Glasgow Announces Man Who Pleads Guilty to Aggravated Driving Under the Influence Sentenced to Five Years in Prison for 2019 Crash Resulting in Pedestrian’s Death

February 17, 2023 JOLIET—Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow has announced that Samuel Byrd, 34, of Joliet, pled guilty today before Circuit Judge Carmen Goodman to one count of Aggravated Driving Under the Influence, a Class 2 felony, for causing the 2019 death of a pedestrian in Joliet.  Byrd was sentenced to five years in prison for the fatal crash.

On June 6, 2019 at about 4 a.m., Byrd was driving the truck that struck and killed 36-year-old Alex Dauzvardis as he was walking to work in the area of West Park Front Street and Park Drive in Joliet.  Officers pronounced the victim dead at the scene. Byrd initially fled the scene after hitting the victim with his truck, and returned on foot approximately 14 minutes later. He submitted to a blood and urine sample. His blood alcohol concentration level was.168 (a BAC of .08 is above the legal level) and his urine showed that he had recently ingested cocaine as well as THC.

“Samuel Byrd deliberately got behind the wheel of his truck and drove that morning, despite having been drinking alcohol and engaging in drug use throughout the night and into the early morning hours. His actions tragically ended the life of a father, brother, and son who was simply minding his own business and walking down the street,” Glasgow said. “Sadly, no amount of time in prison can make up for the loss of his life or repair the wounds to his family and loved ones.”

Byrd will receive 1106 days credit and will serve a remaining 445 days in prison.

Glasgow commended Assistant State’s Attorney Erin Krone, Victim Witness Advocate Jessica Gil, Secretary Traci Knutson, and the Joliet Police Department for their dedication and hard work in this matter.