Sheriff’s Office asks for homicide charges in Middleton crash that killed 3 teens

Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 3:30 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 12, 2021 at 10:28 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Dane Co. Sheriff’s Office is asking prosecutors to file homicide charges against the driver involved in last week’s Middleton crash that killed three students.

The Sheriff’s Office stated its detectives believe the driver, who was identified as Eric Mehring, was intoxicated and speeding when his 2016 Jaguar rear-ended the teens’ vehicle on Oct. 2, sending their car into a field where it caught fire.

(l-r) Simon Bilessi, Evan Kratochwill, and John "Jack" Miller
(l-r) Simon Bilessi, Evan Kratochwill, and John "Jack" Miller(Jon Szczepanski/Wisocnsin Rush Soccer Club & Middleton-Cross Plains School District)

“This tragic event could’ve been avoided, should’ve been avoided,” Sheriff Kalvin Barrett told NBC15. “Due to a very poor decision by Mr. Mehring we lost the lives of three young individuals.”

Simon Bilessi, Evan Kratochwill, and John “Jack” Miller died in the crash. The Sheriff’s Office noted that because of the seriousness of the injuries the 30-year-old Mehring suffered in the wreck, he has not been taken to the Dane Co. Jail, and remains hospitalized.

“If we had the appropriate medical facilities at the Dane Co. Sheriff’s Office he might’ve been housed here in our custody, but due to our inability to provide that kind of medical treatment he is at the hospital,” Sheriff Barrett said.

Detectives have asked the Dane Co. District Attorney’s Office to file charges of:

  • Second Degree Reckless Homicide (3 counts)
  • Homicide by Intoxicated Use of a Motor Vehicle (3 counts)
  • Homicide by Negligent Operation of a Motor Vehicle (3 counts)
  • Second Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety

The Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate the crash and asks anyone with information about it to call its tip line at 608-284-6900.

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