Detroit Motorist Beating: Four Suspects To Stand TrialBy: Val Powell - April 22, 2014
Four men will stand trial on charges of attempted murder after an attack on a motorist. The driver accidentally hit a 10-year-old boy with his vehicle in Detroit, Michigan.
The 54-year-old driver, Steven Utash spent a few days in a coma, and is still recovering in a Detroit hospital. He received a severe beating on April 2nd from four assailants shortly after striking the child with his truck. Utash, who got out of his truck and rushed to the boy’s side, was immediately confronted by a mob of angry bystanders. The boy is now recovering from a broken leg.
Defendants Bruce Wimbush Jr., 17, Latrez Cummings, 19, James Davis, 24, and Wonzey Saffold, 30, will stand trial on charges of assault with intent to do great bodily harm, and assault with intent to murder.
Facing charges as an adult, 17-year-old Wimbush will be tried separately from his counterparts, as he waived his right to a hearing. Cummings, Davis, and Saffold were ordered for trial by Judge Thomas Jackson of Wayne County District Court. This is based on written statements from the defendants and other witness testimonies
Although admitting involvement in the attack, attorneys for the defendants argue that the charges are too severe. Judge Jackson contended, “Even one or two [kicks and punches] may not be enough to kill anyone, but in combination with another person, it can be enough to cause death.”
Several witnesses, such as nearby resident and Nurse Deborah Hughes, testified on what she recalls from the incident. She stated that shortly after she tried to assist Utash, she saw a crowd of people continue to beat and kick him about 20 times within a few seconds.
Family members of Utash state that the victim is not himself and is having difficulty taking his first steps since the incident. They also state that Utash, who works as a tree trimmer, has no insurance and his family is in need of financial assistance to help with his increasing medical bills. Thankfully, the popular crowdfunding website GoFundMe has already raised about $181,000 in funds on his behalf.
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