BILLINGS - A Billings woman has been charged for causing the death of her boyfriend whose body was found in the grass in front of a South Side business.
Nicola Ann Beverlin, 40, pleaded not guilty Thursday in Yellowstone County District Court to vehicular homicide while under the influence. Beverlin also entered pleas to an alternative felony charge of negligent homicide, and one count of failing to stop or remain at the scene involving death or serious bodily injury, also a felony.
According to charging documents, Beverlin is accused of causing the death of her boyfriend, identified in court records by the initials L.T., on Aug. 12. L.T.'s body was found early the next morning in the grass in front of a business near the intersection of King Avenue East and City Center Circle.
An autopsy later determined L.T. died from a condition known as "flail chest." The autopsy found L.T. had suffered nine broken ribs on his right side and three broken ribs on his left side, which caused his death.
A detective with the Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office recovered surveillance video from the business where the body was discovered, which showed a Chevrolet Avalanche veer off the road and into the lawn of the business at about 9:30 p.m. on Aug. 12. The vehicle pulled to a stop before accelerating forward and driving into the parking lot.
The vehicle returned to the grassy area again before the driver went back and parked in the parking lot.
In the video, a woman is recorded getting out of the Avalanche and walking over to where L.T. can be seen lying in the grass.
"The female spent the next approximately forty minutes interacting with L.T. while he was on the ground," court records state. "The video shows L.T. moving while the female is interacting with him."
Surveillance video from another business captured audio of the incident in which "the female is heard saying what sounds like, 'Dude, move,'" court records state.
The woman then returned to the vehicle and left the area.
Investigators learned about the relationship between L.T. and Beverlin and located the woman and the Avalanche. During interviews, the woman allegedly claimed to have been with L.T. the evening before his body was found and said they had consumed numerous alcoholic drinks. She reportedly stated she did not recall causing the injuries to L.T. that led to his death.