Almost a year after a DUI crash killed one person, an East St. Louis man is charged

An East St. Louis man faces multiple felony charges in St. Clair County Court following a car accident that killed another man last October.

Dontez G. White, 28, was charged Tuesday with four counts of aggravated driving under the influence and one count of reckless homicide, charging documents against him state.

According to the documents, White was driving a 2005 Chevrolet Tahoe on U.S. 50 in Lebanon on Oct. 6, 2018, when he got into a head-on crash with another vehicle. The driver of the other car, John P. Heatherly, 57, of Fairview Heights, was killed.

White and his passenger, a then 7-year-old girl, were transported to a hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening.

The documents state that White was driving with a blood alcohol level of greater than 0.08% and had trace amounts of amphetamine and methamphetamine in his system at the time of the crash.

It is unclear why the charges were brought almost a year after the accident. Illinois State Police, the agency that investigated the crash, could not be reached for comment Thursday evening.

Hana Muslic has been a public safety reporter for the Belleville News-Democrat since August 2018, covering everything from crime and courts to accidents, fires and natural disasters. She is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s College of Journalism and her previous work can be found in The Lincoln Journal-Star and The Kansas City Star.