Dover officer: Wyatte’s car struck woman, 72, as he fled police

DOVER — A Dover Police officer testified that a witness saw an elderly pedestrian suffer critical injuries during a police chase ending with an overturned vehicle and arrest almost a year ago.

The vehicular assault trial of Erick J. Wyatte, 31, of Dover, ended Wednesday afternoon after the defense called the investigating officer to answer just one question.

In closing, attorney Andre’ Beauregard said he questioned the credibility of a purported eyewitness who was never called to testify at trial.

Erick J. Wyatte

While the prosecution maintains that Mr. Wyatte drove a fleeing vehicle that struck a walking 72-year-old woman before crashing on March 9, 2017, a pursuing police officer testified the defendant claimed immediately afterward that he swerved to avoid hitting a pedestrian in the 500 block of Nimitz Road.

Resident Judge William L. Witham Jr. will determine the outcome of charges including 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.

Mr. Wyatte was arrested after police responded to a reported domestic incident involving his former girlfriend of over seven years at White Oak Condos.

He then reportedly fled from the scene as a high speed chase ensued, striking a parked Cadillac before becoming disabled about a mile from the original scene.

The former girlfriend said she did not speak with Mr. Wyatte or police, and learned of the crash later from Facebook and a news article. She never left her apartment during the supposed incident, she said.

“He was bothering the whole complex pretty much,” she testified.

On Wednesday, the ex-girlfriend testified that Mr. Wyatte was jumping on her vehicle in a supposedly agitated state outside her apartment and honking a horn for several minutes uninterrupted before a neighbor called police from her phone.

“This was normal for his crazy behavior but unusual for a normal person,” she said.

The couple had dated for more than seven years before a recent breakup, she claimed.

According to police testimony, Mr. Wyatte supposedly claimed he fled the scene due to his fear of law enforcement officers. An officer said he showed signs of impairment after field sobriety tests, but no alcohol was detected in his system.

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

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.

Facebook Comment