(WJBK) - A jury has found Charles Warren not guilty in the crash that killed a Michigan State Police trooper on Interstate 75 in 2015.
The jury found Warren not guilty of Reckless Driving Causing Death and also not guilty of Failure to Stop at Scene of Accident - When At Fault - Resulting in Death. The jury heard closing arguments Tuesday morning and reached a verdict around 11 a.m. Wednesday.
Warren's lawyers were seen hugging him after the verdict was read. You can watch a replay of the verdict being read here:
Warren was also found not guilty on a third, alternate charge of moving violation causing death.
Trooper Chad Wolf was killed in the line of duty when he was hit and dragged by Warren's vehicle, which was pulling a trailer. Wolf was patrolling I-75 on his motorcycle in the early morning of August 28 when he was hit by Warren.
Prosecutors argued that Warren didn't pull over several miles and that his 'poor actions and reckless driving' caused the death of the married father of four.
"This was a tragedy that could have been avoided, that should have been avoided. But for a series of choices made by the defendant, Charles Warren, Chad Wolf may be alive today," prosecutors said.
The prosecutor points out that Warren didn't hook up his trailer lights that morning and instead left them in the trunk of his car. They also argue that the crash happened because Warren missed the entrance to the interstate and veered onto the ramp at the last minute.
Warren did not testify in the case. His attorney painted a different picture and argued that Warren never saw Wolf. He said that Warren thought he hit a bump on the road - which is what Warren told police at the scene.
"He waved Miranda Rights, he was cooperative, consented to a search of everything, multiple DNA [tests]," attorney Neil Rockind said in court. "You have a picture of him, which is a guy that didn't know and was completely caught of guard and was totally shocked."
Warren's attorney also argued his client didn't pull over sooner, because he felt it was unsafe on the side of the highway. He says Warren pulled over at a rest stop, thinking he only had a damaged tire.
Warren had faced 15 years in prison if he would have been convicted on both charges.