State trooper struck while assisting motorist during snowstorm

Pecatonica, IL – On Feb. 13, 2021, at approximately 6:30 a.m. Illinois State Police (ISP) officials investigated a two-vehicle traffic crash on Interstate 39 northbound near the Baxter Road exit in Winnebago County, involving a District 16 ISP Trooper.

On the above date at approximately 6:05 a.m., a District 16 Trooper responded to a motorist assist. The Trooper pulled behind the vehicle on the right shoulder with the emergency lights activated and off set his vehicle to the left in order to protect himself and the scene. At approximately 6:30 a.m., as the Trooper was changing the tire in the inclement weather on the left side of the vehicle facing traffic, a Gray Jeep crashed into the rear of the Trooper’s squad car. The vehicle from the motorist assist was not impacted in the crash. This crash marks the fifth ISP Scott’s Law related crash year-to-date in 2021.

The Trooper luckily did not sustain any injuries from this crash. The driver of the Jeep, Aaron D. Honert a 45-year-old male of Belvidere, IL, did not sustain any injuries. Honert was transported to the Winnebago County Jail and charged with; a violation of Scott’s Law, Driving too Fast for Conditions, Illegal Transportation of Alcohol, and Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol. A person who violates Scott’s Law, commits a business offense and faces a fine of no less than $250 or more than $10,000 for a first offense.

The ISP would like to remind the public of the requirements of Scott’s Law, otherwise known as the “Move Over” law. When approaching an emergency vehicle, or any vehicle with their hazard lights activated, drivers are required to slow down and change lanes when it is safe to do so.

“Troopers risk their lives daily to protect the public. We ask that you do your part by paying attention as you drive, and obey Scott’s Law,” stated ISP District 16 Acting Commander, Lieutenant Joseph Blanchette. “These crashes are completely preventable, always drive sober and move over when you approach a stationary vehicle on the side of the road,” added Lieutenant Blanchette.
The public is reminded that all persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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