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Monday, June 24, 2024 at 3:54 PM

Chavez Sentenced on DUI that Resulted in Child Endangerment

Chavez Sentenced on DUI that Resulted in Child Endangerment

Kinsey May Chavez appeared for sentencing in the Tenth Judicial District Court in Fallon on May 7 before Judge Thomas Stockard. Chavez pled guilty in March to two charges, including Gross Misdemeanor Abuse, Neglect, or Endangerment of a Child Not Causing Substantial Bodily Harm, and Driving Under the Influence of an Intoxicating Liquor or Controlled or Prohibited Substance.   

The court had received the report of Chavez’s risk assessment completed by Dr. Cheri Hixon-Brenenstall, which indicated Chavez was not at high risk to re-offend. Had Chavez not agreed to the evaluation, she would have been ineligible for probation on the child abuse charge.  

DDA Priscilla Baker explained that in January, with poor weather and conditions from a big storm the day before, Chavez was under the influence and put her children in the car to run errands. Consequently, she was involved in a minor accident near McDonald’s. She then chose to keep driving and was involved in a more serious accident, which resulted in the children being taken to the hospital for evaluation.   
Baker said it could have been much worse. The second accident resulted in $780 in fence damage, for which Baker asked the court to order restitution. Regarding the

DUI, Baker asked that the defendant be ordered to attend a victim impact panel and complete a DUI education course, as required by statute, but also for Chavez to spend some weekends in the county jail so that she gets the message. Baker told the court that Court Services has reported that Chavez has continued to use, even with this case pending.  

Judge Stockard said he found it interesting that she was deemed at a low risk to re-offend yet is continuing to use and has tested positive for methamphetamine. CCPD Jacob Sommer explained the risk of re-offending was not regarding substance use but whether she would drive again with her children in the vehicle while under the influence. He said when Chavez uses any substances at all, “things go south.”   

Sommer continued that the low risk was a result of the fact that she was not going to use these substances at all, ever again. He said Chavez has not driven a vehicle since this case, and she recognizes her need to be a mother far outweighs any other. 

Sommer concluded that Chavez had learned the lesson the court wanted her to know. Even though there was no long-term damage, the children and Chavez were scared.  
Chavez took full responsibility for her actions and said she would never drink and drive with her children again.

On Count I, Chavez received a sentence of 364 days in Churchill County Jail and a $400 fine. On Count II, Judge Stockard ordered her to pay restitution for the fence and attend and complete the mandated DUI requirements. He sentenced her to 180 days in jail with the sentences to run consecutively for an aggregate term of 544 days. Stockard suspended all jail time and placed Chavez on probation for 12 months. She must obtain a substance abuse evaluation and follow the recommendations. She is not to drive without a valid driver’s license and must have a breath interlock device installed in her vehicle for 12 months.


 


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