Parents Guilty for Teen Drinking Party

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

WAUKEGAN, Ill. (AP) - A suburban Chicago couple was found guilty of allowing underage drinking in their home on the night of a car crash that killed two teens authorities said had been at their house.

The jury also found Jeffrey and Sara Hutsell, both 53, guilty of endangering the life of a child and attempting to obstruct justice for lying to police officers the night of the crash.

Officials alleged the Hutsells allowed their teenage son to have a party with beer and rum in their basement on October 13. Two 18-year-olds who authorities say attended the party, Daniel Bell and Ross Trace, later died in a car crash not far from the Hutsells' home.

Bell, who was driving, had a blood-alcohol level of 0.132 percent when he died, according to autopsy results. The legal limit for drivers older than 21 is 0.08.

Jeffrey Hutsell testified Friday that he saw no indication that the teens were drinking and that he would never condone it if he knew.

But Assistant State's Attorney Ari Fisz said there were 29 teens in the basement with beer and rum, and it should have been obvious to Jeffrey Hutsell that there was drinking going on.

The Hutsells, convicted Saturday, face up to a year in prison.

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