Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Wednesday

October 2, 2013

Peace eludes Boyce family

TRAVERSE CITY — Nicole Nostrandt fears she'll never know who killed her sister.

Nostrandt's peace of mind remains as elusive as the motorist who struck her younger sister, Kelly Ann Boyce, on July 5 as she pedaled her bicycle home on Washington Street.

"It’s day-by-day," Nostrandt said. "You see little things. Things that remind you of her. It's never not in your mind every day. Our pain, it might lessen some, but especially not knowing how or who did this leaves it so raw."

Nostrandt said her family's "biggest fear" is the three-month-old case is going cold -- tips from the public slowed to a trickle and police still have no suspects. Boyce's family and friends hope to keep the case and her memory alive through billboards, posters, social media postings, a makeshift memorial and events.

Traverse City Police Capt. Mike Ayling said the case has "moved on" from a once-promising lead involving a man who splits his time between Traverse City and Alpena County. The Alpena tip raised hopes among Boyce's family and friends that authorities were closing in on a suspect.

"We had our hopes up there," said Mike Moran, a friend of Boyce and her husband Paul Hurlbert. "I think everybody did."

Grand Traverse County Prosecutor Bob Cooney said his office provided detectives with legal advice throughout the investigation, but hasn't made statements about whether charges could be pursued on particular tips. He said an investigative subpoena recently was prepared that requested information that could narrow a search for a suspect vehicle described by witnesses as a dark pickup truck or sport utility vehicle.

Ayling said detectives are looking to check every dark Ford vehicle registered in Grand Traverse County. He said two detectives remain full-time on the case, down from the original 11, and are close to managing the once-unwieldy 600-plus tips from the public.

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