FedEx Trucker Who Ran Over and Killed Man During Riot Not Yet Cleared… Charges Coming?
St. Louis, MO – A FedEx trucker who found himself in the middle of a riot in St. Louis in May has not yet been cleared in the death of a 29-year-old man and could still face criminal charges.
A spokesperson for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department (SLMPD) confirmed to Transportation Nation Network (TNN) this week the FedEx driver, who has only been identified as a 44-year-old white male, may face criminal charges, but no warrants have been issued in the case so far.
“The case has not been presented to the Circuit Attorney’s Office at this time, thus the investigation remains ongoing,” Evita Caldwell, SLMPD Public Information Officer, said. “However, any charges would be determined by the Circuit Attorney’s Office.”
Embattled Circuit Attorney, Kim Gardner, will be making the decision of whether or not to bring charges in this case.
Could This Spell Trouble for FedEx Driver?
Gardner made major headlines last month when she filed felony unlawful use of a weapon charges against a St. Louis couple, Mark and Patricia McCloskey, who brandished firearms to a group of protesters that broke through a gate on their property.
The much-debated incident occurred on the evening of June 28 as several hundred protesters were on their way to the residence of St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, a few blocks from the McCloskeys’ home.
According to the McCloskeys, protesters screamed threats of violence at them, their dog, and their home during the incident causing them to fear for their safety.
No one was killed or even injured in the altercation and no shots were fired.
However, Gardner pursued a warrant to search the McCloskeys’ home and recover the weapons which was carried out by the SLMPD.
The handgun Mrs. McCloskey brandished was not a real gun and the assault rifle Mr. McCloskey wielded was unloaded, according to the McCloskeys’ legal counsel.
Notably, Gardner declined to bring charges against any of the the protesters in the incident saying their actions were “nonviolent.”
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt quickly moved to have the charges against the McCloskeys dismissed citing the State’s “Castle Doctrine” law which allows residents to use force against intruders, without the duty to retreat, based on the understanding that your home is your “castle.”
Missouri Governor Mike Parson says if the couple is convicted, he will extend a pardon.
“Castle Doctrine” Defense for FedEx Trucker?
Trucking legal expert Joe Pappalardo of Cleveland, OH-based law firm Gallagher Sharp told TNN shortly after the deadly FedEx incident the trucker should not be criminally charged for his actions.
“If you use force that is intended or likely to cause great bodily harm to another, and if that person is in the process of unlawfully entering [your truck], then there is a presumption that you are allowed to use that force,” Pappalardo informed.
After seeing the news that the McCloskeys had been charged, Pappalardo admitted he was concerned the FedEx trucker could also be hit with charges due to the politically-charged environment in which we are living.
“We are in an extremely emotionally-charged environment right now,” he said. “She (Gardner) may be under extreme pressure by some groups.”
Still, Pappalardo says the FedEx trucker made the right decision regardless of the legal outcome.
Further, he stands by his previous advice urging truckers who find themselves in similar situations to do the same.
“I still wouldn’t give them any different advice. That FedEx guy could be dead,” he said.
In Case You Missed What Happened…
TNN was the first media outlet to report on the gruesome scene that played out in downtown St. Louis in the early morning hours of Saturday, May 30.
Police were forced to reroute traffic after protesters shut down multiple interstates in the downtown area.
That’s how the FedEx trucker and a co-driver found themselves operating near Broadway Street when their semi pulling double trailers came under attack.
Multiple videos captured the incident showing a group of people descending on the FedEx big rig.
Looters and rioters pulled packages from the first of the twin trailers and tossed them to other people in the crowd and onto the ground.
Additional footage of the incident also revealed rioters jumped on the tractor and pounded on both the driver and passenger windows.
Multiple reports claim at least two guns were pointed at the driver from the passenger side of the truck as the trailer was being raided.
Barry Perkins III, 29, of the Glasgow Village area of St. Louis, became stuck on the converter dolly between the dual trailers as the FedEx big rig began to pull away from the attack.
WANT MORE? GET MORE!
READ more about this case HERE.
According to investigators, Perkins was caught by one of the tires and pulled under the rig.
He was dragged several blocks and sustained ultimately fatal injuries.
Legal counsel for the Perkins family, Nuru Witherspoon of the Witherspoon Law Group (WLG), has spoken to numerous local media outlets in the wake of the incident and claims Perkins was needlessly killed by the FedEx tractor-trailer.
He told KMOV the truck driver acted recklessly and should have stopped when people began alerting him that Perkins was trapped underneath the rig.
In an effort to save Perkins, multiple people at the scene can be heard on video urging the FedEx driver to “Back up! Back up!”
“There is no justification for running over a human being with a semi-truck,” Witherspoon said.
READ more of Witherspoon’s defense of Perkins HERE.
The WLG has indicated it will pursue a civil suit if a resolution cannot be worked out with FedEx.
However, the criminal standard of proof is much higher.
So, the question remains, will Gardner attempt to move forward with criminal charges such as manslaughter or reckless endangerment?
TNN will continue to track new developments closely.