BLOOMFIELD (KDKA) – An aspiring local artist was run down in the street and left for dead Sunday morning. Wednesday, her alleged killer is in police custody.
Police say a witness and some surveillance video helped them track down the driver.
Jessica McChesney, 26, was hit by a car around 2:30 a.m. Sunday near the intersection of Baum Boulevard and Morewood Avenue. She later died at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital.
In a criminal complaint, there were details about an unnamed witness who gave police the name of the driver allegedly involved in that fatal hit and run and where police could find the vehicle allegedly involved. Just hours after that interview with the witness, police arrested 21-year-old Kyle O’Connor.
O’Connor was questioned Tuesday by Pittsburgh Police. Charges immediately followed. Police believe O’Connor was driving a gray Toyota RAV4 down Baum Boulevard near Morewood Avenue in Bloomfield early Sunday morning when he hit and killed McChesney.
“It helps bring a little bit of closure in a certain way,” J.T. Seelman, the victim’s boyfriend, said.
On Tuesday, police interviewed a witness, who told them to go to South Graham Street, just half a mile from where the accident happened. There, in the parking lot behind the apartment building where O’Connor lives, police say they found the damaged RAV4.
“It might have been difficult, and I just really appreciate that person stepping up,” Seelman said.
During questioning, O’Connor allegedly admitted to drinking in the South Side that night after leaving work at the Fox Chapel Yacht Club. Police report that O’Connor told them McChesney ran into the road in the early morning hours, and he freaked out after the accident – didn’t stop, just drove home.
“This is a 21-year-old kid who made a really awful, horrible decision that not only impacted his life, it impacted everybody, so many people,” Seelman said.
Seelman described her as the most loving person he’s ever met – an artist in her spare time, he says she made a lasting impression on so many lives.
“I just want to thank everyone involved, from the police to the person who stepped up to the people at the hospital who tried all night to save her and people who spread the word to find who did this,” he said. “I thank everyone for that.”
O’Connor remains at the Allegheny County Jail, unable to post $15,000 bond.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family with funeral expenses. McChesney’s funeral is scheduled for Friday in Union City which is near Erie. McChesney graduated from WVU a number of years ago and in lieu of flowers, family has asked that donations be made to the Alpha Kappa Psi business fraternity at WVU where McChesney served as an officer.
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