Judge to sentence man for death of Casper cyclist
Prison

Judge to sentence man for death of Casper cyclist

Widow: 'His time is his restitution'

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A judge is expected to send a Casper man to prison Monday for killing a Casper bicyclist while driving drunk last year.

The sentencing comes exactly one year after Matthew Harker and his family moved to Casper, Matthew’s wife, Stacy, said. Harker died on May 30, one day after Lamont Allen Arthur Jr. struck him with his SUV while Harker was commuting to work on his bike.

Stacy Harker will be in Natrona County District Court on Monday and plans to read a victim impact statement to the judge, she said. Her three sons, Quinton, 9, Sawyer, 4, and Gavin, 2, are staying in Utah, where Stacy relocated after her husband’s death to be closer to family. Stacy will be accompanied by Matthew’s parents and several of his siblings and friends.

Arthur pleaded guilty in November to aggravated homicide by vehicle. As part of a plea agreement, prosecutors said they will not ask for more than 16 years in prison.

The cyclist’s wife said she believes Arthur is remorseful. She didn’t immediately open a letter she recently received from Arthur because she was afraid she would feel sorry for him.

“I don’t think I feel sorry for him,” Stacy said. “I know that he has young kids, too, and he hurt them as well, but if nothing else, the letter explained that he was sorry for what he did.”

Stacy said she and her boys are going to group grief counseling. It helps the kids to know they’re not the only ones who have lost a parent, she said.

Some days are easier for her family than others. Milestones that are the hardest, Stacy said, like her husband’s birthday last month. He would have turned 40.

“I asked our friends to help us complete 40 random acts of kindness,” Stacy said. “People all over the world participated. It was pretty amazing.”

Stacy spread the word on social media, using #mattslegacy. Some people bought lunch for their colleagues and others gave away coffee to strangers. Stacy and her boys took donuts to the local police department.

She said she hopes Arthur receives the maximum sentence for her husband's death.

“But I don’t mean that in an angry or bitter way,” Stacy said. “I feel that his time is his restitution.”

Eyewitnesses said Arthur had been drinking and was driving erratically at the time of the crash.

A friend who was in Arthur’s car prior to the collision asked to be let out because of Arthur’s reckless driving. Blood tests indicated Arthur’s blood alcohol concentration at the time of the crash was above the legal limit for driving in Wyoming.

Arthur turned himself in to Casper police July 3, three days after authorities issued a warrant for his arrest. Court records show Arthur has a previous conviction for driving under the influence and causing injury to his girlfriend.

Contact Lillian Schrock at 307-266-0574 or at lillian.schrock@trib.com. Follow her on Twitter @lillieschrock.

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