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PROVO — A woman who admitted to having marijuana in her system when she caused a crash that killed a South Jordan teenager has been ordered to speak with students about the dangers of driving distracted or impaired, in addition to time behind bars.
Kali Shae Hardman, 31, was sentenced Friday to more than five months in jail in the death of Baylor Christian Stout, 13. Baylor, who loved loved hiking and motorcycles, had hemophilia B, a bleeding disorder, according to his family, and tried to make the world better with little acts of kindness.
He was killed July 22 after Hardman's Kia Sedona drifted into oncoming traffic on U.S. 89 near the small community of Birdseye and hit a Ford pickup truck head-on, troopers reported. Baylor, who was travelling in the truck with his father, was rushed to a hospital where he later died. Both had been wearing a seatbelt.
Hardman pleaded guilty in March to driving with marijuana in her system and causing a fatal crash, a third-degree felony, and driving without insurance, a class C misdemeanor.
Fourth District Judge Kraig Powell ordered her on Friday to three years of probation, and to pay roughly $35,000 in restitution to a hemophilia charity, court documents show.
Baylor's parents, Marty and Staci Stout, said they are satisfied with the sentence because it reflects the profound impact of Hardman's actions, but still gives her a chance to make a positive contribution.
But they also believe their son's death exposes a gap in Utah law that imposes lesser penalties on those impaired by certain drugs, including marijuana, than by alcohol.
"Whether it was marijuana or alcohol," Marty Stout said outside the courtroom, "this tragedy still had the same impact on our family, so we'd like to see more equity in the sentencing guidelines."