GRAND RAPIDS (WWJ/AP) – A 57-year-old Howard City man who told police he thought he hit a deer while driving last spring, but actually hit and killed a pedestrian, has been charged. reports Ronald James Williams has been charged with leaving the scene of an accident causing serious impairment or death.

Twenty-year-old Tyler Helton of Sand Lake died after being struck on April 22. Helton was walking along Stanton Road, east of the village of Pierson.

tyler helton Hit And Run Driver Mistook Pedestrian For Deer

Tyler Helton (Facebook photo)

The driver left the scene, but called police the next morning after seeing news reports about the fatal accident. He told police he thought he hit a deer.

Police said they believe alcohol was a factor in the crash. Williams’ pickup truck, which had significant damage, was impounded.

Williams was released on a $15,000 bond. If convicted, Williams could face up to five years in prison.

Police did not immediately know if Williams had a lawyer.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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