A 60 year old man in Port Saint Lucie, Florida allegedly ran over his 18 month old grandson with his car. According to news reports, Jacques Novembre, claimed he was moving cars when he believed his vehicle accidentally bumped the toddler. It was not until some time after Novembre had already left for work that the toddler’s mother discovered tire tracks on the boy’s back.
The boy is now hospitalized with a collapsed lung, but is said to be in stable condition.
So far no arrests have been made, although police claim that charges are pending.
This case presents a classic example of where a criminal defense lawyer can aid a person who is facing serious felony charges. For his actions in this case, it is likely that Novembre will be charged with leaving the scene of accident resulting in serious bodily injury. Given the very young age of the toddler, Novembre may be facing the very real possibility of going to prison.
However, much more investigation must be done before any conclusions may be drawn. While a jury may not find it plausible, the reality may be that Novembre acted innocently, although without intelligence.
Any normal person would go running to check a toddler who they just “bumped” with a car. The fact that the baby had tire tread on his skin proves that the impact was much more than a mere “bump.” In all candor, a prudent person would have stopped to make sure the toddler was not injured.
Moreover, it is unbelievable that Novembre would leave an 18 month old baby in a driveway by himself… not to mention after he had “bumped” the toddler with a car!
I hate to sound harsh, but the facts of this case present realities that any competent defense lawyer must deal with.
From a defense perspective, I would first want to know more about Novembre’s mental state? Is he mentally competent? Even though he is only 60, is he senile? Does he suffer from a cognitive problem?
Other than guilt or a lack of good judgment, is there another reason why Novembre would have left the scene of an accident?
Contrary to popular belief, the role of a defense lawyer is not to conjure an unbelievable defense. A lawyer who does so, does a tremendous disservice to his client.
If I were to represent Novembre, the first thing I would want done is a psychological evaluation. Next, I would want an accident reconstructionist to evaluate the facts of the case and render an opinion.
Other questions that must be answered include ascertaining the extent of any damage to the vehicle and whether or not such damage is consistent with Novembre’s version of events.
Ultimately, Novembre will be best served by hiring a criminal defense lawyer who has experience handing serious felony offenses and who is familiar with the innner workings of the State Attorney’s Office prior to the filing of criminal indictments.