FOX LAKE, Ill. - Two people were killed and another was seriously injured Sunday after a vehicle crashed into a tree in the northwest suburbs following a police pursuit that started in Wisconsin.
The driver, 28-year-old Theopolis Owens, crashed in Fox Lake while being pursued by an officer who tried to pull him over for speeding in Genoa City, Wisconsin, according to Fox Lake police Chief Jimmy Lee and the Lake County coroner’s office.
Owens refused to stop and traveled through several jurisdictions in northern Illinois, authorities said. As he passed through Spring Grove on Route 173, an officer from that jurisdiction joined the pursuit, Lee said.
Owens lost control of the Toyota Camry about 7:20 p.m. in Fox Lake, authorities said.
The Camry left the roadway on Route 173 near North Converse Road, hit a guard rail and then hit several trees, Lee said.
A bystander was able to pull Owens and the two other occupants, both 18-year-old women, from the car before it combusted, authorities said.
Owens, a Chicago man, and Kayla Crews, of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, were both pronounced dead at Northern Illinois Medical Center, the coroner’s office said. The third passenger, of Waukegan, had surgery and was listed in serious condition, according to Lee.
An autopsy Monday said that both Owens and Crews died of blunt force injuries caused by the wreck, according to the coroner’s office.
No Fox Lake officers were involved in the pursuit during the time of the crash, Lee said.
The Genoa City police department did not reply to messages seeking comment.