Twenty-six-year-old Medal of Honor recipient Lance Corporal William “Kyle” Carpenter, the Late Show With David Letterman marine who captured the nation’s heart with his recounting of his selfless act of bravery, jumping over a live grenade to protect the soldier he was working with in Afghanistan, Lance Corporal Nicholas Eufrazio, was charged after turning himself in to police for a “misdemeanor” hit-and-run and making an “improper left turn,” as reported by WYFF.
Carpenter, a Mississippi native, was reported to have appeared in a Columbia, South Carolina district court to turn himself in to police on December 8. The marine was alleged to have hit a pedestrian who was crossing Assembly Street, at a crosswalk, on the way to the Strom Thrumond Fitness Center with the University of South Carolina, according to ABC.
After hitting the pedestrian, Carpenter was said to have pulled his car over to the side of the road and turned on the car’s hazard lights. It was reported that the Medal of Honor recipient did not exit his car, attempt to exchange information, or render assistance to the victim. Kyle Carpenter was then reported to have driven away, along Blossom Street.
Paramedics were said to have been called to treat the victim of the hit-and-run, who suffered injuries to a leg as well as “scrapes.” Neither alcohol nor drugs were suspected to have played a part in the incident.
While working a 4 a.m. to noon duty atop the roof of a Marjah, Afghanistan building with Eufrazio in 2010, militants lobbed grenades that found themselves at the feet of the two soldiers. In what has been hailed as a heroic act, Kyle Carpenter was reported to have thrown himself over the grenade to protect his comrade, as reported by the Inquisitr.
Eufrazio survived, but incurred brain damage after taking a piece of shrapnel to his frontal lobe and was reported to have been unable to speak until 2012.
“We grew to be extremely close. He was always our point man,” Kyle Carpenter was quoted about Eufrazio in 2014, shortly after it was announced that the marine would receive the Medal of Honor. “He was always on it. I absolutely trusted him with my life. Over there, we were always together and always looking out for each other, so we decided to take post together.”
In the Late Show With David Letterman interview with the marine, the host states that he is going to list the injuries Carpenter has sustained. Letterman asks Carpenter if that is alright with him and he smiles and states that he’s not trying to hide his injuries from anyone.
Carpenter’s long list of injuries include: “countless” shattered bones, including 30 in his right arm; shrapnel in each leg; a punctured carotid artery; two ruptured eardrums; the loss of most of his teeth; a right lung collapsed; and the loss of the majority of his jaw. The marine describes to David Letterman how the majority of his face, “from the eyes down” is the result of “plates” and “reconstructive surgeries.”
Kyle Carpenter stated that he had undergone more than 40 surgeries and gave thanks to the staff with Walter Reed National Medical Military Center for their “phenomenal job.”
After being thought dead on more than one occasion, described as “flatlining” by Letterman, and transported through four military hospitals, Carpenter didn’t regain his memory until five weeks after the incident. He described waking up to a hospital room decorated by his mother.
Carpenter was said to have been transported to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center, after turning himself in for the hit-and-run, where he was released on a bond for an undisclosed sum. The marine is reported to be attending classes with the University of South Carolina.
[Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images]