Chris Soules may be able to join the Bachelor in Paradise cast after all, thanks to new evidence that could get him off the hook for the fatal accident that he was involved in on Monday night.
Although the former Bachelor star is still required to wear an ankle monitor while he awaits his upcoming court hearings, he may not be wearing it for long. Chris was initially charged with leaving the scene of an accident, death resulting. The charge is considered a Class D felony, and according to Puryear Law, it carries a prison sentence of up to five years and a fine between $750 to $7,500.
Radar Online reports that Soules’ legal team feels that the 911 call recording that was released on Wednesday is enough to get their client off the hook. However, there is one thing that could wreak some havoc for the reality TV star — results of an investigation into Soules’ cell phone could create some problems.
Parrish-Kruidenier, the law firm that represents Soules, released a statement to Radar Online that claims the former Bachelor did not leave the scene until he called 911 and attended to the victim of the accident, 66-year-old Kenneth E. Mosher.
“Soules’ 911 call, released yesterday, proved that the initial knee-jerk coverage of this accident was incorrect. While initial reports suggested Soules fled the scene, the 911 call confirms that Soules, in fact, was the one who contacted law enforcement immediately. During the call, he clearly identified himself and explained his role in the terrible accident.”
The statement goes on to say that Chris administered CPR to Mr. Mosher and “remained on the scene until emergency medical personnel arrived.”
In the 911 recording (listen to the call in the video above), Soules identifies himself and admits that he rear-ended a tractor with his pickup truck. There seems to be no question that Soules was upset during the call, but why he left when rescue personnel arrived is still not clear.
TMZ reports that law enforcement sources are taking a close look at his texts, social media posts, and phone calls that may have been made at the time of the accident. If they can prove that he was a distracted driver, he may not fare quite as well with the felony charges that have been brought against him.
Although there will be plenty of information on his cell phone, Chris Soules’ social media accounts have now been deleted. But that doesn’t mean investigators can’t find his deleted Instagram posts and tweets.
Attorney Behnam Dayanim tells Men’s Health that Twitter “may still retain copies of your information” even after you delete a tweet or deactivate your account. And Instagram is similar in that the photo app may retain posts for a reasonable amount of time for “archival or audit purposes.”
What are the odds that Chris Soules will appear on Bachelor in Paradise this summer?
During his arraignment, the judge scheduled Chris Soules’ first hearing for May 2. However, Radar reports that prosecutors have asked for the court to schedule the hearing further out, so the case may not resolve as quickly as the Bachelor star would like.
Previous to his arrest, Chris had not confirmed whether he was going to accept an offer to be part of the Bachelor in Paradise Season 4 cast. He told ET Online that he was considering it, but his “lack of abs” were holding him back.
Now it’s more than six-pack abs that could prevent Soules from heading to Paradise. The judge presiding over the case ordered him to turn in his passport so he would not be able to leave the country to film the show. He is also wearing an ankle monitor, so leaving the state is not allowed, never mind leaving the country.
If his hit-and-run case ends up going to trial, or if the hearing dates keep getting rescheduled, the odds of him going on the summer reality series are slim-to-none. But considering what Chris Soules is dealing with, going on TV is probably the last thing on his mind right now.
[Featured Image by ABC Television Network]