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New Canaan Teen Charged with Negligent Homicide in SUV vs. Jogger Death

Norwalk man, who was jogging along New Canaan Ave., died in March after he was transported to the hospital.

NORWALK—A 16-year-old New Canaan girl was arrested by warrant Saturday, accused of that resulted in fatal injuries.

The girl, who authorities can't identify because of her age, was charged with negligent homicide with a motor vehicle, use of a handheld telephone by someone under 18 years old, and failure to drive in the proper lane.

She came to police headquarters after being told officers had obtained a warrant for her arrest.

She will be prosecuted in Juvenile Court in Bridgeport, which is not open to the public. Her first court appearance is scheduled for May 24.

The man killed, 44-year-old Norwalk resident Kenneth Dorsey, was struck from behind on March 24  at about 9:30 a.m. while he was jogging along the roadside in the area of 229 New Canaan Ave. He was alive but unconscious when emergency personnel arrived. He later died in Norwalk Hospital.

A police news release issued Monday says his cause of death is still undetermined.

At the time of the accident, police said the driver had obtained her license about three and half months earlier.

She was driving a Toyota 4-Runner on New Canaan Avenue when Dorsey was struck. She remained at the scene following the accident.

Under Connecticut motor vehicle laws, it is illegal for someone under the age of 18 to use a handheld phone, even if a hands-free accessory is available.

Negligent homicide with a motor vehicle is punishable with a fine of $1,000 or up to six months in prison, or both.

[Editor's Note: This article was updated with info from Norwalk Patch etc.]

RoccoGeno May 14, 2012 at 05:57 PM
Sad story, especially for the jogger, his family and friends. The fact that cell phone use by the 16 year old was a major contributor in this accident comes at absolutely no surprise at all. I would have bet money on it. Today's kids live in a completely different world that I did when I was growing up.
D Walsh May 14, 2012 at 06:29 PM
Too sad to loose a friend this way. I imagine the kid who hit him is probably devastaed but $1000 dollars seems so insignificant... Education for her & send her out to warn others of how phones can take lives. Something has to be learned from all this tragedy..miss you Kenny!
Cath May 14, 2012 at 09:14 PM
Maybe parents can stop buying their teenagers cell phones that they don't really need and this won't happen anymore. Also, if she doesn't have a good attorney then she's looking at jail time. And for a naive kid, prison is significant and will change your life forever. I can only hope that all the other teenagers that I see on the road now driving like lightning will learn from this preventable tragedy.
Hermann Zwergel May 14, 2012 at 09:30 PM
Sad story, but I'm also guessing that the driver grew up watching parents driving around ignoring the cell phone driving laws.
Ade May 14, 2012 at 09:56 PM
Seriously, people? It's the parent's fault for buying cell phones and potentially leading by bad example? If this girl had a driver's license, then she clearly went through driver's ed and knew the rules of the road. Her parents very well could have told her to keep it turned off while she was driving and she, like many kids, chose to ignore the warning believing that nothing bad would ever happen. It is a sad story for all parties involved but if she was driving the car it was her own responsibility.
Glen K Dunbar May 14, 2012 at 11:48 PM
For once I have to somewhat concurr w/Abe. Very sad. Poor Victim. Poor Family of Victim. Yet, I also feel terrible for this Girl who will now carry this the rest of her life. I agree w/Abe. Why do Kids need cell phones?? What for?? Why bring it in the car if You have one??? I leave my cell phone home if I have to drive to work or to The Met. I only carry cell phone on train days. I hope this Girl can get some help and realize that cell phones and driving do not mix. Moreover, maybe She can one day share this tragedy w/others so people will know this is serious. GLEN
mary parker May 15, 2012 at 02:32 AM
What happened to raising the legal age for teenagers to obtain their drivers liscence? I thought the State did to age 18? How come 16 year olds are still getting their liscences? To me it is too young now a days with the way people drive. They are prooving not to be responsible enough and not able to handle situations at that age. I see too many teenage drivers speeding, running red lights, blowing through stop signs, using cell phones and last week had a teenager in a black Chevy Pick-up, tail-gate me all the way down 123 into Broad River literally on my bumper and when I slowed down to try and make him slow down he began to gun his engine and get within inches of me. He then tried to pass me on the left and then the right side of me. What an idiot. I couldn't get his plate number because he turned before the red light I was approaching. I had my daughter in the car with me or I would have hit the brakes and let him hit me and then sued the heck out of him. So 99% of kids don't care about being safe now a days. All due to their parents not making sure their kids drive safe at all times.
mary parker May 15, 2012 at 03:16 AM
As far as the 16 year old being arrested. She won't do jail time, she'll get a suspended sentence with probation. A $1000.00 fine, not sure what the fine is for? Is it for failure to stay in her lane and on her cell phone? Or does it include killing a person also? Eigther way, now that she is charged the family of the lost man will probably sue her and her parents in a civil suit. She should also lose her liscence until she is 21 years old and attened mandatory driving classes for people involved in DWI'S, seriouse motor vehicle accidents, ect.. at least 4 times a year untill she is 21 years old and serve lunch to the inmates at the Bridgeport jail several times to show her what life is like when you mess up like this. Her parents might be good parents but she just did what teenagers do, not listen to them.All drivers caught on the cell phone, running lights, speeding over a certain speed and running stop signs, should have to go to a class showing movies of what happens when you drive like an idiot.
Liz May 15, 2012 at 03:49 AM
Whatever happened to Kate Regan????
Glen K Dunbar May 15, 2012 at 12:11 PM
Who is/was Kate?
Cath May 15, 2012 at 12:17 PM
another driver who hit someone in New Canaan awhile back. Just google the name. However, she is a grown adult who left the scene of the accident. I commend the 16 year old for not leaving the scene and at least owning up to what she did by calling the police.
James Moore May 15, 2012 at 01:46 PM
This might be a good case for Peer-to-Peer court like we have in New Canaan: http://newcanaan.patch.com/articles/a-jury-of-peers As tragic as the whole situation is, she will not go to jail, she will probably lose her drivers license for awhile, community service will be a given and perhaps a money payout by the insurance company? Maybe by letting this person be tried by her peers would help spread the word out to more kids in the area instead of hiding behind court doors and sealed records.
Charley May 15, 2012 at 04:26 PM
I have been rear ended twice along with countless near misses due to distracted cell drivers. I stated this before on Patch, that drivers texting or on cell phones stick out like dead flies in a bowl of whip cream. It is impossible not to see someone on the phone or texting within 5 minutes of getting on the road. It is not just teenagers but all ages and genders. They all think they can drive and push tiny keys simultaneously but the fact is they can't. Until the state changes the law similar to that of Utah the tragedies will continue. In Utah they treated it like a DWI.
Greenhill May 15, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Texting while driving should be a DWI level offense in Connecticut. Using a hand-held device while driving should also be a DWI level offense. What needs to happen is both our legislators need to step-up and help get this passed and insurance companies should drop customers who commit these violations. For those drivers who must use the phone please buy a Bluetooth device. I see this every day in town and the drivers do stick out like a sore thumb. Go to the High School or NC YMCA and you will see drivers chatting away while driving through the parking lots.
Dean Mulligan May 15, 2012 at 06:49 PM
Texting while driving has been proven to be as dangerous as DWI. It's past time for the lawmakers to show some courage and pass laws that treat it as such, and for police to enforce it.
LU63 May 16, 2012 at 03:42 AM
There is no evidence this lovely girl was doing any more than answering her phone, via Bluetooth. That is still not legal for new drivers. But there is a lot of speculation about what happened. One life ended, another life shattered. Great parents, great kid, horrific accident. We need to use this as a way to teach our kids... No matter what they learn, or hear, until it is real little seems to penetrate. God bless both families!
marilyn May 16, 2012 at 10:13 AM
http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/policereports/article/New-Canaan-driver-on-web-when-she-hit-jogger-3561024.php
Glen K Dunbar May 16, 2012 at 11:15 AM
What Lu states pretty much says it all. So sad. Unthinkable.
Dean Mulligan May 16, 2012 at 01:10 PM
Lets stick to facts...... NORWALK -- A 16-year-old girl was searching the New Canaan High School website on her iPhone when she drove a Toyota 4Runner onto a shoulder and fatally struck a Norwalk man, police say. Read more: http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/policereports/article/New-Canaan-driver-on-web-when-she-hit-jogger-3561024.php#ixzz1v2P9HkRZ
John May 16, 2012 at 07:39 PM
Back in court June 7
John May 16, 2012 at 07:45 PM
Don't they sell bagels in New Canaan? STAY THERE. Another trust fund recipient kills an innocent pedestrian.

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