Traverse City Record-Eagle

July 12, 2013

Hit-and-run tips expected to eclipse 300


— TRAVERSE CITY — Traverse City police — flooded with tips on the hit-and-run death of a local bicyclist — received a software assist from their state police counterparts.

A steady stream of tips — nearly 300 thus far — has landed on investigators' laps since July 5, when a hit-and-run motorist struck and killed Kelly Ann Boyce, 29, as she rode her bicycle to her Washington Street home. It's a public response unmatched in city Police Capt. Mike Ayling's experience, and he said detectives reached out to a Michigan State Police team before the volume overwhelms them.

"It's a team out of Lansing that handles just tips," he said. "They have software that loads on our computers to assist us ... with tips."

The state police team met with local investigators today, a day after hundreds gathered in F&M Park to celebrate Boyce's life and rode their bikes in a procession across downtown Traverse City.

"I've never been a part of anything like that," said Mike Moran, who serves as spokesman for the families of Boyce and her husband Paul Hurlbert. "It's sad, but I think we did our (best) to give Kelly her justice. She deserved that for sure."

Moran said close family and friends held a private gathering Thursday after the public service and bike procession. They lit sky lanterns at the Open Space and let them fly over the bay.

Authorities worked closely with the family as a reward for information leading to Boyce's killer increased to $50,000. Ayling said detectives seek information on the incident, or from people who traveled Washington Street on July 5 at about 1:50 a.m., or who may have seen a dark pickup truck or SUV or a silver SUV. He said detectives collected video surveillance from the south and east sides of Traverse City in the search for the vehicle.

"We're also collecting receipts from downtown bars," he said.

Detectives plan to collect information from area hotels next, he said.

Members of the public with information on the case can call detectives at 231-995-5152 or call the anonymous tips line at 231-947-8477.