SNOW HILL — A Berlin man, convicted in November of negligent homicide while under the influence after a fatal hit-and-run collision involving a bicyclist, was sentenced on Monday to 20 years in prison, all but 10 years of which was then suspended.
After two days, 100 exhibits and testimony from four experts, a Worcester County jury in November found Jonathan Kidder, 59, of Berlin, guilty of vehicular homicide while under the influence and leaving the scene of an accident involving death. Back in court on Monday, Kidder was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge Beau Oglesby to 10 years for the negligent homicide while under the influence count, five of which was suspended. He was also sentenced to 10 years for the leaving the scene of an accident involving death county, five of which was suspended, for a total of 10 years in prison. Upon release, he will be on five years’ probation including the requirement that an ignition interlock be installed on any vehicle he drives.
On May 6, Kidder was driving while intoxicated when he struck and killed another Berlin man on a bicycle on Route 589. Kidder fled the scene and involved in another accident on Route 50 in West Ocean City about 10 minutes later and fled that scene on foot.
Around 10:10 p.m. on May 6, Maryland State Police (MSP) troopers responded to a motor vehicle collision involving a bicyclist in the area of Route 589 and Gum Point Road near Ocean Pines. Upon arrival, MSP troopers determined the operator of the bicycle had suffered severe trauma.
The bicyclist, later identified as Jose Eduardo Madrid-Pineda, 38, of Berlin, a Honduran national, was transported to Atlantic General Hospital where he was pronounced deceased. Kidder fled the scene of the fatal accident. After Kidder was involved in the fatal accident that killed the bicyclist on Route 589 near Gum Point Road, he fled leaving damaged parts to his vehicle at the scene including a broken side view mirror and broken part of the grill.
About nine minutes later, Kidder was involved in a second unrelated accident near Route 50 and Keyser Point Road. According to witnesses, Kidder got out of his vehicle at the second accident and reportedly said things to those involved in the accident something to the effect that he was so drunk and needed to get out of there, and that he had just ruined his life.
He then fled the scene of the accident at Route 50 and Keyser Point Road on foot, leaving his damaged vehicle behind. Investigators were able to bring damaged parts of the vehicle from the scene of the fatal accident on Route 589 to the accident at Route 50 and Keyser Point and they were consistent with the damage on the vehicle, essentially like pieces of a broken puzzle. In short, the damaged pieces of the vehicle left behind at the scene of the fatal accident on Route 589 allowed investigators to connect him to the second accident nine minutes later on Route 50 and Keyser Point Road.
Kidder turned himself in four days later and was charged with negligent homicide by motor vehicle while under the influence, homicide by motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol and numerous drunk-driving-related charges. The incident was Kidder’s fifth DWI arrest.