Breckenridge police arrest suspect after fatal hit-and-run
Breckenridge police arrested the suspect of a fatal hit-and-run crash that killed 25-year-old Christina Martinez Hernandez the night of Monday, Aug. 31. Officers arrested 55-year-old Blue River resident Steven James Gravatt on Thursday, Sept. 10, after his vehicle was identified in downtown Denver.
He is charged with failure to remain at the scene of an accident, a class-three felony, arson, a class-four felony, and tampering with physical evidence, a class-six felony.
“We were fortunate that we received the info from Denver Police Department, fortunate we had some great investigators here that were able to put some videos together,” Breckenridge assistant police chief Dennis McLaughlin said. “The department worked great as a team and worked with some other agencies that were very helpful.”
The District Attorney’s Office, Colorado State Patrol, the FBI, the Colorado Information Analysis Center, the Denver Police Department and the Denver Fire Department all contributed to the investigation.
McLaughlin said police were able to recognize Gravatt’s blue Volkswagen Tiguan from compiled video footage, identifying him as the registered owner of the car by tracing his VIN and license plate numbers through the DMV.
Over the weekend, Breckenridge police received a call from Denver police, with reports that the vehicle had been torched.
Gravatt was booked into the Summit County Jail on Thursday, as police continue to investigate the crash. He will appear in court on Friday.
The hit-and-run was the second to take place on Airport Road in the last year, with another crash seriously injuring a Breckenridge woman on Dec. 26, 2014. McLaughlin said that Breckenridge police would conduct a traffic assessment of the area to identify problem areas and possible solutions once the investigation is concluded.
“It’s something we’ll definitely be looking at,” he said. “We’ll be looking at if there are any causing factors.”
“I would like to thank the Breckenridge community for their support and assistance in the investigation of this tragic incident,” Breckenridge police chief Shannon Haynes said in a statement. “With help from other law enforcement agencies — local, state, and federal, as well as continued help from the community in sharing key information — we were able to help begin the closure process for Ms. Hernandez’s family.”
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