a report of multiple shots being fired in the area of Kishwaukee Street and College Avenue. Reports said the gun shots came from a dark colored Monte Carlo. While checking the area, officers located the suspicious vehicle. The vehicle then attempted to flee the area but eventually crashed into a tree.

A 17 year old passenger was ejected from the vehicle. He was sent to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries.

A 25 year old man who was driving and a 16 year old female passenger were also sent to a local hospital, however their injuries are being reported as serious but non-life threatening. All three people are from Rockford.


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