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Crash leads to DUI for Lake Villa police chief’s son

Updated: August 19, 2012 1:59AM

The son of the chief of the Lake Villa Police Department was arrested for driving under the influence in the village after a crash near Milwaukee and Cedar avenues.

Robert Roth, 23, of 20929 San Rem Ave., in Venetian Village, unincorporated Lake Villa, was arrested and charged last week with DUI, reckless driving, improper lane usage and failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, Lt. Dennis Garaty said Tuesday. The information was included in the police report provided by the department.

The younger Roth does not live with his father, Chief Ron Roth.

“My son made a very tragic decision to drive a motor vehicle with passengers while impaired and he will be responsible for his actions through the court system, which I am confident will treat him no different than anyone else,” said the chief.

“As the chief of police I have delegated my authority of case approval and follow-up on this arrest to one of my command officers to further ensure no conflict of interest,” he added.

The accident occurred Thursday, June 14, at 12:51 a.m. in the 200 block of North Milwaukee Avenue (Route 83) and police responded to a call of a 2006 silver Chevrolet Trailblazer striking a tree. When they arrived they found four occupants inside the vehicle.

All were transported to Advocate Condell Medical Center, Libertyville, for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. Roth was arrested and charged after he left the hospital that morning. He is scheduled to appear in Lake County Circuit Court on July 13.

Chief Roth said he was informed about 1 a.m. that “my 23-year-old adult son, Robert Roth who lives independently at his Lake Villa residence, was operating a motor vehicle with three passengers. The car was involved in a one-vehicle accident ... It was related to me that there was evidence of alcohol being a contributing factor,” the chief said.

“As the department’s chief executive officer I ordered my command personnel to handle the crash investigation by ‘the book’ to include making an arrest if warranted,” he said.

“The Lake Villa Police Department and I have a zero-tolerance policy on operating a motor vehicle while impaired,” the chief added.

Some anonymous callers to The News-Sun said the incident was being covered up, but Garaty said the information was being released routinely along with other blotter reports at the regularly scheduled time.

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