Woman gets 13 years for DUI crash that injured state trooper

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SUN-TIMES MEDIA WIRE - A 61-year-old woman has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for driving drunk and causing a crash that left an Illinois State Police trooper seriously injured more than two years ago.

Leslie Thurow was sentenced Thursday to 13 years in prison for failure to report an accident and aggravated DUI, according to Illinois State Police and Cook County court records. She has been held at the Cook County Jail since her arrest.

About 2:45 p.m. on Sept. 6, 2014, Trooper Michael Cokins was conducting a traffic stop on northbound I-294 at North Avenue in the western suburbs, police said.

He was on the right shoulder of the roadway when he was struck by a vehicle driven by Thurow, police said. The impact of the crash hurled Cokins over the hood of the vehicle he had pulled over.

Thurow continued driving north on I-294, where she struck an SUV carrying a family of four, police said. The SUV rolled over, and Thurow’s vehicle crashed into a concrete median.

Cokins suffered 15 broken bones, underwent eight surgeries and 17 months of therapy, police said. The family of four was also hospitalized.

Thurow was found to be intoxicated at the time of the crash, police said.

Cokins returned to full duty on May 1 and resumed his original assignment, patrolling the north Tri-State, police said.