A car explosion in Chicago’s River North neighborhood left its 21-year-old passenger killed, authorities say. The driver of the vehicle allegedly fled the scene on foot and reportedly committed suicide later that day.
On January 26, 2017, at approximately 1:30 a.m., Anthony Milder, 34, was speeding in his 2009 Nissan coupe down the 400 block of West Ontario Street when he crashed into two utility poles at Orleans Street near the Ontario Street feeder ramp. The force of the collision reportedly caused the vehicle to split in half and burst into flames. Parts of the vehicle, including a bumper and a stereo, came off onto the road, while a light on one of the poles fell to the ground and the other pole was knocked over.
Mr. Milder’s passenger, Alejandra “Aly” Damian of Joliet, was pulled from the wreckage at approximately 1:40 a.m. and pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office and the Chicago Police Department.
Mr. Milder reportedly jumped out of the vehicle and fled the scene on foot, leaving a trail of blood for “at least a block.” Police found him later that day hanging in his apartment in the 1800 block of North Wood Street in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood. He was pronounced dead at 6:23 p.m. A subsequent autopsy ruled Mr. Milder’s death a suicide.
Authorities closed the Ontario Street feeder ramp for approximately eight hours following the crash for an investigation and for cleanup.
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