Man arrested, ID’d after Hometown police officer killed while investigating crash

Chicago News

HOMETOWN, Ill. — A man has been arrested after a Hometown Police Department officer was killed Saturday morning while investigating a car crash.

The officer was investigating a DUI crash and was standing near the road when he was fatally struck by a white sedan in the 9000 block of Pulaski Road at approximately 3 a.m. Saturday.

James Kouski, 58, a 34-year veteran of the Hometown Police Department, succumbed to his injuries shortly after the crash.

“It was terrible to wake up this morning and hear the news about the fallen officer. We have such a small, tight-knit community here,” Hometown resident Robert Beatz-Ventura said.

A memorial procession was held Saturday afternoon for the fallen officer where he was saluted by residents and other local police departments.

“He always wanted to do things right,” Hometown police chief Lou Dominguez said.

The driver, later identified as Otis Pruitt, 27, of Oak Lawn, has been charged with reckless homicide, felony DUI and failure to yield to an emergency vehicle, which is also known as Scott’s Law.

The incident remains under investigation, with assistance from the Cook County Sheriff, Illinois State Police, Oak Lawn police and Evergreen Park police.

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