COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL)– A 20-year-old accused of involvement in a deadly hit-and-run earlier this month appeared in Recorder’s Court on Friday.
David Stinson was arrested on Aug. 30, 2021 in connection to the death of Wanya Wise. According to Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan, Wise died on Aug, 25, 2021, after succumbing to injuries from the three-vehicle crash that happened three days earlier on Aug. 22, at the intersection of Forrest Road and Gleason Avenue.
The crash involved a U-Haul truck that pushed a smaller car into a third vehicle. Police say Wise and a female passenger were both injured in the crash. According to police, the driver of one of the vehicles, later identified as Stinson, ran away from the scene on foot.
A warrant for Stinson’s arrest was issued following Wise’s death. Stinson turned himself in to the Muscogee County Jail on Monday after the Columbus Police Department issued a warrant for his arrest the previous Friday.
David Stinson pled not guilty on the following charges: Homicide by Vehicle 1st degree, serious injury by vehicle, two county hit and run, driving while license is suspended, no proof of insurance and failure to yield.
Officers investigating the incident tracked down the individual who rented the U-Haul truck, who was identified as Stinson’s aunt. Investigators were able to obtain fingerprints from the U-Haul belonging to Stinson. They additionally conducted a photo line-up where witnesses were able to identify Stinson as the driver of the U-Haul.
Stinson’s attorney Michael Eddings says they learned today in court that Stinson’s license was suspended because he had a “failure to appear in court” matter. Eddings said Stinson was not aware his license was suspended and was driving a U-Haul truck to help his family move.
Eddings defended his client by saying the event was a horrible accident. He says there was no malice and no information to suggest Stinson was aware his license was suspended.
“What we have is an accident, an innocent accident,” Eddings said. “It’s unfortunate that the person suffered a loss of life in this and Mr. Stinson will carry that with him but it’s also not something he should be sitting in jail for people who have intentionally committed crimes.”
Most charges minus his two felony charges were misdemeanors, and the court did grant a bond on all of his misdemeanor charges. The court declined to grant bonds on his felony charges so he defers bond on those to superior court. He will remain in Muscogee County Jail while awaiting trial.