Fallon man receives maximum sentence for I-80 crash
Augustine Joseph Kennedy of Fallon was sentenced last week in the Tenth Judicial District Court to 96-240 months in the Nevada State Prison for seriously injuring two occupants when he slammed into their vehicle head-on on Interstate 80 in late December 2014.
According to the Nevada Highway Patrol, Augustine Joseph Kennedy’s vehicle spinned a U-turn in the eastbound lane in his Toyota before the crash happened. The NHP said the collision occurred near mile marker 71 in Churchill County.
Trooper Dave Gibson, now with the Nevada Department of Public Safety, said Kennedy decided to make a U-turn for some unknown reason, and then the two cars collided. The accident closed the eastbound lanes for several hours until one lane was reopened. Care Flight took Kennedy to Renown along with the passengers from the other car, Trent Renner and Alisa Merino, both from Smith Valley. The Fallon Churchill Volunteer Fire Department responded to aide in the extrication of the occupants.
Deputy District Attorney Michael Winn said tests on Kennedy showed him to be driving under the influence, a factor that caused substantial injury to both Renner and Merino.
Pubic defender Jacob Sommer said Kennedy recognizes he did something wrong to both him and to two other people.
“There is no excuse for this,” Sommer said. “He knows he has to pay the price.”
Kennedy, who worked as a pipe fitter for 14 years, apologized for his actions.
Merino took the stand and said she and her boyfriend were heading to Reno when the accident occurred. She remembers being removed from the vehicle and taken to Reno on Care Flight where she spent the next nine days in a trauma wing. Merino said she also wore a neck collar and back brace for three months.
“I can’t perform many activities I could before,” she said.
Merino said her doctor told her she would also have difficultly with any future childbirth.
“My heartbreak is still there,” she said.
Renner, a professional paramedic and firefighter, said he watched “a person he loves wait in pain until Care Flight arrived.”
Renner said he suffered numerous fractures in his hands, feet, arm and nose.
In addition to the sentence, Judge Thomas Stockard said Kennedy must pay $36,400 in restitution to cover what insurance did not pay.
In other court news ….
Michone Kaye Jackson was sentenced 42-120 months to the Nevada State Prison and fined $2,000 for allowing a child to be present during the sale of a controlled substance on Nov. 18, 2015.
Deputy District Attorney Michael Winn argued for the maximum sentence, stating in court that Jackson, who was originally charged with 11 counts, brought her then 7-month-old child to every deal. He also said Jackson sold drugs to the same confidential informant four times.
“There are programs in prison that will be available to her,” Winn said.
Defense attorney Peter Smith said Jackson’s first introduction to meth occurred when she was 12 years old. She later had three misdemeanor charges for possession.
“She was a drug addict and single mother and associated with other drug addicts,” Smith said before Stockard sentenced her.
Smith also said Jackson discovered in December, while in jail, she waspregnant.
Stockard said he would not place Jackson on probation and then he gave her the harshest sentence he could.
Brendan Dwight Twomey, who pleaded guilty to one count of grand larceny of a firearm, in October 2015, had his 18-48 month sentence suspended, and he was placed on probation for five years.
Stockard, though, said Twomey must serve 45 consecutive weekends in jail or 90 consecutive days if he does not have employment.
A competency evaluation conducted by Lakes Crossing in Reno has determined Stanislaw Kuzmicki is competent to stand trial. He has pleaded not guilty to a charge of violation of a temporary court order restricting stalking or harassment. A two-day trail is scheduled for late November.
Jason Lee Enox pleaded not guilty to six counts of trafficking in a controlled substance (4 grams or more but less than 14 grams); offer, attempt or commission of an unauthorized act relating to a controlled or counterfeit substance near a school; failure to stop on the signal of a peace officer; possession of a controlled substance; possession of a dangerous weapon or silencer; and being a habitual criminal with three prior felonies.
Enox faces up to 10 years and a fine not to exceed $50,000 for count one; one to six years and a fine not to exceed $20,000 for count two; one to six years and fine not to $5,000 on count three; one to four years and fine not to $5,000 on count four; and 36-40 months and a fine not to exceed $2,000.
The incident occurred July 17, 2016. A trial has been set in January 2017. Enox’ bail has been set at $250,000.
Michel John Kandle pleaded guilty to one count of offer, attempt or commission of an unauthorized act relation to a controlled or counterfeit substance. Kandle was transporting Methamphetamine across Nevada on June 30, 2015.
The charge carries a penalty of one to six years in the Nevada State Prison and a fine not to exceed $20,000. Sentencing will be in July.
Randy Lee Hutchraft pleaded not guilty for being in possession of a controlled substance. He faces a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine not to exceed $5,000. Trial has been set for late June.
Thomas Robert Worthy pleaded no contest to one count of possession of a controlled substance, Methamphetamine, on March 26, 2016.
Sentencing will be in early July, and a pre-sentencing investigation report has been ordered. Worthy was released on his own recognizance.
Neal Bryan Boles entered an Alford Plea to one count of burglary, a Category B felony. On March 12, 2016, he tried to kick down the door at his grandmother’s residence.
Chief Deputy District Attorney Lane Mills said Boles also yelled he was going to kill her.
Mills said this is not the first time Boles has committed domestic battery against his grandmother. Sentencing is set for early July, and bail has been set at $10,000. Boles faces one to 10 years in the Nevada State Prison and a fine not to exceed $10,000.
An arraignment for Jacob William Kolwyck turned into a suspended sentence for two counts of unlawful use or being under the influence of a controlled substance. On March 21, 2016, he was under the influence of both Methamphetamine and opiate.
On each count he faces one to four years in the Nevada State Prison and a fine not to exceed $5,000. Stockard placed Kolwyck on five years probation and required him to have a substance abuse evaluation.
The court received an evaluation from Lakes Crossing for Kelly Lynn Meador that ruled the defendant competent to face one count of violation of extended court order restricting stalking or harassment, a Category C felony.