Sentencing in Victim Intimidation Case
Sun Valley Man Sentenced to Prison for Charge of Intimidating a Victim of Domestic Battery
For Immediate Release
Contact: Michelle Bays
775.321.4304 (o); 775.771.6049 (c)
May 23, 2016
The Washoe County District Attorney’s Office announced today that a Sun Valley man has been sentenced to 5 years in prison for attempting to intimidate a witness to influence testimony. The charge against the defendant relates to a domestic battery case, also prosecuted by this office and underscores the challenges associated with prosecuting cases involving domestic violence and working with victims of abuse.
Andrew Mikel Kearney, 27 (DOB 5/28/88) from Sun Valley was sentenced in Washoe County District Court on May 11, 2016 on one count of Bribery or Intimidation of a Witness to Influence Testimony, a felony. Kearney was sentenced to 5 years in prison to run consecutive to a jail term for an associated misdemeanor domestic battery case in which he was sentenced to 180 days. Kearney pled guilty in both cases and will have to serve a minimum of two years in prison before he is eligible for parole. The 180 day jail sentence for the domestic battery conviction must be served prior to the prison term.
Kearney’s charges stem from a January 7, 2015 incident in which he sprayed a female victim in the face with bear mace. Deputies with the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office responded to the victim’s 911 call and arrested Kearney. The case was subsequently submitted to this office for prosecution. While the domestic case was being prosecuted, Sheriff’s Office deputies discovered that Kearney had made several jail calls to the victim in an attempt to prevent her from testifying. In the calls, Kearney is heard making intimidating statements to the victim and saying he would file criminal charges against her for filing a false police report. Based on this, Kearney was charged with intimidation of a witness.
In the fall of 2015, the Washoe County District Attorney’s Office established a new program within its Investigations Division designed to enhance the prosecution of domestic violence cases through improved victim contact. District Attorney Chris Hicks said, “The Washoe County District Attorney’s Office is committed to assisting victims of domestic violence. We are seeing positive results with a new office program that focuses on early intervention with victims of abuse.” For additional information, please contact the PIO.