SPOKANE, Wash. – Court documents released Monday give more details in the circumstances leading up to and after a hit and run of a motorcyclist on the South Hill.
Spokane Police arrested Leslie Hester, 33, on Friday for her involvement in the collision that happened on April 23. The motorcyclist, Daniel “Dutch” Inwood, suffered a serious leg injury that resulted in his leg being amputated below the knee.
Per documents, the first officer on scene noticed a “gold 1990s era GMC Yukon type” vehicle speeding away from the scene of Southeast Boulevard and 11th Avenue. The officer said the vehicle was swerving and driving erratically as if it was trying to get away quickly. The officer also noted that the rear driver side tail light was out and not working.
Officers interviewed those living nearby and one witness told them they saw an SUV driving westbound on 11th Avenue and collide with a motorcycle.
Crash investigators on scene said their preliminary investigation showed the SUV was probably traveling westbound on 11th Avenue and turned southbound onto Southeast Boulevard when the collision happened.
On Friday, officers got a tip that a woman, later identified to be Hester, was repairing the driver side rear taillight of her GMC Yukon that was parked in her driveway. Once on scene later that evening, officers noted the vehicle was a tan 2001 GMC Yukon with an Idaho license plate. They also said the damage appeared to be consistent with the severity and height of the motorcycle striking the vehicle. Officers also noted damage to the rear driver side passenger door, but said that it appeared to have been from two different collisions.
Hester spoke with officers outside her home and initially told them that the damage to her driver side passenger door happened at a Walmart parking lot a few weeks before. Hester then told officers the damage to the rear corner of the car happened on Thursday (April 20.)
Officers asked Hester to come with them to talk about the collision and she agreed.
Meanwhile, detectives interviewed a man who said he agreed to rent a bedroom to Hester for the past few months, but that Hester had not paid him. The man also said Hester stole $30 cash from him and he believes she also took a credit card from him.
Documents said Hester told the man, either two or three days after the collision happened, that a motorcycle ran into the rear of her car and that it was her fault. He said Hester mentioned something about being pulled over by police because she had a taillight missing from her car. She also told him that she knew there was human skin on her vehicle.
"She also told him that she knew there was human skin on her vehicle."— Lindsay Nadrich (@KREMLindsay) May 1, 2017
When detectives spoke with Hester at the station, they implored her to be honest with them to which she began sobbing and apologizing for not telling the truth.
Hester told detectives she had difficulties in her life such as not being able to see her infant daughter, relapsing into methamphetamine use, and not taking her medications for her bipolar disorder.
Hester said on the day of the collision she was arguing with two people who were in the car with her. Hester said one of the people in the car was physically abusive with her and grabbed her by the neck while she was driving. Thus, Hester told detectives she pushed on the gas pedal and she knew that she was involved in a collision. She told detectives she looked behind her and saw sparks. She said she did not call police because she was scared.
Authorities noted that Hester did not have any visible marks on her neck.
The Department of Licensing indicated that Hester has an ID only and is not licensed to drive in Washington state.
Leslie Hester, the driver arrested for the hit & run crash involving a motorcycle, doesn't have a driver's license, according to docs.— Lindsay Nadrich (@KREMLindsay) May 1, 2017
Hester is facing one count of felony hit and run. The Spokane County Jail roster showed Hester was released over the weekend.
Hester appeared in court on Monday afternoon. The state reportedly is asking for a bond of $250,000 even though she was released without bond initially.
According to records Leslie Hester was released from jail over the weekend on her own recognizance, which means she didn't have to post bond— Lindsay Nadrich (@KREMLindsay) May 1, 2017