By Jeff Reinitz, Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier
INDEPENDENCE — Prosecutors have tweaked the charging documents in the case of reality TV star Chris Soules, who is accused of leaving the scene of an April crash that killed an Aurora man.
Attorneys for Soules had asked the court to have the state produce a bill of particulars to outline how authorities claim he violated the law following the fatal crash.
A hearing was scheduled for Thursday in Buchanan County District Court, but the sides reached a resolution before the hearing.
Under the fix, County Attorney Shawn Harden said the state will amend the trial information — the document that formally charges Soules. The charge will remain the same, but the document will reference subsections of law that pertain to remaining at or returning to the scene of a crash and the requirement to leave identification information at the scene, Harden said during the brief hearing.
In response, the defense dropped its request for a bill of particulars.
Soules, 35, of rural Arlington, is charged with leaving the scene of a fatal crash, a felony. Authorities said he rear-ended a tractor driven by 66-year-old Kenneth Mosher of Aurora and then left before law enforcement arrived, apparently heading home where he refused to exit until deputies obtained a search warrant.
Soules’ attorneys in earlier court filings said that Soules called 911 from the crash scene, identified himself to dispatchers and attempted to help Mosher.
In May, defense attorney Gina Messamer said in a court filing that the trial information charging document and minutes of testimony that summarize the evidence were deficient because they don’t outline how Soules is alleged to have broken the law.
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She also said the trial information and minutes of testimony don’t indicate when and where Mosher was pronounced dead, and she argued that the requirement that the driver remain at the scene isn’t triggered until there is a death.
“Until there is a fatality, a person involved in an accident has no obligation to remain at the scene, return to the scene, or inform law enforcement of his or her location,” Messamer wrote in her May motion.
She requested that the state indicate when lifesaving efforts were stopped as well as the time of death indicated on Mosher’s death certificate and the location of the death.
Harden, who prosecuting the case, resisted the defense request.