The woman accused of striking Starkville cyclist Jan Morgan will not face felony charges according to Morgan”s husband.
David Morgan said Wednesday he spoke with District Attorney Forrest Allgood and Clay County Prosecutor Angela Turner-Lairy and was informed no felony charges would be brought against Robbie Norton, the Cedar Bluff woman accused of striking Morgan with her car while Morgan and a friend biked along Highway 50 in Clay County May 22.
“There”s no law they could pursue for felony charges. The most they could pursue are misdemeanor charges and those, at most, are six months (in jail) and $500 in penalties,” said David Morgan.
Allgood and Turner-Lairy could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
Morgan had hoped Norton would be charged with aggravated assault for allegedly running over Jan a second time after striking her the first time accidentally and getting out of her car to check on Jan. She was forced from her vehicle by witnesses at the scene. Morgan said the explanation Norton offered to law enforcement officers for running over Jan the second time was a panicked attempt to get her car out of the highway as quickly as possible.
“I don”t think there”s an excuse for the second hit,” said David Morgan.
He bemoaned the state Legislature”s failure to pass a law making it illegal to talk or text on a cell phone while driving.
“I don”t understand the law. I just understand right and wrong, and to me this is wrong,” said David Morgan. “Nothing we do will really help my wife. But something needs to be done to help people in the future. Laws need to be made to keep people from doing this.”
Jan Morgan remains heavily sedated in a Tupelo hospital recovering from multiple severe injuries which could lead to lifelong physical impairment. An awareness ride and educational seminar for cyclists and non-cyclists is planned for 7 a.m. Saturday at Boardtown Bikes, the bike shop owned by the Morgans. Boardtown Bikes is located at 200 S. Montgomery St. in Starkville.
Jason Browne was previously a reporter for The Dispatch.