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Prosecutors: Illinois man accused of reckless driving on I-94 said he’s blind, ‘God was guiding him’

Tomasz Ruszkowski

Tomasz Ruszkowski

RACINE COUNTY — An Illinois driver accused in connection with a case of reckless driving on I-94 in Racine County on Friday, March 13 told investigators he’s blind, “couldn’t see,” and “God was guiding him and showing him the way,” according to prosecutors.

Deputies responded to a report of a driver in a truck headed northbound on I-94 in excess of 100 miles per hour and swerving.

The vehicle was spotted by a deputy at Mile Marker 333, at which point the criminal complaint said the driver swerved from the No. 2 lane to the median concrete barrier — nearly hitting another driver, who had to “aggressively” hit the brakes in order to avoid a crash. The truck then almost hit the barrier, swerving from the median to the shoulder concrete barrier — the driver speeding up in excess of 100 miles per hour. The complaint said the driver swerved between lanes for a half mile before pulling over — nearly striking a barrier near Mile Marker 332.

The complaint said the driver was identified as Tomasz Ruszkowski, 65, of Des Plaines, Illinois. According to prosecutors, Ruszkowski indicated “he was blind,” “couldn’t see,” and “couldn’t open his eyes,” and he was “driving because God was guiding him and showing him the way.” Ruszkowski’s speech was slurred and he was incoherent at times, speaking nonsense in English and Polish to investigators, who noted an odor of intoxicants. Prosecutors said Ruszkowski stumbled out of the vehicle.

When deputies tried handcuffing him, the complaint said he “went limp” and fell to his knees before attempting to hold his hands together — yelling incoherent words in English and Polish — refusing to get to his feet. Prosecutors said he attempted to wiggle free and kick his feet around.

Investigators found a crack pipe with burnt residue in the console of the truck, and a syringe in the glove box, the complaint said. Ruszkowski was taken to the hospital, where officials noted track marks on his arms. A blood sample was taken, and the complaint noted that Ruszkowski spit on two deputies.

One felony and three misdemeanors were filed against the Des Plaines, Illinois man on March 16:

  • First-degree recklessly endangering safety
  • Resisting an officer
  • Disorderly conduct
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia

An adjourned initial court appearance was scheduled for March 20.

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