Aug. 22 – A Columbia Falls motorist convicted last summer of a charge stemming from a drunken hit-and-run with a group of cyclists in Kalispell has earned five years in prison.
Judge Dan Wilson sentenced Kenneth Malcolm Stevenson, 35, to 10 years in Montana State Prison with five years probation in Flathead County District Court on Aug. 17. Wilson credited Stevenson for two days of time served and ordered him to pay restitution as well as court fines and costs.
Stevenson initially pleaded not guilty to a single count of negligent vehicular assault after the August 21, 2022 collision along Seventh Avenue East North in Kalispell. He entered into a plea deal with prosecutors in May of this year. In exchange for a guilty plea, prosecutors agreed to recommend a partially suspended sentence to the state Department of Corrections.
Wilson gave Stevenson jail time instead last week.
The wreck occurred as Stevenson reportedly tried to pass the group of cyclists. Instead, he seriously injured a bicyclist before hitting a Jeep with his Ford F-350 pickup, court documents said.
When Kalispell police arrived, they reported finding Stevenson with slurred speech and the smell of an alcoholic beverage, as well as watery, bloodshot eyes, court documents said. Stevenson, who was riding without shoes, reportedly needed officers’ help to stay upright.
He also admitted to drinking at a nearby bar earlier in the evening, according to court documents.
News editor Derrick Perkins can be reached at 758-4430 or [email protected].