Driver Who Killed Family Guilty of DUI on Same Road
Walter Depner drove drunk again on the same road
By Neal Colgrass, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 7, 2014 3:42 PM CDT
Updated Jul 7, 2014 4:10 PM CDT
Walter Depner.   (McHenry County sheriff's department)

(Newser) – A scary story from northern Illinois, where a man who killed four people while driving drunk nearly 15 years ago today pleaded guilty to a DUI on that same road, the Chicago Tribune reports. In the most recent incident, Walter Depner, 62, was reportedly seen driving into a snowbank on Feb. 24, 2013, before police found him mumbling and crying at the home of an old friend. He "seemed severely depressed," said his friend, who quoted Depner as saying he'd taken "a whole bottle of Klonopin ... I hope that's enough," and "I want to see my old friends before I go."

Depner was reportedly talking about the people he'd killed back in August of 1999: a 34-year-old mother and her three children; the father, Thomas Burleson, survived. "The tragedy has not become any less tragic based on the passage of time," Burleson told the Northwest Herald. "The real tragedy now is that he has been arrested again for basically the same crime." Having served 12 years for the first incident, Depner admits that this time he drank alcohol and downed 30 to 40 Klonopin pills before driving in his girlfriend's truck. He now faces 5 to 10 years without probation, and was ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation before his sentencing in August.

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Man Who Killed Family Pleads Guilty to 2nd DUI is...
4%
2%
55%
2%
15%
22%
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Comments
Showing 3 of 15 comments
SpiderOne
Jul 8, 2014 3:59 PM CDT
when I was five, my mother and I were hit by a drunk driver leaving her friends house. it was just after midnight and I was asleep. she was pulling out and the **shole smashed into us on my side bouncing us around between the cars on either side. my seatbelt broke from the force and I ended up on the floor behind the drivers seat. since the car was so smashed up, the police had no idea I was there. my mothers friend was deaf so she couldn't hear all the sirens. later she saw the lights flashing on her wall but none of the response team spoke sign language so she had to run and get some paper and write it to them. all told, I was in a smashed up tin can for over an hour before anyone knew I was there. I could hear them calling my name, but I'm autistic and couldn't answer. my mother was in critical, but she made it, though was never the same after that. but what I remember most was her friend screaming and wailing. they told my mother if my seat belt hadn't broken I would have been smashed like a bug. the noise, the screaming, the smells, I wish I could bottle it all up and give it to people who drink and drive so they could know what drinking and driving feels like to a little child. I looked over and they had to restrain my mothers friend when they pulled me out because everyone that I had to be dead. I thought they were stealing my mother.
Who_Cares
Jul 7, 2014 8:21 PM CDT
Maybe someone should have taught this guy about responsibility and accountibility. I don't feel sorry for people like him as my life was ruined by the drunk driver.
steve
Jul 7, 2014 7:16 PM CDT
Everyone is happy an overjoyed when drunk kills anyone because they no nothing is going to be done about it that is why laws were written for drunks