Rep. Womble's mug shot. Courtesy WSPD.
Winston-Salem, NC -- State representative Larry Womble turned himself in to police Thursday afternoon, soon after authorities charged him with misdemeanor death by vehicle.
Womble, a nine-year veteran of the North Carolina House of Representatives, was involved in a two-car crash in December 2011.
The wreck killed 55-year-old David Carmichael and left Womble seriously injured.
"He's still in a wheelchair, he is still, his legs were broken, his hips were broken, he's still on some major convalescence," said David Freedman, Womble's attorney who also revealed Womble is now blind in one eye.
Freedman says his client got a heads up about the charge Wednesday when police called to alert them of their plans.
A police mug shot shows a noticeably scarred Womble soon after he turned himself in around 2:30 p.m.
"He was pulled up in a medical van, they were able to pull up right to the magistrate's office, took him in a wheelchair," said Freedman. "He knew that this was always a possibility."
Freedman says the December 2nd car crash was a terrible accident.
But he warned his client that he could be charged with negligence - a normal procedure, he says, in fatal car crashes.
Freedman adds that the charge is bringing up painful memories for his client of the night of the accident
"I do worry that this charge could be very stressful for him," he said.
Police records show Womble was driving down the 2600 block of Reynolds Park Road around 11 p.m. when he crossed the yellow line and struck Carmichael.
"It's just a fact that we've got to deal with. There may be a number of reasons why that occurred."
Toxicology reports say Womble was not drinking but Carmichael had a blood alcohol level of .29.
A family member who answered the door at the Carmichael home said he's aware Womble has been charged but declined to comment.
The same was the case in the Womble household.
Meanwhile, Freedman maintains the misdemeanor charge against his client is not an open and shut case.
"A charge is just that, a jury is told. Someone is charged. That's no evidence of guilt or innocence. And it's still a case that needs to play out in the court system," Freedman said.
Womble is out on an unsecured bond. Because he's being charged with a misdemeanor and doesn't have a criminal record, worst case scenario, if convicted, he would be put on probation and lose his driving license for a year.
He is scheduled to appear in court on July 18th.
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