Traverse City Record-Eagle

July 9, 2013

$10,000 reward offered to help find killer

BY MATT TROUTMAN mtroutman@record-eagle.com
Traverse City Record-Eagle

---- — TRAVERSE CITY — Police continue to chase leads in the hit-and-run death of a Traverse City bicyclist, and the victim’s family and friends offered a $10,000 reward to help find the killer.

Traverse City Police hadn’t arrested anyone by Monday afternoon in the July 5 death of Kelly Ann Boyce, 29, said Capt. Brian Heffner. Boyce was riding her bicycle home from work when a dark pickup truck or SUV struck her from behind in the 600 block of Washington Street and dragged her more than a block to a Railroad Street alley.

“We’re getting a lot of calls on the tip line,” Heffner said. “We’re trying to follow up on all of them, but so far there’s been nothing substantial or complete.”

Boyce’s death sparked an outpouring of grief and concern in the Traverse City community where she lived and worked for the past decade. A funeral is scheduled Thursday at 2 p.m. in F & M Park and the two downtown businesses where she worked — North Peak Brewing Company and Kilkenny’s Irish Public House — will be closed the entire day.

Mike Lloyd, general managing partner, said he pressed the establishments’ owners to close to give Boyce’s friends and coworkers time to grieve.

“It’s a tremendous tragedy,” he said. “I can’t put it into words.”

Boyce was returning home from a double shift at North Peak the night she died. Before she left, she stopped downstairs in Kilkenny’s to see her husband Paul Hurlbert play a show with Mike Moran Music. Band leader Mike Moran said he set up the $10,000 reward through his company Quarter After Entertainment after consulting with Traverse City police.

“The only reason we went forward was we thought it was a good idea,” he said. “I know they’re doing a good job.”

Moran said donations and other assistance to Boyce’s family can be sent at www.remembertolove.org — a website named after a phrase Boyce’s grandmother was fond of saying.

News of the incident struck a chord among bicyclists outside Traverse City. Dennis Bean-Larson, a Traverse City resident who runs a popular bicycle website, said news stories about Boyce’s death have been shared tens of thousands of times on Facebook. He said Traverse City may rank as a Bicycle Friendly Community, but could do more to improve safety -- like install wider bike lanes similar to those seen in Portland, Ore. or improve crosswalks along Seventh Street.

“The incident pushed my buttons from different number of standpoints,” he said.

The public can call detectives at 231-995-5152 or call the anonymous tips line at 231-947-8477. Heffner said the suspect’s vehicle likely would show damage on the passenger side.

“Our guys have stopped every dark-colored pickup or SUV in Traverse City,” he said.

Moran said he believes police will find Boyce’s killer soon.

“I believe in my heart we’re close,” he said.