Six weeks after a 16 year-old Texas boy tried to to intimidate a group of cyclists by “rolling coal” (diesel smoke) on them and hitting them with a Ford Super Duty F-350 monster truck, the teenager has been charged with six counts of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, one count for each cyclist injured.
Four the cyclists were seriously hurt, injuries included broken vertebrae, cervical spinal injuries, broken collarbones, hands, and wrists, in addition to soft tissue damage, lacerations, and multiple traumatic brain injuries. Two riders required medical evacuation via helicopter.
The felony charges follow a September incident in which the teenager allegedly said he lost control of his vehicle and ran into a group of cyclists training for an upcoming amateur race. At the time, the teen had a discussion with officers but was allowed to leave the scene without being charged by the Waller County Sheriff’s office.
Due to a cry for justice from the cycling community and after the case was not handled appropriately by the county sheriff’s investigators, the Waller County District Attorney’s Office started its own investigation to uncover evidence, interviewing victims and witnesses.
On Monday 8 November charges were filed against the teenager who surrendered to authorities and was locked in jail. While the teen offered no comments, his lawyer Rick DeToto said, “My client and his family continue to pray for the quick recovery of the injured bikers. Due to the confidentiality laws surrounding juvenile cases, we have no further comment at this time.”
A witness who was among the riders at the time of the collision said that the teen driver wondered aloud at the time of the incident if he would go to jail, the Houston Chronicle reported.
Conviction of the crime of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon is a second-degree felony in Texas and if convicted can bring prison time of 2 to 20 years and a fine of up to $10,000 USD for each count.
In total the teen could be sentenced from 12-120 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $60,000 USD.
PHOTOS: C. Ferrell