Deputies arrest woman in fatal hit-and-run

Heather Wood (MDC)

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

Deputies arrested a Los Lunas woman accused of fleeing a crash that left a bicyclist dead last week in the South Valley.

Heather Wood, 32, is charged with leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in death or great bodily harm, and careless driving in the April 10 crash that killed 28-year-old Troy Nichols, a homeless man.

Deputies arrested Wood at her home Tuesday night. She was booked into the Metropolitan Detention Center.

According to a criminal complaint filed in Metropolitan Court:

Bernalillo County deputies responded to the crash around 4 a.m. on Broadway SE, north of Rio Bravo. They found Nichols dead near the bicycle he had been riding.

A deputy pieced together vehicle parts from the scene and found they belonged to either a Dodge Caravan or a Chrysler Town and Country minivan. The Sheriff’s Office released photos of the two types of vehicles and asked anyone with information to come forward.

An anonymous tip came in Tuesday morning that led deputies to Wood’s home, where they discovered a Dodge Caravan with “significant damage” to the passenger side. Wood told deputies she was the designated driver but had at least one drink the night of the crash.

Wood said she was driving south on Broadway when she swerved to avoid something in the road and an object “like a traffic cone” popped up and hit the windshield. She said she got out of the van but didn’t see or hear anything, so she left.

“The damage on the vehicle was so severe, any reasonable person would make an effort to locate whatever was struck, and/or call 911 to report the collision,” a deputy wrote.

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