Statesville Police Department investigator retires amid hit-and-run investigation

A Statesville Police Department investigator whose assigned vehicle was involved in a hit-and-run after he reported it stolen New Year’s Day has retired amid an ongoing investigation, according to the agency.

The Hickory Police Department says Christopher Rivera reported the vehicle stolen at 1 a.m. that morning in the 6000 block of Glenwood Place Court. This is in south Hickory not far off Highway 127. An assault was also reported.

Roughly eight hours later, shortly before 9:00, the Highway Patrol responded to a single-vehicle hit-and-run where it found the city-owned vehicle crashed into trees at the intersection of River Road and Sandy Ford Road. The Highway Patrol’s report estimates the driver was traveling at the posted speed limit, 45, before the accident and about 35 at the time of impact.

The Statesville Police Department deferred to the Hickory Police Department concerning investigation of the vehicle being stolen before the accident. An internal investigation of the events continues. The Hickory Police Department has not yet responded to WSIC’s most recent request for information.

Rivera turned himself in to the Catawba County Sheriff's Office on Thursday, March 14. He was released on an unsecured bond.