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Man charged in crash that killed 2 had cannabis in system: prosecutors

Updated: November 16, 2011 1:24AM

A 35-year-old man charged in a fatal DUI crash that claimed the life of a woman and her 16-year-old son had cannabis in his system at the time of the accident, Cook County prosecutors said Thursday.

Richard Strum, of the 5400 block of North Mobile, also was driving on a suspended license and had no insurance, at the time of the collision, assistant state’s attorney Morgan Creppel said.

Strum was ordered held in lieu of $2 million bail Thursday.

The victims were among a group of family members getting set to head for the Wisconsin Dells. Three other children were injured in the crash at Sunnyside and Austin, which ended with the vacationers’ smashed Honda Civic wrapped around a light pole.

Claudia Delia, the woman driving the car, was killed, as was her 16-year-old son, Bryan Delia. Claudia Delia’s fiance, Steve Marvin, was subdued when asked about the DUI citation Wednesday.

“It’s sad, everything is sad,” Marvin said.

Marvin’s 15-year-old son, Zack Marvin, was among those injured, as was a 2-year-old son, Hauk Marvin, that Steve Marvin shared with his fiancee. Zack suffered brain swelling and bleeding and Hauk fractured his leg, Creppel said.

Late Wednesday, Marvin said Hauk was “doing better,” and that he had a cast on a leg broken during the crash. Marvin said doctors had removed his son Zack’s breathing tube but that he had not regained consciousness.

The two-car crash happened in the 4400 block of North Austin just after 8 a.m. Tuesday, police said. Claudia Delia’s green Honda Civic was heading west on Sunnyside when a Ford Mustang driven by Strum headed south on Austin, police said. Strum’s car allegedly smashed into Delia’s car, which was stopped at a stop sign, police said. Strum was taken to an area hospital, but his injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Strum’s girlfriend was also in the car at the time of the crash, but it was unclear whether she suffered any injuries.

Strum was charged with three counts of felony aggravated DUI and was cited for driving on a suspended license, driving without insurance and failure to reduce speed, police said. A urine specimen taken from Strum indicated he had cannabis in his system at the time of the crash, Creppel said.

Strum’s license has been suspended since May 2002, after he failed to pay a $9,982 Cook County court judgment stemming from a lawsuit and a December 2000 crash, according to the Illinois Secretary of State’s office.

Christian Diaz, 16, Bryan’s best friend, also fractured his pelvis in Tuesday’s crash. Family members had said Diaz received stitches but was expected to fully recover.

Delia family members said Claudia Delia was on her way to her ex-husband’s house on the Northwest Side. Claudia Delia was going to leave the teens with her ex-husband, Mark Delia, who would then drive the boys up to the Dells.

Strum has a 2001 conviction for violating an order of protection and a 1997 conviction for aggravated stalking.

Contributing: Michael Lansu

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