A probation revocation hearing for the man accused of injuring a former Liberty County deputy at the Port of Savannah was continued until May 5.
The case against Robert Lee Turner was continued by Liberty County State Court Judge Leon Braun Thursday, pending toxicology results from Chatham County.
Turner was charged with DUI in Chatham County after hitting William Solomon, a former Liberty County Sheriff’s Office deputy and current Georgia Ports Authority officer. Turner allegedly hit the officer with his tractor-trailer on March 2 as Solomon was directing traffic.
Turner had bonded out of Chatham County Jail and was subsequently arrested here on an alleged probation violation for any earlier DUI in Liberty County.
According to local court records, Turner was cited in June 2012 for failure to maintain lane and DUI. Turner rolled his car in a single-vehicle accident on Lewis Frasier Road. Last May he was sentenced to 24 months of probation on those charges. He also was fined $2,000 and ordered to do 40 hours of community service.
Solomon sustained threatening injuries in the accident. He’s been at Memorial Health University Hospital in Savannah.
Throughout the ordeal Solomon’s wife, Aida, has rarely left his bedside.
She was in court Thursday and talked with the Courier after the hearing.
“My God is sustaining him,” she said. “He was breathing on his own, last night they did place him back on the ventilator, but for the last few days he had been breathing on his own.”
In a Facebook post Wednesday she reported Solomon moved his leg, arm and torso, and seemed to shrug when a nurse shined a light in his eyes.
She said she does not condemn Turner.
“Honestly in the eyes of God he is my brother, we are equal,” she said. “I don’t think God differentiates between a big sin or a small sin. A sin is a sin. And when we fail our brother we are supposed to forgive and I forgive him because in the eyes of the Lord he is my brother.
“I focus on what God will do for my husband. However in the eyes of man, by all definition, in the eyes of man he is a criminal and he needs to answer to man’s law, accordingly.”
She said she was speaking out to honor police.
“They save lives and they put their lives at risk to help other people which I know is what my husband did that day. I want to be here because I know that William, if there was a police officer that was hurt or a fallen officer, he would have been here to make sure that if this man receives any kind of sentence it goes to every other police officer not just William.”
She said the accident has changed her family. Her oldest son Alfredo, 20, returned from his first deployment the day before the accident and had new responsibilities thrust upon him.
“He had to become a mother, father and a brother and friend to my 9-year-old Jonathan,” she said. “He takes him to school and he basically does everything for him.
She said her husband also has two children, Clarissa and Christian who she calls her own, and who have been by his side throughout the ordeal.
And she said she is humbled by the support she has received from the Hinesville community.
“So many people…my FPCA family I don’t know how to thank them enough,” she started. “People throughout the community have come to my house…brought food over and I don’t know who these people are and I can only say thank you. The Georgia Port Authority has been more than his employer. They check up on me every day … I never would have imagined I’d have that support.”
A prayer vigil for William Solomon is set for 6 p.m. Thursday Calvary Baptist Church in Savannah, near Memorial.
“I wasn’t expecting a lot of visitors, but suddenly five turned into 10 people and 10 turned into a 100 and then a lot more people… Memorial can’t allow them on the premises because of security reasons and I can understand that so we are gathering at the Calvary Baptist Church on Waters and 64 Street,” she said.