Judge Sets Trial Date for Bachelor Alum Chris Soules' Fatal Car Crash Case
A judge signed an order Tuesday setting a jury trial for Nov. 7 in Independence, Iowa, according to the Associated Press
A trial date has been set for Chris Soules, who has been charged with leaving the scene of a fatal accident.
A judge signed an order Tuesday setting a jury trial for Nov. 7 in Independence, Iowa, according to Associated Press, which reports that Judge Andrea Dryer set aside four days.
Soules’ attorney did not respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Soules, 36, was arrested on April 25, 2017, in Iowa after he allegedly crashed his truck into a tractor, running it off the road into a ditch. His vehicle was later found at a home that he was present at, and Soules allegedly refused to leave until officers obtained a search warrant several hours later.
Iowa State Patrol alleged that he fled the scene, violating the Iowa code that states: “If the accident causes the death of a person, all surviving drivers shall remain at the scene of the accident except to seek necessary aid or to report the accident to law enforcement authorities.”
After entering a not guilty plea in May to the charge, Soules’ legal team filed a motion to dismiss the “failure to remain” charge on constitutional grounds, refuting the last sentence of the Iowa state code.
The attorneys said in court documents obtained by PEOPLE that “because Mr. Soules indisputably stopped his vehicle, returned to the injured driver, contacted law enforcement, provided aid to the injured driver, arranged for medical treatment for the injured driver, remained until emergency personnel responded to the injured party, and provided identification data, the State’s charge must be dismissed.”
Their request to dismiss was denied in January before being brought to the Iowa Supreme Court.
Leaving the scene of a fatal car crash is a class D felony in Iowa. If convicted, Soules could face as many as five years in prison.
Soules was not charged with driving under the influence, though court documents obtained by PEOPLE reveal Soules was in possession of alcoholic beverages/containers.
In June, Soules’ legal team filed court documents, which were obtained by PEOPLE, that stated the former Bachelor did not have alcohol or drugs in his system following the fatal crash.
“A report issued by the Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation’s (DCI) Criminalistics Laboratory, Mr. Soules’ specimens were negative for drugs and alcohol,” his legal team said in the documents.
“The DCI conducted thorough toxicology testing on two separate samples – his urine and blood – and conclusively determined no detectable amounts of alcohol or drugs were in either specimen,” they continued. “Furthermore, Mr. Soules has not been charged with any alcohol related offense. Rather, Mr. Soules has been charged with leaving the scene of a fatal accident.”
According to the documents, Soules’ legal team also claims that the following are “not admissible” and has filed a motion that they not be used in reference to the case or presented to a jury: “Any evidence, testimony, reference, or argument that, on the night in question, Mr. Soules: 1) purchased alcohol, 2) consumed alcohol, 2) drove while impaired, or 3) had beer cans in or around his vehicle.”