Public Safety

Former 'Bachelor' star Chris Soules agrees to probation, suspended prison term

Judge has yet to approve deal in 2017 crash the left a farmer dead

Defendant Chris Soules sits in the courtroom May 21 for his sentencing on a leaving-the-scene charge in Independence. The hearing was postponed, and Soules said Friday in court papers that he has agreed to go on two years of probation with a two-year suspended prison sentence. (Kelly Wenzel/Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier)
Defendant Chris Soules sits in the courtroom May 21 for his sentencing on a leaving-the-scene charge in Independence. The hearing was postponed, and Soules said Friday in court papers that he has agreed to go on two years of probation with a two-year suspended prison sentence. (Kelly Wenzel/Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier)
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INDEPENDENCE — Former reality TV star Chris Soules said in court documents Friday he will accept a suspended prison sentence and two years of probation for his role in a 2017 traffic crash that killed Aurora farmer Kenneth Mosher.

Soules, 37, of Arlington, shot to fame as fans dubbed him “Prince Farming” in the hit ABC show “The Bachelor,” and then had a successful run on “Dancing with The Stars.” But he suddenly found himself in the national spotlight again after an April 24, 2017, traffic crash in which his pickup struck a tractor being driven by Mosher.

Mosher, 66, later died and Soules was criminally charged with leaving the scene of a fatal crash, a felony that carried up to a five-year prison term upon conviction.

The case never went to trial and the case has gone on more than two years.

The defense said Soules reported the crash to 911 operators, performed CPR and remained on the scene until medics arrived.

But prosecutors said he left in another vehicle before law enforcement pulled up. Sheriff’s deputies later found Soules at his home, but he would not emerge until authorities obtained a search warrant hours later.

On Nov. 13, 2018, he entered a conditional plea of guilty to the lesser charge of leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious injury — which dropped the charge from a felony to an aggravated misdemeanor.

After another delay caused by a rewrite of his presentencing report from Department of Correctional Services officials, Soules was scheduled to be back in court Tuesday to be sentenced.

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According to a waiver of rights and consent to judgment document filed Friday by Soules, he agreed to waive asking for a deferred judgment — which would have wiped the case off his record forever in two years — and instead accept the prosecution and presentence investigation recommendation that he receive a two-year suspended prison sentence and two years of probation.

Court records do not show the agreement has been approved yet by a judge. The documents show Soules waived his right to be present for sentencing Tuesday.

If the agreement is not accepted, Soules faces a maximum of two years in prison and a fine of up to $6,250 plus costs.

Soules earlier paid $2.4 million to the Mosher family to settle a wrongful-death lawsuit.

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