Jury finds driver guilty of homicide in crash that killed triplet

NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. - A jury reached a verdict of guilty on all counts Wednesday in the trial of a Hudson woman accused of running down a group of young girls and killing one of them.

Betty Jo Tagerson was found guilty of vehicular homicide, culpable negligence manslaughter and reckless driving.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, on November 5, 2010, Tagerson peeled out her front yard after an argument and almost immediately lost control of her Jeep.

Investigators say Tagerson hit a mail box and ran into a group of young girls playing in a neighbor's yard.  The group included 5-year-old triplet sisters, Delaney, Gabrielle and Isabella Rossman.  Their older sister, 10-year-old Victoria was also there.

Delaney later died, Gabrielle was seriously injured. The other girls escaped with minor scrapes and bruises.

Tagerson testified Tuesday that she blacked out in the Jeep and doesn't remember anything that happened.
But medical experts who took the stand during the trial said she showed no signs of any such problems that would cause blackouts.

The prosecution says Tagerson's Jeep was not fit to drive. They say the driver's side door was broken and normally had a bungee cord attached to keep it closed.

They say Tagerson drove off in such a hurry she did not put the bungee cord on. They told the jury she was trying to prevent the door from opening with her arm and that helped cause her to lose control.

Investigators also say she was going about 5 miles over the 30 mile per hour speed limit.

Tagerson could receive 25 years in prison.

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