Chandler police: Woman killed, children hurt in crosswalk

[Update as of Aug 2017; no charges, no nothing; nothing on caselookup??]

Nov 2016: A driver was arrested after a collision at crosswalk left one woman dead and two small children seriously injured. The intersection has a signal; police, based on some witnesses, believe the driver ran a red light when he struck the people in the crosswalk crossing Ray Road at College Dr (also known as Ponderosa Dr) in Chandler, AZ. (it may be very near the boundary of Tempe).

Oh, and the driver was driving on suspended license, police say.

Police are investigating if the driver did indeed cause the crash by running a red light; which would make him eligible for the slightly more serious charges of 28-672 (I mean slightly more serious than the civil traffic ticket for running a red light 28-645. A violation of ‘672  is a minor misdemeanor); but additionally if his license was suspended for certain reasons, he would be eligible for the somewhat more more serious charges of 28-676 / 28-675 (serious injury / death) ; which are a class 5 / 4 felony. More about 28-672,5,6 here.

There are a number of traffic court entries for the driver over the years; though none indicated conviction of DUI; there were two DUI dismissals where the driver plead guilty to reckless driving (TR-2000004847, TR-2009003241 gulty reckless driving, and TR-2005004583 Dui/dismissed all Flagstaff). And a number of other traffic-related tickets.

The fatal victim has been identified as Pamela Hesselbacher, the two childred (a 2 and 3 year old) “remained in critical condition at the hospital on Monday…”. That news story didn’t give any updates on the suspect’s situation.

Here’s another tidbit:

Police investigators are trying to assess if he ran a red light, with Lieutenant Scott Veach saying, “Preliminary information indicates that they had the walk sign and that the light was red when the driver came through. We are still sorting that out through witnesses, but the first two witnesses we talked to confirm that.”

A slightly newer news story explains: “…because Epperlein is suspected of causing death and injury, while on a suspended license, it’s considered a felony.” thus he’s awaiting charges… though no charges (or citations) were ever filed, at least according to caselookup last checked 8/25/2017 no idea why , over nine months later.

Crash Report

This is a Adot incident # 3201832.
Nothing notable; it is as described in the news reports: the driver is said to have disregarded a signal, striking the victims who were crossing in a marked crosswalk.

But it is an unusual combination because it’s a fatal crash that involved a (not fatally injured) bicyclist, the fatal counts are askew. There were bicyclists in 31 fatal collisions in 2016 and 31 bicyclists were killed; though one of the incidents involved a double-fatality.

 

CHANDLER, AZ – One person has died and two more seriously hurt after a crash in Chandler.

The [a-word deleted] happened around 6 p.m. Saturday afternoon near College Avenue and Ray Road.

…The driver was arrested for allegedly causing death by use of a car while driving on a suspended license and may have run a red light.

Police have identified the driver as William Joseph Epperlein.

“Preliminary information indicates that they had the walk sign and that the light was red when the driver came through. We haven’t confirmed that yet. We are still sorting that out through witnesses, but the first two witnesses we talked to confirmed that,” said Lt. Scott Veach, with the Chandler Police Department.

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