PRESTON — A Stewartville woman was convicted Thursday of manslaughter and criminal vehicular homicide in connection to a 2017 crash in Fillmore County that left a woman dead.
Sarah Nichole Sexton, 39, was found guilty by a Fillmore County District Court of felony second-degree manslaughter, criminal vehicular homicide, two counts of felony criminal vehicular operation as well as five traffic gross misdemeanor, misdemeanor and petty misdemeanor charges.
The jury's foreperson signed the nine guilty verdicts at 4:50 p.m. Thursday, according to court records. The jury trial began Monday.
Law enforcement was called to a crash about 6:30 p.m. Oct. 17, 2017, at the intersection of County Road 2 and County Road 38. Once on scene, they found a Chevrolet Suburban on its side in the ditch, and a Nissan Murano 75 yards northeast of the intersection in a cornfield.
Neither party remembered the crash, according to court documents.
Sexton and her 13-year-old daughter were in one vehicle. She told officers she didn’t know what happened at the scene, but later found she had suffered a concussion. Her daughter also suffered minor injuries, according to court documents.
The man driving the vehicle Sexton struck also sustained a number of injuries, including a broken jaw, broken foot, broken neck, broken ribs and had to have intestines removed, according to court documents. His wife, Joan Hodge, died from her injuries after being airlifted to Mayo Clinic Hospital–Saint Marys.
A Minnesota State Patrol trooper pieced together details of the collision using crash reconstruction, and determined Sexton failed to stop at the stop sign, yielding to the right of way traffic.
The airbag control module obtained from Sexton’s car showed that 0.5 seconds prior to impact, the vehicle was traveling at speeds of 53-54 mph and did not apply the brakes, according to court documents.
A motion hearing is scheduled for Sept. 16. Sexton is scheduled to be sentenced on the charges on Oct. 7.