Missoula County prosecutors have decided against filing a felony charge against a woman they say hit and killed Hellgate High School senior Chance Geery. Investigators say the woman, Yoon Hee Cho, had driven up onto a sidewalk and struck Geery.
An investigation into the matter had found that Cho, a University of Montana Associate Professor, was distracted, but had not been texting, drinking or speeding. City prosecutors will likely file a misdemeanor careless driving charge.
Some Hellgate students NBC Montana spoke with said that Cho will have to deal with the incident for the rest of her life, and so a felony isn’t necessary. Others expressed anger that a driver who prosecutors say struck and killed their classmate won’t face a felony.
Cho’s attorney, Paul Ryan, says his client is remorseful, and is looking at contributing to a scholarship in Geery’s name.
“She feels really bad about this. She knows it has had a great impact on a lot of good people,” said Ryan.
Ryan says Cho will likely plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge, which prosecutors expect to be filed next week.
Meanwhile, critics have created a “Real Justice For Chance Geery #58” Facebook page, which had hundreds of “likes” on Friday. NBC Montana has also received word that folks have tentatively organized a protest in front of the Missoula County Courthouse next Friday at 4:00 pm.