CHICO, Calif. - The suspect makes his first court appearance Wednesday in the alleged drunk driving crash that killed a Chico State nursing student.
Riley Dean Hoover, 19, faces charges including gross vehicular manslaughter, driving under the influence of alcohol causing serious injury or death, and leaving the scene of a collision resulting in great bodily injury or death.
Investigators said Hoover hit Kristina Chesterman, 21, around 11 p.m. Sunday as she was riding her bike on Nord Avenue after studying at the library. Hoover then reportedly continued driving, crashing into two cars in an apartment complex on Nord Avenue.
Chesterman was critically injured. She was pronounced brain dead Tuesday afternoon.
Chesterman is from Livermore in Alameda County. Her family and friends have held candlelight vigils in her hometown and outside Enloe Medical Center in Chico.
Chico State issued a statement Wednesday morning about Chesterman's death.
"It is with great sadness we report that senior Kristina Chesterman passed away yesterday, Sept. 24, in Chico. She was 21. Kristina was riding her bicycle home from studying at Meriam Library Sunday night when she was struck by a car near the intersection of Nord and Stewart Avenues. She was transported to Enloe Medical Center and later succumbed to injuries received in the collision. The driver of the vehicle, who is not a CSU, Chico student, is being charged with driving under the influence of alcohol causing serious injury or death, leaving the scene of a collision resulting in great bodily injury or death, and gross vehicular manslaughter."
"Kristina was born Jan. 14, 1992, and graduated from Granada High School in Livermore. She attended Las Positas College in Livermore and Chabot College in Hayward before transferring to CSU, Chico in fall 2012. She was enrolled in the undergraduate nursing program and was on pace to graduate in spring 2015."
"School of Nursing Professor Peggy Rowberg said Kristina was a dedicated student and class leader well respected by her peers. She said Kristina had completed an internship at Stanford Hospital last summer and was looking ahead to her career as a nurse. "Her classmates said, ‘She took care of us; she looked out for us.' They said she led the class. She was a really nice person and was going to be a wonderful nurse."
We will pass along more information, including any information about services, as it becomes available. The University flag is lowered today in Kristina's memory. "
Students who need support can access free urgent walk-in services at the Counseling and Wellness Center located in the Student Services Building Room 430. The counseling center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. For more information, call 898-6345.