Alexis Hein-Nutz: Colorado sheriff's deputy killed by illegal immigrant in drunken hit-and-run
WELD COUNTY, COLORADO: An illegal immigrant has been accused of killing a Colorado sheriff's deputy in a deadly hit-and-run. Octavio Gonzalez-Garcia, 36, was arrested on Monday, September 19, in connection with the death of Weld County Sheriff's Office deputy Alexis Hein-Nutz, 24, the Sheriff's Office said. Officials said there is evidence suggesting Gonzalez-Garcia was living in the country illegally. A falsified green card and a fake Social Security card were found in his car.
On Sunday, September 19, Hein-Nutz was riding her motorcycle to work when she was hit by a Ford van that was allegedly driven by Gonzalez-Garcia. After hitting her, Gonzalez-Garcia fled on foot. Colorado State Patrol believe he was "under the influence at the time", according to the Daily Mail. Gonzalez-Garcia drove through a stop sign and hit Hein-Nutz's motorcycle, which collided with the front-passenger side of the van and caught fire. Hein-Nutz was pronounced dead at the scene.
Weld County Sheriff Steve Reams said in a statement posted on Facebook, "It is with a heavy heart I announce today the victim of yesterday’s fatal hit-and-run crash north of Greeley was Weld County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Alexis Hein-Nutz. Alexis was hired in November 2018 and assigned to the Weld County Jail where she served as a detentions deputy. She joined our ranks at the age of 21 and was one week away from celebrating her 25th birthday. Alexis was born in Bismarck, N.D. It was a childhood dream to someday serve others as a peace officer."
"The Colorado State Patrol is leading the investigation into the circumstances of yesterday’s crash with the assistance of the Weld County Sheriff’s Office. As of early this afternoon, I can confirm the driver of the vehicle is known as Octavio Gonzalez-Garcia," the post added. "Gonzalez-Garcia is 37 or 38 years old and residing in this country illegally, as evidenced by a falsified Green Card and a fake Social Security Card recovered from his vehicle. Evidence collected last night shows Gonzalez-Garcia was intoxicated at the time of the crash."
Gonzales-Garcia has now been arrested. In a Facebook post, Weld County Sheriff's Office wrote, "The prime suspect in a hit and run crash that killed an off-duty Weld County Sheriff’s Office deputy has been taken into custody. On September 19, 2022 a warrant was issued for Octavio Gonzales-Garcia, 36, for charges related to the fatal crash that took place September 18 which killed Deputy Alexis Hein-Nutz, 24." The charges against the suspect include leaving the scene of an accident involving death and careless driving resulting in death. The post added, "His first court appearance is scheduled for September 20 in Greeley. As with all suspects, Mr. Gonzales-Garcia is presumed innocent until proven guilty."
Kristin Kovach, who worked with Hein-Nutz at a McDonald's after both of them graduated from high school, told FOX 31 that the former deputy wanted to be in law enforcement. "She knew that's what she wanted to do," Kovach said. "She was very passionate about it, very inspiring."
Ben Selvey, who was once an inmate at Weld County Jail, recalled how Hein-Nutz had an authoritative presence. "I went to jail this summer to clear up a charge I'd had for a while, and she was one of the (Special Response Teams)," Selvey said. "Spending 50 days in jail, I saw her probably five days out of the week, every week. You would think maybe a female officer might not get the respect that a man does, but there wasn't a single dude in that jail (who) wasn't afraid of her."