The game is called “dinging” and the teens were doing it to hear the rocks ding off the cars, making different sounds.
Kenneth A. White, 32, of Mt. Morris, died Oct. 18, 2017, after a rock came through the windshield of the vehicle and hit him in the chest, he was riding on southbound Interstate 75 in Vienna Township. Although he was rushed to a nearby medical center, the Michigan healthcare professionals were not able to revive him and were forced to declare the father of five dead at the hospital.
Kyle Anger, 20, was part of a group of five teens charged in connection with the 2017 death of Kenneth White who was riding in a van on Michigan’s Interstate 75 when a large rock came crashing down from an overpass.
Teresa Simpson didn’t hold back her emotions after hearing the first sentence in what has been a long journey toward justice for her son.
“A young man was taken from a family, a loving, caring family and he was a loving, caring, compassionate person and now his son has to grow up, his daughter has to grow up…without him,” said Simpson. “Where is the fairness here? 39 months for murder…This is a great injustice. This is a slap in my face. This is a slap in my son’s face.”
Anger, who was 18 at the time, was the oldest of the teens involved and the one who threw the rock that struck White, according to prosecutors. Anger pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in exchange for other charges being dropped.
His sentence of 39 months to 20 years in prison includes credit for 740 days spent in jail since his arrest in 2017,
In addition to the second-degree murder charge, the five teenage boys – 17-year-old Kyle Anger, 16-year-old Mark Sekelsky, 16-year-old Mikadyn Payne, 15-year-old Trevor Gray, and 15-year-old Alexander Miller – were also charged with conspiracy to commit second-degree murder and six felony counts of malicious destruction of property.
White and his friend Steve Amthor were driving home from work on Oct. 18, 2017, when Amthor said he saw a large rock coming toward the vehicle. The rock entered the passenger side through the windshield, hitting White in the face, and then ricocheted from his face to his chest, authorities said.
While the teenagers and their parents want Michigan authorities to go easy on the boys, the prosecution and local law enforcement do not see any fun in the “prank” gone wrong.
Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell said:
“It’s not a prank, I don’t think anybody’s laughing. You make a bad decision; you could be spending the rest of your life in prison.”
More details of the incident from AWM:
After tossing the rocks from the overpass and killing White in the process, the teens went to a local McDonald’s to celebrate their success. Meanwhile, local authorities set out to hunt down the teenagers responsible for tossing the rocks off the overpass. One of the teens turned himself in to authorities and confessed to the crime. After that teen turned himself in, the other teens were arrested in short order.
The teens threw at least twenty rocks and a loose tire from the overpass. They were throwing these objects at cars that were traveling at 70 miles per hour.
Meanwhile, White’s family and his widow are stunned by the death. His fiance, Amy Cagle, told reporters about what she had to say to White’s five-year-old son when the little child asked when daddy would be coming home. It was tragic.
“He was a good man and a good father,” Cagle said. “For some senseless act, for it to be just a rock, just to take him so soon. He took away a child’s father and the love of my life. His stupid act took away a life.”
White’s sister, Alicia Waskoski, also commented: “I just don’t understand what a person could be thinking to even want to do something like that. To know they’re putting lives in danger by just throwing rocks over the overpass.”