DAVENPORT, Iowa — A Texas woman was sentenced to up to 10 years in prison for causing a car crash in eastern Iowa that killed one person.
Lauria Lee Kelly, 58, of Alvarado, Texas, was sentenced Wednesday in Scott County District Court, the Quad-City Times reported . Kelly was found guilty of homicide by vehicle-reckless driving for the January 2017 wreck that killed Cynthia Jones.
Witnesses told police Kelly was speeding and running through red traffic lights in downtown Davenport. Kelly’s vehicle struck Jones’ car, which was stopped at a red light.
The collision caused Jones’ car to push into the rear of another vehicle. That driver, Jessica Russell, was seven months pregnant at the time. Russell was taken to the hospital, but did not sustain life-threatening injuries. Russell’s unborn child wasn’t harmed.
“I just can’t take it back,” Kelly told Jones’ family during the sentencing hearing. “I just want you to forgive me.”
Kelly’s attorney, Harlan Giese Jr., asked Chief District Judge Marlita Greve for a suspended sentence and probation considering Kelly’s mental health issues. Greve previously said a notebook was found in her truck filled with random and repeating words.
The judge said the prison sentence was appropriate based on the offense’s severity, Kelly’s mental health issues and her criminal history, which included drug-related offenses. Greve also ordered Kelly to pay $150,000 in restitution to Jones’ family.
Kelly has 30 days to file an appeal notice.
Information from: Quad-City Times, http://www.qctimes.com