A man facing trial in Caddo District Court Monday, July 11, 2022 for vehicular homicide and first degree negligent injuring pleaded guilty unconditionally just as proceedings were about to begin.
Jaiden Augustus Seth Kephart, 22, of Shreveport, pleaded guilty to causing an accident that killed the front-seat passenger, his girlfriend, and seriously injured his roommate, the back-seat passenger, early September 13, 2018, at 1600 Bert Kouns Industrial Loop at Millicent Way, in front of Pizza Hut.
Kephart’s guilty plea leaves his sentencing on September 28, 2022, entirely to the discretion of Caddo District Judge Donald Hathaway Jr.
Kephart, 19 at the time of the collision, faces up to 30 years imprisonment for vehicular homicide of the female passenger and up to five years in prison for the first-degree negligent injuring of the male passenger.
Kephart was driving his girlfriend and his male roommate to work in a borrowed Toyota Camry, and had turned right onto Bert Kouns from the intersection at Millicent Way. He drove toward Pizza Hut and had entered the middle turn lane from the inside eastbound lane. Kephart attempted a left turn into the Pizza Hut parking lot; however, he turned into the path of an oncoming Ford F550 that was pulling a trailer. The impact of the collision on the passenger side of the Camry killed Kephart’s girlfriend and seriously injured the male back seat passenger.
Kephart’s blood, drawn for forensic testing, contained the active ingredients of two controlled dangerous substances, marijuana and alprazolam, as well as cocaine metabolites. Kephart, who suffered no lasting injuries, admitted to medical personnel that he would test “dirty,” and also took a selfie in the hospital bed with the notation “took 8 bars and wreck my girl.”
During the guilty plea, prosecutors introduced the toxicology report, the death certificate of the female victim and the defendant’s selfie into evidence.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Jason Waltman and Courtney Ray. Kephart was defended by J. Antonio Florence.
The case was docket No. 361536.