Prosecutors in the Wrentham District Court claim that Moses Acloque dragged a women who worked at a Route 1 motel for three miles underneath his vehicle causing her death. According to a report in the Patch Acloque was at a party in a motel room watching Monday Night Football. The prosecution claims that Acloque had not paid for the room nor was he permitted to be in the room. His defense lawyer stated that he was a visitor in the room. Apparently, motel staff members demanded payment from Acloque. The defense has alleged that Acloque was then assaulted. His injuries warranted hospital treatment. The prosecution contends that Acloque ran over the victim while trying to leave the property without providing payment for the room.
The Patch article further suggests that at least one person, not present at the motel saw the body being dragged by Acloque’s vehicle. That person alerted the state police who in turn located Acloque, his truck and the victim’s body. An arrest was immediately made.
Acloque has been charged with leaving the scene of an accident, motor vehicle homicide and other motor vehicle crimes. A modest bail was set and at least for now the case will be prosecuted in the district court.
The facts reported in this article leave much to the imagination relative to potential defenses to these charges. Key to the case will likely be what the witness who alerted the state police actually saw. The article suggests that he saw Acloque’s vehicle hit the victim. If that is true then his observations tend to undermine the prosecutor’s representations that the victim was struck by Acloque while blocking his truck in an effort to secure payment for the room. There is also the suggestion that the accused was leaving the motel to escape from an assault. This conduct in some cases provides a viable affirmative defense to criminal accusations.
Here is something else to think about. Acloque’s defense lawyer stated that he had no idea that someone was being dragged by the car. This might very well be true depending on where the body was in relation to the car. For instance, if the somehow the victim or her clothing got stuck on a portion of the rear of the truck while she was running after the vehicle this suggestion becomes plausible. On the other hand, if the truck struck her from the front and she was dragged underneath then Acloque might have some bigger problems. One thing is for sure. Acloque hired an excellent Massachusetts criminal lawyer with years of experience. Getting the judge to set reasonable bail was in and of itself an initial victory for Acloque.