'Barreled through him:' Racine man accused of striking pedestrian during birthday parade

KENOSHA COUNTY -- A Racine man stands accused of striking a pedestrian with his vehicle during a May 2 birthday parade in the Village of Somers in Kenosha County. Prosecutors said he was behind the wheel despite having a suspended license -- and he was speeding when he struck the man standing in the middle of the roadway -- trying to get him to slow down in an effort to protect children in the neighborhood.

Christopher Goodman, 22, faces two charges -- one count of knowingly operating a motor vehicle while suspended -- causing great bodily harm, and one count of reckless driving -- causing great bodily harm. The crash happened around 3 p.m. on 45th Avenue near 15th Street, where the posted speed limit is 25 miles per hour.

According to a criminal complaint, the victim, identified by prosecutors as Michael Jucius, had to be airlifted to Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee after suffering brain bleeding, among other injuries.

Goodman told investigators he was taking part in a birthday parade for a friend's son, and had completed a "burnout" in front of the home, when he saw two males in a driveway yelling at him. Soon, he said one of the males stepped out in front of him, and he "could not stop in time," according to the complaint.

The victim's brother said he and his brother were the two males yelling at Goodman. He said they were working on a truck when they heard a motorcycle and a vehicle speeding. The vehicles soon raced past again, and he estimated them to be traveling at 50 to 60 miles per hour. He said he and his brother yelled at them to slow down because there were children in the neighborhood, and three drivers then slowed down. The victim's brother said as he walked back toward the house, he heard a vehicle's engine/exhaust and saw his brother in the middle of the road, yelling for the driver of a black vehicle to slow down. The victim's brother said the black vehicle "barreled through him," and his brother hit the front end, windshield, roof and spoiler before the driver pulled over.

A witness said after the crash, the driver of the black vehicle, who prosecutors said was Goodman, jumped out and said, "You (expletive). Why were you standing in the road?" The witness said Goodman never tried to help the victim. He also advised that he never heard the vehicle braking before the crash, and estimated its speed at approximately 60 miles per hour, according to the complaint.

A woman who was on a motorcycle behind the black vehicle Goodman was driving estimated their speed at 40 miles per hour near the birthday house, and said she was concerned about going to fast with kids in the neighborhood. She said after the crash, Goodman did try to help the victim. A witness who was in the vehicle with Goodman said he tried to stop before hitting the man.

The complaint noted Goodman's driver's license, which had been suspended, was reinstated in December, but he received a points warning by month's end, and his license was suspended again on March 10 for failing to pay tickets.

Goodman made his initial appearance in court Monday, May 4. Cash bond was set at $500, and a preliminary hearing was scheduled for June 4.