ST. CROIX COUNTY, Minn. (KMSP) - Just over a year ago, 16-year-old Kyra Hayes died while on her way to work, rolling her car after swerving to avoid another driver who had drifted into her lane.
Several witnesses said they saw the other motorist, 22-year-old Makellia Jensen, driving erratically before the crash. Police also found drugs in her car.
But now, more than a year after that October day, prosecutors decided not to pursue a case against Jensen. Despite the witnesses, they felt they could not prove that she was on her phone at the time of the crash.
"There's just no assuming in the court of law that because someone saw her on her phone with both hands 20 seconds before the crash, we can't use our own reason and assume that she was still on her phone," Kyra's mother, Ione Hayes, said.
Still grieving the loss of their daughter, the Hayes are asking people to pause for a second before picking up a phone while driving. Ask yourself, they said, if it's really worth it.
"The next time you're tempted to pick up that phone, picture your daughter or picture your father or picture someone you love and can't live without and decide: Would a text be worth that person dying for?"