Mont Vernon motorist Travis Hobbs told police he thought he hit a snowbank when he allegedly drove off after fatally injuring an Amherst man, but the state says Hobbs knew or should have known he hurt someone — and left anyway.
Hobbs, who turns 21 on Thursday, faces an additional felony charge of failing to immediately stop his vehicle after the collision that led to the death of former Amherst Fire Chief John Bachman, 71, two days before Christmas.
A Hillsborough County grand jury has handed up two indictments against Hobbs, charging him with conduct after an accident in addition to negligent homicide. Both Class B felonies carry maximum penalties of seven years in prison and $4,000 in fines.
Hobbs allegedly was using his cell phone when he drove west past Bachman’s 100 Merrimack Road home, striking Bachman as he was getting his mail from his mailbox.
Bachman’s wife, Marilyn, found her husband lying in a snowbank at the end of their driveway. Bachman was rushed to Southern New Hampshire Medical Center in Nashua, where he died from multiple blunt-impact injuries.
Hobbs, who lives with his parents at 110 Brook Road, Mont Vernon, turned himself in to police the next day. He was released on $50,000 personal recognizance bail at his initial hearing on Dec. 24 in Nashua and ordered to continue living with his parents.
In charging Hobbs with conduct after an accident, the state maintains Hobbs “knowingly” failed to immediately stop his vehicle and identify himself when he knew or should have known he had just been involved in a personal injury collision.
The negligent homicide indictment alleges Hobbs hit Bachman because he was using his cell phone and not paying proper attention to the road while driving his vehicle.
The grand jury handed up the indictments April 17.