A 58-year-old man has been sentenced to a year in jail for fatally hitting a pedestrian in St. Paul and leaving the scene.
Robert W. Kinney, of Maplewood, was sentenced Monday in Ramsey County District Court after being convicted of criminal vehicular homicide in connection with the death on Jan. 22 of John D. Benjamin, 68.
District Judge JaPaul Harris stayed a four-year sentence for Kinney and put him on probation for 15 years. If eligible, Kinney could be granted work release during his jail term.
Benjamin was hit near his home while walking about 8:35 p.m. that day and then left facedown to die against a snowbank along N. McKnight Road near the intersection with Margaret Street, the complaint said.
The criminal complaint against Kinney said he drank eight double shots of vodka over a three-hour stretch in the 5-8 Tavern & Grill, where a tipster described him to police as a regular. He left the bar about 10 minutes before Benjamin was hit, according to the business' surveillance video, the complaint continued.
Days passed before authorities determined that Kinney was the driver and then arrested him at his home. Police were therefore prevented from administering a blood alcohol test in time to determine whether the driver was intoxicated.
Kinney's criminal history includes convictions in Minnesota for drunken driving in 1996 and 2004.