Metro-East News

Truck driver accused in fatal crash pleads not guilty

Orlando V. Luke
Orlando V. Luke

A Georgia semi-truck driver, who was involved in a five-vehicle crash resulting in one woman’s death, pleaded not guilty on a two-count indictment Friday, according to St. Clair County court records.

The driver, 47-year-old Orlando V. Luke, was charged with reckless homicide and aggravated driving under the influence in connection to a fatal crash that happened in O’Fallon on election night.

According to the indictment, Luke, of Augusta, Ga., was speeding in a 2009 Kenworth semitrailer that was heading east on U.S. 50 on the night of Nov. 8. The indictment also said Luke was under the influence of cocaine while he was driving that night. O’Fallon Police said Luke had violated a traffic control device and crashed into another vehicle driven by Cheryl Culver.

Culver, 67, was pronounced dead at the scene by a St. Clair County deputy coroner. Five vehicles total, including the semitrailer, were involved. Police had said the crash scene stretched for nearly a quarter-mile.

Court records indicated that Luke remained in the St. Clair County jail with bail set at $250,000. A trial date had not been scheduled as of Tuesday.

Kaitlyn Schwers: 618-239-2526, @kaitlynschwers