Highland Park Teen’s Fatal DUI Trial Set To Start Tuesday
WAUKEGAN, Ill. (STMW) – Following failed attempts to reach a negotiated deal, the trial of 19-year-old Carly Rousso for allegedly running over and killing a 5-year-old girl while driving under the influence of an inhalant is scheduled to begin Tuesday morning.
Rousso and her attorney, Douglas Zeit, have opted for a bench trial in which Judge James Booras will reach the verdict in the case. Attempts by Zeit and prosecutors to reach a negotiated plea deal in the case have been declared “at an impasse.”
The Highland Park teen pleaded not guilty to a felony charge of aggravated DUI resulting in death, punishable by between three and 14 years in prison. She also pleaded not guilty to reckless homicide, which can result in probation or a prison sentence of two to five years.
According to prosecutors, Rousso drove over and killed 5-year-old Jaclyn Santos of Highwood on Central Avenue in downtown Highland Park on Labor Day 2012, after “huffing” a computer cleaning chemical agent.
Despite the failure to reach a resolution, Zeit said the bench trial would be short because much of the information in the case would stipulated and not contested.
Rousso has been free on bail after her family posted a $500,000 bond.
A settlement was reached in a civil case the Santos family filed against Rousso, but details of the agreement have not been released to the public.
Santos was walking with her mother and two siblings on a downtown Highland Park sidewalk when she was run over by a car driven by Rousso, according to prosecutors.
(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2014. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)