Trial pushed back for suicidal crash suspect

Mug shot of Jeremiah Therkelsen

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE)  – A man accused of intentionally causing a crash that left one person paralyzed, will have to wait a little longer before he goes to trial.

Crash on St. Joe Road
Crash on St. Joe Road

Police said 32-year-old Jeremiah Therkelsen purposely crashed his car into a car driven by Lamonta Green on February 7 in an attempt to kill himself. After the crash, Therkelsen got out of his car and punched another car’s windshield, causing it to shatter.

The crash broke Lamonta Green’s spine. Hospital officials said Green also suffered a “shearing injury” to his head, which may cause long-term complications.

Therkelsen was scheduled to go to trial on July 15 but that date has been pushed back to September 23. He will also have a competency hearing on June 16th.

Therkelsen told detectives that he got into a fight with his wife prior to the crash. He said he tried to kill himself twice.

“I closed my eyes and put my foot on the gas,” Therkelson said.

Police said a man punched through the windshield, on the driver's side, of this car.
Police said a man punched through the windshield, on the driver’s side, of this car.

Therkelson said after he realized the impact of the crash didn’t kill him, he got out of his car and jumped in front of another car. He shattered the windshield of that car and ripped off the side mirror, according to court documents.

Therkelson also admitted to the detective that he did not try to help Green after the crash.

Therkelson’s Past 

Jeremiah Therkelsen was indicted in 2009 by a grand jury in Chatham County, Georgia on a charge of vehicular homicide.

NewsChannel 15 contacted a spokesperson at the Chatham County, Georgia Sheriff’s Department in February. The spokesperson said that on July 3, 2008 Therkelsen was booked on charges of DUI, reckless driving, serious bodily injury, and homicide by vehicle.

Therkelsen was accused of driving drunk and too fast in Chatham County, Georgia and of ultimately killing his passenger, 26-year-old Dennis Springer, as a result of his recklessness. Therkelsen was enlisted in the U.S. Army at the time as was Springer.

Therkelsen was sentenced to 12 years probation.

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