Kimberly Graham Found Guilty On All Counts

Thursday, March 12th 2009, 3:59 pm
By: News On 6

By Jeffrey Smith, The News on 6

TULSA, OK -- A jury has found a Tulsa woman guilty in a deadly November 2007 hit-and-run accident.

Jurors convicted Kimberly Graham on all five counts of first-degree manslaughter and one count of leaving the scene of an accident.

When the first guilty verdict was read out loud, from the victim's families side of the courtroom, there was quiet bursts of elation and tears of joy. Across the courtroom, from the defendant's side, there was silence.

"I feel like justice was definitely served," said Bobbi Nickel, sister of victim Casey Jones. "It's been a long time coming."

The trial lasted four days, and more than 15 witnesses were called to the stand. Kimberly Graham shocked the courtroom by testifying in her own defense.

But in the end, it wasn't enough.

"It was total relief," Nickel said. "Because I knew that finally our voices were heard."

The victims' family members, about 30 strong, were first to leave the courtroom.

Teenager Korrie Young lost both of her parents, DeAnna and Ronny Coatney.

"It's closure," Young said. "Finally, she goes to jail for what she did, and the rest of us can start trying to move on with everything, and get back with our lives."

Graham's family did not speak when they left a few moments later.

"It's been devastating," Kimberly Graham's father, Leon Graham, said earlier in the day. "It's just like your heart's been ripped out.

"Whatever happens, that's what I'll have to live with. That's what the other families will have to live with."

On each of the five counts of manslaughter, the jury recommended 20 years. On the sixth count of fleeing the scene of a fatality accident, it recommended seven years.

In total, the jury unanimously agreed to put Graham behind bars for 107 years.

"I finally can have some closure," Nickel said. "Everybody can. We can start to heal."

For the family members of the five victims, they say they've been waiting for this day for a year and a half.

Graham will be back in court in April for her formal sentencing.

03/11/2009  Related Story: Kimberly Graham Says Crash Wasn't Her Fault

11/10/07 Suspect Arrested in Fatal Hit And Run Traffic Accident