Hit-and-run West Chicago: Naperville man charged in crash that killed bicyclist, court records show

Bicyclist crash was 2nd West Chicago hit-and-run in days

ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Thursday, July 6, 2023
Naperville man charged in hit-and-run that killed bicyclist
West Chicago police are investigating 2 hit-and-run crashes that took place just days and miles apart. A Naperville man has been charged in 1.

WEST CHICAGO, Ill. (WLS) -- A Naperville man has been charged in connection with the more recent of two deadly hit-and-run crashes that took place just miles and days apart in west suburban West Chicago.

John C. Gray, 26, is charged with one felony count of failure to report an accident causing death, DuPage County court records show.

Gray is accused of fatally striking a bicyclist just before 10:50 p.m. Tuesday on Joliet Street near Wilson Street and driving away.

The DuPage County State's Attorney's Office identified the person killed as 40-year-old Renato Vargas-Gutierrez.

He died on the scene, the state's attorney's office said.

Vargas-Gutierrez had been biking south on Joliet Street, while Gray was driving south on Joliet Street, before the crash, DuPage officials said.

Gray was found minutes after the incident near Stevens Court and Continental Drive.

Gray's bond was set at $500,000 Thursday. He faces up to 15 years in prison, if convicted.

"We heard this loud noise, and we didn't think anything of it," neighbor Lily Garcia said.

She said the victim was a familiar sight in the area, riding his bike on busy Joliet Street.

Neighbors said cyclists frequently ride on the road, and it can be dangerous. There is very little room on the shoulder and drivers frequently go faster than the posted speed limit.

"As a cyclist, I have concerns about the safety, or lack thereof, being able to use this road and other roads to get to a path or return from a path," neighbor Larry Granseberry said.

West Chicago police were back on the scene Wednesday morning after another hit-and-run crash over the weekend left a teen pedestrian dead.

That crash took place about 6 p.m. Saturday in the 900-block of Hawthorne Lane, police said.

The DuPage County Coroner's Office identified the person killed as 16-year-old Julio Salinas-Pino of Aurora.

He suffered multiple traumatic injuries after a vehicle hit him, the coroner's office said.

Police said they executed a search warrant Wednesday as part of their investigation, and are speaking with someone who may be a person of interest in the case.

Police were seen searching through the garage of a home on the street where the deadly crash took place Wednesday.

It was not immediately clear how the crash took place.

Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call 630-293-2222.

Gray is next due in court Aug. 3.