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Man gets two years for crash that killed Illinois state trooper

Andrew Bokelman | Illinois Department of Corrections

A semi truck driver was sentenced to two years in prison Friday for falling asleep behind the wheel of his semi and striking and killing an Illinois State Police trooper in 2013.

Andrew Bokelman, 28, pleaded guilty to violating motor vehicle safety laws in Skokie branch court Friday, according to Cook County court records.

Bokelman worked a 12-hour shift on March 28, 2013 before he dozed off behind the wheel of his semi on the Tri-State Tollway near Glenview about 11 p.m., striking and killing 28-year-old Trooper James Sauter, authorities said at the time.

Sauter had been a trooper since 2008 and earned a life-saving medal as a cadet for coming to the rescue of a female crash victim that year, the Sun-Times reported at the time. He had been married to his wife, Elizabeth Sauter, for less than three years.

She received a $10.9 million settlement with Bokelman and the companies he worked for, United Van Lines LLC, Unigroup Inc., and Suddath Relocation Systems of Minnesota and Milwaukee in 2014.

Judge Jeffrey Warnick sentenced Bokelman to two years at the Stateville Correctional Center Friday, according to court records. He will also serve one year of mandatory supervised release.

Trooper James Sauter