Man Pleads Guilty To DUI That Severely Injured Passenger
A man who was intoxicated while driving and crashed two years ago faces up to five years in prison because of the injuries to his passenger.
Kevin Michael Gemkow pleaded guilty to driving while under the influence resulting in serious bodily injury during a hearing before Natrona County District Judge Catherine Wilking.
In exchange for the plea, prosecutors agreed to a five year cap on a prison sentence. The "cold plea" agreement requires Gemkow to not violate any laws between now and sentencing or the deal is off. He also will be required to pay restitution, Assistant District Attorney Dan Itzen said.
If the case had gone to trial, and Gemkow had been found guilty, he could have faced up to 10 years behind bars.
Wilking said she is not a party to the plea agreement arranged by his defense attorney and the prosecution, and she has the option of rejecting it at Gemkow's sentencing.
The case began on May 23, 2013, when he was driving on U.S. Highway 20-26 about 55 miles west of Casper. His vehicle left the road, injuring himself and his passenger Brian Bowden.
According to court documents, Gemkow had a blood alcohol content level of .14 percent at the time of the crash. He also had cannabinoids and benzodiazepines in his system.
When asked to describe what happened that day, Gemkow said he didn't know all what had happened. He knew that Bowden was on life support for several weeks and needed skin grafts, he said.
Court records indicate Gemkow, too, was seriously injured. He stated he owed $1 million to a hospital in Denver for his treatment.
Gemkow, who was 27 when arrested in December, is free on bond until his sentencing.