Archive for Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Conviction and sentence upheld in highway worker deaths

November 20, 2012


Douglas County District Court Judge Paula Martin earlier this month upheld the conviction and sentence of a 53-year-old woman convicted of killing two highway workers while driving south of Lawrence in 2007.

Ramona Morgan, of Chewelah, Wash., filed a petition in Douglas County, arguing that she received ineffective assistance of counsel and that her sentence — 26 years — was excessive.

According to Martin's decision, while there were some errors committed by Morgan's court-appoitned attorney, Billy Rork, they would not have affected the jury trial outcome, the judge ruled.

During Morgan's 2008 trial, witnesses testified that Morgan drove around a pilot car twice at a U.S. Highway 59 work zone south of Lawrence on Sept. 11, 2007. The second time she struck and killed two workers — Ty Korte, 30, and Rolland Griffith, 24 — and law enforcement officers had to puncture the tires of her pickup truck in Osage County after a chase to get her to stop.

Morgan claimed she thought she was being chased by a gang of robbers after a dispute over some property she intended to buy in Missouri the day before. Morgan has denied she struck the workers and instead said she ran over construction equipment.

Morgan's earliest possible parole date is in 2030.


midwestmom 5 years, 5 months ago

I'll go one more. I hope she rots and then dies alone and afraid and finally full of regret while in prison. SHE MURDERED TWO TOTALLY INNOCENT PEOPLE who were just trying to earn an honest living.

Jeremiah Jefferson 5 years, 5 months ago

Considering she robbed two inocent people of roughly 80 years, I would say she got a pretty good deal to start with. In fact its too good. If it was me, she would never see the light of day again.

Ron Holzwarth 5 years, 5 months ago

This is a repost of a comment I made on May 24, 2012. Yes, it is true.

Many years ago, I went to St. Luke's AME Church here in Lawrence for one of the barbecues that were being done for a fundraiser. I bought a whole lot of BBQ ribs and took them to a friend's house to share.

I met his roommate, who I had never seen before, and the three of us had a feast of BBQ ribs.

A few weeks later, I visited my friend again and it was obvious that his roommate was not living there anymore. I asked what happened, did he move?

No, he was a highway construction worker, and a motorist had struck and killed him.

FlintlockRifle 5 years, 5 months ago

Judge Malone gave her all the law would allow, like everyone else should have been life behind bars

Danielle Brunin 5 years, 5 months ago

I might be mistaken, but it seems like someone on here said that Kansas doesn't have guilty by reason of insanity so it wouldn't have been possible for her to do so.

somebodynew 5 years, 5 months ago

Jack - from what I understand, that is what her attorney actually wanted to do. But she would not allow it. She probably would have had a better chance if she had done that.

But, I am very thankful that she did not and that she is away for as long as the law allowed.

Jeremiah Jefferson 5 years, 5 months ago

53 years plus 26, she will be 79 if she is able to walk out.. My money says she don't make it the full 26.. Oh well, do the crime, do the time...

Ben Bahe 5 years, 5 months ago

Wow!!, she really needs to be locked up for good.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.