"She had hopes and dreams of becoming a Marine biologist and this man took that away from her," the devastated dad shared.
Trigger Warning: This article mentions gun violence which some readers may find distressing.
A homeowner in Hebron, NY, identified as 65-year-old Kevin D. Monahan, killed a 20-year-old woman after her vehicle mistakenly pulled into his driveway. "The homeowner fired at least two shots, one of which struck the victim while she was a passenger in a vehicle. Through the preliminary investigation, it was learned that the vehicle, the victim was in, mistakenly pulled into the driveway at the Patterson Hill Road address," the Washington County Sheriff's Office stated in a news release. Monahan "fired at least two shots" at the vehicle and the victim, identified as Kaylin A. Gillis, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Her family is utterly devasted by her shocking death. "My daughter was an honor student. She had hopes and dreams of becoming … a Marine biologist and this man took that away from her," Andrew Gillis, Kaylin's father, told CBS News on Wednesday, April 19.
Gillis was in a car with three others on the night of April 15 when they pulled into the wrong driveway, Washington County Sheriff Jeffrey Murphy said during a press conference. "While they were leaving the residence after they determined that they were at the wrong house, the subject came out on his porch for whatever reason and fired two shots, one of which struck the vehicle that Kaylin was in," Murphy said per CBS News. "It's a very rural area, it's dirt roads, there's not a lot of cellular services or any type of internet," added Murphy, explaining that the vehicle drove up Monahan's driveway "in error."
BREAKING: A 65-year-old man has been charged with second-degree murder after police say he shot at a car that had mistakenly turned into his driveway Saturday night.— Times Union (@timesunion) April 17, 2023
20-year-old Kaylin A. Gillis, from Saratoga County, was killed.
FULL DETAILS: https://t.co/GaDLqCIgsD pic.twitter.com/1C0NLLNBAh
Officials claimed Monahan was uncooperative and wouldn't come outside to talk with officers. "He was later taken into custody with the assistance of the New York State Police Special Operation Response Team after several hours," shared the Washington County Sheriff's Office in their release.
The homeowner has been charged with murder in the second degree. He is yet to reveal why he shot at the vehicle. "There was clearly no threat from anybody in the vehicle," Murphy said. "There was no reason for Mr. Monahan to feel threatened." As for the victim she came from a very good family. "From all indications, she was an innocent young girl who was out with friends," he said. "This is a very sad case of some young adults that were looking for a friend's house and ended up at this man's house who decided to come out with a firearm and discharged," said Murphy, adding that the department is in the early stages of their investigation, per PEOPLE.
Washington County Sheriff Jeffrey Murphy says 4 young adult friends in a car Saturday night in Hebron were looking for a friends house when they drove up the wrong driveway. Kevin Monahan exited his home and fired 2 shots at the car, killing 20 year old Kaylin Gillis @CBS6Albany pic.twitter.com/ApY6Uz3NYm— Ashley Dager CBS 6 (@ashleydagertv) April 17, 2023
"(It) angers me so badly," her father said of his daughter's killer. "I just hope to God that he dies in jail." Her boyfriend of four years is also reeling from the shocking loss. Blake Walsh, 19, was in the vehicle when his girlfriend was killed. "We thought we were at the right address," Walsh told NBC News. "We didn't have any cell service to figure it out. As soon as we figured out that we were at the wrong location, we started to leave, and that's when everything happened."
Kaylin Gillis’ father speaks with reporters about his daughter’s death https://t.co/J570Nxek06— WNYT NewsChannel 13 (@WNYT) April 19, 2023
"My friend said, 'They're shooting — go!' I tried to step on the gas as fast as I could, and that's when the fatal shot came through," Walsh said. His girlfriend was shot in the neck and was later pronounced dead by medical staff.
"I want the world to know how good of a person she really was and how much she impacted everybody who had the fortunate opportunity to be in her life," he added. A GoFundMe page has been set up for the victim's family and funeral expenses and so far has raised over $127,102 so far.
Kaylin Gillis' boyfriend says his life is shattered after driveway shooting https://t.co/EKc6kaE6Pt— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) April 19, 2023
Meanwhile, Monahan's lawyer Kurt Mausert described the sheriff's version of events as a "superficial, simplistic" account of what actually happened. "I believe we have a series of mistakes that led to a tragedy," Mausert said. "But I don't believe my client is a villain. But not every case with a tragedy has a villain, and I think this is one of them."
This is 20 year old Kaylin Gillis of Schuylerville. Police say she was shot and killed when the car she was riding in turned down the wrong driveway and the homeowner opened fire on the car. 65 year old Kevin Monahan of Hebron has been charged with her murder. @CBS6Albany pic.twitter.com/qkY02x1mfe— Jacquie Slater (@jacquieslater) April 17, 2023
Cover Image Source: GoFundMe