By Vicky Wedig

Staff Writer

A Wind Lake man pleaded not guilty Tuesday to six felony offenses in connection with a December crash in the Town of Troy that injured six people.

Nicholas D. Lecus, 27, was charged Aug. 27 in Walworth County Circuit Court with first-degree reckless injury and five counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety.

Lecus appeared in court Tuesday free on bond with his attorney, Craig Mastantuono, of Milwaukee, before Judge James L Carlson. He entered not guilty pleas on all counts Tuesday, waived his right to a speedy trial and moved for a substitution of judges. Lecus appeared before Judge James L. Carlson on Tuesday and had his preliminary hearing Oct. 6 before Judge Phillip A. Koss, but Judge David Reddy is the official assigned to the case. Carlson deferred scheduling another hearing on the matter until a new judge is assigned.

According to the criminal complaint, Lecus was driving a Chevrolet Colorado truck west on Highway 20 on Dec. 6 when he tried to pass a truck in front of him in a no-passing zone and crashed head-on into a car traveling east on Highway 20.

Four people in the eastbound Toyota Corolla – Joseph A. Larson and James Stenson and his then 6-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son – were injured, according to the complaint. Larson was hospitalized for 16 days and underwent surgery for injuries that included a broken leg, broken arm, fractured vertebrae, facial fractures, an open fracture of his left elbow and bleeding on his brain, according to the complaint. The 6-year-old girl was hospitalized for a few days and underwent surgery for two broken bones in her leg, according to the complaint.

Two people in the truck in front of the truck Lecus was driving – his friend, Nicholas Zingale, and a passenger, Alexander Hornack – were also injured, according to the complaint. When police went to Froedtert Hospital on Dec. 6 to speak with Zingale and Hornack, Zingale was in a neck brace, had a large facial cut and his right leg was immobilized, according to the complaint. Hornack was unconscious, but police later learned his injuries were not life-threatening, according to the complaint.

Crash data retrieved from the truck Lecus was driving revealed the truck was traveling 89 mph five seconds before the crash and 91 mph one second before impact and didn’t brake, according to the complaint.


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