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A Man with a 'Short Fuse' Killed a Lost Woman Turning Her Car Around in His Driveway. Now, He May Never Walk Free Again.

New York Man Fires On Car In Driveway; Young Woman Murdered
Source: Washington County Sheriff's Office; GoFundMe

Kevin Monahan (left) could spend life in prison for fatally shooting Kaylin Gillis (right), who pulled into his driveway in error when she was lost.

Mar. 5 2024, Published 10:02 a.m. ET

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Pulling into the wrong driveway can be a simple mistake, and now a man in eastern New York could spend life in prison after he fatally shot a 20-year-old woman who paid for that lesson with her life.

Kevin Monahan, 65, was charged with second-degree murder for firing two shots after stepping out of his rural home in Hebron, north of Albany, on the evening of April 15, 2023.

He was convicted of the killing on Jan. 23 following a two-week trial, The New York Post reported.

Shortly after the incident, Washington County Sheriff Jeffrey Murphy said Monahan fired at a car with four people inside as they were trying to turn around in the driveway. The group apparently realized they were at the wrong address.

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Kaylin Gillis was struck in the neck by a bullet from Monahan's 12-gauge shotgun. The New York Times reports her friends drove about six miles to a town where they could call 911.

During his trial, Monahan claimed the first shot was meant to be a warning and the second shot, which killed Gillis, was the result of him tripping. “I didn’t mean to shoot the second shot … the gun went off,” Monahan testified, alleging he at the time believed his house was “under siege.”

CBS News reported first responders found the car on Cemetery Road in Salem but were unable to save Gillis's life.

“She was an innocent young girl who was out with friends looking for another friend’s house,” Murphy said.

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A neighbor testified that the defendant "had a short fuse."

"I think he was a bit of a narcissist,” said Adam Matthews last spring, according to The New York Post. “He could do no wrong, but everybody else didn’t know jack s***,” Matthews said, adding Manahan had ongoing issues with drivers who mistook his driveway for the nearby road.

During closing arguments, Assistant District Attorney Christian Morris said the defendant "acted out of anger."

"That’s the only thing that can be inferred from shooting at people within 90 seconds of being on his property,” Morris said. “He grabbed his shotgun and intended to make them leave as fast as possible and he didn’t care if they were hurt or killed.”

Washington County Judge Adam Michelini recently sentenced Monahan to 25 years to life in prison, The Recount reported.

During the sentencing, Michelini told the defendant, “Mr. Monahan, I think if you were released from prison — and people who commit murder generally don't recidivate a lot, they don't commit the same crime; again, it's a low rate of recidivism — but, with you, I think you really could possibly do the same thing again.”

“It's obvious to me that you feel justified," the judge continued. "You don't take any responsibility for the outcome of your actions. You just don't get it,” Michelini continued. “You senselessly took the life of Kaylin Gillis, and you have the gall to sit here and talk about how you plan to finish up the work on your house and race Motocross in the future? You don't deserve that. What would make you think that you deserve those things?”

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