Bachelor alum Chris Soules is no longer facing a felony in the case of a 2017 car accident that resulted in the death of 66-year-old Kenneth Moser.
TMZ reported Tuesday that Soules entered a guilty plea in Iowa's Buchanan County to one count of leaving the scene of a personal injury accident, an aggravated misdemeanor, after initially entering a not guilty plea to a felony charge of leaving the scene of an accident resulting in death. He faces up to two years in prison, and will be sentenced in January.
The fatal crash occurred in April 2017, when Soules rear-ended a tractor while in his home state of Iowa, which led the two vehicles to spin into a ditch. While Moser was declared dead soon after at a nearby hospital, Soules left the scene of the crash and was arrested at his home later and charged with leaving the scene of a fatal accident before police arrived. In June, it was determined by police that Soules did not have any drugs or alcohol in his system at the time of his arrest.
In November 2017, The Hollywood Reporter obtained audio of Soules calling 911 about the crash, which his attorneys used to file a motion to have the charges dismissed, claiming the reality personality performed CPR on Moser before realizing his efforts would not be successful and leaving.
"For whatever reason, the charging officer failed to include in the Complaint and Affidavit that Mr. Soules provided his name and accident location to the telecommunication arm of law enforcement prior to his departure," attorney Gina Messamer wrote in the motion to dismiss obtained by the publication. "Nor did the charging officer mention that Mr. Soules had rendered emergency aid to Mr. Mosher. Ultimately, Mr. Soules’ 911 call establishes probable cause does not exist for the charge against Mr. Soules."
"Mr. Soules did not depart the scene until he was assured emergency personnel had the situation in hand," Messamer continued. "As a matter of law, the State cannot prove Mr. Soules did not render 'reasonable assistance.'"
However, prosecutors rebutted that Soules was only at the scene of the crash for 14 minutes, which did not satisfy his legal duty.
"People who have a fender bender are at a crash scene longer than Mr. Soules," Assistant Iowa Attorney General Scott Brown said at the time of the motion. "Because this is a fatality it is necessary for law enforcement to at least have a face to face interaction with those that are involved."
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