A New York man has been found guilty of fatally shooting a 20-year-old woman who was in the passenger seat of a friend's car when they turned into the wrong driveway, according to Albany ABC affiliate WTEN.
On the night of April 15, 2023, Kaylin Gillis and her friends mistakenly pulled into the long, dark driveway of 65-year-old Kevin Monahan in rural Hebron, New York, while they were looking for a friend's house, authorities said. The group of friends was traveling in two cars and a motorcycle, and Gillis was a passenger in one of the cars, driven by her boyfriend.
Monahan, standing on his deck, fired at least two shots toward the group and fatally hit Gillis in the neck, authorities said.
"They were a victim of circumstance. Their friend that they were going to see was a half a mile down the road," Gillis' dad, Andrew Gillis, said in April. "For this man to sit on his porch and fire at a car that posed no threat, just angers me so badly."
Monahan was convicted Tuesday of second-degree murder, reckless endangerment and tampering with physical evidence, WTEN reported. The jury deliberated for less than three hours, according to WTEN.
Monahan's defense attorney, Arthur Frost, has said Monahan was scared by the strangers who showed up on his driveway in the dark of the night, according to The Associated Press.
Monahan testified that he fired one warning shot so the people on the driveway would know he was armed, the AP said.
"The warning shot, to me, is almost like starting a dialog," Monahan said under cross-examination, according to the AP.
Monahan said he then tripped over nails on his deck, lost his balance and the gun accidentally fired the second shot, the AP said. Frost called the gun defective, the AP reported, a claim that was disputed on the stand by Victoria O'Connor, a New York State Police forensic investigator.