Joshua Todd Soule

Joshua Todd Soule, 41, of Hickory

The man accused of fatally striking a pedestrian and severely injuring another during a chase with the Gaston County Sheriff’s Office has been sent to Central Prison in Raleigh for safekeeping.

Joshua Todd Soule, 41, of Hickory had been kept in solitary confinement since his arrest July 14. He was moved to Central Prison after he threatened to take his own life, according to court documents filed Monday.

Soule’s mental health status, combined with the fact that Soule was being kept in a jail staffed by sheriff’s office deputies and that witness statements blame Antrel Garnigan’s death on officers, led Superior Court Judge Robert Bell to approve a safekeeping order.

Soule faces second-degree murder charges in Garnigan’s death. He was also charged with felony fleeing to elude arrest and driving while impaired for the incident that occurred on Rankin Avenue.

Soule also allegedly struck Shawn Smith, who was hospitalized with serious injuries.

A deputy attempted to stop Soule on U.S. 321 near Rankin Avenue at 7:32 p.m. on July 14, according to warrants. He was driving a 1998 Ford Taurus and drifting in and out of his lane of traffic, according to the Highway Patrol.

Soule ran a red light at Rankin Avenue before going airborne after crossing an intersection at a high rate of speed. The collision happened just west of the Highland Street intersection with Rankin Avenue.

The sheriff’s office and highway patrol have both said the evidence doesn’t indicate the patrol car struck either Garnigan or Smith, though several neighbors in the community insist the deputy’s car did.

Sheriff Alan Cloninger and District Attorney Locke Bell held a community meeting earlier this week at Friendship Christian Church to discuss the case.

Cloninger acknowledged that deputies moved the car from the scene for safety reasons but emphasized again that no evidence implicated his officers.

Soule’s trial hasn’t been scheduled.

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