Woman, son safe after car crashes into home

June 14, 2011 8:23:29 PM PDT
A west suburban woman and her infant son escaped injury when a car crashed into their home. The driver of the car was killed.

The crash happened late Tuesday afternoon near North Aurora. Investigators say the driver blew through a stop sign along Route 31.

The pregnant mother who lives at that home says that moments before the crash, she had a feeling that she needed to leave the house with her baby. The entire vehicle would end up in the nursery, the impact killing the driver.

Tuesday night, the 1999 Chrysler Cirrus was pulled from the badly-damaged home, hours after the people living there barely escaped injury.

"She was in shock, but she just said how lucky and blessed she was that she was able to get the baby out," said neighbor Jennifer Thompson.

Police say the driver, identified as Max Dobner, 19, of Aurora, had been driving east on Mooseheart Road when he blew a stop sign at the T intersection with Route 31, hit a retaining wall and a tree, and went airborne.

"The speed limit is about 45, and they were going around 70. And they didn't stop. They hit the brick wall and the car went flying, propelling up, hitting the tree... went into the house," said Thompson.

The entire vehicle ended up in the home, the impact sending the engine crashing through to the back of the house like a missile. The home is located several dozen yards back from the road.

Minutes earlier, resident Theresa Kettlewell and her one-year-old son had been inside.

Kettlewell, who is pregnant, was too shaken to speak to ABC7 Tuesday night. She told a neighbor her baby had just awoken from a nap prior to the crash.

Thompson said Kettlewell said she was "thankful," and that: "'Something was telling me to go outside at that time, and the baby said he wanted to stay,' and she said: 'No. We need to go outside.'"

Dobner, who was alone in the car, was taken to Mercy Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

A portion of Route 31 was temporarily shut down as investigators combed for evidence.

Police say Dobner's autopsy is scheduled for Thursday. The Kane County Accident Reconstruction Team is investigating.

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