NY man guilty of murder in wrong driveway shooting

NY man guilty of murder in wrong driveway shooting

By Nicki Brown, Nic F. Anderson and Ray Sanchez | CNN

Kevin Monahan was found guilty of second-degree murder Tuesday for shooting and killing a woman who was a passenger in a car that mistakenly drove up his driveway in rural New York last year, according to Katherine Thompson, deputy chief clerk of Washington County Supreme and County Courts.

Monahan had pleaded not guilty to charges of murder in the second degree, reckless endangerment and tampering with physical evidence in the death of 20-year-old Kaylin Gillis on April 15, 2023. He was convicted of all charges.

CNN has reached out to Monahan’s attorneys and the Washington County District Attorney for comment.

Prosecutors argued that the 66-year-old defendant acted recklessly when the teens used his driveway to turn their vehicles. The defense said what happened was a terrible accident.

Monahan shot at the vehicle when it accidentally turned into his driveway while the occupants looked for a friend’s house in Washington County, roughly 55 miles north of Albany. Gillis died a short time after the shooting.

Monahan took the stand at his trial last week, testifying that he felt like he and his wife were under siege that day and that he only wanted to protect his wife, CNN affiliate Spectrum News 1 reported.

Monahan told jurors that he and his wife were awakened by three vehicles in his driveway: two SUVs and a motorcycle revving its engine, the station reported. He testified that he told his wife to hide in their closet and he loaded his 20-gauge pump-action shotgun before going outside.

Monahan testified that he thought about past criminal activity in the area and fired a warning shot into the air. The vehicles began to leave slowly, he testified, and he lost his balance on some nails on his deck when the second fatal shot was fired, Spectrum News 1 reported.

Under cross-examination, Monahan was not able to point out in a photograph the nails that caused him to lose his balance. He was emotional when asked how Gillis’ death made him feel, telling the jury that his “soul is dead,” the station reported.