A former officer for the Navajo Nation was sentenced to 16 years in prison for the fatal collision involving a bicyclist in his 60s.
Kevin Richard Hevel, 31, had pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for the crash that killed Peter Rankin on Sept. 22, 2017.
“There is absolutely no excuse for someone to drive impaired and risk the safety of others with so many transportation options available today,” Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery said in a release. “The defendant’s murder of Peter Rankin was senseless and the conviction and sentence for Hevel’s selfish decision illustrates our resolve to do all we can to deter impaired driving due to alcohol and/or drugs.”
Police had received multiple 911 calls that night of a man driving erratically and possibly intoxicated near 95th and Glendale Avenues. As he continued to drive along Glendale Avenue he drove off the roadway and struck Mr. Rankin, who was riding his bicycle on the sidewalk.
The force of the collision sent Mr. Ranking into a light pole, officials said. Mr. Hevel then continued to drive away from the area and collided with a marked police vehicle.
Mr. Hevel told officers he had “a lot to drink” and was found to have a blood alcohol level of 0.235.
Police said Mr. Rankin was 60, but MCAO lists him as 61 in its release.