Bulgarian woman guilty in fatal Las Vegas hit-run case

Image

Christopher DeVargas

Galina Stoyanova Kilova appeared before a judge during a preliminary hearing at the Regional Justice Center, Wed. Dec. 31, 2014. Kilova is accused in a hit-and-run on Nov. 24 that killed 63-year-old Michael Grubbs and injured his 18-month-old granddaughter.

Wed, Nov 4, 2015 (8:20 p.m.)

Click to enlarge photo

Family and friends of 63-year-old Michael Grubbs, who was killed on Nov 24 in a hit-and-run, tear up durring a preliminary hearing for the accused, 29-year-old Galina Stoyanova Kilova, Wed. Dec. 31, 2014.

A jury in Las Vegas found a 29-year-old Bulgarian woman guilty on Wednesday of driving away after her car struck and killed a grandfather pushing a stroller on the shoulder of a busy southwest valley road nearly a year ago.

Galina Stoyanova Kilova, who testified that she didn't know she hit anyone, showed no reaction as the verdict was read.

She'll face up to 15 years in prison for leaving the scene of the crash that killed 63-year-old Michael Grubbs and left Grubbs' 18-month-old granddaughter with minor injuries in an overturned stroller.

Grubbs family members and friends sat as a group in the courtroom during the two-day trial. Some sobbed as the verdict was read.

Clark County District Court Judge Jennifer Togliatti scheduled sentencing for Dec. 22.

Prosecutors Eric Bauman and Brian Rutledge pointed during closing arguments to photos of dents on the passenger side of Kilova's Honda Civic and holes on the corner of the bumper that Rutledge said matched like a jigsaw puzzle with pieces left at the scene the November 2014 crash.

Kilova was running late heading to work at her job at restaurant, and she accelerated as she swerved onto the dirt shoulder of busy Rainbow Boulevard where it narrowed south of the 215 Beltway before striking Grubbs.

Rutledge said Grubbs was thrown onto the hood of the car, and his head hit and dented the windshield post on the passenger side. The stroller was thrown free.

Witnesses describing hearing, seeing and feeling the crash as they sat in their cars, the prosecutors reminded the jury during closing arguments.

"They saw her run down Michael Grubbs," Bauman declared. "They all saw it. She knew she had been involved in a crash."

One witness tried to follow the Honda Civic, but lost it as it turned onto a side street, went down an alley behind stores and headed for the freeway.

Matt Davis, a former U.S. Army combat medic, pulled his black Lexus sedan off the road the moment he saw the crash and tried to help Grubbs. Grubbs had a severe head injury and never regained consciousness.

Kilova surrendered to police eight days after the crash, on Dec. 2.

She was initially released on $20,000 bail but was taken back into custody Dec. 9 by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for having an expired U.S. entry visa.

Authorities say she entered the U.S. in 2006 on a visa that permitted her to stay in the country for six months. She faces deportation once she completes her sentence.

Back to top

Share

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy