Miranda Woman Sentenced to Six Months and Community Service in Fatal Hit and Run

Press release from the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office:

District Attorney Maggie Fleming reports that on June 7, 2016 19-year-old Carley Palsson having pled guilty to felony vehicular manslaughter and failure to report an injury accident, was sentenced by Judge Timothy Cissna to 180 days in jail and 500 hours of community service. The sentence was consistent with the report prepared by the Probation Department.

The charges arose from the fact that at about 8 pm on September 1, 2015, Ms. Palsson allowed the vehicle she was driving to drift onto the shoulder of northbound Highway 101 near its intersection with State Route 36. The vehicle struck 48-year-old Kenneth Bryant of Fortuna, who was walking along the highway. Mr. Bryant’s injuries were instantly fatal. Ms. Palsson did not stop, though passengers in the vehicle urged her to do so. She surrendered herself to the California Highway Patrol the next day.

Mr. Bryant’s son, Cody Bryant, and his mother, Ms. Bryant-Boyd, addressed the Court prior to sentencing. Both expressed sorrow over how the crime had affected their family. Cody Bryant also expressed anger at the defendant for not stopping after the collision. Ms. Bryant-Boyd closed by telling Ms. Palsson, “I hope your life goes forward in a good direction”.

Earlier Chapters:



  • Oh she is so lucky out by the end of trim season .Just a bump in the road of life got to love or not California..

  • And she didnt even slow down after she killed the guy? Can someone please explain to me just wtf is goin on here…she lucky he wasnt my loved one [edit] if the DA and judge wont do there job, i would do it for them.

  • Really ?? Six month and community service?? Come on she killed a man and fled the scene!! What kind of judge let’s this young woman off so easy. .. this is so wrong in so many ways.

    • I agree, and I’d like to know more about the passengers who “urged her” to stop….like, they didn’t have cell phones?
      The disregard for personal responsibility doesn’t lie at this woman’s door alone. Those passengers are complicit in this crime. Aiding and abetting.
      How would they have decided the poor guy was dead? His live, mangled body could have lain there for….ever.
      Shame on the whole gang who failed to make that call. af

  • So sorry Cody this is not justice big hug to you and your grandma .

  • LeAnna Carson-Hansen

    Justice has not been served. Sad to see her baloney sentence. I seriously doubt she has learned a “lesson”. The family of the one she killed will forever be without the love, care and concern their lost one had to give them. I am heartbroken over this. She must of had a stellar expensive lawyer. I know I would not make a good juror. I have a hard time at this late stage of my life giving in to rules and protocols. Guess the jury was swayed by her youth. I know of a gal who in the early seventies hit a station wagon and killed the occupants. She got six years, loss of driving privileges for life. She was forever changed by her actions and she has gone on to live a good life since she got out of prison. Yes it was hard on her. She has gone on to live a good life forever knowing her choice to drive drunk changed the lives of so many. So the sentence in this case is so wrong. May she never ever harm another by her choices.

  • The whole thing is sad.the fact she left the scene.was she drunk?I guess to her and the courts,a life is what,worth 6 months.shame on our courts,judges etc.shame.SHE RAN HIM OVER and kept going.my god what kind of a person does that.Theres not one bit of justice here.im so sorry to the Bryant family

  • I feel a man would have received a much harsher sentence.

    • Not if your the ex sheriff that killed the girl on his motorcycle while he was showing off while drunk. His sentence was about as pathetic as this one.

  • sad all around

    im really suprised at the anger over the sentence. she is young and committed a fatal mistake, but she is clearly not of criminal mind and prolonged incarceration would not teach her any more a lesson than she learned the minute she accidentally killed the guy. it would burden us all to imprison her longer and years of imprisonment would in all likelihood change her for the worse, furthering the social burden. an otherwise completely innocent young woman has to live with this for the rest of her life, allow her now to grow to be a better person for the world. physical punishment isnt always justice, judge not lest ye be judged.

    • sad all around

      its also important to remember the man shouldnt have been loitering on the freeway, and imagine the shame one has to put themselves through in reiterating this point to stave an unecessarily harsh punishment for what is still a fatal crime, the whole while experiencing grievous remorse. put yourself in her shoes before stringing a rope to a tree.

      • You are not blaming the man for walking beside the road are you? Yikes.

        • sad all around

          of course not! cmon kym, think about it! i even reiterated that! but that it has to be said, and yes in her defense, despite the shame of having to do so, that the reason its illegal to walk along the freeway, especially at night as this guy was doing, is because somebody might ACCIDENTALLY hit and very easily KILL you! thats what happened! these comments are practically crying murder! he was instantly killed, nobody wanted that to happen!

          i also think you should, as some crime blogs do, caption when a photo is from dmv rather than a mug shot, as people commenting on her picture are criticizing her for smiling after the accident without you clarifying that youve posted her dmv photo, NOT a mug shot.

          • While the color made me think this image was likely a DMV photo, I didn’t know that and can’t say that. The image came from law enforcement with no identifying info. I looked and I don’t see any comments on this post criticizing her for smiling.

            She’s a young kid in a terrible situation. Some of the situation was an accident. Some of it was a choice. Hopefully she will come through this a better person.

            • sad all around

              not on this blog, but “over there” people are virtually lynching her over a smug mug that isnt. i detest crime blogs for these reasons.

              next time you experience any kind of hiccup in your driving, imagine youd just killed somebody in the process. may neither you or your loved ones make such a mistake, as these comments demonstrate a court of your own peers would not be so understanding.

              • I don’t think people are upset that she accidentally hit the guy. It seems they are upset that she intentionally left the scene. Others speculate that she did so in order to sober up. If that is the case, it wasn’t an accident, it was one of two crimes. She didn’t get sentenced for hitting the guy (regardless of the speculation regarding sobriety), she was sentenced for a fatal hit and run.

                • to clarify, then, they are upset she ran, because the fatal part was the accident. have you ever accidentally killed anybody? me neither. i wouldnt blame you for reacting any number of ways out of shock, and id be even more compassionate toward a teenager. the police are very determined to find if somebody was under the influence in an accident, especially fatal, her passengers were no doubt thoroughly interogated as well, and the court did not determine that to be the case so its an unfair act of vitriol to cry for more punishment assuming she was.

                • Who knows she could’ve been transporting I think you made some great points .Yay

              • I understand what you mean when you say that people seem to never imagine making a mistake. There can be an amazing amount of self-righteous posing. (I have a hope that somehow as we talk communally we’ll move past that.) But, possibly because you are upset over the pain someone you love is going through but you seem to me to be a little tone deaf to the relative harm to the young woman and to the man. He broke the law to walk home beside the freeway and died. She drove off the side of the road, hit someone and drove away without trying to render aid. He paid with his life. She with six months. And I’m not advocating for more. Frankly, I’m not sure that jail is the right response for most crimes. But, except in a court of law by her attorney, blaming the victim feels wrong.

                • how am i blaming the victim? ive made it clear im not but that its a double whammy of shitty circumstances. he was literally in the wrong place at the wrong time. i dont know anybody involved, and therefore would never be so insistant for more prosecution of such a young person in a situation like that. do you know the victim and his family? i dont understand such hateful damnation.

                • you seem to be tone deaf to the fact that you believe her time in jail ia the extent of her punishment. she isnt a criminal, shes a teenager who made a fatal mistake and has to live with it forever. it would do us all good for such people to be surrounded by understanding after jailtime, it begets respect from the incarcerated and a want to do good. hate on the real criminals, theres enough of them. choose your fights and get a life.

                • It’s hard not to hear victim blaming when I read you saying this, “the man shouldnt have been loitering on the freeway” as if the poor man was standing in the middle of the road and obstructing traffic. He wasn’t “on” the freeway. He was beside it. He wasn’t “loitering;” he was walking. The man’s biggest crime appears to have been he was too poor to own a car and had to walk.

                  In addition as I read your responses to me, I wonder if you read what I posted. You appear to be creating your own response and not reading the words I wrote. I don’t believe that if she is any sort of thinking human at all that her time in jail is the worst of her punishment. Living with killing someone could be devastating. I don’t know the victim and his family. I don’t know the young woman. And I’m confused by your statement that I’m “so insistant for more prosecution of such a young person in a situation like that….. i dont understand such hateful damnation.” I specifically said that I wasn’t for more jail time. Please don’t conflate all the comments from all the readers into one person’s opinion.

          • You must know her to defend her like this. [edit] the only reason she got off was money. Go after the truck owner. Money won’t bring him back but it will teach the owner not to loan out her truck to people like this.

            • i dont know her at all. you, too, with such speculation? do you have a life? you and kym and these others believe her only punishment is the time she will spend in jail? she isnt a criminal, shes a teenager who made a horrible mistake and has to live with that knowledge for the rest of her life. again, imagine your child doing the same thing.

        • veterans friend

          It actually is against the law to walk on the freeway. Just sayin’

        • Actually people walk way to close to the roadway, and the man who was hit was well known to walk the roadways. When you walk or bike next to high speed vehicles your putting yourself in danger you have no control of someone else’s actions in a vehicle. Therefore you have to be expecting to get hit at some point if you walk roadways everyday. I personally see bums partially in the roadway every single day.
          Not saying it wasnt horrible to keep driving after hitting someone. Just saying that people are dip shits for walking and biking so close to traffic. Not only traffic the amount of novis drivers on the road.

    • Why are you surprised people are disappointed of her sentence? She hit a man, killed him, took off and didnt turn herself in until the media and sheriffs department came looking for her….her sentence is rediculas. If that were my father or yours, can you tell me you would still think it fair? This young lady will have to live with her poor choices, but i doubt this will be the last we hear of her poor choices. Maybe if she had been raised with morals and a concept of right and wrong, this wouldnt have happened. She is a product of her environment, an environment where bad choices are normal.

      • Thank you well spoken .

      • sad all around

        you have no idea what ive forgiven. put yourself in her shoes, remember when you were a teenager, imagine yourself waking up from shock realizing a nightmare is your permanent reality. have some compassion, imagine she is your daughter just the same.

      • I still love Humboldt.

        And if that were your 18 year old little girl who has yet to experience what it takes to make some very scary choices. How many times have you crossed the white line for only 1 second. That’s all it takes.

    • I would have more empathy for her had she stopped. I think the sentence is too light. RIP Mr Bryant.

    • Please see my comment above. af

  • This is bull shit!! 6 months for killing a human being!!
    Not only killing a man but running and denying it all till she got caught!! Then bragging all over Facebook about how she’s not going to do any time because the guy was a bum and no one cared for him anyways!!
    Once I heard this I lost my shit!!
    It docent matter who he was!! Omg!
    She’s lucky I wasn’t her judge, I would have given her a lot harsher sentance!!
    She was right obviously, sadly nothing more than a slap on the wrist sentance for killing a man and running.
    I can guarantee she didn’t learn a damn thing!!

  • well kym, you run a court of public opinion, and this girls punishment extends well beyond her jail sentence. congradulations. youve gathered a crowd who, anonymous to this teenager, will follow her with hate. my mother was homeless, by the way, and my uncle was murdered. im over it. as adults we can choose our fights, and its sad to see this incident be of such significance to anybody but those involved, as they are all no doubt suffering enough already.

    is this how you people spend your free time? damning teenagers on the internet? this blog is backlogged with murdereds and rapists infinitely more deserving of your perverted pastime. get a life! good night, drive safely.

  • Unbelievable I can’t even take it !! That’s it a small slap on the wrist she will be out in no time doing the same shit drunk on drugs and high on god knows what behind the wheel in no time ! Hope my family isn’t in her path ever !!

  • How many of you people out there has ever hit an animal and kept right on driving? Anyone ever hit something and not know what is was that you hit? Even one of you ever hit something and was scared to death and said a quick prayer that it wasn’t a child behind you? I’m guilty of crossing the white line a time or two. Or taking my eyes off the road for just a second. We all are. This girl doesn’t need a linchmod. She need love and prayer and counseling and family and friends to help her get through this for the rest of her life. So sorry for the family of the man that died. So sad for all. If anyone’s knows her and knows she was drunk or high on the night that this happened ,then that would be different. Sounds like everyone is just guessing.

  • I’m angry over this yes,she knew what she did,because she left the scene . we’ve all made mistakes,and learned never to do that again.if she didn’t KILL someone then her punishment fits,BUT SHE KILLED A HUMAN BEING,and left him there.i would never be able to sleep again,then again I would never leave someone dying I just hit.come on really.

  • Sure doesn’t say much for our new DA.

  • Leaving the scene of a “hit and run” automatically marks you as guilty of driving under the influence of drugs and or alcohol. There would be NO other reason to leave a human being laying in the road that you just hit with your vehicle…..I repeat NO OTHER reason!! This sentence is a very sad injustice and if I were the family of the victim I would NOT stand for this…..I smell a rat

  • Have you heard of the “Affluenzia Defense?”
    Another teenager in Texas got parole for killing FOUR people, under the same circumstances. His lawyers’ position (basically) was that the poor kid had been raised in such wealthy circumstances that he could not understand his crime and would be damaged by being jailed.
    Many corollaries come to mind, but “Bleeding Heart” stands alone here. [pls see prior posts] af

  • Yes and his mother fled the country with him . because they knew he knew exactly what he did.now she’s in jail too.shes a winner of a mother.well sweet dreams little buddy,prison is ruff

    While I have little doubt that the offender’s gender or skin color had a large influence on her sentence, I am disappointed with people calling for a more harsh sentence. Let us help her to see and accept her wrongs and to become a good citizen. We are not (yet) taking prison ‘off the table’ but would be giving her a chance to start over.
    Let us think beyond the current system of just being punitive. There is A MUCH BETTER SYSTEM: RESTORATIVE JUSTICE (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Restorative_justice).
    Be it this young white girl, the young white rapist at Stanford, or black drug dealers/ offenders (who have gotten the opposite of the 2 above examples, disproportionately long sentences) etc, let us take more positive, fair and healing path. Restorative Justice provides for taking responsibility, for making amends, and for healing all around. (Yes, victims and/or their families are often involved). Check it out (see link above and plenty other info on line). Ask Hum Co DA Maggie Flemming or others charged (in part) with limiting and resolving crimes to offer it. HUMBOLDT IS A PERFECT PLACE FOR THIS CHANGE TO OCCUR!
    Also, watch Michael Moore’s recent film “Where To Invade Next” for healthy ways other countries are dealing with offenders and how their crime rates are falling!

    • Kym, please read!

      Excellent comment. If anybody truely cares about situations like this, rather than impulsively fueling the lynch mob’s flames it would do a world of good to read the link provided by Old Thymer. Kym, as the proprietor of this blog, that’s especially important for you. “Fairness” isn’t always punitive, and this is a perfect case example. Very surprised at the responses, but not surprised to see that most commenters amount to resident trolls who have something negative to say about the prosecuted within almost every thread.

      • I also said that I didn’t call for more punishment. So are you recommending that I delete people who disagree with me or…? My idea is that if people want to see more positive comments that they take the time to make them. If people stand up for what they see is the right way, we can have a conversation that will help us improve our ideas and our methods of responding to problems. But choking out ideas that we don’t agree with rarely works.

  • Not saying it’s going to be easy but we need to find a way to get the drugs out of the prison system.And stop the other Injustices on prisoners by prisoners.You have to break the cycle of injustice …

  • Ok. So im wondering. Rape vs Felony Manslaughter. Spoiled little pre-olympian vs derelict trimmigrant. 6 months in Jail. White privilege. If this had been a male, well to do, Toyota driving mega-grower…Would he have gotten 6 months in jail? Lets not to mention how much the victims lack of regard for personal safety seems to be the biggest focus of this thread. Thank God there wasnt any non-consentual touching. Then we might actually hear people asking for some accountability!

  • She [edit] deserves to rot in prison forever for what she did

  • heather bottino

    I worked with this girl at a hotel 2 years ago she showed me on her Facebook that when she was 16 she got a brand new Audi from her mother and her parent or parents she wrecked that Audi within six months for her drinking and driving and they had to pull her car out of the river which shows that in the last few years she has not changed her parents enable her and her behavior to the point where it has cause somebody to lose their life. White privileges is exactly what she got and it’s disgusting., she should have to do more than 6 months for killing a human being for her night of fun and her carelessness that she hit somebody and didn’t even have the courtesy to call nine-one-one or stop shows she is a heartless person and should have served time in prison no amount of time is Justified when somebody loses their life. they should pull a hair and blood sample to see if she was under the influence /or on drugs!

  • Young or not??? We all have choices and this young lady made hers when she left the person she hit on the side of the road to die. People are right accidents happen but her choice to leave the scene was far more than what I would consider an accident. People say this young lady has a full life ahead of her….thats great to know but what about the man who already had his life created, he might have had young children her age, people who loved him and needed him. His life shouldn’t have ended the way it did …alone on the side of the road cause some careless “young lady” decided to drive away and leave him there. I pray that she remembers what she has done to this family cause she did get very lucky that she got a slap on the wrist. People need to take it into consideration that people still walk on the roads cause some don’t have vehicles to get them places. So drive safely and pay attention.

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