Defendant in Dover vehicular assault trial to testify

Erick J. Wyatte

DOVER — A 31-year-old Dover man plans to testify at his vehicular assault trial today in Superior Court, his attorney said Tuesday.

Erick J. Wyatte is accused of driving a vehicle that caused critical injuries when it allegedly struck a 72-year-old woman during a police chase last year. He may take the witness stand when the trial resumes at 1 p.m., along with his ex-girlfriend and investigating Dover Police officers.

In the opening of what’s expected to be a two-day proceeding, defense attorney Andre Beauregard tried to cast doubt on whether the senior citizen was actually hit by a vehicle while questioning a Bayhealth-Kent General Hospital general surgeon on duty when she arrived on March 9, 2017.

Prosecutor Deputy Attorney General Stephen E. Smith showed a police dashcam video of the vehicle pursuit involving Mr. Wyatte from White Oak Condos that ended with a rollover crash. An injured woman was seen laying in the roadway next to her walker and another vehicle was struck before the defendant was taken into custody.

Police alleged that Mr. Wyatte was fleeing from the scene of a domestic incident with his ex-girlfriend at the time.

Charges include first-degree vehicular assault, leaving the scene of a collision, driver’s license suspended/revoked, failure to stop at stop sign, failure to wear seatbelt, unsafe speed, trespass by motor vehicle, first-degree assault, failure to report a collision and disregarding a police officer’s signal. Delaware Division of Forensic staff testified that a drug screen indicated that Mr. Wyatte tested positive for the hallucinogenic drug PCP in his system after the crash.

Mr. Wyatte, who suffered minor injuries during the alleged incident, is charged with first-degree vehicular assault, leaving the scene of a collision, driver’s license suspended/revoked, failure to stop at stop sign, failure to wear seatbelt, unsafe speed, trespass by motor vehicle, first-degree assault, failure to report a collision and disregarding a police officer’s signal.

Resident Judge William L. Witham Jr. will determine Mr. Wyatte’s fate in a non-jury bench trial.

A Superior Court docket showed Mr. Wyatte is being held at Sussex Correctional Institution in Georgetown. He was indicted on May 1, 2017 and four previous trial dates were postponed.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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