State Police Say They Weren’t To Blame For Deadly Motorcycle Crash

WARRENVILLE, Ill. (CBS) — Illinois State Police say contrary to an accusation, a state trooper did not cause a crash that left a motorcyclist dead last week on the Ronald Reagan Memorial Tollway.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, friends of Nicholas Linton, 29, of Aurora, say he was thrown from his motorcycle on Interstate 88 when he swerved to avoid an State Police squad car and it cut him off near Winfield Road.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports

Linton died from the injuries he suffered in the crash at 9:15 p.m. this past Friday.

Contrary to what Linton’s friends claim, the police report for the crash says two motorcycles were involved.

“One swerved into another, causing the second to take evasive action,” said an officer reading from the report.

Illinois State Police issued a two-paragraph press release Wednesday stating “the officer’s enforcement action was not a contributing factor” to the crash and Linton’s death.

“The officer followed Department policy in taking enforcement action while observing three motorcycles traveling at a high rate of speed in front of the officer’s vehicle,” according to the statement.

“Basically the investigation remains an active investigation,” said Monique Bond, public information officer for the Illinois State Police.

“What I can say at this point is based on the preliminary investigation reports and the in-car camera video that we’ve been able to review, the officer’s enforcement actions did not contribute to the crash and department policy was followed.”

State Police also released still shots from the squad car’s in-car video camera just prior to the crash that show the motorcyclists in front of the squad car. According to State Police, the photos are evidence the officer was not a contributing factor to the crash or Linton’s death. The video also shows the recorded speed of the officer’s vehicle, which tops 92 mph in one clip.

“Based on the video, the motorcycles were in front of the officer’s vehicle, and it also captures one of the motorcycles’ brake lights in front of the officer’s vehicle,” said Bond.

Linton’s friends and fellow riders from the RPM Riders United Motorcycle Club placed a cross at the site of the crash Wednesday.

The Aurora Beacon-News contributed to this report, via the Sun-Times Media Wire.

  • Bill S.

    Cop should NEVER have been chasing them at 92 mph. Does video show emergency lights on cop car activated? This was a case of the cop should not have attempted to catch a crotch rocket that was designed as a police-avoidance-vehicle to begin with.

    • Roberta Waker

      Really? I thought motorcycles were designed for fun, not to avoid the police while breaking the law. If that’s the case, the police officer did the right thing and Linton was responsible for his own death if he was doing 92 mph. The in-car video will tell all and the camera doesn’t lie; so now we know what REALLY happened.

      • Bill S.


    • Fred

      Wrong. The fault lies with the motorcycle rider(s). The Trooper took enforcement action that was consistent with both the law and agency policy. The rider placed his own life, and the lives of others, in jeopardy with his reckless actions.

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  • KK

    You are completely ignorant Fred…. I am a female rider and had a state trooper pull up next to me and give me the middle finger, pull in front of me, slam on his brakes and take off… No lights were on and I was only going 60-65 keeping up with traffic on a Saturday evening…. You see the shots prior to accident…. please explain the damage to the officers rear quarter panel of his car….. Don’t comment on something you have no clue about! There is no reason to endanger a life regardless of speed!

  • Eddie Murphy Jr.

    State Police hate crotch rockets ! Always a vendetta against them, even law-biding ones!

  • Nikia Thurmond

    I agree his comment is very f-ing ignorant. If you watch the small snippets they show, he was riding his ass at that speed, so its natural reaction to hit your breaks so that ignorant ass-riders back off. They didn’t know he was a trooper until he passed them by. I will bet that there is a lot more footage that is missing such as, when his wife came to the scene to comfort her husband she was tackled to the pavement like a football player


    Let’s just have no rules for speeding cycles.Just rules for everyone else.

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