(5/7/14) A driver in western Wisconsin might not spend any time behind bars for illegally texting just before his vehicle killed an elderly pedestrian.
41-year-old Timothy Peterson, who now lives in Red Wing Minnesota, was given a diversion agreement by a Trempealeau County judge. If he meets certain conditions, he will not have to spend time behind bars after he pleaded no contest to a felony count of negligent homicide. Investigators found that Peterson was texting on his cellphone just two minutes before his vehicle struck-and-killed 86-year-old Cecelia Killian in January of last year. She was crossing a street in Independence, where Peterson was living at the time. Circuit Judge John Damon imposed a five-year diversion agreement in which he must perform 200 hours of community service. He must spend half that time talking to teens about the dangers of texting and driving -- which in-and-of itself is against state law. Killian's family said the diversion agreement was okay with them. They said a prison sentence would only hurt another family.