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Teen enters plea in vehicular homicide case
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Jacob A. Rives

LARNED – On Monday afternoon in the Pawnee County District Court, Jacob A. Rives, 18 of Ellsworth, entered a no contest plea to vehicular homicide, a class a person misdemeanor, and was adjudicated a juvenile offender, Pawnee County Attorney Douglas McNett said.

The charge stems from a traffic accident that occurred on K-156 near Rozel during the early morning hours of June 7, 2017.  According to the Kansas Highway Patrol accident reconstruction report, Rives’ vehicle was westbound when it crossed the centerline and struck an eastbound semi-tractor trailer driven by Shane M. Edenfeldof Sheldon, Iowa.  

The impact ruptured the front driver’s side tires of the semi causing the truck to pull strongly into the westbound lane where it struck a Ford F-150 operated by Michael Heim of Pratt. Heim, 38, did not survive the crash. 

According to the crash log, all three drivers were using seat belts. 

Following the plea, Pawnee County Magistrate Judge Julie Cowell took a short recess to review impact letters from Heim’s family, McNett said. Since Rives was under the age of 18 at the time of the accident, he was sentenced pursuant to the Juvenile Code to six months supervision with Court Services. As an additional sanction, Judge Cowell suspended Rives’ driving privileges for a period of 90 days to be followed by a 90 day period of restricted driving privileges.