California man fined for hitting truck arrestor said he was being followed by Santa Claus
JACKSON (WNE) —A California man who collided with a truck arrestor has pleaded no contest to three charges in Teton County Circuit Court.
Charles Green, 61, from Susanville, pleaded no contest Oct. 20 to failure to report a collision, duty upon colliding and possession of a small amount of marijuana.
Green waived his right to an attorney, and his plea was not the result of a plea agreement, according to court documents. He spent a total of eight days in jail.
He has been fined $420 for all three charges.
Green was in the area visiting family when he was traveling over Teton Pass into Jackson. An eyewitness saw his Volvo collide with the truck arrestor at around 6:30 p.m. Oct. 3 on Wyoming Highway 22.
He drove on and was contacted by a highway patrol trooper who found him pulled over near the Snake River bridge.
State Trooper Andy Jackson responded to the call of an erratic driver and said Green exhibited “bizarre behavior,” reportedly telling Jackson that Santa Claus had been following him.
Jackson suspected Green of having some sort of “psychotic episode” at the time of the collision. In his release orders dated Oct. 11, Teton County Circuit Court Judge James Radda ordered Green to submit to a psychiatric evaluation.
Drug and psychological assessments are always confidential and not available to the public, Chief Clerk of Teton County Circuit Court Erin Munk said.
Green was ultimately deemed “competent to enter a plea,” according to court documents.
The truck arrestor was reopened two days later after minor repairs to the initial net.
According to Wyoming Department of Transportation spokesperson Stephanie Harsha, the cost to fix the truck arrestor was $64,500 plus shipping.