Man pleads guilty to driving through crowd at Jones rally

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama man who drove his three-wheeled motorcycle through a crowd of supporters of then-U.S. Sen. Doug Jones, injuring one woman, has pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment.

Charles David Harris, of Blountsville, was scheduled to go to trial Wednesday but agreed to a plea deal. Harris, 59, was sentenced to 120 days in jail with 116 days suspended, according to Guntersville Municipal Court officials, news outlets reported.

Harris was charged in October for driving a motorcycle through a crowd of people at an Oct. 18 campaign stop for Jones. One woman was reportedly injured in the incident, which happened weeks before the Democratic senator lost his reelection bid.

Harris previously said he wanted to hear Jones speak and he didn’t intend to hit anyone, Guntersville police told the Gadsden Times. Court officials said Harris has apologized to the woman who was injured.

Harris also received two years of probation and was ordered to pay a $200 fine, $261 in court costs and a $25 bond.

Marshall County Democratic Party Chairwoman Susan McKenney said in a statement that she hoped the guilty plea would discourage others from similar acts.

“The woman struck by the motorcycle is a college administrator,” McKenney said. “She is currently recovering from knee surgery due to Harris’ actions. Several others barely escaped injury including a talented pianist, law school graduate, and nurse practitioner. A sitting U.S. Senator was in the pathway just moments before the man plowed through the crowd.”

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