Woman shot in eye after police chase is sentenced to probation
FARMINGTON — A Colorado woman who led police on a chase, striking police vehicles before being shot in the eye, was sentenced to probation Monday.
Kristine Biggs, 41, pleaded guilty to failure to stop at the command of a police officer, a third-degree felony, and driving under the influence of alcohol, a class B misdemeanor, in December. Monday, she was sentenced to zero to five years in prison and 180 days in jail, but both terms were suspended by 2nd District Judge Michael Allphin in favor of three years probation.
The judge imposed a 42-day jail sentence, but gave the woman credit for the 42 days she has already served, defense attorney Michael Edwards said. Allphin also ordered Biggs to pay $250 in public defender fees. He suspended another $5,350 in fines.
"All things considered, I'm pleased with the outcome," Edwards said.
On Nov. 24, a Morgan County sheriff's deputy attempted to pull Biggs over on I-84 for having just one working headlight on her vehicle, police said. The woman, however, did not pull over.
The ensuing chase went west on I-84 through Weber Canyon. At one point, Biggs turned around on the freeway and headed back into Morgan County. With deputies and the Utah Highway Patrol in pursuit, she again changed directions and headed back down the canyon, police said.
Near the area known as Horseshoe Bend on I-84, a UHP trooper spiked three of the woman's tires. She continued driving, however, for another six to eight miles into Davis County. By the time the chase came to an end, police said the left side of her vehicle was riding completely on its rims.
In South Weber, Biggs again made a U-turn and attempted to drive the opposite direction. This time, however, she hit two Morgan County sheriff's vehicles, side-swiping the first and hitting the second one head-on, police said.
The deputy got out of his car and ordered Biggs to get out of her truck. Instead, she backed up and rammed the police car again. Police said she repeated this action a couple of times before the officer fired a shot through the pickup truck's windshield, striking the woman in her left eye.
The woman was hospitalized and Edwards said she continues to have a "dead eye" that needs to be removed and replaced with a prosthetic.
Following an investigation, Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings determined that Morgan County Sheriff's Sgt. Daniel Scott Peay was not "squarely justified" in the shooting. Still, prosecutors did not file any criminal charges against the sergeant.
"In his mind, he was protecting life from an aggressor in a vehicle who was not going to stop," Rawlings wrote of Peay in a letter outlining his decision. "However, we also believe a unanimous jury would not convict Sgt. Peay of a crime when presented with all of the evidence."
Biggs originally faced seven charges in connection with the incident, including two counts of aggravated assault, failure to stop at the command of a police officer, third-degree felonies, driving under the influence of alcohol, a class B misdemeanor, open container in a vehicle on a highway, using plates registered to another vehicle and expired vehicle registration, all class C misdemeanors. The other charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.
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