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Vehicular homicide charge filed in November collision that killed boy near McCormick JH

Google Maps street view image of Western Hills Boulevard in front of McCormick Junior High in Cheyenne.

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Charges were filed earlier this month in Laramie County Circuit Court against a woman who in November allegedly struck and killed a 13-year-old boy with a car near McCormick Junior High.

Kelly Lynn Gaskins is charged with vehicular homicide in the death of Makaili James Evans, who died Nov. 5 after being struck by a vehicle while walking across a lighted crosswalk near the school that morning, the probable cause affidavit alleges. The Wyoming Tribune-Eagle was the first outlet to report on the charges, which were filed March 4.

The vehicular homicide charge is a misdemeanor and can carry a penalty of up to one year of jail time and/or a $2,000 fine upon conviction. The charge also states that Gaskins allegedly drove a vehicle in “a criminally negligent manner” that resulted in Evans’s death.

Gaskins was driving a 2005 Ford Escape when she collided with Evans around 7 a.m. near the area of Western Hills Boulevard and Moccasin Avenue, the affidavit alleges. Gaskins told police that she did not see the victim and was facing and talking to a passenger at the time of the incident.

The affidavit adds that Evans was legally crossing Western Hills Boulevard southbound as three vehicles driving westbound stopped to let the teenager pass. The lighted crosswalk was “properly marked” with white reflective paint signs posted nearby, alerting drivers to pedestrians.

Per dashcam footage that officers stated that they obtained at the scene, Gaskins allegedly “never slowed down or attempted to evade the collision” with Evans. Multiple witnesses confirmed this claim as well, per the affidavit. Evans was listed in the affidavit as appearing to have had no reaction to the approaching vehicle, as he was thought to have been looking at a cell phone at the time of the crash.

Evans’s injuries sustained in the collision were “not survivable,” according to the arrest affidavit. The Cheyenne police officer that wrote the affidavit stated that they believed Gaskins was at fault for the incident due to the fact that she was driving while distracted “in an area she knows to be a school zone, on a school day, because she drives that route daily to drop her children off at school.”

Gaskins’s blood results from the incident, returned in December, showed that she had benzodiazepines in her system, and Gaskins told officers on the day of the collision that she takes the medication daily, the affidavit notes. No other substances were in Gaskins’s system at the time, per the toxicology report.

Gaskins’s initial appearance in circuit court is currently listed for 9 a.m. Tuesday.