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No charge in death of pedestrian by Illinois cop

January 9, 2021 GMT

SOUTH BELOIT, Ill. (AP) — A northern Illinois police officer who struck and killed a pedestrian last summer won’t be charged, a prosecutor said Friday.

Michael Guzman, 35, the father of five children, was walking inside the left lane of traffic at 2:30 a.m. when he was hit in South Beloit in August.

“The officer’s squad car video captured the incident,” Winnebago County State’s Attorney J. Hanley said. “The death of Mr. Guzman was a tragedy. However, based on the evidence in this case, I cannot conclude that the police officer committed a criminal act.”

Officer Sawyer Kurth immediately stopped his car to aid Guzman, who apparently had been drinking and had a very high blood-alcohol level, Hanley said.


A lifelong friend, Manuel Salgado, said he wants to see the evidence.

“If it came out it was a horrible accident we would have to just live with that. As of right now, there are too many questions and not enough answers.” Salgado told the Rockford Register Star.