Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

As boy is mourned, St. Petersburg police start investigation of 14-year-old driver

ST. PETERSBURG — Stuffed animals filled the hole in the concrete wall where 5-year-old Kevon Wilson died.

Smiley-face balloons, bubbles and caution tape tossed in the wind as loved ones gathered for a candlelight vigil Thursday evening.

Sitting in white plastic lawn chairs in an empty parking spot, Kevon's mother and father wept. Outside, St. Petersburg police officers kept watch.

"That's my baby," cried his mother, Sikkina Wilson, 22. "It's hard, man. It's hard."

The mourners met 24 hours after the car crash that left Kevon dead, a 14-year-old driver under investigation and residents of an apartment complex reeling with grief.

On Thursday, St. Petersburg police released new details about the crash.

Kevon was hanging out in the parking lot of the Pinellas Point Apartments at 2175 62nd Place S with friends Wednesday evening when a 14-year-old girl, who neighbors say is a student at Thurgood Marshall Middle School, got the keys to her mother's car. The girl said she wanted to get some books out of the car.

Police say the girl instead started the Volkswagen Cabrio and backed out of the parking spot with a friend in the passenger seat. Kevon and 8-year-old Jacquez Dawson were between the front of the car and a small wall as the girl backed out.

Police say the girl then shifted into drive and suddenly accelerated into the parking space, striking the boys. Jacquez was slightly injured, and Kevon died as he was pinned against the wall.

Jacquez's grandmother, Rose Wainwright, said in an interview that the girl struck the boys with the car twice.

The girl then panicked and sped backward, the car came to rest with its back wheels on top of a planter, police said. Witnesses said the girl's 13-year-old passenger ran away.

Police are not releasing the driver's name because they say doing so could hinder their criminal investigation. The girl is too young for a driver's license or learner's permit.

"She was driving a vehicle without a driver's license, and she was in a crash that resulted in a death," police spokesman Bill Proffitt said. "We have to investigate that."

The girl's family could not be reached for comment.

Robert Batey, a professor of criminal law at Stetson University College of Law, said the girl could face a range of charges, such as manslaughter or reckless driving, depending on the evidence and the situation.

"It's a classic example of a situation where the prosecutor has discretion," Batey said.

Although the accident took place on private property, police say that has no impact on their investigation.

Kevon's grandmother on his father's side said she feels for the family of the teen.

"That's somebody's child, and being a grandparent, I understand," said Ernestine McCrone. "This is a person here who has to live with this for the rest of her life."

Kevon's mother hopes the girl doesn't go unpunished.

"I'm left with nothing, and I can't let it go like that," Wilson said. "You can't just let a person walk away."

Times researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report. Abhi Raghunathan can be reached at or (727) 893-8472.

As boy is mourned, St. Petersburg police start investigation of 14-year-old driver 05/29/08 [Last modified: Thursday, June 5, 2008 12:35pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. In one day, fundraisers appear to reach goal to move Confederate monument from downtown Tampa


    TAMPA — Hillsborough County commissioners gave an ultimatum Wednesday to people who want to move a Confederate monument from downtown Tampa: Raise the money yourselves or it stays. They had 30 days.

    It took 24 hours.

    Private money is flowing in to help move the Memoria in Aeterna Confederate monument from the old county courthouse to a private family cemetery. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  2. Who are the antifa?


    On Monday, President Donald Trump capitulated to the popular demand that he distance himself from his comment that "many sides" were to blame in Charlottesville by explicitly denouncing white nationalism. "Racism is evil," he appeared to grudgingly concede, "including the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists."

    A group of counterprotesters who identified themselves as antifa, or anti-fascists, rest Saturday during a rally of white nationalists in Charlottesville, Va. Counterprotesters in Charlottesville came united against white supremacy, but they advocated a wide array of beliefs, tactics and goals. [Edu Bayer | New York Times]
  3. Lucky carrot: Alberta woman finds mother-in-law's lost ring

    Bizarre News

    CAMROSE, Alberta — A Canadian woman who lost her engagement ring 13 years ago while weeding her garden on the family farm is wearing it proudly again after her daughter-in-law pulled it from the ground on a misshapen carrot.

    In an undated photo provided by Iva Harberg, Mary Grams, 84, holds a carrot that grew through her engagement ring in Alberta, Canada. Grams, who lost her diamond ring 13 years ago while pulling weeds in her garden, is wearing it proudly again after her daughter-in-law pulled it from the ground on a misshapen carrot. Grams, 84, said she can't believe the vegetable actually grew through and around the diamond engagement ring she had given up for lost. [Iva Harberg/The Canadian Press via AP]
  4. Good luck finding solar eclipse glasses across Tampa Bay, U.S.


    Andi Figart pulled up to the New Port Richey Library on Thursday morning to an unusual sight.

    NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 11: Pairs of free solar eclipse glasses sit on display at a Warby Parker store  on August 11, 2017 in New York City. To view the upcoming total solar eclipse on August 21 eye protection is essential. The designer eyeglass store expects to give out thousands of pairs of the glasses before the event.  (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
  5. Republicans face primary in whirlwind special election for Plant City-area House seat


    PLANT CITY — With qualifying completed this week, the field is set in a whirlwind special election to replace state Rep. Dan Raulerson, R-Plant City — and the race could come down to two candidates in a Republican primary, Yvonne Fry and Lawrence McClure.

    Yvonne Fry is one of two Republican candidates with strong Plant City ties to quality for a special election in state House District 58.