Semi driver charged in November crash that killed 4, injured 12 - KMOV.com

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Semi driver charged in November crash that killed 4, injured 12

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20-year-old Hailey Bertels and 17-year-old sister Madisen Bertels were killed in the crash. (Credit: KMOV) 20-year-old Hailey Bertels and 17-year-old sister Madisen Bertels were killed in the crash. (Credit: KMOV)
Vivian Vu, a sophomore at Missouri Southern State University, died at 12:40 p.m. Thursday at a St. Louis hospital from injuries sustained in the eight-vehicle crash Vivian Vu, a sophomore at Missouri Southern State University, died at 12:40 p.m. Thursday at a St. Louis hospital from injuries sustained in the eight-vehicle crash
Mohammed Y. Jama was charged with four counts of reckless homicide and eight counts of aggravated reckless driving after killing four people in an accident in November 2017 on I-55 in Madison County, Ill. (Credit: Madison County Sheriff's Office) Mohammed Y. Jama was charged with four counts of reckless homicide and eight counts of aggravated reckless driving after killing four people in an accident in November 2017 on I-55 in Madison County, Ill. (Credit: Madison County Sheriff's Office)

HAMEL, Ill. (KMOV.com) -- Madison County State's Attorney Tom Gibbons filed charges Monday against the semi-truck driver who plowed into several vehicles on Interstate 55 near Hamel Nov. 21, killing four. 

Mohamed Jama, 53, of Colorado is charged with four counts of reckless homicide and eight counts of aggravated reckless driving. According to Gibbons' office, the investigation into the crash concluded Jama was driving his Cascadia Freightliner too fast for traffic conditions in a construction zone. 

Video: 'One of the worst accidents I've seen in my life'; sisters killed in crash that injured 12 others

The report also said he failed to slow down enough to avoid being a danger to other drivers. 

Four people died of injuries sustained during that multi-vehicle crash.

The crash happened around 6:15 p.m. Nov. 21 near mile marker 27 in Illinois when a semi-truck plowed through seven other vehicles, all traveling at highway speeds.

Read: School remembers 'amazing and loved' Staunton sisters killed in I-55 crash

"This is one of the worst accidents I've seen my entire life," said Geoffrey Schlechte, who was a member of the response team on scene. "This is terrible."

Hailey Bertels, 20 and her sister Madisen Bertels, 17, both from Staunton, were killed in the crash.

Two days after the crash, Vivian Vu, a sophomore at Missouri Southern State University, died at a St. Louis area hospital from injuries sustained in the crash.

On Nov. 30, police said a fourth victim, Tori Carroll, 20, of Alhambra, Illinois, also died of her injuries.

The eight-vehicle accident shut down the highway into the night Nov. 21 as officials worked to uncover the cause of the crash. Stretches of the highway are under construction around the area of the accident, but the site of the crash was in a pocket without any work going on. 

Twelve people total were injured in the crash.

The penalties for reckless homicide range from 3-14 years in prison. For aggravated reckless driving, it's 1-3 years. Jama turned himself in Monday afternoon and is being held at the Madison County Jail with no bond. 

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