Police seek driver who fled I-74 exit ramp crash

Police seek driver who fled I-74 exit ramp crash

CHAMPAIGN — Police are looking for a Champaign man who fled the scene of an accident on an Interstate 74 exit ramp Friday night.

Illinois State Police at Pesotum said about 7:30 p.m., Thomas Buttry, 47, was driving fast on the westbound exit ramp to Prospect Avenue when he failed to slow down and hit the rear end of a sport utility vehicle driven by Cherri Benefield, 54, of Champaign.

The impact then sent Benefield's vehicle into the rear of another SUV driven by Martin McLain, 43, of St. Joseph. He was not injured, police said.

Buttry then fled the scene and his car was located several blocks away in an alley. His passenger, Billy Smith, 52, of Danville, was taken to Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana, where he was listed in good condition Saturday.

Benefield and her passenger, Blayne Benefield, 19, of Champaign, were taken to Provena Covenant Medical Center in Urbana, but no information was available on their conditions. Both of them were wearing seat belts, the report said.


News-Gazette.com embraces discussion of both community and world issues. We welcome you to contribute your ideas, opinions and comments, but we ask that you avoid personal attacks, vulgarity and hate speech. We reserve the right to remove any comment at our discretion, and we will block repeat offenders' accounts. To post comments, you must first be a registered user, and your username will appear with any comment you post. Happy posting.

Login or register to post comments

sameeker wrote on February 05, 2012 at 12:02 am

Did they get him or not? It is hard to tell from the story.