Chris Soules’ lawyers ask judge to dismiss felony charge

Chris Soules attends the 2016 iHeartRadio Music Festival Night 1 at T-Mobile Arena on September 23, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nev. JB Lacroix/WireImage

One week after Chris Soules, an Iowa farmer who starred on The Bachelor, was arrested after authorities say he caused a traffic accident that killed a fellow farmer and allegedly fled the scene, his legal team has filed documents in order to dismiss the felony charge.

The reality star is facing a felony charge for allegedly leaving the scene of the crash.

Soules’ legal team is asking the court to recognize that he did everything he was legally required to do following his accident, according to documents obtained by People.

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In a motion filed Monday in Buchanan Country, Soules’ lawyers asked for the felony charge to be dropped, which happened to be the same day of the burial for the 66-year-old Vietnam veteran victim Kenneth E. Mosher.

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People reports that Soule’s legal team will be submitting a 911 call recorded shortly after the deadly collision on April 24, with the intention to prove that “Mr. Soules satisfied, as a matter of law, the requirements of Iowa code 321.261 and 321.263.

“Because probable cause does not exist to support the charge against Mr. Soules, it must be dismissed,” the documents read in regards to the felony charge.

“Mr. Soules contemporaneously files a brief in support of this motion and, by this reference, incorporates the arguments presented therein into this motion,” the documents continue. “Mr. Soules respectfully requests that the Court, after hearing, enter an Order dismissing the Complaint and Affidavit, exonerating the bail and restrictions imposed for the charged offense, and granting any other relief in favor of Mr. Soules that is necessary and appropriate under the circumstances.”

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Soules, who was portrayed as a wholesome country boy looking for love on Season 19 of the reality show, was behind the wheel of a pickup truck that rear-ended a tractor in northern Iowa near Aurora last Monday night, the Iowa State Patrol said.

The crash caused the tractor to roll and go into a ditch on one side of the road, while Soules’ truck went into a ditch on the other side, the patrol said. The tractor driver was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The patrol identified him as Mosher, a farmer from Aurora.

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Soules wasn’t injured in the accident and left the area before emergency responders arrived, the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office said. He was arrested later at his home in Arlington, which is about 10 miles (16 kilometres) north of Aurora, and 75 miles (120 kilometres) north of Iowa City.

Authorities said someone had called 911 to report the crash, but they didn’t release the identity of the caller or audio of the call. Investigators spoke to multiple witnesses and determined that Soules caused the crash and fled, according to a complaint, which doesn’t name the witnesses.

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Police audio of the incident obtained by the Des Moines Register shows that a deputy told a dispatcher that Soules “took off” in a red truck while Mosher was unconscious in his vehicle.

Mosher was laid to rest on Monday in Madison Township Cemetery near Aurora, Iowa.

Alcohol was found at the scene, and investigators are trying to determine whose it was, said Sheriff Bill Wolgram. Court records show that Soules has had some driving infractions in the past, including a 2006 conviction for operating while intoxicated.

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Soules, 35, was arrested about five hours after the crash and then booked into the Buchanan County Jail on a charge of leaving the scene of a fatal accident, which carries a penalty of up to five years in prison. He was released around midday on $10,000 bond, and will be required to surrender his passport and wear an electronic monitoring ankle bracelet until his trial, jail officials said.

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Soules first drew national attention as a participant in The Bachelorette in 2014, when he tried to win the affections of star Andi Dorfman but was passed over.

A fan favourite, the reality show had him back as The Bachelor the following year. His appearance drew attention to farming life and some of the struggles facing rural Iowa. He proposed to Chicago fertility nurse Whitney Bischoff at the end of his season, but their relationship ended shortly after the show.

— With files from the Associated Press


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