(Golden, CO – February 14, 2020) A Jefferson County jury returned guilty verdicts in the double vehicular homicide that occurred in Lakewood on May 19, 2019. William Lloyd Jokay-Szilagji, DOB: 6-3-91, was found guilty of 24 counts including four counts of Vehicular Homicide, four counts of First Degree Assault, and four counts of Vehicular Eluding causing Serious Bodily Injury.
Following one week of trial, the jury deliberated almost two days before returning its verdict.
Lakewood police were called to a condominium complex at 12350 W. Nevada Place where they observed a Toyota 4-Runner in the lot, with the engine running. They pulled up behind the vehicle and determined that it was stolen. Agents observed Joday-Szilagji, wearing all black, run up and get into the vehicle. Police commanded him to stop. He ignored them. In an attempt to get away he rammed a police cruiser, injuring an officer; drove through a 6-foot wooden fence; and through a pedestrian area where he was temporarily stuck in a playground sandbox.
Minutes later, two Lakewood police agents were stopped at the light at W. Alameda Pkwy. and S. Kipling Pkwy. They saw a white Nissan traveling southbound on Kipling. They then observed the 4-Runner driven by Mr. Joday-Szilagji traveling east on Alameda Pkwy. without headlights at a high rate of speed. It entered the intersection, against the red light, and collided with the Nissan. The jury heard that Jokay-Szilagji was traveling at 105 mph five seconds before the collision.
Both the 26-year-old driver of the Nissan, Jacob Bowen, and his passenger, 30-year-old Jesse Edmonds, suffered fatal injuries in the crash. Mr. Bowen and Mr. Edmonds had just arrived in Colorado on vacation and were less than three miles from the home of the friend they were here to visit. Both men lived in Kansas.
The two female passengers in the 4-Runner suffered massive injuries.
In days leading up to this incident, Jokay-Szilagji’s crime spree included theft of the 4-Runner and use of financial transaction devices inside the vehicle; a home burglary where he stole a rifle, multiple wallets, credit cards, and a tactical vest; another car trespass; and robbery of a person in a bar in Arvada. The stolen items were found inside the vehicle following the collision. Police also found 4.5 grams of methamphetamine in the vehicle.
Jokay-Szilagji had injected methamphetamine earlier in the evening of the crash. 16 hours later, while he was still at the hospital, he had 300 ng. of meth and 78 ng. of amphetamine in his system.
Jokay-Szilagji remains in custody at the Jefferson County jail. Sentencing has been set for April 2, at 9:00 a.m. He faces decades in prison.
Guilty Verdicts returned on: